Advising philanthropists, Emma Beeston, Charity Impact Podcast
THE CHARITY IMPACT PODCAST EPISODE 11: Emma Beeston on advising philanthropists, giving strategically, assessing impact, trends in philanthropy and grantmaking.
Advising philanthropists: Alex Blake & Emma Beeston discuss philanthropy advice, grantmaking trends, giving strategically and assessing social impact.
In this episode of the Charity Impact podcast, I talk to philanthropy advisor Emma Beeston. We talk about the role of advising philanthropists, the types of philanthropists Emma works with and the process of helping them to give strategically. We cover some of the thinking around how to choose which charities to support and what makes an effective charity; the pressure of trying to make the perfect decision and the inevitable need to take risks.
“It’s giving permission sometimes, to not be perfect. There’s this sense that there’s a magic answer. Everybody has all these opinions about what philanthropy should and shouldn’t be, so it can be quite a baffling world if you’re new to it.”
We also talk about the debate between trust-based philanthropy and more data driven approaches, trends in philanthropy and grantmaking including the changing attitudes of the younger generation and increased collaboration between grantmakers.
Emma also introduces us to her new book, co-authored with Beth Breeze, ‘Advising Philanthropists: principles and practice’, which they believe is the first ever book specifically on philanthropy advice (more info on this at the bottom of the page).
Scroll down for episode notes with links to resources.
Emma Beeston, Philanthropy Advisor
Emma is an independent philanthropy advisor to philanthropists, families and foundations. Her advice guides donors from exploring their values through to implementing their giving to achieve their philanthropic goals. Emma specialises in supporting those new to philanthropy and facilitating multi-generational giving. Prior to her current role, Emma worked for grant-making organisations including Children in Need, Lloyds Bank Foundation and Comic Relief.
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NOTES AND LINKS FOR EPISODE 11
EPISODE 11: Advising philanthropists, Emma Beeston
Setting the scene – what is philanthropy advice, who Emma works with
The process of choosing how to give strategically
Should philanthropy be led by donor preference
There is a tension between supporting people with what they want to do while questioning, challenging, pushing to help them think about it in a wider context
Open calls, collaboration and proactive giving
How philanthropists and funders think about choosing charities to support
How philanthropists and their advisors assess charity effectiveness, including ethos, how well connected they are, their expertise, their confidence in knowing why they do what they do, why they’ve chosen that approach
Philanthropists can, and need to, take risks on which organisations or movements to support
The pressure of trying to make the perfect decision
Trust based philanthropy vs data driven approaches
Trends in philanthropy and grantmaking
Changing attitudes of the younger generation of philanthropists
Emma’s new book is available and some further information is below:
The book description is:
“Earning money is one thing but giving it away with intelligence and consideration is the hardest thing in the world. That’s where philanthropy advice fills a real and increasing need. Philanthropy advising is an emerging and important profession that has largely gone under the wire in spite of the growing demand, particularly among younger donors, for support in charitable giving.
Advising Philanthropists explores the developing role of philanthropy advisor, the practicalities involved in the job and the wide range of skills and knowledge needed to start and excel at working with donors. As well as explaining the key concepts, this accessible guide considers the challenges that can be encountered and ethical dilemmas that must be considered; it is supplemented by the inclusion of previously unpublished interviews with 40 philanthropy advisors from around the globe providing illuminating case studies and insights.
Focused on UK-practice, but also rich with examples and material from across the world, this book is a unique and timely addition to the developing body of literature on philanthropy.
Advising Philanthropists covers: How the role of advisor has emerged; What key concepts you need to know; the role and practical skills of an advisor; Understanding and working with donors; The challenges and broader context in giving philanthropy advice The key audience for this book is those new to or considering a career in philanthropy advising, including students, as well as established philanthropy advice professionals seeking to deepen their knowledge and improve their practice.”
“This unique in-depth examination of the burgeoning field of philanthropic advising, illustrated by interviews with people doing the actual work, will be of great value to philanthropy advisors as well as philanthropists seeking their advice.”
Paul Brest, Professor Emeritus Stanford Law School and former President, William and Flora Hewlett Foundation
“This is a coming-of-age reference guide for the philanthropy sector revealing the professional toolkit of the 21st century philanthropy advisor. It uncovers how philanthropy advisors help donors give money where it is needed most.”
Cath Dovey, Co-founder, Beacon Collaborative
“To use the phrase of the moment – I feel seen! The authors have shone a light on the practice of philanthropy advice and its challenges. This book is an essential guide for community foundation professionals and others who seek to harness donor generosity to do good.”
Rob Williamson, CEO, Community Foundation Tyne & Wear and Northumberland
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