Exploring the new frontiers of philanthropy

Enormous social, economic and environmental problems confront the world today, yet the resources of both governments and traditional philanthropy are barely growing or in decline. It is increasingly clear that new models for financing social and environmental objectives are urgently needed. Fortunately, a significant revolution appears to be under way in the tools and actors mobilizing private resources in support of social and environmental objectives.

Where earlier such support was limited to charitable grants and gifts made available directly or through charitable foundations and corporate giving programmes, now a dynamic array of new instruments and institutions is being deployed – loans, credit enhancements, equity-like investments, capital aggregators, funding collaboratives, social stock exchanges, secondary markets and many more.

While these changes are significant, their full scope has yet to be visualized, let alone pulled together and examined in a systematic way. To address this gap, the Johns Hopkins New Frontiers of Philanthropy Project has assembled an experienced team of scholars and practitioners to produce the first comprehensive and accessible overview of this emerging field in the form of the New Frontiers of Philanthropy volume, to be published by Oxford University Press later this year. Through its 24 chapters, this volume will introduce readers to the striking array of new actors and new tools taking their place on the frontiers of philanthropy and social investing, and to some of the cross-cutting issues and challenges these developments pose. Building on this foundation, a training package is in prospect to take the book’s message out to a variety of audiences.

Philanthropy is being reinvented in the 21st century. Like all such reinventions, this one is full of risks. But with governments reeling under escalating debt and traditional philanthropy struggling, the risks of standing pat seem even greater, especially since the door to a possible different future seems open.

For more information
Contact Lester Salamon at lsalamon@jhu.edu or William Burckart at william.burckart@jhu.edu
Johns Hopkins website: http://www.ccss.jhu.edu/index.php?section=content&view=9&sub=106

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