ACPNS Blog

Understanding place in Australian philanthropic foundations

Great article on understanding place in Australian philanthropic foundations and the impact of a potential new ‘hyper-localism’ in the wake of the COVID-19  pandemic. Thank you Sage Perspectives for posting this blog authored by ACPNS researcher Dr Alexandra Williamson. 


This article offers insight into the importance of the local and familiar, and explores how these themes are often in tension with the global forces influencing and driving philanthropy.

  • Place based giving is one factor that shapes a foundations identity, driven by a felt sense of responsibility. 
  • Conceptions of place may be a primary or secondary factor in the decision making process
  • Every participating foundation could draw a boundary (national, state, shire/locale) within which they would fund. 
  • A sense of place often motivates and informs philanthropy.

In 2020, foundations found that place came to the forefront of their decision-making, as the  global pandemic forced social, emotional places to collide with our physical places, pushing many to explore and experience sense of place in new ways.

Read More .

In this short video, Dr Alexandra Williamson, Postdoctoral Research Fellow at ACPNS, talks briefly about this study of ‘Place-based Funding’

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