Our industry reports identify trends and challenge conventional thinking to advance effective practices.

Philanthropy is undergoing a revolution, updating its approaches to more effectively support the leaders, organizations, and communities driving transformation. Open Impact’s forward-looking industry reports and articles are helping reshape how philanthropy thinks about its role based on case studies, mapping of giving trends, and best practices.

Our work has garnered expansive coverage in The New York Times, Bloomberg, the Washington Post, Stanford Social Innovation Review, San Francisco Chronicle, The Atlantic, and beyond.

Open Impact in the News

The super-rich are trying new approaches to philanthropy

The Economist

February 5, 2024

Silicon Valley Fortunes Grow, but Frustrating Trends in the Region’s Philanthropy Persist

Inside Philanthropy

September 28, 2021

What happens when only rich people give to charity?

The Washington Post

December 3, 2019

Dede Wilsey Asks the New Rich, “Why Don’t You Give Back?”

The New York Times

November 6, 2019

How Silicon Valley Has Disrupted Philanthropy

The Atlantic

July 25, 2018

How Leaders Can Strengthen Their Organizational Culture

Stanford Social Innovation Review

July 13, 2018

Nonprofits struggle to adjust as tech donors take center stage

San Francisco Chronicle

December 29, 2016

Learning from Silicon Valley’s Wealth Gap Problem


November 15, 2016

Client Profiles and Insights

Announcement from our CEO and Co-Founder

For me, 2024 has already been full of surprises. I did not expect when the year got underway that I would be telling our cherished network of clients and colleagues this news: I will be accepting an exciting new role and winding down Open Impact at the end of 2024. I’ve been offered a unique […]


Open Impact’s 2024 Resolution: Improve Governance to Improve Impact

As we begin 2024, our firm is doubling down on supporting founders and families as you explore how to develop governance systems that align to your philanthropic aspirations and increase your impact. “Governance,” the structures and processes for decision making, accountability, and control, may sound like a dull topic for us to be so fired […]


What’s Your Strategy for Change? Try Ours.

If you missed our workshop at the National Center for Family Philanthropy’s Leadership Retreat in Park City in November, read on for our framework for managing change within philanthropies that will limit friction and build excitement. A worksheet to help you plan for change is available for download. Over the years, we’ve found that leaders […]


2022 Philanthropy trends and practices that inspire us for 2023

As we look ahead to 2023, this digest provides an easy way to bring you up to speed on the ideas, stories, and trends of 2022.


National Center for Family Philanthropy

As NCFP’s new CEO took the helm, the landscape of philanthropy was—and continues to be—changing rapidly; with COVID-19, questions of relevance, equity, and power taking center stage for both philanthropies and philanthropy-serving organizations. In launching a fully virtual, adaptive strategy process with Open Impact, NCFP sought to harness these shifts, scale its field-level impact, and expand and deepen its support of a diverse set of family philanthropies.

Client Profiles

The Conrad Prebys Foundation

The Conrad Prebys Foundation is the largest private grantmaking foundation in San Diego County, with $1.6B in assets and nearly $100M in grant commitments in 2021 alone. As a newer philanthropy, the Board of Directors partnered with Open Impact to define its legacy of impact and support its Board to align around its future focus areas in order to lay the groundwork for bringing onboard a new CEO.

Client Profiles

The Arthur M Blank Family Foundation

With an ambition to significantly accelerate his family foundation’s grantmaking, the Founder of AMBFF engaged Open Impact to partner with his family in defining what its future impact would look like. Once this initial planning work was complete, Open Impact worked with the Foundation’s new President to engage the Board in a process of deeper learning and high level strategy setting for each new focus area.

Client Profiles

Get It Right: 5 Shifts Philanthropy Must Make Toward an Equitable Region

Lifts up the voices and transformative practices of those in philanthropy leading the way toward a more caring, connected, and equitable region. The report includes case studies that demonstrate how many leading funders have already moved from addressing symptoms to also shifting systems.


Pioneers 2020: Funding the Frontlines of Social Justice

Shares rich lessons learned by a cohort of Bay Area social and racial justice leaders who have scaled their impact by building movements, harnessing social media, and collaborating in networks to change systems over the past decade.


Building Capacity for Sustained Collaboration

Reports on the groundbreaking efforts of a national network of pooled funding initiatives for sustained collaboration: mergers, joint ventures, partnerships, and other arrangements that permanently change an organization’s business or operating model.


Leading Systems Change: A Workbook for Community Practitioners and Funders

Shares key lessons for supporting cross-sector collaboration, community capacity-building, and civic innovation in service of systems change, based on our experience running the New Leadership Network (NLN) in the Central Valley of California.


Making Better Big Bets

Discusses the potential of institutional foundations to more effectively address some of the most urgent issues of our day by enlisting new donors as critical stakeholders and partners in their work to help scale and accelerate their giving.


How Five Organizations Drive Positive Organizational Culture

Demystifies the elusive concept of organizational culture and provides practical examples of what social impact leaders can do to drive higher performance and healthier cultures.


The New Normal: Capacity Building During a Time of Disruption

Offers research insights on the struggles of nonprofit leaders in the current political and economic environment and calls on philanthropists to be more adaptive and supportive in their response.


Pioneers in Justice

Documenting a groundbreaking five-year effort, Pioneers in Justice shares many rich lessons as Bay Area social justice leaders work to scale their impact, building social movements through social media and networked action.


The Giving Journey: Guiding New Donors to Actualized Philanthropy

Based on 50+ interviews with UHNW individuals, seeks to understand their barriers and motivations to giving, and ways to accelerate their journey.


Creating a Cross Sector Leadership Network

Shares key lessons learned from the Irvine New Leadership Network, which supported cross-sector collaboration and civic innovation in the Central Valley of California.


The Giving Code: Silicon Valley Nonprofits and Philanthropy

Presents quantitative and qualitative data about growing wealth and philanthropy in Silicon Valley, including groundbreaking insights on what donors in the region give to, and offers frameworks for understanding and bridging the divides with local community-based organizations.


Leadership for Social Change: I / We / It

A framework outlining the new skills and mindsets leaders need to drive large-scale change and transformation in a world where our problems are scaling faster than our solutions.


Forces for Good

Written by Heather Mcleod Grant, this bestseller reveals the six powerful practices that twelve high-impact nonprofits use to change the world and shares their compelling stories of success. Over a decade after first publication, the book is taught in many nonprofit leadership courses and programs around the globe.