It is hard to underestimate the extent to which technology could improve philanthropy. Managing donations electronically and transparently is the beginning. Through crowdsourcing, anyone with access tot he Internet can contribute money, ideas and collaboration. Open-source code, online procurement, and off-the-shelf customer relationship management software can increase giving efficiency and effectiveness. Rapid advances in technology are changing philanthropy in fundamental ways-making it potentially more rational, effectives, collaborative, transparent and democratic.
Once scarce information about the funding portfolios of family foundations is going online, with foundations such as Good Ventures and the Case Foundation. GuideStart International provides information on millions of nonprofits. GreatNonprofits develop tools that allow people to identify, review and share information on effective charities. GiveWell compares the impact and relative cost of different nonprofits and makes recommendation to donors and Social Impact Exhange’s S&I index, use third-party evaluations to assess nonprofits impact and scalability.
Collective giving is powered by technology, building virtual giving circles for pets, veterans, and those facing challenges they are not prepared to manage with their available resources. Online democratization will advance measurable models of change and giving, harnessing technology to scale, predict and manage some of the world’s biggest problems. Disruption is a call to action to change the mindset among philanthropy groups and individual contributors to scale the possibilities and think differently of the impact of giving.