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Challenges for Nonprofits and Philanthropy
The Courage to Change
Pablo Eisenberg; Stacy Palmer, ed.

Civil Society: Historical and Contemporary Perspectives

Tufts University Press
2004 • 224 pp. 6 x 9"
Political Science & Government / Philanthropy & Charity

$29.95 Hardcover, 978-1-58465-421-6

“Eisenberg's speeches, articles and essays examine the past and look to the future of the nonprofit world.”—Shelterforce

The indispensable collection of writings by one of contemporary philanthropy’s most influential and outspoken voices.

For nearly three decades, Pablo Eisenberg’s speeches and articles have provoked thoughtful, and at times contentious, debate in the nonprofit world. Intellectually vigorous, rigorously honest, and unstintingly courageous, he has addressed the questions and challenges facing philanthropy today, and his forthright commentary has influenced contemporary philanthropy. The works collected here include the best of Eisenberg’s published and unpublished pieces on American and global philanthropy—its challenges, responsibilities, hits and misses, accountability, and leadership—and on his views of what lies ahead as the greatest intergenerational transfer of wealth in U.S. history looms. The book incorporates tributes to many of the leading lights in late-twentieth-century American philanthropy, including John Gardner, Paul Ylvisaker, John Filer, and David Hunter, men Eisenberg knew well. Every nonprofit leader, donor, grant maker, anyone involved with poverty-fighting organizations as well as faculty members and researchers who study nonprofit organizations will need this collection of writings by of one of the nation’s most prominent leaders in the nonprofit world.


“If Eisenberg strikes some as a harsh critic of nonprofit and foundation practices, it’s because he holds such high expectations for the sector. In the past, he maintains, civil society’s nonprofits led to charge in abolishing slavery, tackling the plutocracy of the Gilded Age, and attacking discrimination by race, gender, sexual preference, and disability. And so he expects nonprofits today to assume a major share of responsibility for the most serious challenges he sees facing the nation.”—The Philanthropy Roundtable

“This book has value as a collection of the writings of a major figure in the philanthropic world.”Eleanor L. Brilliant, Nonprofit and Voluntary Sector Quarterly

" Dozens of essays included in Challenges for Nonprofits and Philanthropy provoke a passionate reaction . . . Part observer, part interlocutor, he challenges his nonprofit audience toward self-assessment.”Shelterforce


"In his long and characteristically thoughtful Preface, Pablo Eisenberg urges the philanthropic world to summon up more 'guts and brains.' These are the qualities Pablo has brought to the voluntary and nonprofit sector for many decades. He practically invented the notion that philanthropic foundations need to be responsible to their donees, and he has steadfastly championed the right of the poor to be at the center of philanthropic activity. This son of privilege has spent his professional career urging philanthropists lead rather than react, to democratize their organizations and their giving programs, and to speak out. I wish I could say that I thought that Pablo, near the end of his public career has succeeded. He knows he has not, and we owe it to him to read these essays in order to reflect on where we have gone wrong—for I agree that we have."Stanley N. Katz, Professor,
Woodrow Wilson School, Princeton University

"You may love him or hate him, but nobody can question Pablo Eisenberg's passion for the non profit sector. He has devoted his life to causes that have one thing in common: they all rely on this wonderful American heritage variously known as the voluntary sector, the independent sector, or the nonprofit world. In this book, Pablo shares his perspectives as a practitioner, as a innovator, and as a student of the dynamic world of 'charity.' But Pablo is rightfully and righteously outraged with those who would misuse this sacred vehicle for their own private gain. He is a modern day gadfly to an ever more important part of our economy and of our lives. No matter your station in life, one would do well to heed his message."Raul Yzaguirre, President, National Council of La Raza

PABLO EISENBERG is a senior fellow at the Georgetown University Public Policy Institute. He has been leader of the Center for Community Change, one of the nation’s most highly regarded poverty-fighting organizations, and founded the National Committee for Responsive Philanthropy, of which he is chairman emeritus. For the past decade he has been a regular columnist for The Chronicle of Philanthropy. STACY PALMER is editor of The Chronicle of Philanthropy.

Wed, 20 Jun 2012 09:57:38 -0500