Winter 2019

Volume 17, Number 1

There has been a dramatic increase in the number and size of private foundations around the world. Many people view the growth of big philanthropy as a positive thing, but a growing number of critics are asking whether it is undermining democracy. One of these critics is Stanford University Professor Rob Reich, author of “Philanthropy in the Service of Democracy,” the cover story in the Winter 2019 issue of Stanford Social Innovation Review.

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The Power of Letting Go

By Dan Honig 3

New research explores when top-down control works best in international development work, and when organizations should let employees in the field navigate challenges by using their own judgment.

What’s Next

Field Report

Case Study




Last Look



Finding, Funding, and Scaling

The Vital Role of Early-Innovation Funders

By Carol Dahl

At The Lemelson Foundation, we seek to foster inventions that will have social impact and improve lives. But our support for early-stage innovation could not succeed without a trusted network of grantees and partners.

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