Giving Compass’ Take:
• Rockefeller Philanthropy Advisors released a report on the best practices for diversity and inclusion efforts, and further explain how those practices help inform effective philanthropy.
• How will diversity help drive progress for more equitable funding actions? How can individual donors benefit from diverse perspectives on giving?
• Read more about how diversity and inclusion make for powerful philanthropy.
Part of the Philanthropy Roadmap series, this guide aims to explain how diversity and inclusion can be used as practical considerations for getting better results. Diversity is the practice of including a full range of perspectives, ideas and experience in philanthropic decision-making. Inclusion seeks the participation of individuals from diverse backgrounds in the process.
These principles have a strong association with philanthropic efforts to create a more just and equitable society, especially in regard to historically disadvantaged populations. See the Z. Smith Reynolds Foundation case history on page 10.
But any philanthropist—working in any issue area—can benefit from adopting a policy of including diverse voices at all levels of their giving program. The New York Times expressed the idea concisely in a 2008 headline: “Diversity is Productivity.” “There’s a lot of empirical data to show that diverse cities are more productive, diverse boards of directors make better decisions, the most innovative companies are diverse,” says systems scholar, Professor Scott E. Page of Michigan University and author of the book The Difference: How the Power of Diversity Creates Better Groups, Firms, Schools and Societies.
In philanthropy, tapping into diverse thinking is common sense. Better-informed funding decisions often require a more comprehensive analysis of both problems and their solutions. The principles of diversity and inclusion also enhance the cultural competency of any giving program—building a deeper and more operational understanding of the diverse people and communities it aims to serve.
Read the full article about diversity, inclusion, and effective philanthropy at Rockefeller Philanthropy Advisors.
People from different backgrounds have varying ways of looking at problems, what I call ‘tools.’ The sum of these tools is far more powerful in organizations with diversity than in ones where everyone has gone to the same schools, been trained in the same mold and thinks in almost identical ways.”