Global Debate On Future of Philanthropy & International Development
Thursday, 11th August 2011 at 11:58 am
A global initiative that aims to find new forms of collaboration between philanthropists and international development experts, with the aim of improving human wellbeing, has been launched in the UK.
The Bellagio Initiative: The Future of Philanthropy and Development in the Pursuit of Human Wellbeing has been launched as millions of ordinary people and many philanthropic organisations around the world donate funds to alleviate the suffering of those affected by the urgent food crisis in the Horn of Africa.
And promoters of the initiative say it also comes as philanthropic giving becomes ever-more important in the fight to eradicate poverty. It has more than doubled in size over the past decade, according to OECD figures, standing at over US$22bn in 2009.
The International Development Committee (IDC) of the UK Government also recently decided to hold its own inquiry into the role of private foundations in international development.
The Bellagio Initiative is led by the Institute of Development Studies (IDS) the Resource Alliance and the US Rockefeller Foundation.
Professor Allister McGregor, a research fellow at IDS and Director of the Bellagio Initiative, says that throughout the second half of 2011, the Initiative will engage a diverse group of practitioners, opinion leaders, beneficiaries, social entrepreneurs and donors to consider innovative solutions to some of the major challenges affecting poor people today.
It will convene global consultations on topics such as climate change, emerging markets, sustainability, migration and rights which, together with specially commissioned papers and commentary, will feed into debate at a high-level summit being held at the Rockefeller Foundation Bellagio Centre, Italy, from 8 – 22 November.
Prof McGregor says the summit will see some of the world's best thinkers and practitioners in philanthropy and development circles sitting together – in some cases for the first time – to explore joint solutions to poverty. Others from around the globe will participate online.
In addition, the Bellagio Initiative will produce:
- A Timeline of Philanthropy, providing insights into the growth of private giving.
- A Mapping of the Philanthropic Sector, revealing who the big private donors are today, what they spend their money on and which countries benefit most from their giving.
- A Framework for Action, focusing on building partnerships, across regions and sectors, for the promotion of human wellbeing.
Prof McGregor says the Initiative will involve some of today's best thinkers coming together to find ways to confront the challenges to improving human wellbeing worldwide.
He says the process will involve creative thinking, and it will culminate in a concrete action plan that will make a real difference to people's lives.
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