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Weekend Link Roundup (January 22 - 23, 2011)

January 23, 2011

Palm_tree Our weekly roundup of new and noteworthy posts from and about the nonprofit sector....

Disaster Relief

GuideStar president and CEO Bob Ottenhoff offers his perspective on what our expectations of international aid organizations should be following a natural disaster.


On The Choice blog, New York Times reporter Jacques Steinberg announces the three finalists for the Get Schooled Affordability Challenge, "a national competition...in which current and aspiring college students were asked to devise better ways to administer and award financial aid."


"If foundations want to be real leaders in advancing social change, they must move past the endless happy-talk that makes every grant sound like a success," writes Michael Remaley on the Foundation Center's Transparency Talk blog. "Instead, they should use their Web sites to detail how they are evaluating their work and what they've learned from unexpected outcomes."


In conjunction with Martin Luther King Jr. Day, Rosetta Thurman offers some thoughts on one of Dr. King's lesser-known speeches, The Drum Major Instinct, which King delivered on February 4, 1968. In her post, Thurman reminds us "that the way to honor our heroes is not to merely quote them, but to embody their most sage advice in our life and work." One way for nonprofits to do this, says Thurman, "is by redefining the status quo of WHO is considered a leader within our organizations and removing barriers to service in our communities."


On his Tactical Philanthropy blog, Sean Stannard-Stockton wonders why, in a world that's moving ever faster, so much of institutional philanthropy is content to operate at a twentieth-century pace.

Poverty Alleviation

Philanthrocapitalism bloggers Matthew Bishop and Michael Green consider several comments responding to an earlier post in which they compared microcredit pioneer Muhammad Yunus to the mythical Greek titan Cronus (who devoured his own children rather than let them take his place in the heavens). "Our complaint against Mr Yunus is not that he thinks mistakes are being made, or that he wants proper regulation of microfinance," write Bishop and Green. "We agree with him on those points. It is that rather than making a justified warning against mission drift by for-profit microfinance institutions, he is making sweeping generalisations that seem to be ideological rather than grounded in reality...."


"There seem to be people who will ask for a [retweet] on just about anything they do," writes Zoetica co-founder Geoff Livingston. "Given the lack of capital that is involved in kicking out a RT these days, does it mean anything?" What do you all think?

And after sharing a few broad themes from Blackbaud's new white paper outlining top technology trends in the nonprofit sector, Katya Andresen offers a few thoughts of her own.

That's it for now. What did we miss? Drop us a line at rnm@foundationcenter.org and have a great week!

-- Regina Mahone


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Quote of the Week

  • "[L]et me assert my firm belief that the only thing we have to fear is...fear itself — nameless, unreasoning, unjustified terror which paralyzes needed efforts to convert retreat into advance...."

    — Franklin D. Roosevelt, 32nd president of the United States

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