Course Subject
Course Number
Course Credit

Philanthropy and Social Change

Course Description

With over $700 billion in assets and grantmaking exceeding $50 billion/year, private charitable foundations are a source of concentrated social and political influence in American society. Despite the fact that their giving represents only 15% of the $330+ billion given to U.S. charitable causes annually, many believe that foundations exert a disproportionately large degree of influence on the political and social development of our country due to their institutional approach to grantmaking and long-term commitment to specific issues and approaches. Through this course, students will gain an understanding of the roles and influence of philanthropy on political advocacy and social change movements in the US (with differing views on the appropriateness of this influence); the scope and diversity of the philanthropic sector; political advocacy approaches and social movements; and examples of current philanthropic involvement in advocacy and social change efforts across the political spectrum.