• Minister Katherine Zappone T.D., with Colin McCrea (Board Member), Éilis Murray (CEO), and Bernard Kirk (Chairman) of Philanthropy Ireland
  • Farmleigh House, former home of notable philanthropists, The Guinness Family
  • Minister Katherine Zappone, T.D., Department for Children and Youth Affairs
  • Bernard Kirk, Chairman of Philanthropy Ireland
  • Éilis Murray, CEO of Philanthropy Ireland
  • Minister Seán Kyne T.D., Minister of State at the Department of Rural and Community Development
  • Philanthropy Version 2.0. Connect. Listen. Engage.
  • James Murphy, Lifes2good
  • Joey Newton, The Rank Foundation & Gerard O'Hare
  • Corporate Panel; Eimear Cowhey, basis.point & Liam Ryan, SAP
  • Paul Hayes (Beechhut PR) with Dr. Beth Breeze, University of Kent
  • Dr. Beth Breeze, University of Kent & Jacob Gayle, Medtronic Foundation
  • Éilis Murray, CEO of Philanthropy Ireland & Dr. Beth Breeze, University of Kent
  • Philanthropy Version 2.0. Connect. Listen. Engage.
  • Philanthropy Version 2.0. Connect. Listen. Engage.
Philanthropy Version 2.0, an all-Ireland event dedicated to donors for reimagining ideas on how to make philanthropy for social impact part of a wider conversation, took place on 1st December 2017. Hosted in Farmleigh House, the former home of notable philanthropists, the Guinness Family, the gathering brought together current and future philanthropists interested in exploring current trends, and developing philanthropy in Ireland. Speakers included international and Irish thought-leaders engaged with innovative models of philanthropy and giving. Under the Chatham House Rule, this was an interactive conversation for donors lead by panel discussions.

While there are undoubtedly challenges for the successful growth and development of philanthropy in Ireland there is also tremendous opportunity. Our traditions of giving coupled with our increasing wealth, act as a solid foundation for growth of philanthropy for the benefit of society. A key challenge is to move from reactive giving to strategic giving, to create greater impact and value.

But if we are to understand and gain insight into how this can best be achieved we need to listen and hear from those actively engaging in giving, individual and corporate. We need to hear the voices of donors, we need to create space for collaboration and engagement.

There is no ‘one’ way – there must be choice, choice of models, structures, approaches and causes if we are to create vibrancy in the sector.

As a representative organisation providing leadership and voice for donors, that is what PI seeks to facilitate, the creation of a space for dialogue. Space for exchange of insights and understanding, space to debate challenges and to consider pathways. That is what our recent event Philanthropy Version 2.0 sought to achieve. With generous input and contributions from donors (individual and corporate), government, including inspiring addresses from both Minister Katherine Zappone T.D. and Minister of State Sean Kyne T.D., and leading international thought-leaders on philanthropy, the event provided opportunity to step back, reflect and inform.

How can we maximise the Social Impact from giving? What, if anything, can we do differently? How can we do it? How do we structure it? Can we re-organise Philanthropic Giving in Ireland? If so how? And is it only about money? What about technology, influence, etc. – what role can they play? These were just some of the questions raised in discussions at the event.

What was evident is that there are no right or wrong answers. There is no ‘one’ way – there must be choice, choice of models, structures, approaches and causes if we are to create vibrancy in the sector. But by listening and engaging in conversations, hearing about journeys on giving, openly discussing the challenges involved, this event provided valuable insights to inform the pathways for progression of philanthropy in Ireland. These are documented in the report adding value for all those engaged with the sector.

We all have a role to play, including donors, government, corporates, and causes. We can inform the debate, inspire thinking and dare to imagine new ways of giving for impact. It is not about ‘telling’ it is about informing. Philanthropy has the power to make significant social impact for the benefit of all in our society. We all have a responsibility to do what we can and to do it in partnership.

The event would not have been possible without the generous cooperation and support of all those who partnered with us to resource the event in addition to all those contributing and attending. We are very grateful to all who participated and we intend to use the learnings from this event to push forward in providing leadership, collaboration and support for the continued development of philanthropy in Ireland, for the benefit of all.

As always, Philanthropy Ireland is available to those looking for information and resources on the different aspects, and models of philanthropy. From the discussions, we know that there is a need for us to continue to create more spaces for engagement and facilitate connections amongst donors. We will embrace our role as the collective voice on philanthropy to amplify the stories of impact of philanthropy and promote it amongst our own network and more broadly.

Reflection by Éilis Murray, CEO Philanthropy Ireland

The Report from Philanthropy Version 2.0 is available here.