Summer 1 2020 - 87410 - PA F388L - Advanced Topics in Management

Perspectives on Philanthropy - WB

Course Description

At least since the founding of the United States, a central feature of the American Republic has been a supposedly "non-political" sphere in which a substantial portion of the public’s business is accomplished. This sphere has been variously called the "third sector," the non-profit sector," the "independent sector" and/or civil society." This course is principally devoted to surveying the roots, character, dimensions, problems and achievements of this sphere as it relates to the rise and practice of the American PHILANTHROPIC TRADITION. In the context of such an approach, the course also explores the relationship of the American philanthropic sector to three other sectors present in the American experience: the sectors of government, business, and the family, which may likewise be categorized as the political, the economic and the household sectors. Central to the conduct of the course is a focus on the question of the degree to which the third sector has defined and shaped the ongoing history of the American political regime as it has evolved over time.

Requirements & Expectations

Individual student performance will be measured by assessing general class presence and participation in discussion (30%); participation in leading analysis and discussion of one of the central assigned readings (15%); completion of a short personal “ philanthropic autobiography (15%); and writing an 8-10 page essay on the current role on the philanthropic sector in American society (40%). These papers may focus on one of the ten major class subjects or on an aligned subject of student interest.


The course will be supported by readings compiled from a wide range of books, journals, private papers and studies, with materials related to each class session. These readings will be available on the UT CANVAS system as the class begins. In addition, two course texts will provide support for and required readings related to the course: The Non-Profit Sector: A Research Handbook (Yale University Press: New Haven/2006) and The State of Non-Profit America (Brookings Institution Press: Washington D.C./2012).

A special feature of the class will be the presence on most class evenings of a significant leader in the Austin and Texas non-profit landscape drawn from executive, board and analyst ranks. These guests will provide authentic real-world connection with the major themes of the course.