Rethinking Philanthropy

Creating a Culture of Gift

Philanthropy seems to lack a representative cultural voice in the arts today, so what might be the major themes of an artistic and cultural movement devoted to the life of philanthropy?
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The Transformation of Philanthropy: Causes, Processes, and Foreseeable Results

Philanthropy is undergoing a classic paradigm shift—a particular kind of historical change, which has a usefully intelligible character and direction. The generic phenomenon was identified by Thomas Kuhn, in The Structure of Scientific Revolutions (Chicago, 1962), and was readily applied in other fields of historical scholarship, especially to describe revolutionary change. More broadly applied, it refers to the total transformation of a mature field of human endeavor—“mature” in the sense of fully and coherently organized in its conceptualization, methodology, technology, and demographics, and fitting into its broader historical milieu, including technology, economy, societal infrastructure, cultural norms, and institutions.

Empowering, Not Enfeebling: Beyond the ‘Market V. State’ Dichotomy

The very core of philanthropy is the desire to do something, and rightly so. But sometimes we need to pull back and let individuals work to form their own associations, based on their own goals and taking advantage of their dispersed knowledge and diverse talents.

Poverty and Politics in Tocqueville’s Memoir on Pauperism

Alexis de Tocqueville's Memoir on Pauperism can help us understand the unintended consequences of apparently benign “solutions” and can help us become more fully aware of the difficulties of solving the problem of need in the modern world.

Why State-Led Humanitarian Action Fails

Foreign aid intended to alleviate poverty has largely failed and, still worse, in many cases caused additional harms to those who were already suffering.


Will the ties of community based on mutual need continue to fray thanks to centralized charity (welfare) and the comfort of the coming plenty? Or will abundance lower the costs of each of us to become a superphilanthropist?

Education for Charity: A Spiritual Visitation

How can we educate for charity? How can we help those we care most about realize their full charitable potential? We might explore the human ascent from the pit of avarice to the heights of charity.

Pioneer Virtues

For the Western pioneers, justice was a concrete action to be taken in specific circumstances, not an abstraction; happiness was a pursuit, not a right; and democratic decisions were a practical more than a political responsibility.
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Social Innovators

Profit, Compassion and Grit

CleanTurn provides general labor services to local businesses and organizations in Columbus, Ohio. While fulfilling market demand, CleanTurn also provides market-wage employment opportunities to individuals who have high obstacles to employment, including prior incarceration.

Freewheelin’ Dreams

12-year-old Atticus Ryan attaches pedals to a used bike When Nancy Stimson retired from youth ministry in 2004, she had no intention of starting her own non-profit.

Pay-it-Forward Tutoring

Co-founders of Forward Tutoring at the Dallas Mayor’s Back to School Fair Students don’t always need teachers to learn.

A Q&A with Founder of The Soleil School

Similar to Skybridge Academy but for elementary school children, The Soleil School operates around the idea that each child is the center of the learning experience.

Bringing Life to a Food Desert

“What do you love about your grocery store?” an interviewer asks California locals on a Youtube video.

So All May Eat

In the heart of Denver on Colfax Avenue, you enter a cheery storefront café and step in line to see what’s on the menu today.

The Garden That Gives Together

De Vay Photography In the heart of Austin, Texas, a sprawling three-acre community garden teems with life: young couples and retirees work alongside each other, planting their first plot or harvesting their 30th season of heirloom tomatoes.
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