The Philanthropy: Towards a Better Practice Model report is the result of an analysis of the practices of grantmakers supporting not-for-profit
organisations in Australia. Grantmakers and grantseekers were surveyed and interviewed to better understand how they approached giving, social impact
and the use of evidence in decision-making. The report draws on the Trust Company’s five pillars of good practice for grant-making to capture those
thoughts. Those pillars are:

  • Grant making philosophy.
  • Capacity building and not-for-profit resilience.
  • Scaling, replication, and collaboration.
  • The strength of the relationship between grantmakers and grantseekers.
  • Approaches to evaluation and social impact.

30 in-depth interviews were held with grantmakers and grantseekers.

What did we find out?

Both grantmakers and grantseekers are passionate and united in their commitment to addressing the serious social problems facing Australia and work collaboratively
to support social change. There does seem to be a considerable discrepancy between grantseeker and grantmaker perceptions around what that is. The
key differences are:

  • Philanthropic organisations have a more favourable view of the state of practises and relationships in the sector than NFPs.
  • There is an imbalance of power between grantmakers and grantseekers.
  • Long term funding is not a priority for philanthropic organisations.
  • There is a difference in funding priority perceptions between grantmakers and grantseekers.
  • The perception of the types of support needed differ between grantmakers and grantseekers.

What does this mean?

With the discrepancy between grantmakers and grantseekers on frontiers like power and priority-setting there is the chance that the social impact on beneficiaries
of NFP support are not as strong as they should be. Effort needs to be made to bring grantmakers and grantseekers into alignment with each other so
that real improvements can be made in the lives of those who need it most.