Venture Philanthropy in Europe: Landscape and Driving Principles
FINANZIERUNG VON SOZIALUNTERNEHMERN, SCHAEFFER-POESCHEL, Ann-Kristin Achleitner, Reinhard Poellath, Erwin Stahl, eds., pp. 34-43, 2007
7 Pages Posted: 2 Jan 2009 Last revised: 6 Jan 2009
Date Written: December 15, 2006
This paper analyzes venture philanthropy in Europe. Since the mid-nineties, the rise of venture philanthropy has mirrored the rise of social entrepreneurship in civil society in interesting ways. Social entrepreneurs and venture philanthropists alike have often laid claim to being among the most innovative players in the civil society and social change space. Their rise to prominence has mainly been driven by five developments: the general growth of more entrepreneurial approaches to social change; the increasing professionalization of civil society; increasing levels of wealth; the changing demographic composition of donors; and their greater desire for involvement in philanthropic ventures. Given its early stage and the capital available, the European venture philanthropy landscape is likely to evolve significantly in coming years. The degree of path dependency is limited and driven by mindsets and mental models: most venture philanthropy organizations (VPs) are currently small and experiment with various intervention models. The paper gives a brief overview of the main characteristics of the European venture philanthropy landscape and looks into the "DNA" of venture philanthropy as a core driver of future VP strategy. It also asks what this means for social entrepreneurs who look to VPs for funding.
Keywords: Venture philanthropy, social entrepreneurship
JEL Classification: L31
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