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Weekend Link Roundup (August 15-16, 2015)

August 16, 2015

Julian-bond-1940-2015Our weekly roundup of noteworthy items from and about the social sector. For more links to great content from and about the social sector, follow us on Twitter at @pndblog....


In the first Q&A for their new Community Insights series, the folks at Markets for Good speak with Andrew Means, co-founder of the Impact Lab and founder of Data Analysts for Social Good.


Good post by Beth Kanter on six fundraising platforms that have disrupted charitable giving forever.

In a review of Will MacAskill's Doing Good Better: How Effective Altruism Can Help You Make a Difference, Nonprofit Chronicles blogger Marc Gunther says that if "Effective Altruism catches on more widely – and that's a big if – it will disrupt traditional philanthropy, change the way individuals donate to charity and force nonprofits to get much better at measuring impact...."

Global Health

Think the world is getting worse? Max Roser and the folks at OurWorldinData.org have a dozen or so charts and tables that suggest otherwise.

The continent of Africa recently celebrated a year without a single recorded case of polio. On Slate, the Gates Foundation's Jay Wenger explains why that is cause for optimism but not complacency.


In an op-ed in the Chronicle of Philanthropy, Sonya Campion, a trustee of the Seattle-based Campion Foundation, argues that advocacy is a basic responsibility of all nonprofit boards.


On the Social Velocity blog, the Packard Foundation's Kathy Reich, who usually doesn't agree with those who urge nonprofits to act more like for-profits, says there is one area where nonprofits lag their for-profit peers: talent assessment, development, and management.


On the HistPhil blog, a skeptical Pablo Eisenberg responds to a post by HistPhil co-founder Ben Soskis in which Soskis suggests that the Ford Foundation's decision to focus its grantmaking on eradicating inequality "might augur a critical shift" in the tendency of wealthy Americans to "substitute 'generosity' for 'justice'."

What if inequality isn't the urgent problem that most people think it is? On the Atlantic's City Lab blog, Richard Florida cites a new Century Foundation study by Paul Jargowsky to argue that worsening economic segregation is a bigger problem.

"If you look at the major forces of progress in world history, philanthropy isn't high up there. Scientific research and technological innovation, however, are," writes Dylan Matthews on Vox. And that is why Google co-founder and billionaire Larry Page seems to be signaling that he plans to use his own fortune "to enforce a vision of Alphabet/Google as a company that invests in ambitious, crazy-seeming ideas."

Congrats to Jürgen Habermas and Charles Taylor, who will share the $1.5 million John W. Kluge Prize for Achievement in the Study of Humanity. Habermas and Taylor are the ninth and tenth recipients of the award, which is administered by the Library of Congress. More details here.


File under Ideas Whose Time Come: What do the poor need? Let's ask them. David L. Kirp, a professor of public policy at the University of California, explains.


Brian Mittendorf, a professor of accounting at Ohio State University, explains why the Clinton Foundation's treatment of funds passed through to the Clinton Health Access Initiative (CHAI) may be an issue that continues to dog the foundation for some time to come.

"[A]s the number of donor-advised funds has increased, so too have the challenges for nonprofits and the donors themselves. That's because there are some very real legal restrictions on how grants from donor-advised funds can be distributed." Alan Cantor explains.


And Beth Kanter reflects on a decade of designing and delivering interactive webinars, including this bit of wisdom: "[T]he most important point is that we have to think...about webinars less as a push and more [as] a pull. It is less about disseminating content and best practices and more about pulling ideas and knowledge in through many-to-many interaction...."

That's it for this week. What have you been reading/watching/listening to? Drop us a line at mfn@foundationcenter.org or via the comments section below....


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