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Trust-based philanthropy

Trusted partnership: pushing the boundaries of traditional grant-making and trust-based philanthropy

1 Anna Hirsch-Holland 28 July 2022

Trust-based philanthropy has been critiqued for emphasizing unrestricted funding to the detriment of ‘criteria- and data-driven’ (thereby ‘unbiased’) funding. Its defenders argue that it is about much more than unrestricted funding, highlighting also the streamlined …


Funders and charities should be equal players in a collective effort

Ben Cairns and Kamna Muralidharan 9 May 2022

In response to recent exchanges in Alliance magazine about the nature and efficacy of trust based philanthropy, we join the founders of the Trust-Based Philanthropy Project in encouraging all funders to ‘look beyond the headlines …


We practice trust-based philanthropy. Here’s what it looks like

1 Lauren Janus and Janell Johnson 1 May 2022

Recently, Simon Sommer of the Jacobs Foundation in Switzerland wrote a critique of the practice of trust-based philanthropy (TBP), a framework for giving that’s gained popular acclaim within our sector over the past several years. …

A historical case for trust-based philanthropy

7 Greg Hilditch 28 April 2022

Like any other field of human activity, philanthropy has gone through different fashions over the years. Whether it’s impact philanthropy or participatory grantmaking – every new idea about how the wealthy should give has come …

Imagining a world where we trust young feminists

Purity Kagwiria and Juliana Vélez Uribe 24 April 2022

When we think about the ways that philanthropy has worked historically, what we’ve heard from and shared with young activists during the Pro-action Cafe (a community space for open conversations about the practice of resourcing …

We’re here to clear the air on what trust-based philanthropy is and what it isn’t

3 Carrie Avery, Pia Infante, Philip Li and Brenda Solorzano 21 April 2022

Recent pieces in Alliance magazine have attempted to poke holes in trust-based philanthropy, the approach to giving that is being increasingly recognized as a strategy to address the inherent power dynamics between funders and nonprofit …

Letter to the editor: Trust-based philanthropy is not a myth, it’s a solution

Devon Kearney 13 April 2022

Like Simon Sommer says of himself, I may not know what trust-based philanthropy is. But I have a good idea of where he goes wrong. Let’s set aside the broad generalizations (‘unrestricted funding seems to …

Is the trust-based philanthropy bubble about to burst?

3 Charles Keidan 6 April 2022

If trust-based philanthropy is the new orthodoxy sweeping the philanthropic world, then MacKenzie Scott is its undisputed champion. Scott has turned the institutional philanthropy model on its head donating over $12 billion to nonprofits over …

It’s time to ditch the mantra of trust-based philanthropy

2 Simon Sommer 5 April 2022

The omnipresent demand for so-called ‘trust-based philanthropy’ is, at best, naïve. At worst, it can be counterproductive and dangerous. What our sector has to achieve instead is unbiased funding. In current conversations among philanthropists, providing …