Participation and Policy: Foundation support for community organizing and civic engagement in the United States

  • Suárez D
  • Lee Y
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Non-profits build social capital by linking citizens to each other and to government, but little research has explored the role of foundations in this process. Using data from 2007 for approximately 1,400 foundations, this study focuses on the determinants of foundation support for community organizing and civic engagement. Empirical analyses indicate that foundations with a legacy of promoting social justice philanthropy and foundations that utilize the discourse of social change tend to support both activities, and foundations with more organizational memberships also support both activities. - In addition, foundations with larger boards are associated with funding for civic engagement and community organizing, and larger foundations are as well. -These findings indicate that foundations with a progressive policy agenda tend to embrace grant-making strategies that build social capital, and foundations that develop networks by growing their boards and by joining professional organizations translate those practices into their giving priorities.

Author-supplied keywords

  • Civic engagement
  • foundations
  • non-profit
  • philanthropy

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