2013’s Philanthropic Buzzwords

2013’s Philanthropic Buzzwords

Dec 23
2013’s Philanthropic Buzzwords
Philanthropy Buzz Words

IMG: via Shutterstock

Lucy Bernholz, an author and scholar from Stanford University, recently published a list of the top philanthropy-related “buzzwords” of 2013. These words embody the trends the world of philanthropy saw this past year, as well as where those trends will lead next. Here are Bernholz’s picks for “Philanthropy’s 2013 Buzzwords“:

  1. “Privacy.” Privacy is what Bernholz considers to be the philanthropic buzzword of the year. As she explains, “Our pervasive reliance on digital communications makes us all vulnerable to disclosure of private data,” mentioning the importance of privacy for donors and clients.
  2. “Performance Management.” Measuring outcomes, operations improvement, and evaluating your success are all part of performance management, another 2013 buzzword.
  3. “Peer-to-peer Services.” Bernholz explains, “The lessons of the peer-to-peer economy and investment-capital expectations will be useful to all efforts to expand social enterprises.”
  4. “Constituent Feedback.” In 2013, getting timely feedback from beneficiaries has never been easier.
  5. “Makers.” With this buzzword, Bernholz is referring to those interested in DIY aesthetic, handmade things, and contemporary craftsmanship. She says, “One of the odd outcomes of the digital age is a newfound interest in old-fashioned handmade goods, such as wooden birdhouses and knitted sweaters.”
  6. “Bitcoin.” “A digital, nationless currency with a value that fluctuates at rates earlier seen only during dot-com booms,” Bitcoin is popular with nonprofits such as shelters and food banks.
  7. “Commons.” Bernholz explains, “Nothing has put the old-fashioned concept of resources held ‘in common’ back on the front burnder as powerfully as the metaphor of the Internet coupled with our collective fear of a warming planet.”
  8. “Metadata.” The “data about data,” that can be very useful in politics, human rights organizations, and much, much more.
  9. “Randomista.” Bernholz calls this a “tongue-in-cheek derogatory term for an evaluator or social scientist who believes that the only meaningful evidence is that which comes from randomized controlled trials.”
  10. “Soluntionism.” This buzzword pertains to digital innovation, new technological developments, and the resilience of our time.

What do you think of these philanthropic buzzwords? Are there any more that you would add?

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