« West by Southwest | Main | Business Week and Professional Immortality »

August 12, 2008


Feed You can follow this conversation by subscribing to the comment feed for this post.


A friend sent me your post. Spot on mate!
We are trying to affect the sector in the UK in this very way. Suspicion, provincial thinking (my problem is not the same as yours), and ownership (homegrown, recreation of the wheel proves I am a stalwart) issues pervade.

However, we represent a new era of social enterprise and we are trying to connect the dots to private enterprises with a social bent. A slog to be sure, but we think its the injection of resources (in much the way you are describing) that is the key.

I would be interested in figuring out how we could get such a network off the ground. Some fraction of this does exist (www.xigi.net for money networks), but it is more push than collaboration. Also, Skoll Foundation has a network of sorts, but I have not come across a purpose built portal.

Are you going to take this forward? If so, give me a bell as I would be interested in starting it up in the UK.

Kind Regards,


Head's Up! You are getting blasted on Twitter by someone who filters all the time :) http://tinyurl.com/5jso5d

Michael Idinopulos

Jean, thanks for your post. I had mistakenly flagged it as spam. No censorship intended. It is hereby restored, with my apologies. It's great to hear there are nonprofit communities like the ones I imagine already in existence. Your list also reinforces the fact that this is still a relatively new and fringy phenomenon. Where are the major foundations in all of this?
harrylyme, thanks for the heads-up.


Niki Buchen

Knowledge is might and only people who know something will come ahead. More then ever it is important to learn something and to be good in this. It doesnot matter if it tis an profit orangization or a non profit one. Greetings, Niki

Jean Russell

Thanks Michael. Glad you got it. Meyer Memorial Trust is the largest family foundation in Oregon, I believe. But as far as I know, theirs is the only one going beyond silos of brand.

Ashoka is working at Changemakers.net to help connect the public and their fellows, but technology is not their strong suit. Skoll Foundation with Social Edge is interesting, but I rarely go there. Check with someone like Jessica Margolin in the Bay Area for more info on them. Do you know her? I would love to see Omidyar Network working on something like this, but they might be too burned on the online community they had for several years. You can check with Thomas at Omidyar Network on their efforts to go beyond silo thinking.

I am not aware of what Gates, MacArthur, and others are doing in this line. If anyone does know, I would love to learn about it. Large foundations are usually slow to take up technology solutions without proven success pilots. In fact, all too often foundations conflate solutions that use technology for technology itself. Many orgs I consult with have pushed against this for years. This helps explain why the foundations embracing technology-based solutions are from the wealth in the technology sector itself.

The comments to this entry are closed.

My Photo

Twitter Updates

    follow me on Twitter