Giving Compass’ Take:
• Morgan Stanley Philanthropy Management helps define “systems change” and explains how it may be shifting how organizations tackle society’s most complex problems.
• Do we have the resources, talent and willpower to commit to systems change work? How can we mobilize partnerships to scale such efforts?
For anyone who doubts the breadth and depth of public generosity, here are a few numbers to consider: The U.S. has more than a million public charities, funded by over 105,000 private foundations, along with millions of businesses and individuals, who together give more than $350 billion a year.
Why then do so many social, economic and environmental challenges seem more intractable than ever? The answer may lie in how we look at society’s problems: As isolated issues to tackle, or as a complex, interconnected web of causes and effects.
Enter the breakthrough notion of systems change, which is shifting how philanthropic organizations approach problem-solving. Systems change acknowledges that society’s ills are complex. To drive lasting progress, organizations should first analyze the systemic causes of a problem, then scale impact by partnering with complimentary organizations that each bring a specialized focus.
“The definition of insanity is to keep doing the same thing and expect a different result. If we continue as individual actors, we will continue to waste our precious assets and not achieve the results we seek,” said Melanie Schnoll Begun, Head of Morgan Stanley Philanthropy Management.
Read the full article about the roots of philanthropic systems change by Morgan Stanley Philanthropy Management.
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