This century belongs to the African philanthropists, whose capital, influence, local knowledge, and moral authority have the power to address pressing challenges that face the continent. In addition to the new demands and complexity of challenges facing Africa, there is a lack of data and comprehensive knowledge when it comes to giving in Africa and the impact on the continent. Our centers create a platform to share ideas and work together to understand the role of African philanthropy.
This is a difficult time for philanthropy. Challenges like global climate change are demanding collective action on an unprecedented scale. Technology, meanwhile, is creating new social problems at the same time as providing new tools to address existing ones. Added to this, shifting demographics and social trends are changing our notions of community, society and nationhood beyond recognition.
In the spring of 2013, the Rockefeller Foundation—the hundred-year-old charitable organization started by Standard Oil tycoon John D. Rockefeller—launched an ambitious program to help cities around the world adapt to the physical, social, and economic challenges of the 21st century. Known as 100 Resilient Cities, the initiative was designed largely to address challenges of urban population growth and the increasing threat posed by climate change.
Nearly a decade since the first social impact bond (SIB) was launched in the UK, the jury is still out on whether they are indeed an effective mechanism for driving social impact while achieving financial returns for those that invest in them.
If you are a philanthropist, grantmaker, financial advisor or involved in private equity, you have probably come across the term “impact investing” in the past few years. It’s a relatively new concept all over the world, but a particularly nascent one in South Africa
The intervention of development organisations in the global South has given rise to accusations of ‘neo-colonialism’. Netherlands-based Hivos is addressing this legitimacy issue by maximising the freedom of local partners
North-South philanthropy is growing as a proportion of Official Development Assistance (ODA). Money alone is not the issue, though. If such aid is to be effective, systems change approaches are increasingly seen as necessary. However, by nature, and in history, development aid and Northern funding have been criticised as being ‘neo-colonial’, guided by geo-strategic considerations and contributing to maintaining economic inequalities. Systems change approaches, therefore, throw up wider considerations than whether or not they work.
In the spring of 1889, Andrew Carnegie published an essay on money. If possession confers knowledge, then there was no greater expert on the subject: Carnegie was possibly the richest American who ever lived. The essay, which was printed first in the North American Review, then in Britain’s Pall Mall Gazette, and later reissued in a pamphlet, became known as “The Gospel of Wealth.”