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Changing practices in institutional philanthropy in Europe since the beginning of the Covid-19 pandemic are examined in a new paper from Philea.
Future-proofing foundations for a post-Covid-19 world offers insights into how foundations learned and adapted to the new circumstances thrust upon them by the pandemic. It also shares ideas for how the sector can make responsible philanthropy the new normal.
Leveraging data from a document review as well as various surveys and interviews conducted with the membership of the former EFC, the analysis delves into what foundations have learned from this period.
It shows that while organisations may survive in their current state, they will lose legitimacy and perceived value if they do not adapt. The publication first looks at the challenges perceived by philanthropy professionals and how they respond to these threats, and then takes stock of actions that have helped foundations to bounce back from disruption.
The paper also offers a set of recommendations to help organisations spot opportunities for change and prepare for what’s next, including advice on how to move towards new models of philanthropy, commit to reflexivity and organisational learning, and engage with criticism.
Sevda Kilicalp from Philea commented:
“There has been a growing interest in trust-based philanthropy over the last few years. Our analysis suggests that in addition to flexible and power-shifting relationships with grantees, institutional philanthropy should assess its performance against four other dimensions; including the alignment of internal practices with overall strategy; resonance with society; innovative and risk-tolerant approach to problem solving; and being guided by the principle of accountability, transparency, accessibility and humbleness in order to ensure that responsible philanthropy becomes the new normal beyond the emergencies.”
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