Commentary and Opinion

Philanthropy News Digest invites opinion and commentary on topics of importance to the philanthropic sector. For more information, contact Kyoko Uchida, PND's features editor, at kyu@foundationcenter.org.

Six Key Trends Transforming Jewish Philanthropy

Six Key Trends Transforming Jewish Philanthropy

Lisa Eisen   |   February 11, 2011

Today, with the benefit of hindsight and a slowly rebounding economy, it is clear that while the financial crisis had a painful impact on giving, it did not provoke an abrupt reversal of course. Rather, it accelerated tectonic shifts already well under way in philanthropy....

Achieving Real Justice: Funding Criminal Justice Reform

Achieving Real Justice: Funding Criminal Justice Reform

Timothy Silard   |   January 18, 2011

An ambitious, multiyear plan to reduce the number of women behind bars...a major push to expand job opportunities for Californians with past convictions by advocating with major businesses and state government to change hiring practices....

Volunteering to Change the World

Volunteering to Change the World

Michelle Nunn   |   November 18, 2010

At the Points of Light Institute we believe in tapping into the power of people through service. At the core of this theory of change is our conviction that supporting the participation of young people in volunteering and service is critical....

How Better Data Will Shape the Future of Social Problem Solving

How Better Data Will Shape the Future of Social Problem Solving

Andrew Wolk, Colette Stanzler   |   November 11, 2010

We are on the brink of a sea change in how we generate and use data to address social problems and change is exactly what we need. Although significant data on social issues exist, much of it is either not publicly available or is not action oriented. Indeed, quality information about nonprofit performance is scarce and not typically standardized to make it possible to compare organizations working on the same social issue. As a result, we don't know whether the billions of dollars invested annually in nonprofit organizations by the public and private sectors is achieving the desired results or even any results at all....

Opera's Continued Growth

Opera's Continued Growth

Melanie Feilotter   |   October 29, 2010

Opera is not a quiet endeavor, particularly during National Opera Week, when companies take to the streets with events such as "Pop-Up Opera," free dress rehearsals open to high-school students, and performances in libraries....

Defending Civil Liberties for Generations to Come

Defending Civil Liberties for Generations to Come

Donna McKay   |   September 15, 2010

Five years ago, in response to an unprecedented assault on civil liberties by the Bush administration that made a mockery of the Constitution and the rule of law through such practices as torture, indefinite detention, and illegal government spying....

A Networked Approach to Social Innovation

A Networked Approach to Social Innovation

Carol Thompson Cole   |   August 18, 2010

Hundreds of thousands of young people across the country are struggling to make the transition to a thriving adulthood. The completion of postsecondary education, whether vocational training or college, is critical to finding meaningful employmen....

Childhood Bereavement - Helping Kids Cope With Loss

Childhood Bereavement - Helping Kids Cope With Loss

Christine Park   |   July 28, 2010

In our death-averse society, there is a reluctance to discuss death, particularly with children. There is a belief that children, especially young children, won't understand the loss or grieve for the person who died. This simply isn't true....

Helping Haitians to Rebuild and Restart the Economy

Helping Haitians to Rebuild and Restart the Economy

Reeta Roy   |   July 13, 2010

At the six-month anniversary of the Haiti earthquake, it is natural to stop and reflect on the international donor community's role in the rebuilding effort. Many have criticized programs that do not empower local organizations and rebuild infrastructure....

Impacting Jewish Lives

Impacting Jewish Lives

Al Levitt   |   June 3, 2010

Since our founding in 2006, the Jim Joseph Foundation has granted nearly a quarter of a billion dollars to organizations that foster compelling, effective learning experiences for young Jews in the United States. It's an impressive figure, to be sure....