Many feel that privatizing public services is a contradiction in terms and leads to any number of problems; and, in the context of human services, inattention to matters of geography appears to result in misallocation and/or unequal quality of delivery—unsurprisingly, with the highest levels of inadequate or distressed providers correlating with less well-off communities. Mapping service providers, says the author, can enrich the debate and help us to grapple with these spatial concerns.
Philanthropic support for public services is increasing rapidly, and we should be concerned about the long-term implications on a number of fronts—in particular, the tendency of private funding of such services as schools and parks to exacerbate rather than eliminate financial and geographic inequities and to reduce public accountability and citizen access.
As wealth becomes more stratified, giving goes up—but more of it is being directed by the highest-level givers. What does this mean for democracy? This article is from NPQ’s latest edition of its print magazine, entitled, “Inequality’s Tipping Point and the Pivotal Role of Nonprofits,” and is part of our emphasis on inequality.