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Obama and Philanthropy

January 13, 2009

It’s all inauguration all the time these days, it seems!  This great article by Jane Wales (of the Aspen Institute and the Global Philanthropy Forum) in last week’s SF Chronicle outlines some of the ways that the new administration can use the expertise of the philanthropic sector to combat problems here and abroad.  Philanthropic groups are coming up with some of the most innovative solutions to challenges like war and terrorism, poverty, and educational gaps – South Asian Muhammad Yunus being just one great example.

And an article in Inside Philanthropy discusses meetings by nonprofit leaders with Obama and his staff to develop a nonprofit agenda, including support for nonprofits to pursue these kinds of solutions and build their own capacity.

One thing both articles mention is an intriguing plan for Obama to open an office of social innovation – a federal agency to help nonprofits and social entrepreneurs and tap their ideas.  That sounds like a great way for the government to benefit from the incubator of the giving sector to renew America in the coming years.

I know there are a lot of innovators and nonprofit leaders among South Asians – what do you all think about the proposals discussed in the two articles?

One Comment leave one →
  1. Venu Gupta permalink*
    January 13, 2009 8:03 pm

    What a great post, Archana! I love the idea of an Office of Social Innovation. It’s certainly about time that the Executive Branch acknowledged and supported the work of not for profits.

    I wonder what kind of impact federal oversight would have on the Greenlining/WSJ debate . . .


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