The Role of Design and “Design Thinking” in Philanthropy

At the turn of the current century, after decades of academic percolation, the concept of “design thinking” began to expand rapidly in popular business literature and conversation. Although finding a clear, consistent explanation of design thinking is rather like asking bridesmaids to agree on the perfect shade of blue, Wikipedia offers this definition: Design Thinking refers to the methods and processes for investigating ill-defined problems, acquiring information, analyzing knowledge, and positing solutions in the design and planning fields. As a style of thinking, it is generally considered the ability to combine empathy for the context of a problem, creativity in the generation of insights and solutions, and rationality to analyze and fit solutions to the context. Ill-defined problems. Combining empathy, … Continue reading The Role of Design and “Design Thinking” in Philanthropy

read more >

4 Resources To Help Foundations Prepare For The Next Disaster

There really is no substitute for planning and preparedness when it comes to effective disaster response. An hour you spend today could save days in response time when time is most critical. Here are four good reads to start: The Jessie Ball duPont Fund’s Creating Order From Chaos: Roles for Philanthropy in Disaster Planning and Response, was published earlier this year and contains learnings from the massive tornado disaster in Alabama last spring. Best Practices in Disaster Grantmaking: Lessons from the Gulf Coast, was published by the New York Regional Association of Grantmakers (now Philanthropy New York) in 2008. It describes the philanthropic responses to Hurricanes Katrina and Rita that were deemed “successful” by funders and grantees, and offers recommended practices … Continue reading 4 Resources To Help Foundations Prepare For The Next Disaster

read more >

8 Longer-Term Ideas for Funding Disaster Recovery

Disaster recovery can take years, and there are many opportunities for grantmakers to have a meaningful impact long after other resources have moved on. Yesterday we share 6 Things Grantmakers Can Do Right Now To Help Hurricane Sandy Relief. Today we want to share 8 longer-term ideas for supporting disaster recovery, recommended by our colleagues at the Center for Disaster Philanthropy in a recent National Center for Family Philanthropy newsletter: Recognize that there are places private philanthropy can help that government agencies might not. Situations that arise during and immediately after disasters (such as the hospital generator failure in New York or levee failure in New Orleans) can offer prime opportunities for funding academic research on causes and best practices … Continue reading 8 Longer-Term Ideas for Funding Disaster Recovery

read more >

6 Things Grantmakers Can Do Right Now To Help Hurricane Sandy Relief

It’s heart wrenching to see images of a disaster aftermath on TV, like the one we’re still watching in the wake of Hurricane Sandy. It’s even more heartbreaking when it happens in your neighborhood. What are the best and most effective ways for a grantmaker to help? Here are 6 things you can do right now: 1.  Follow updates on recovery needs and ways to engage via the recently launched Center for Disaster Philanthropy. 2.  Make a donation: A few places to consider are the Center for Disaster Philanthropy’s Hurricane Sandy Disaster Fund, Red Cross, or the United Way Hurricane Sandy Recovery Fund. 3.  Use the Council on Foundations’ Community Foundation Locator to find community foundations in affected areas to … Continue reading 6 Things Grantmakers Can Do Right Now To Help Hurricane Sandy Relief

read more >