Jump to ContentJump to Main Navigation
Philanthropy in Democratic SocietiesHistory, Institutions, Values$
Users without a subscription are not able to see the full content.

Rob Reich, Chiara Cordelli, and Lucy Bernholz

Print publication date: 2016

Print ISBN-13: 9780226335506

Published to Chicago Scholarship Online: May 2017

DOI: 10.7208/chicago/9780226335780.001.0001

Show Summary Details
Page of

PRINTED FROM CHICAGO SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.chicago.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright University of Chicago Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in CHSO for personal use.date: 28 November 2021

On the Role of Foundations in Democracies

On the Role of Foundations in Democracies

(p.64) Three On the Role of Foundations in Democracies
Philanthropy in Democratic Societies

Rob Reich

University of Chicago Press

This chapter discusses the role private philanthropic foundations should play in democratic societies. Though endowments of sort or another have existed for centuries, the modern grant-making foundation -- in which private assets are set aside in a permanent, donor-directed, tax advantaged endowment with a fraction of the assets annually to be distributed for a public purpose – is a recent invention. Philanthropic foundations in this form are institutional oddities, plutocratic voices in a democratic society. Despite many anti-democratic features, I argue that the foundation is not incompatible with democracy, so long as it functions in support of what I call pluralism and discovery.

Keywords:   private foundation, philanthropy, democracy, John Rockefeller, Bill Gates, plutocracy, nonprofit, endowment, pluralism

Chicago Scholarship Online requires a subscription or purchase to access the full text of books within the service. Public users can however freely search the site and view the abstracts and keywords for each book and chapter.

Please, subscribe or login to access full text content.

If you think you should have access to this title, please contact your librarian.

To troubleshoot, please check our FAQs, and if you can't find the answer there, please contact us.