Topic: Race & Social Justice

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Issues in Philanthropy

Funding a Social Movement: The Ford Foundation and Civil Rights, 1965-1970

A story recounting many accusations, from rigged elections to the meddling of big private money in grassroots organizing.

Issues in Philanthropy

The Fairy Godmothers of Women’s Studies

Moving scholarship by and about women from margin to center.

Race & Social Justice

Can Data Drive Social Change? Tackling School Segregation with Numbers

In the years before Brown v. Board, a philanthropic fund hoped research and data would turn the tide on attitudes toward segregation.

Elementary children of diverse ethnic backgrounds get ready to go inside their school, two hold hands
1940s 1950s

Funding a Sexual Revolution: The Kinsey Reports

The inside story of the study that first questioned binary sexuality and spurred outcry and controversy.

1960s 1970s

Ted Watkins and the Rockefeller Foundation: An Unlikely Partnership

How a charismatic community activist from Watts challenged a foundation’s civil rights strategy through a jobs training program.

Black and white image of "agronomistos", harvesting rice in a field.
1940s 1950s 1960s

Photo Essay: Mexico and the Launch of the Green Revolution

One foundation’s program in Mexico created the blueprint for ending hunger worldwide.

1910s 20th Century

“Investment Philanthropy” Investing for Social Good, a Century Ago

An early twentieth-century foundation tried using its endowment to support for-profit projects that also would achieve a social goal.

1960s 1970s

Photo Essay: Supporting Minority Enterprise in the late 1960s

In 1968, the Ford Foundation began to make social investments using a new tool borrowed from the for-profit world, the Program-Related Investment.

A room full of African-American students attending a lecture in 1955 as part of the United Negro Collection fund.
1960s

The Origins of the Rockefeller Foundation Equal Opportunity Program

How a simple grant request seeded the launch of a full program addressing inequality.

Black and white image of a group of children on a cart that is decorated with them holding signs reading "sleep", "fresh air", "good food" "dirt" and "ignorance".
1900s 1910s

Photo Essay: The Rockefeller Sanitary Commission and the American South

Battling hookworm on rural farms laid the groundwork for a global public health system.

1960s

A Hand in Urban Design: Rockefeller Foundation Support for Renowned Urbanist Jane Jacobs and New York’s Lincoln Center

One small grant gave enduring voice to one of the most famous critiques of postwar urban renewal, while another huge grant went to an opposing cause.

Elementary children of diverse ethnic backgrounds get ready to go inside their school, two hold hands
1950s 1960s

Can Data Drive Social Change? Tackling School Segregation with Numbers

In the years before Brown v. Board, a philanthropic fund hoped research and data would turn the tide on attitudes toward segregation.

1960s

The Rockefeller Foundation Confronts School Inequality

A college prep program increased admissions rates for at-risk students, but it also raised larger questions about systemic inequality.