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Both philanthropy and the public good often get a pass because we assume they are intrinsically positive. Indeed, philanthropists get mileage out of the common assumption that they contribute their money to advance a collective idealized notion of the public good. Yet, we also know that debates about what is the good, who is our neighbor, and what is good for the public has lasted for centuries. While deeply ethical and religious questions, the professionalization of philanthropy and public policy have framed the bounds of the public good more through the bureaucratization of giving and development than to ethical foundation on which such actions are based and can be evaluated. Questions of ethical and religious foundation and evaluation are rooted in the humanities and made empirical with the benefit of social science.

 

photo of david kingDavid King; Lake Institute on Faith and Giving; Philanthropy; IUPUI; kingdp@iupui.edu

 

 

photo of raymond haberski jrRaymond Haberski Jr.; History/American Studies; Liberal Arts; IUPUI; haberski@iupui.edu

 

 

 

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