Philanthropie et secteur privé

Foundations play innovative and catalytic roles for youth empowerment far beyond financing, finds new OECD netFWD study


OECD Development Centre - Paris, 28 May 2014


Foundations’ engagement is critical to youth empowerment efforts. They employ innovative approaches to support youth which go far beyond the mere provision of funding to promising projects. This non-financial support encompasses technical assistance, capacity-building measures and strategic management advice and can result in a set of very different roles for foundations in the support to youth, according to the OECD netFWD study Philanthropy and Youth Empowerment.

Foundations’ work for Youth Empowerment - defined as “creating and supporting the enabling conditions under which young people can act on their own behalf, and on their own terms, rather than at the direction of others”- goes beyond the youth skills or education agendas and is increasingly centred around the question of how to create an enabling environment that best allows youth to use the window of opportunity at this stage of their life.

Philanthropy and Youth Empowerment
is based on 11 case studies from foundations pioneering innovative approaches to support youth. The qualitative analysis provides insight into how foundations work with youth, their motivations and strategic visions and their specific value added and comparative advantages vis-à-vis other development actors. It includes an overview of trends, highlights specific examples of programmes and partnerships, and offers recommendations to foundations and policymakers on how to work together to achieve greater impact.

The study finds that foundations often play innovative roles at all stages of a programme cycle. They partner with cutting-edge research institutions to inform programme design, fund and incubate early-stage ideas, build the long-term financial and operational capacity of their grantees, employ inventive evaluation techniques to assess their interventions and broker multi-stakeholder partnerships to bring successful pilots to scale.

The study is launched today in Nairobi, Kenya, co-hosted by the Rockefeller Foundation, one of the foundations participating in the study.


For further information about Philanthropy and Youth Empowerment: Foundations Innovative Approaches to Support Youth, journalists are invited to contact Bochra Kriout at the OECD Development Centre (; +33 1 45 24 82 96).


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