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From development to dignity: a profound challenge for international cooperation

‘Some people just don’t want to develop.’ During my years of work in international development I’ve heard this view expressed, implicitly or explicitly, by frustrated practitioners. It sounds bizarre, and demonstrates a monumental lack of empathy, but funnily enough it can often be right. Many communities don’t want to ‘develop’ according to someone else’s definition…

Multiple means to reach a single goal – new paper explores systems to #ShiftThePower

In the 19th century, Victor LeGrand created an orderly, geometric railway system for France which was designed to bring about the full integration of the country. This was reckoned to be far superior to the Prussian rail system, which was a hodgepodge of lines run by 50 different companies. The French system, known as the…

Philanthropy: size matters – but not in the way you might think

It’s good news that philanthropy in India is on an upward curve, since it can help supplement government’s efforts at social sector development. This upward curve is especially noticeable when it comes to giving by individuals. It’s not just the amount of giving that’s significant, however. Where it comes from and where it goes are…

Community philanthropy – the best hope for women’s rights in Nepal…and for all of us

PSJP’s recently published paper on Individual giving in India, Russia, the Arab region and Brazil is a timely reflection for us in Nepal. Individual giving has always been a part of Nepali communities mainly through our religious and cultural traditions. In the absence of a strong state presence particularly historically because of geographic isolation and…

Let’s play a new European tune

New promise Thirty years ago, European philanthropy stood on the brink of new promise. The formation of the European Foundation Centre (EFC) on 9 November 1989 – the same day that the Berlin Wall fell – ushered in a new era for philanthropy as part of a vision for a new Europe. There was hope…

Philanthropy in India is growing: Fact or fiction?

Smarinita Shetty points out the much-hyped but underwhelming contribution to philanthropy by the ultra-wealthy and CSR. Instead, Smarinita argues for greater attention to ‘smaller-ticket individual giving or retail giving’ to enable it to grow and develop appropriately so as to be able to support Indian civil society.   India has no shortage of billionaires. We added…

An enabling environment for leaders to thrive in development and philanthropy

‘Leadership for what? Leadership for whom?’ These questions seem to be uppermost in conversations with colleagues. We all seem to be feeling that we have not perhaps done enough, or are not doing enough, in our respective leadership roles to feel like we are making a difference. We are all constantly bombarded with books, articles,…