Panel & Discussion: The Role of Philanthropy as a Facilitator of Collaboration in Polarized Times
Date & Time
Monday, April 25, 2022, 3:00 PM - 4:15 PM
Wendy Feliz Andrew Hanauer Ted Johnson Kristen Cambell

The ability of diverse groups to collaborate toward shared goals is a prerequisite for collective impact. But many communities are (at best) very demographically sorted and ideologically segmented, if not altogether divided, fractured, and polarized. So, is coming together—much less working together—even possible in deeply divided and polarized times? Who decides when it is worth it?  And what is the responsibility of philanthropy within these questions?  

This session will seek to surface assumptions and complicated narratives about the opportunities for (and barriers to) collaboration across lines of difference. We will highlight examples of unlikely alliances in specific communities and contexts, and discuss what conditions made them possible and what they were able to achieve (or not). We’ll consider if, where, and how funders can be a conduit to collaboration across lines of difference, as well as honestly and candidly wrestle with the ways well-intentioned funders can inadvertently make polarization dynamics worse. 

Session Type
Funder Pre-Conference Session