White House asks Jane Wales to convene meetings on social innovation

Jane Wales, President of the Global Philanthropy Forum and touted as the most powerful woman in philanthropy, has been asked by the White House to hold a series of meetings over the next year to explore how the federal government can work with philanthropists and NGOs to spur social sector innovation. She told PND News Digest that the meetings would ‘take a look at specific solutions to key problems’, such as the ‘disparities in access to quality education in this country … What we hope to do is to put together a group of experts in the field to identify theories of change in that area, identify the key strategies that flow from those theories, consider the division of labour among the public, private, and philanthropic sectors, explore the possibilities for public and private partnerships, and come to a shared view of what the metrics are for success.’ Interviewed by Harvard Business Review, she said that ‘this is an administration that at the very top easily understands the world of social change and how it’s achieved’, adding: ‘In the face of reduced resources and growing problems, you have to turn to those actors who are most agile and flexible. And I’d argue that the philanthropic and non-profit groups fit that bill.’

For more information

http://foundationcenter.org/pnd/newsmakers/nwsmkr.jhtml?id=248900019 http://blogs.harvardbusiness.org/hbr/hbreditors/2009/04/in_advance_of_the_eighth.html

Next News to read

Make-up of foundation boards crucial to decisions about investment

Alliance magazine