Thursday, July 26, 2007

Philanthromapping: Help me respond to Phil's challenge ....

Last week, I blogged about my dream of running a foundation. In response to that blog, I received a rather significant challenge from the grand master of the philanthropic blogosphere, Phil Cubeta.

His challenge was, in essence, to create a social justice "philanthromap." And yes, this term has been used before (though I first thought I was rather smart for coming up with it). Check out this 2005 post:

"Transforming Philanthropy with a New World Map" by Brooks Cole (Shift In Action)

Phil asked some very compelling questions, which I have been pondering for days (hence the relative lack of blog posts). I have yet to come up with a substantive response that I find suitable to his inquiry, so I would throw the question out to you:

What response do you have to his questions and ideas? Who are the allies we could secure to join us in this effort?

I have posted a selection from his commentbelow. I also recommend that you check out his own blog on this topic:

Thinking through the system of roles, rules and relations is the breakthrough step. I have never been a foundation person, a big funder, nor a fundraiser. Yet as a trainer of advisors I am in the same ecosystem. How can we help our ecosysem, as well as our individual professions, thrive? Has to start by thinking of the roles and imagining ourselves in each, to see the world from the points of view of the others, then thinking where are the dysfunctional points, and how can we overcome them?

Nice to see Pam Gerber in your post too. A clear next step, Jeremy, would be to "map" the ecosystem around CDM. Who are the players around you? What institutions are already in motion with respect to you? City Hally? Dallas Foundation? DSVP? Entrepreneurs Foundation of North TX, various financial services orgs, legal firms, associations of professionals like NCPG and the estate planning counsel? Can you begin to literally sketch a map by sectors? I can help you add to it. Pam could too. So could Dallas Foundation. Why the heck has this not already been done?

Map it by place - Dallas. But then also map it by issues. What is the map of key players for social justice in the US?

Who funds social justice work nationally and locally? What else do they fund? How do they fund it? Who funds them? What are their constraints and criteria?

Who works as a professional with specific social justice funders? What are their strengths, weaknesses and blindspots?

I would like to accept part of Phil's challenge today: making this blog "a collaborative space...(to) convene key players and talk about the maps... (to) identify natural allies. Natural synergies."

Calling all allies! Please comment... even if it is just "I am in." I want to know if there's any interest in this sort of venture.