By Richard Magat
This file originated in a request to me from the Board of Trustees of the Ford origin in the summertime of 1975. The trustees, conscious that there will be a metamorphosis of management on the origin be fore 1980, desired to make a working commence within the technique of plan ning for the longer term. Their first step was once to make a learn of the good nationwide and overseas wishes that would lie forward within the subsequent decade and a part, and the place and the way the root may perhaps advert gown them. They sought recommendation either in the origin and out of doors it, they usually engaged in lengthy discussions in their personal. even though the workout used to be directed towards making plans for the long run, the trustees additionally needed to study our earlier, now not exhaus tively yet at the least good adequate to have a transparent experience of what the root have been as much as within the zone century of its lifestyles as a countrywide and overseas establishment. during this connection, the chairman of our board, Alexander Heard, requested for /I a canvass of the Ford Foundation's stories, successes, and screw ups over the past twenty-five years . . . [focused] at the vast pursuits sought, the capability pursued to accomplish them, and the results.
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Additional resources for The Ford Foundation at Work: Philanthropic Choices, Methods and Styles
24 The versatility of the staff roles reflects in part the growth of our professional staff, which nearly doubled, to 309, in the decade 1964-1973. But versatility also appears to have been maintained as the staff has shrunk (to 202 as of this writing). Even when our staff was growing, we drew increasingly on the assistance of other groups and individuals to help us plan and administer our work. Since the early 1950s, we have used hundreds of consultants. In the early years, we used them primarily to help us review grant applications, and we continue to rely on peer review to an extent.
In some instances, as in our work with resident theaters and ballet companies, the grant is part of a continuing relationship with an institution, including monitoring and technical assistance. Particularly in the case of organizations that depend heavily on our support, we often try to maintain helpful contact without intruding to the point of creating either overdependence or resentment. Grants to individuals have become a major activity of the Foundation, greater in number, although not in expenditure, than grants to institutions.
Taking our history as a whole, we have in fact dealt in domestic affairs primarily with established institutions. Of the some 2,500 domestic institutions we have supported, only 65 have received $10 million or more, but the grants to these institutions account for nearly three-fourths of the funds we have spent in the United States. Half of the 65 largest recipients are leading colleges and universities. But increasingly, and for quite some time now, our attitude may be described as pragmatic. The quality of an institution's work-what it is capable of doing to further objectives we consider important-matters more to us than its status.
The Ford Foundation at Work: Philanthropic Choices, Methods and Styles by Richard Magat