Welcome back to RADAR, Friday inbox botherer par excellence. This week’s fraff includes: the potential of ‘funder advocacy’, women in the voluntary sector, Bill Gates’s annual letter, Lafley Vs Jobs, and innovation in Higher Education.
There was a piece in Civil Society this week about the effectiveness of ‘funder advocacy’, and the potential for collaboration between funders and the government in the UK. It reported on a review of The Corston Independent Funders’ Coalition (CIFC), a three-year collaboration of 22 grantmaking trusts and foundations, which showed that the coalition achieved outcomes that individual trusts and foundations could not have achieved alone. The review also outlined the underlying tension between governments and trusts/foundations, saying: “Government interest in independent funders is primarily to do with their money, whereas trusts and foundations are keen to avoid the substitution of government funds”. Read the Civil Society piece click here, to read a fuller blogpost click here, and to download the review as a PDF click here.
Women in the Voluntary Sector
Frequent Third Sector Women contributor and all round good egg Rowenna Lewis released her report Close To Parity this week. The research, undertaken as part of her Clore Social Leadership fellowship, showed the glass ceiling still firmly in place in the third sector. She writes: “Women are starkly absent from the leadership of major charities. Among those charities turning over £10m the proportion of women in leadership positions plummets to 27%”. This despite the fact that nearly 7 out of 10 employees in the sector are female. I don’t think this is necessarily new, it was the focus of a Third Sector Women event last year and is the basic reason for the existence of the network, but it is still very powerful to see it in black and white. Read Rowenna’s piece on the Guardian Voluntary Sector Network here, and Civil Society coverage here.
Bill Gates’ Annual Letter
The founder of The Gates Foundation this week produced his annual letter, which outlines the trajectory for the foundation in the year ahead. This year’s letter focused on innovation, in particular innovation in agriculture, and its role in fighting extreme poverty around the world. Read the letter, fascinating from beginning to end, here, and read a profile of Gates in the Telegraph here. Gates was joined at the launch by Hand Rosling, the statistician. If you haven’t heard of Rosling you’re missing out, see his work in this video, and follow him on Twitter.
Lafley Vs Jobs
Continuing the theme of American technology pioneers, a piece on HBR this week compares Steve Jobs’ ability to give consumers what they didn’t know they wanted with P&G CEO Adam Lafley’s investment in using market research to understand what the consumer wants. The piece goes on to look at intuition vs. research and is available here.
Innovation in Higher Education
The RSA’s Matthew Taylor was worth following on his blog this week. He asked readers for thoughts on a proposed speech about innovation higher education, then gave his initial reaction to the RSA jobs summit, then continued the conversation on innovation. Read the posts, in order, here, here and here.