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Welcome to the Giving Thought Podcast, a bi-weekly exploration of trends in global philanthropy and civil society from the Charities Aid Foundation’s in-house think-tank, Giving Thought.

In each episode your host Rhodri Davies (formerly with co-host Adam Pickering) explores a big issue, theme or trend and analyses what it means for philanthropy and civil society around the world.

Be sure to check the show notes for each podcast and find blogs, reports and videos from Giving Thought and do get in touch if you have questions or suggestions at

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Oct 10, 2017

In this episode, Rhod and Adam look at the relationship between place and philanthropy. Topics covered include:

-Does charity still begin at home?: Has the relationship between place and philanthropy become weaker over time, and what if anything can we do to reverse this downward trend? Can philanthropy be used to boost civic identity and pride, or does it rely on people having an existing sense of place?


-The Dark Side of Civic Philanthropy: When does philanthropic action within a local area start to become a problem? We consider examples like Detroit, where philanthropic funders stepped in to cover vital services when the city went bankrupt, and what these highlight about the potential risks.


-A new sense of place?: What does 'place' actually mean to each of us? In a highly connected, mobile world, do traditional notions of geographic locality have any relevance when it comes to philanthropy? Should we instead be thinking of new dispersed communities of interest or identity, such as diaspora communities? Or has technology actually made us think more locally than ever?


Related Giving Thought material:

Giving a Sense of Place: Philanthropy and the future of UK civic identity

Chain Links: The role of mayors in building a culture of civic philanthropy

The History of Civic Philanthropy in the UK: What can we learn from it?

Philanthropy and the City of London

Big Apple turnover: does the election of New York’s new mayor spell tough times for philanthropy?