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Weekend Link Roundup (November 25-26, 2017)

November 26, 2017

Giving-TuesdayOur weekly roundup of noteworthy items from and about the social sector. For more links to great content, follow us on Twitter at @pndblog....


In the Bangor Daily News, Chris Gates, former president of the National Civic League and executive director of Philanthropy for Active Civic Engagement, argues that the House Republican plan to eliminate the estate tax "would hurt [the] country, and the people of Maine, in significant ways" — with charitable giving all but certain to be one of the biggest casualties.

Which state is the most generous? And which is the least? Mona Chalabi, data editor at the Guardian USand a columnist at New York magazine, has a state-by-state breakdown on the FiveThirtyEight site, for which she was previously a lead news writer.


Here on PhilanTopic, the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation's Karabi Acharya shares some of the ways the foundation scours the globe for ideas with the potential to improve health and health care in the U.S.

International Affairs/Development

Yemen is on the brink of a terrible famine. Amanda Erickson reports for the Washington Post.

"[W]ithout the ability to conduct accurate, timely, and robust progress measurement," efforts "to advance human health and development...and the SDGs have an unaddressed Achilles heel," writes Philip Setel on the Devex site. But there is a way forward, says Setel. Because of technological advancements in data collection and processing, and a landmark investment from Bloomberg Philanthropies and the government of Australia, "for the first time in history it may be possible to count every human life and make the invisible visible."

On his Nonprofit Chronicles blog, Marc Gunther reports on the efforts of Village Enterprises, a small NGO headquartered in San Carlos, California, to fight poverty in East Africa with something called results-based financing.


In an interview with HuffPo contributor and Ireland Council of State member Ruairí McKiernan, former Atlantic Philanthropies head Gara LaMarche argues that "[f]unders badly need to rethink their approach to philanthropy if they are serious about social justice."

Are Shark Tank-style competitions featuring nonprofits really an effective way to allocate scarce resources and deliver the disruptions and breakthroughs they often promise? In the Nonprofit Quarterly, Sheela Nimishakavi, a nonprofit finance and operations professional, says the evidence for such claims just isn't there. 

The mind-boggling news that auction house Christie's sold Salvator Mundi, believed to be the last known painting by Leonardo da Vinci in private hands, for $450 million, prompted the Artsy website to ask six luminaries from the world of arts, economics, bioethics, and development to share how they’d spend $450 million.

In The Atlantic, Helaine Olen profiles Resource Generation, "the almost 20-year-old nonprofit that works with wealthy people between the ages of 18 and 35 to encourage them to devote a portion of their financial assets to left-wing causes, including addressing the economic divides between the haves and the have-nots, and race and gender discrimination...."

PEAK Grantmaking (formerly the Grants Managers Network) and Foundation Center are interested in better understanding the practice of "grants management" and the role it plays in decision making at foundations. You can help by completing this short survey.

Public Affairs

In a post on the World Wide Web Foundation site, Sir Tim Berners-Lee, the inventor of the World Wide Web and the foundation's founding director, argues that the protection of net neutrality — "the fundamental principle that all content should be treated equally online — is vital "to individual empowerment, democracy, and economic growth."


And in honor of International Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women, which this year fell on November 25, the Hilton Prize Coalition, an independent alliance of the twenty-two winners of the Conrad N. Hilton Humanitarian Prize, is shining a spotlight on 2006 Hilton Humanitarian Prize laureate Women for Women International and the work that organization is doing with women who have been displaced by war and conflict in the Kurdistan region of Iraq and around the world.

That's it for this week. Got something you'd like to share? Drop us a line at mfn@foundationcenter.org.

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