WHAT is philanthropy infrastructure and WHY it matters?
Worldwide, there are institutions creating the conditions for a favourable environment for philanthropy institutions to accomplish their mission and achieve their potential. Giving a necessary collective voice to philanthropy, whether it is at national, regional or global level, and helping it provide a ‘deliberate’ response to attacks and provide resources to resist restrictions or improve the regulatory framework - This positive environment is what we call philanthropy infrastructure.
WHO are the organizations working with philanthropy infrastructure?
Organizations working with philanthropy infrastructure can be Networks, Membership Associations, Academic Education Institution, other professional support organization, among others.
HOW do we develop infrastructure?
Philanthropy infrastructure organizations develop infrastructure by building capacity, capability, connection and credibility.*
*The 4Cs is an assessment framework developed for our field.
Capacity: Building Resources
Organizations supporting philanthropy are committed to the field’s capacity by contributing to the growth of the overall value of financial capacity and resources relating to public benefit investment; guaranteeing the duration of this financial capacity and ensuring that there is philanthropic investment in the long term; and making sure that philanthropy remains strategic and committed to the achievement of defined outcomes and impact, and targets financial resources accordingly.
Capability: Building Skills, Knowledge and Expertise
Infrastructure organizations support philanthropy’s capability by contributing to the ability of philanthropic institutions to apply knowledge towards the fulfilment of tasks required to achieve their objectives; to the understanding of the philanthropy field and processes involved; and to the fulfillment of conducts as established by standards of practice, ranging from good governance through to operational behavior and performance.
Connection: Building Relationships
Philanthropy infrastructure organizations build connection by contributing to communication processes, both internal (within the philanthropy sector) and external (in the public domain), in relation to philanthropy objectives and practice; promoting collaboration within the philanthropy sector and from other sectors (public and private); and supporting philanthropic organizations in their ability to inform policy and legislation.
Credibility: Building Reputation, Recognition and Influence
Organizations supporting philanthropy are building credibility by raising the level of consciousness and understanding about the value and impact of philanthropy and the approaches and processes involved; increasing the recognition by the general public and of the state of the value of the field; and guaranteeing that the philanthropic organizations are transparent and open to public scrutiny, in particular in respect of governance and financial accountability.
HISTORY of the field
There are diverse versions of the history of the field, according to different cultures and times - this timeline is capting the modern institutionalized model of infrastructure.