chapter  4
Designing for What’s Next
ByGrant Oliphant
Pages 9

This chapter reviews some critics of no accident grand philanthropic gestures coincide with moments in history when wealth becomes concentrated in very few hands and the gap between the rich and the poor grows unmanageably large. It discusses the great American foundations around the time of the Robber Barons, or the Gates Foundations contemporary vow to eradicate malaria. The age observers contend philanthropy functions a social safety valve, redistributing just enough wealth to keep people in low-income communities from uncontrollably militant. Piore suggests politicians and policymakers champion the borderlands, institutions in social claimants cross group boundaries and communicate needs to society at large. Albert Ruesga remembers sense of anticipation some 20 years ago landed first community foundation job. He and his friends or colleagues any inkling what happened inside the black boxes consistently swallowed proposals and issued polite rejections. The borderland institution takes place much more in the arena of cultural translation than in the arena of public policy.