What is Philamplify?

Philamplify is an initiative of the National Committee for Responsive Philanthropy (NCRP) that aims to maximize the impact of our country’s grantmakers. By providing a modern, user-friendly space to gather straightforward feedback from everyone involved in philanthropy, the project brings together voices that have traditionally been unheard.

Philamplify combines expert research on the work foundations do with feedback from foundation and nonprofit leaders and staff, issue experts, community members and more.

How does it work?

At the center of Philamplify is a series of comprehensive reports conducted by highly regarded researchers assessing foundation grantmaking and operations. Assessments include key findings and recommendations, along with in-depth analysis of foundations’ funding strategies. By keeping these assessments public, Philamplify seeks to build a culture of transparency, mutual accountability and knowledge sharing.

Philamplify.org turns the assessments into an interactive experience, giving everyone involved with or touched by philanthropy a chance to comment on each assessment’s key recommendations and each foundation’s overall grantmaking approach. Visitors also can share their stories in text, photo or video, chime in on general issues affecting philanthropy and provide direct feedback about Philamplify itself.

“For foundations serious about impact and getting their hands on all the information and data available to increase learning and effectiveness, Philamplify is a huge opportunity and an additional tool to guide strategic grantmaking.” – Taj James, Executive Director, Movement Strategy Center

Learn more about the criteria we use to assess private foundations.

Who funds Philamplify?

In FY 2013, 96.6 percent of NCRP’s funding came from grantmaker supporters in the form of grants and membership. Currently, all costs associated with developing and maintaining Philamplify – from the website to the research assessments – are covered by general support grants, which was 81 percent of NCRP’s foundation funding. A complete list of NCRP funders can be found here.

Why does Philamplify matter?

There is reluctance among grantmakers, nonprofits and the communities that benefit from philanthropic support to provide honest, constructive feedback to specific foundations. Yet, foundations cannot achieve their missions and maximize impact in their communities if they remain in an isolation bubble.

For the philanthropic community to continue to flourish, this status quo must change. That’s why Philamplify was created – to break through the isolation bubble and give everyone involved a place to share feedback and learn from one another. It’s our hope that Philamplify will lift our collective work to new heights and help us better achieve our individual and shared missions.

“So many people are working tirelessly to help immigrants and other marginalized communities bring their voice into the policy arena, yet these communities often remain voiceless in philanthropy. Philamplify provides a platform for the intended beneficiaries of foundation funding to share what works and what doesn’t – so that funders can make an even bigger difference on the issues they care about.” – Pramila Jayapal, Taconic Fellow, Center for Community Change

How can you get involved?

Philamplify is fueled by community interaction. This site was created to bring together all voices, but it only works when you share. Explore each assessment, take the polls, leave comments and help us improve grantmaking across the board. Make your voice heard.

Take a moment to share a story of how philanthropy has affected your life – and inspire the donors and grantmakers in your area to keep learning, growing and making an impact in our communities.

“As someone who has been both a grantmaker and nonprofit leader fighting for social change, I see how hard it is to engage in honest dialogue about how philanthropy can more effectively support grassroots communities. I’m excited to see that dialogue finally happen through Philamplify.” – Judy Hatcher, Executive Director, Pesticide Action Network of North America