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.

At What Cost 'Mission'?

At What Cost 'Mission'?

Mark Rosenman   |   January 24, 2018

In his latest, frequent contributor Mark Rosenman asks whether we should support exempt organizations' single-minded pursuit of funding for their mission if comes at the expense of the public good....

Thoughts on 'As the South Grows'

Thoughts on 'As the South Grows'

Allen Smart   |   January 9, 2018

Allen Smart, a former vice president at the Kate B. Reynolds Charitable Trust and Rapides Foundation, shares his thoughts on the National Committee for Responsive Philanthropy's As the South Grows report and the need for more and better philanthropic investments in the region....

Now More Than Ever, Foundations Need to Step Up for Democracy

Now More Than Ever, Foundations Need to Step Up for Democracy

Mark Rosenman   |   December 21, 2017

Mark Rosenman, a professor emeritus at the Union Institute & University, calls on nonprofit and philanthropic organizations to build "people power" through democratic action, with robust support for democratic institutions and civic engagement....

The Worst Tax Reform That Money Can Buy

The Worst Tax Reform That Money Can Buy

Mark Rosenman   |   November 22, 2017

The House and Senate tax bills working their way through Congress are an unmitigated disaster for the social sector, argues Mark Rosenman, and charities and organized philanthropy need to speak out now — before it's too late....

SPARCC: Rewriting the Playbook on Equitable Infrastructure Investment

SPARCC: Rewriting the Playbook on Equitable Infrastructure Investment

Amy Kenyon, Chris Kabel, Sharon Z. Roerty   |   October 19, 2017

The Kresge Foundation's Chris Kabel, the Ford Foundation's Amy Kenyon, and RWJF's Sharon Z. Roerty highlight the aims of the Strong, Prosperous and Resilient Communities Challenge, a collaborative effort to create opportunities for low-income people and communities of color....

Once and for All: Lead-Free, Healthy Kids

Once and for All: Lead-Free, Healthy Kids

Ruth Ann Norton   |   October 11, 2017

Ruth Ann Norton, president and CEO of the Green & Healthy Homes Initiative, explains why community leaders and elected officials need to make lead poisoning prevention a priority....

Keeping the Dream Alive: The Case for Faster Funding

Keeping the Dream Alive: The Case for Faster Funding

Donna P. Hall   |   October 2, 2017

Donna P. Hall, president and CEO of the Women Donors Network, argues that funders have to rethink "business as usual" to meet the needs of the moment — identifying innovative mobilization efforts, funding them fast, and taking their cues from the communities they are trying to empower....

Philanthropy Teams Up With Institutional Investors to Fight Climate Change

Philanthropy Teams Up With Institutional Investors to Fight Climate Change

Tracey Durning   |   September 18, 2017

Tracey Durning, executive director of the Planet Heritage Foundation, argues that as governments become less willing to bankroll transformative change, innovative funding mechanisms will be a critical component of our efforts to address climate change....

The Long Haul: Lessons From Charitable Responses to Previous Disasters

The Long Haul: Lessons From Charitable Responses to Previous Disasters

Michael Seltzer   |   September 12, 2017

Michael Seltzer shares lessons learned from the responses to disasters like Hurricane Katrina and the 2010 earthquake in Haiti about the importance of small acts of kindness, investing in both relief and rebuilding efforts, supporting community-based organizations, and addressing underlying factors that contribute to a disaster's destructive impact....