Tracking the generosity that changes the world

Research partnership studies the relationship between social innovation and philanthropy

How can charitable giving lead to lasting social change? The Université du Québec à Montréal’s Jean-Marc Fontan studies this question. His research is leading to new insights on the impact of contemporary philanthropy.

Leading a team of scholars from across Canada and a coalition of partner organizations—including Community Foundations of Canada, Philanthropic Foundations Canada and the Ontario Trillium Foundation—Fontan looks at how charities and foundations become catalysts for social change.

The innovative research partnership studies social enterprises—businesses focused on serving the common good, rather than on maximizing profits—as well as impact investing, which supports charitable or community-based initiatives while still aiming to deliver solid returns on investment.

Fontan’s findings are helping us better understand philanthropy’s role in driving social innovation and how we, as a society, can maximize the impact of charitable giving.