The drive for better data, metrics, and measurement is increasingly looked to as the Holy Grail for philanthropists interested in maximizing the effectiveness of their giving. But the values, ethics, and personal beliefs of families and donors – as well as existing relationships, family dynamics, local commitments, and commitments to particular causes or issues – also play a key role in how a family’s philanthropic investments are made.
So what is the best way to balance the science and art of family giving? How do families make good decisions around issues and causes that are not easily measured by data, or where change takes many years to realize? This teleconference featured a discussion with the co-authors of “What Do Donors Want?” published in the September 2010 edition of Nonprofit Quarterly.