In His Own Words. A Q&A (part 2) with Vartan Gregorian. "Foundations as Incubators"

Encouraging American institutions to constantly renew their mission, purpose and work so that satisfaction with the status quo does not lead to atrophy, Vartan Gregorian offers a provocative assessment of American philanthropy 100 years following the creation of Carnegie Corporation of New York, the foundation he leads.

In the second installment of a wide-ranging interview which will be released in five parts over the course of the next year, Gregorian champions the thoughts and actions of idealists, revolutionaries and activists within philanthropy.  By transcending compromises and navigating around cynics, philanthropists can act as incubators of social change.  He warns, however, that philanthropy must not become a permanent "oxygen tank" shielding innovations from standing on their own in the marketplace of ideas.  Gregorian expresses his disdain for ideological shackles and reveals why Andrew Carnegie affixed the name "Corporation" to a grantmaking foundation. 

The second installment of Gregorian’s interview with Susan King, Carnegie Corporation’s Vice President of External Affairs, concludes with Gregorian placing the foundation’s size into perspective acknowledging that, in proportion to the magnitude of the challenges, Carnegie Corporation’s dollars are "insignificant" but its tradition of working in partnership with other foundations and nonprofit institutions is one of the grantmaker’s keys to success.  Read the Q&A Part 2.

Read the Q&A Part 1.