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Who Gets What?: A Landscape Analysis of Education Philanthropy in California

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Jimmy Zhou

In the past two decades, there has been an increased emphasis on strategic giving within the field of philanthropy. Grantmakers and grantees alike have been asking themselves these
fundamental questions of what constitutes creating impact. Along the way, there have been many claims about what is effective and what is still lacking, but few of these claims are backed by empirical evidence or data. This paper conducts a landscape analysis of educational grantmaking by foundations in California. The purpose is to provide clarity and insight into what is being funded in California and also provide direction into what opportunities should be pursued going forward. The $3 billion philanthropic dollars in California’s education system is no small number, and understanding where it is going can help a variety of stakeholders better plan and allocate their funds.


philanthropy, education funding, grantmaking, landscape analysis, California, nonprofits