American Foundations: An Investigative History

American Foundations An Investigative History In American Foundations Mark Dowie argues that organized philanthropy is on the verge of an evolutionary shift that will transform America s nearly foundations from covert arbiters of knowledg

  • Title: American Foundations: An Investigative History
  • Author: Mark Dowie
  • ISBN: 9780262041898
  • Page: 446
  • Format: Hardcover
  • In American Foundations, Mark Dowie argues that organized philanthropy is on the verge of an evolutionary shift that will transform America s nearly 50,000 foundations from covert arbiters of knowledge and culture to overt mediators of public policy and aggressive creators of new orthodoxy He questions the wisdom of placing so much power at the disposal of nondemocraticIn American Foundations, Mark Dowie argues that organized philanthropy is on the verge of an evolutionary shift that will transform America s nearly 50,000 foundations from covert arbiters of knowledge and culture to overt mediators of public policy and aggressive creators of new orthodoxy He questions the wisdom of placing so much power at the disposal of nondemocratic institutions.As American wealth expands, old foundations such as Ford, Carnegie, Rockefeller, Pew, and MacArthur have grown exponentially, while newer trusts such as Mott, Johnson, Packard, Kellogg, Hughes, Annenberg, Hewlett, Duke, and Gates have surpassed them Foundation assets now total close to 400 billion Though this is a tiny sum compared to corporate and government treasuries, and foundation grants still total less than 10 percent of contributions made by individuals, foundations have power and influence far beyond their wealth Their influence derives from the conditional nature of their grant making, their power from its leverage.Unlike previous historians of philanthropy who have focused primarily on the grant maker, Dowie examines foundations from the public s perspective He focuses on eight key areas in which foundations operate education, science, health, environment, food, energy, art, and human services He also looks at their imagination, or lack thereof, and at the strained relationship between American foundations and American democracy.Dowie believes that foundations deserve to exist and that they can assume an increasingly vital role in American society, but only if they transform themselves from private to essentially public institutions The reforms he proposes to make foundations responsive to pressing social problems and accountable to the public will almost certainly start an important national debate.

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      Posted by:Mark Dowie
      Published :2018-05-26T19:55:29+00:00

    1 thought on “American Foundations: An Investigative History”

    1. I only sort of read this. Skipped around a bit. I sort of got the idea after a couple chapters and then wanted to read something that was a little more fun. Some great examples of philanthropy gone wrong though for those that are interested. I wish Mark Dowie had a blog or something because the book is pretty old in the ever-transforming world of non-profits. He mostly is writing about the actions of family foundations, and I would be curious about his thoughts on the non-profit world in general [...]

    2. Political impactA major critic[citation needed] of the Green Revolution, U.S. investigative journalist Mark Dowie, writes:[citation needed]The primary objective of the program was geopolitical: to provide food for the populace in undeveloped countries and so bring social stability and weaken the fomenting of communist insurgency.Citing internal Foundation documents, Dowie states that the Ford Foundation had a greater concern than Rockefeller in this area.[41]

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