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Gold star for Starbucks?

Corporate philanthropy is rapidly evolving. As we argue in the book, what has traditionally been a discretionary activity typically in the gift of the chief executive, and of uncertain value to shareholders, is turning into a corporate citizenship programme designed to advance a company’s core for-profit strategy. If we are right, companies will be far […]

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Social Entrepreneurship for Conservatives

On Friday, Matthew moderated a panel discussion on income generating strategies for non-profits, at the annual conference put on by students at New York’s Columbia Business School. With a keynote address by Jeff Immelt, the boss of GE, and the title, “The Moment of Now: Market Innovations in Social Enterprise”, the conference was full of […]

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Just Another Emperor?

Earlier this year, Mike Edwards of the Ford Foundation launched a pre-emptive strike against philanthrocapitalism. In “Just Another Emperor: The Myths and Realities of Philanthrocapitalism”, he challenged our excitement about the potential of a new generation of businesslike philanthropists, questioning whether they really have any special skills to offer and suggesting that they are bad […]

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The globalisation of philanthropy

We think that the emergence of heavyweight philanthropy in the developing world is a major part of the philanthrocapitalism revolution.  Two big recent announcements caught our eye. First, that the 2008 Mo Ibrahim Prize for African leadership has gone to Festus Gontebanye Mogae, the former president of Botswana, a country that has managed its natural resource wealth better […]

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Intermediation on the up

An interesting report has just come out predicting a boom in philanthropic advisory services in Europe from the Scorpio Partnership, a wealth managment consultancy (yes, rich people do still exist), commissioned by New Philanthropy Capital. Based on a survey of wealth advisors in Europe, Scorpio found that only 50% of the private banks interviewed thought […]

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Angelina Jolie speaks

The movie star Angelina Jolie drew a full house on October 17th when she spoke at New York’s prestigious Council on Foreign Relations. As we have found, taking “celanthropists” (celebrity philanthropists) seriously can get you accused of being star struck, so the same accusation may be leveled at the collection of leading policy thinkers, diplomats, […]

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Make three wishes

The annual TED Prize has been announced. The winners get $100,000 each plus the chance to make “One Wish to Change the World. No Restrictions”. In February, they will get the chance to make their wish in front of the trendy do-gooders at the annual Technology Entertainment Design Conference, and hopefully persuade them to help […]

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System failure opportunity

SoCap08, the first of what is likely to be an annual conference on “social capital markets”, has been taking place in San Francisco. Matthew delivered a keynote speech about Philanthrocapitalism. Some 650 people attended the event, around two-thirds of them registering in the past couple of weeks, since the demise of Lehman Brothers. Kevin Jones […]

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The public interest revisited

Got a very kind and thoughtful e-mail from Rob Reich at the Stanford University Center on Philanthropy and Civil Society, whose 2005 article A Failure of Philanthropy in the Stanford Social Innovation Review poses important questions about the tax subsidy to giving.  For example, if rich families give to the schools their children attend, then they […]

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Hair shirt anyone?

Martin Brookes of New Philanthropy Capital has written a provocative editorial in the latest issue of their Giving Insights newsletter, taking to task a recent book by two leading British commentators Polly Toynbee and David Walker, Unjust Rewards. Brookes says that they mock Arpad Busson, founder of hedge-fund charity Absolute Return for Kids (a bit like the Robin […]