Evolving Partnerships

Partnering with sector influencers to build data and knowledge

No organization can do it alone. Partners help us better interpret and deliver on our mission, and engage with people who we may not have otherwise reached. Partnerships take time and work to build, and we’re investing in them as a core strategy. It’s paying off.

We’re now in our third year of a thriving partnership with the Forum of Regional Associations of Grantmakers. Together, we’re working to improve the information infrastructure available for and about philanthropy, and translating that into knowledge that drives smarter grantmaking.

The partnership initially launched the “Get on the Map” campaign. The 26 member regional associations participants were encouraged to share grants data with Foundation Center using the eReporting standard. This data was centralized and structured using the Philanthropy Classification System and visualized in custom regional maps.

Now, we’ve put that increasingly current and comprehensive data to good use, generating standardized regional giving dashboards as a new service. Our first for California was launched during the year, which has been used to tell regional stories of giving and explore funding priorities. Prithi Trivedi, program fellow, effective philanthropy at the William and Flora Hewlett Foundation shares, “I found the Foundation Maps: California tool to be incredibly helpful in answering the question I had. The design and interface are really user-friendly, and produces clean visuals, which can help you grasp the data.”

David Biemesderfer, president and CEO of the Forum, shares,

“We place great value on our ongoing partnership with Foundation Center. As we work to help our members lead, inform and support philanthropy, Foundation Center plays a critical role by making foundation data more accessible and usable throughout our network.”

As we develop more regional dashboards in 2017, our partnership will continue to grow. We’ll continue to work with regional associations to better understand needs, and respond with new data visualizations, benchmarking services, and knowledge management tools that will empower users to draw actionable conclusions from the information.