• Alexandra Stubbings

    As one of the authors of the report, I’m delighted to see the ‘systems change’ potential for applying the venture philanthropy model being picked up here. It certainly struck us as one of the most exciting differentiators in the findings. The challenges it surfaces though are numerous. The three that stand out are: 1) the need for good quality research which involves an honest appraisal of a foundation’s strengths and interests (to know where to intervene in the system); 2) the cultural capacity to engage with substantially different ways of operating, and 3) the willingness of the foundation to partner, collaborate and manage power relationships with other foundations and the social purpose organisations they fund. Addressing these challenges are paramount, but, we believe, genuinely worthwhile.

  • John Ryerson

    An engaging article as we see shift to being more “impactful” in investments, however, we may be replacing one complex system with another when what we really need is to anchor on values and measurement and let the creativity flow in how to get there- pushing projects and organizations into boxes is a waste of energy and encourages status quo.
    Also funders put so much energy into measurement when often the $2000 grant is quite minimal in impact – the measurement needs to be broader to see if change is happening – at the small business level it is too fluid i.e. a person or two unlike an institution.
    So intervene at the beginning of a project with alignment on values and agree on measurement of outcomes and applaud and learn from the creativity of the journey whether it succeeds or fails.