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Foundations Respond to Crisis: Toward Equity?

December 9, 2020

The disproportionate public health and economic impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic on certain communities, along with nationwide protests against police violence and racial injustice, have intensified the calls for foundations to focus on equity and reckon with anti-Black racism in a deeper way than they had before. To what extent have staffed foundations changed their practices in 2020 in response to this push for substantial shifts in how philanthropy approaches its work?CEP surveyed and interviewed foundation leaders to find out. Foundations Respond to Crisis: Toward Equity? reveals that almost all foundations participating in CEP's study report placing new, or more, focus on supporting Black, Latino, and lower-income communities; and most foundation leaders say they are reckoning with racism and paying greater attention to racial equity in their work. However, there remains still significant room for further progress, and it remains to be seen how deep and sustained this new focus will be.

Enabling environment and civic space; Race and Philanthropy

Grantees' Limited Engagement with Foundations' Social Media

July 1, 2012

It is not surprising that foundations are investing in social media tools. These tools can serve myriad functions for foundations, from promoting a culture of transparency to the public at large, to influencing thought leaders, to connecting with grantees.

Data and technology, Information and Communications; Transparency and accountability

Foundation Communications: The Grantee Perspective

February 1, 2006

Foundation Communications: The Grantee Perspective reveals the key components of effective foundation communications with grantees. Based on analyses of thousands of grantee surveys, this issue paper argues for a more holistic approach to foundation communications than is often practiced today. This report highlights best practices and provides practical management implications for foundation leaders.

Family, HNWI, and independent philanthropy

Listening to Grantees: What Nonprofits Value in Their Foundation Funders

April 1, 2004

What do nonprofits really think of foundations? This report draws on CEP's Spring 2003 round of surveying 3,200 grantees of 30 of the largest foundations in the U.S. The report reveals what really matters to nonprofits -- and what doesn't -- in their relationships with their foundation funders. It also details implications for foundation leadership and program staff.

Philanthropy ecosystems and infrastructure

Indicators of Effectiveness: Understanding and Improving Foundation Performance

August 1, 2002

This report describes current practices in foundation performance assessment and provides a framework for overall performance assessment, based on CEP's research during the Foundation Performance Metrics Pilot Study. The Pilot Study included a survey of CEOs of the country's largest foundations, a survey of grantees of 23 foundations, in-depth interviews with foundation CEOs and trustees, and analysis of publicly available data.

Evaluation, Impact and Effectiveness; Tools, frameworks, effectiveness

Toward a Common Language: Listening to Foundation CEOs and Other Experts Talk About Performance Measurement in Philanthropy

February 1, 2002

While evaluations of specific grants, or even clusters of grants, are currently widely utilized in assessing grantee performance, this report examines what information might be useful in assessing overall foundation performance. The report is based on 74 discussions, including 18 interviews with CEOs of major foundations, and describes the growing interest in performance metrics among foundation leaders and a common language for thinking about overall performance.

Evaluation, Impact and Effectiveness

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