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Philanthropy Australia’s 2014 National Conference

31 July 2014 at 11:02 am
Staff Reporter
Philanthropy Australia’s 2014 National Conference from September 2-3 in Melbourne is a biennale gathering not to be missed.

Staff Reporter | 31 July 2014 at 11:02 am


Philanthropy Australia’s 2014 National Conference
31 July 2014 at 11:02 am

Philanthropy Australia’s 2014 National Conference from September 2-3 in Melbourne is a biennale gathering not to be missed.

It’s an exciting time for philanthropy in Australia- we’ve seen more and more major gifts in the last couple of years, more Private Ancillary Funds established and more Australians thinking about how and why they should give.

Australians are also thinking about the impact of their giving, and how they can support causes in new ways such as through impact investing and crowd funding.

So the timing couldn’t be better for the Philanthropy Australia’s 2014 National Conference, which brings together leading philanthropists, trendsetters and visionaries from both Australia and overseas every two years.

Whoever you may be – a funder interested in cutting edge thinking about the shape and direction of philanthropy in years to come, an advisor seeking to enhance yours or your clients’ understanding of this burgeoning area, or a not-for-profit (NFP) seeking new insights about how trends in philanthropy will be relevant for your organisation – don’t miss out on this rare opportunity to be a part of this important event!

Over 300 funders and 300 others from across the business, government and community sectors have registered to attend – so it will be truly unique gathering of Australians with a shared interest in change through philanthropy.

On Day 1 of the conference, speakers and delegates from the philanthropic, advisory and broader NFP sectors will discuss and debate global trends in philanthropy, impact investing, digital civil society and innovation.

Through a donation of $50 million to the Australian National University, the Graham & Louise Tuckwell Foundation lifted the bar for philanthropic support of our universities and talented students. The conference will provide the opportunity to hear Graham Tuckwell in conversation with Andrew Forrest, one of Australia’s most well-known philanthropists. Andrew and his wife, Nicola, became the first Australasian signatories to the Giving Pledge and now devote the vast majority of their time and fortune to creating sustainable improvement in the lives of the world’s most underprivileged.

Philanthropy is growing in Australia, but of course it hasn’t yet reached it potential, which is why international guest Christine Sherry will be of particular interest. Philanthropy is an accepted and common practice on the East Coast of the United States, but less so in areas of new economic growth such as Silicon Valley on the West Coast. Christine is the founder of The Philanthropy Workshop West and Sherry Consulting USA, organisations that have been a driving force in the growth of philanthropy on the West Coast.

We all know that technology is changing everything, and philanthropy is no exception. Self-described ‘philanthropy wonk’ Lucy Bernholz, Senior Fellow at Stanford University Center on Philanthropy and Civil Society in the United States will ignite the conversation on how we create, fund and distribute shared social goods in the digital age – what she calls ‘The Future of Good’.

Improving the impact and effectiveness of philanthropy requires a new focus on sharing information and data and promoting best practice. There’s no better person to address such an important issue than Brad Smith, President of the Foundation Center in the United States. The Foundation Center is the leading source of information about philanthropy worldwide, providing an accessible knowledge bank for the sector unlike anything yet available in Australia.

Community foundations are big in North America, and they’re ripe for growth in Australia. That’s why Ian Bird will provide unique insights relevant to community philanthropy in Australia. Ian is the President of Community Foundations of Canada and a two-time Olympian in field hockey. From expanding Community Foundations of Canada’s circle of champions, to including new voices and expertise, to building new partnerships based on common interests and outcomes, Ian has worked hard to find new ways for the community foundations movement to work together to address complex issues.

Day 2 is open to funders and advisors, and will include collaborative sessions on themes including ageing, education, indigenous, arts, international giving, health and medical research, homelessness and rural/regional issues. In addition, there will also be sessions around corporate giving and private inventive giving.

The conference will also include the announcement of the winners of the inaugural Philanthropy Australia Philanthropic Leader Awards. Nominations close tomorrow (Friday, August 1) and can be submitted at

Conference tickets are selling fast, so visit to secure your spot.

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