CORPORATE CITIZENSHIP MATTERS Philanthropy: Focus on Innovation, Governance, and Technology | The Conference Board
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CORPORATE CITIZENSHIP MATTERS Philanthropy: Focus on Innovation, Governance, and Technology

This article is based on: Mark Dodgson and David M. Gann, Philanthropy, Innovation and Entrepreneurship: An Introduction (Palgrave Macmillan, 2020).

Philanthropy can be a powerful driver of innovation and social progress, yet it can also fail to deliver on expectations and have detrimental social consequences. In our view, a crucial role for philanthropy is as an accelerant for innovation and willingness to take on more risk than is conventional for the field; philanthropy should encourage creativity, experimentation, prototyping, and testing, and it should be tolerant of failure. We contend that all philanthropic giving, from foundations and corporations alike, can learn from the approaches of innovators and entrepreneurs. Employed in this way to improve societal welfare and well-being, it avoids many of its criticisms. To make this contribution, philanthropic giving needs to follow good governance and seize opportunities provided by new digital technologies.

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