Research Paper: Rethinking Philanthropic Partnerships

Posted in News Story

Adam Ambrogi was a 2022-2023 Visiting Practitioner at the Center for Public and Nonprofit Leadership. 

The social sector is highly dependent on contributions from philanthropic institutions, leading to a dynamic that can be both productive and challenging. Recognizing the need for nonprofits to have a louder voice in steering philanthropic strategies, Adam Ambrogi interviews four leaders in the nonprofit sector to discuss their experiences in the field.  These leaders share a unique perspective on the dynamics of the funder-grantee relationship, particularly for women and people of color.  They discuss what works, what doesn’t work, and how future philanthropic interactions can be improved. 

It is becoming clearer that the voices of nonprofit leaders in the field need to drive more of the conversation around the direction of philanthropy and where this relationship can be enhanced. The provided perspectives and suggestions are intended to benefit foundation leaders across their professional journeys and nonprofit executives aiming to foster, construct, and sustain impactful relationships with funders. Recommendations include reimagining nonprofit-foundation relationships, broadening opportunities for supporting nonprofits, and connecting foundation staff with the community in a deeper, more authentic way. By providing specific examples in each of these focus areas, this paper aims to imagine how both nonprofit and philanthropic stakeholders into a new age of effective and powerful leadership.

Read the entire research paper here.