Measuring what matters

Measuring what matters is a consultation paper designed to advance a conversation about measurement 
in civil society and the goal is to identify more meaningful approaches to organizational learning and accountability. The paper is based on a series of parallel and intersecting conversations, online and in-person, over a two-year period with 130 people from civil…

You can give money away, but how about power?

By Andrew Milner and Halima Mahomed ‘Development can be seen as expanding the real freedoms that people enjoy,’ wrote Amartya Sen. However, it seldom has. Instead, development has been reduced to much more easily identifiable numbers and targets. Nowhere is this more apparent than in Africa. Institutional philanthropy, which could potentially play a significant part…

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…

Dignity reassessed: From old-school grantmaker to local philanthropy enthusiast

PSJP’s recently published paper on ‘Dignity and Development’ looks at the concept of dignity in development and philanthropy. At the Zambian Governance Foundation for Civil Society (ZGF) this paper provided us with an opportunity to revisit our own journey from a dignity lens. In this blog post we would like to share the practices at…

“If Dalits can establish a community foundation then any community – no matter how marginalized – can do it too”

By Jenny Hodgson (The title of this blog was inspired by a conversation with a colleague at the Africa Philanthropy Network conference in November 2018.) On 28 November 2018, together with GFCF board chair, Rita Thapa, and several community philanthropy partners from across India, I attended the launch of the Dalit Community Foundation in Patna, the capital of India’s…

The (continuing) enigma of Kaspar Hauser

Most of us (by ‘us’ I loosely mean those who are steadily employed in the philanthropy sector) are not poor, but we write and talk about poverty. Many of us are middle-aged or beyond, but we write and talk about young people. We cudgel our brains to understand social movements and how to reach them,…