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Weekend Link Roundup (December 26-27, 2015)

December 27, 2015

New-years-resolutionsOur weekly round up of noteworthy items from and about the social sector. For more links to great content, follow us on Twitter at@pndblog....

Arts and Culture

Eight years after its controversial Central Library Plan was greeted with alarm and derision, the New York Public Library  is moving forward with a $300 million renovation of its historic midtown campus, and this time, library leaders say, "it's a different story." WNYC's Jessica Gould reports.

How can we talk about art and artists in a way that makes clear their contributions to quality of life in the communities we call home? Veteran policy advocate and communicator Margy Waller shares some thoughts on Americans for the Arts' ArtsBlog.

Civil Society

On the Open Society Foundations' Voices blog, OSF president Christopher Stone notes the troubling fact that, in countries around the world and for a variety of reasons, "active citizenship is under attack and the space for civic engagement is closing."

Climate Change

Andrew Simmons, founder of the JEMS Progressive Community Organization and the Caribbean Youth Environment Network and a previous winner ('94) of the Goldman Environmental Prize, talks to the folks at GEP about the global agreement forged at the recent Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC/COP21) summit in Paris and whether it is enough to save vulnerable island-nations from disaster.

Corporate Philanthropy

Based on Corporate Responsibility magazine's list of the 100 Best Corporate Citizens of 2015, the folks at the JK group share ten lessons from their work that make these companies the best in philanthropy and how yours can follow suit.

Criminal Justice

On the Marshall Project site, Vincent Schiraldi, formerly director of juvenile corrections for Washington, D.C., and a senior advisor to the Mayor's Office of Criminal Justice in New York City, argues that in order to truly end mass incarceration in the U.S., "we need to completely shutter the doors of youth prisons...."

Higher Education

On Medium, Donovan X. Ramsey, a multimedia journalist whose work puts an emphasis on race and class, reports on the ongoing efforts of "students of color, black students in particular," to create a place for themselves at historically white institutions like the University of Missouri.

The New York Times' Jacob Bernstein reports on Sandy and Joan Weill's long history of charitable giving and their on-again off-again $20 million naming gift to Paul Smith's College in upstate New York.


From an eco-friendly brick to a lamp powered by plants, 2015 witnessed dozens of innovations with the potential to improve the lives of people around the globe.


Inside Philanthropy's David Callahan uses the second annual IP Philanthropy Awards (the IPPYs) to highlight some of the important personalities, organizations, and trends in philanthropy that he and his contributors covered in 2015.

A year on, Jocelyn O'Rourke, formerly a Philamplify fellow at the National Committee for Responsive Philanthropy and currently a research associate at the Criminal Justice Policy Foundation, shares her thoughts on Detroit's philanthropy-driven "grand bargain." 

Why are billions of charitable assets, money that "is supposed to help nonprofits and those in need," being held in private foundation endowments and bank accounts? Ray Madoff, a professor of law at Boston College and co-founder of the Forum on Philanthropy and the Public Good, shares her thoughts with the team at Tiny Spark, a website dedicated to "investigating the business of doing good."

On the HistPhil blog, Benjamin Coates, who teaches U.S. and world history at Wake Forest University, reviews Patricia Rosenfield's new book, A World of Giving: Carnegie Corporation of New York – A Century of International Philanthropy.

And PRWeb reports that Rockefeller Philanthropy Advisors and the Marshall Institute for Philanthropy and Social Entrepreneurship at the London School of Economics and Political Science on a project called the Theory of the Foundation, which was started by RPA in 2013 and aims to "enhanc[e] the capacity of foundations to align resources for effectiveness and to extend the field of knowledge about foundations as institutions."

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

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