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Weekend Link Roundup (May 12-13, 2018)

May 13, 2018

Pexels-photo-414659Our weekly roundup of noteworthy items from and about the social sector. For more links to great content, follow us on Twitter at @pndblog....

Arts and Culture

Power is shifting at the top of U.S. museums — and that's a good thing. Nadja Sayej reports for the Guardian.


If the latest Atlas video released by Boston Dynamics hasn't got your attention...well, take a look. But before Atlas and his pals decide that we're all so much useless wetware, you might be wondering what the implications of AI for nonprofit marketers are. Forbes contributor Dionisios Favatas, digital lead for the award-winning Truth Initiative, a youth tobacco prevention campaign, shares some thoughts.

Google has rather sneakily announced significant changes to its popular Google Ad Words program. In a post republished on Beth Kanter's blog, Whole Whale's George Weiner fills in the details.


New menu labeling rules that require chain restaurants and other food retailers to provide calorie counts and other nutrition information to their customers are about to go into effect. How did we get here? And how do the guidelines connect to the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation's Culture of Health vision? The foundation's Jennifer Ng'andu explains

Higher Education

"Anyone who believes that public higher education is crucial to our democracy should be alarmed by the recent suggestions by George Mason University’s president that donations to the institution from the Charles Koch Foundation have had 'undue influence in academic matters,' " writes Rudy Fichtenbaum, a professor emeritus of economics at Wright State University and president of the American Association of University Professors, in the Chronicle of Higher Education. Why? Because such donations threaten the twin principles of shared governance and academic freedom that "ensure that institutions of higher education serve the public interest, as opposed to the narrow special interests of big corporations, wealthy donors, or powerful politicians." 

The 18-year-olds graduating high school this spring have known schools as sites of violence their entire lives. How can higher education support them and help advance the movement they have started to prevent gun violence in schools? On the Inside Higher Ed site, Kathleen McCartney, president of Smith College, shares some thoughts.


Nonprofit Chronicles blogger Marc Gunther profiles Leap of Reason author, philanthropist, and social sector thought leader Mario Morino as the tireless Morino sets his sights on "build[ing] a movement to improve the performance of America's charities." 

Nonprofit AF's Vu Le is trying to work less — and explains why you should, too.


A "toxic culture of fear, blame and intimidation” reinforced by the "inaction" of senior leadership and HR was how a July 2017 letter to the board signed by sixty-five employees of the Silicon Valley Community Foundation characterized the workplace there.  New York Times' reporter David Gelles looks at how one of the biggest "success" stories in philanthropy unraveled.

In the New York Times, Harold Pollack, a professor of social service administration and public health science at the University of Chicago, has some thoughts about how Amazon founder Jeff Bezos, who has amassed a $131 billion (with a "b") fortune and finds himself in a position where he can spend more than $6 billion every year, pretty much indefinitely, can use some of that wealth to help people here on Planet Earth.

On her Social Velocity blog, Nell Edgington poses a question that many others were asking at the recently concluded Grantmakers for Effective Organizations conference: Is philanthropy disrupting or perpetuating the system of inequality from which it was born? 


And on our sister Transparency Talk blog, Melissa Moy announces the release of a new GrantCraft guide, Open for Good: Knowledge Sharing to Strengthen Grantmakingpart of the center’s #OpenForGood campaign, as well as details about the inaugural #OpenForGood Award, which aims to bring recognition and visibility to foundations that share their challenges, successes, and failures with the goal of strengthening how we all think and act as a sector.

Got something you'd like to share? Drop us a note at mfn@foundationcenter.org

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