Project Title: Philanthropy social science program
Supervisor: Nicolas Duvoux
Partners: Fondation de France, Fondation Daniel et Nina Carasso, Fondation Caritas, PhiLab
Team members: Anne Monier
Following the recent transformations of a burgeoning philanthropic sector, social science research on this question is slowly structuring itself in France. While a few other philanthropy research centers already exist, this project distinguishes itself by the conceptual tools and methods used as well as its target. The project emerged from exchanges between researchers during protests, which initiated a dynamic with the aim of bringing together existing research and to stimulate researchers on the theme of the implication of private actors in actions of general interest. It is characterized by an attachment to the multidisciplinary dimension of philanthropy research, a multidimensional object which allows interconnecting questions specific to history, political science, sociology, economy, anthropology. The project’s aim is to reinforce and make visible social science research on philanthropy, as well as distributed them to both actors of the sector as well as the public at large in France and internationally.
The project has three main objectives:
- The first is to make known in the international literature, both in the European and North American spheres, the results and analyses of past and present research on philanthropy in France (works of the founders of the initiatives and of the whole community of French and francophone researchers). Publications in journals and the publication of a book in English are the first objectives of this initiative. The development of international partnerships, with PhiLab in Canada, with philanthropy research organizations in Europe (Dafné) and in the United States (namely at Stanford University) will be at the heart of the project initiator’s concerns.
- The second objective is to ensure the development of empirical research on philanthropy. While research on French founders and donors as well as another on transnational philanthropy are in progress, a new research program is in development. It consists in a «Traces» project that aims to understand philanthropy according to the donor lifespan, by taking interest in «what remains» once the donation is made, meaning all the material counterparts offered to donors, namely through the implementation of donor recognition plates, be they nominal or multiple, but also the benches, statues, buildings that carry the name of donors for 10, 20, 100 years.
- The third objective is to contribute to the distribution of this research to actors of the sector as well as to the public. Attention will be paid to the animation of exchanges between researchers and actors of the sector, through the organization of seminars or regular study days. Particularly, meetings with researches on the key social issues in connection to philanthropy are organized. A meeting with Sylvain Lefèvre took place on November 22nd, 2018. Two other meetings will follow: meeting with the economist Julia Cagé, and with the historian Pierre Rosanvallon. Research activities are also in place, such as the organization of two study days in June of 2018.