Giving 2.0: Transform your giving and our world


Magazine article

Laura Arrillaga-Andreessen

As the ‘2.0’ in the title indicates, the aim of this book is to show donors how they can become part of the next generation of philanthropists, by (according to the publishers) “harnessing the power of technology, collaboration, innovation, advocacy, and social entrepreneurship to take their giving to the next level and beyond”.

The author has a strong track record in this field, as she founded the Silicon Valley Social Venture Fund and is well-regarded as an award-winning philanthropist. She does a service in correcting a common misconception about the relative power and importance of the mega rich and the ‘ordinary’ donors, as she rightly states, “Major gifts may dominate headlines, but the majority of giving still comes from individual households”.

However, the book itself is a curious mix of a biographical and anecdotal accounts of a rather random assortment of givers whose stories are intended to illustrate the points being made in the text. The book sorely lacks is any rootedness in, or reference to, the existing literature; surprising given the author now teaches at the prestigious Californian university, Stanford. Despite its promise, there are many other better books on  philanthropy, including those by the big-name academics who endorse this volume.

Jossey-Bass: San Francisco, 2011. 320pp. Hardcover. ISBN 978-1-118-11940-2. £17.99