Taken from WHAT’S NEXT for PHILANTHROPY, Monitor Institute Download Report

“As innovation theorist Bhaskar Chakrovorti explains in The Slow Pace of Fast Change, ‘The players in various networked markets appear to be prisoners of their own individualism. The problem is that the decisions that make sense at the individual or institutional level are not necessarily the best choices when viewed in the aggregate.’

“The result in philanthropy is a system with no natural mechanism for coordinating effort, for learning, for sharing knowledge about what does and doesn’t work, or for adapting to shifting circumstances. Isolated successes are seldom replicated, and new innovations replace old ones before they have time to prove themselves, with the unfortunate byproduct that funders and their grantees are doomed to repeat the same mistakes again and again.

“That’s the playing field, and no amount of critique alone will change it. As we have argued before, positive change in a voluntary field will take hold only when it can be embraced as an aspiration of the healthy, not when it must be accepted like a cure for the sick.”

This report is worth a look.

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