Helping Funders Act Boldly and Give Wisely

In 1989, Peter Karoff launched a social experiment to see if the idea of strategic philanthropy, when applied to a broader cohort of donors, could increase effectiveness and encourage greater generosity. The Philanthropic Initiative (TPI) was born, playing a lead role in the creation of the field of strategic philanthropy. In our view, strategic philanthropy is about articulating a vision and goals, and then determining the most effective ways in which philanthropic resources can support those goals. From the beginning, we have encouraged funders to engage a wide range of stakeholders, listen deeply to diverse perspectives, and work in close partnership with nonprofit leaders and others with shared goals.

TPI was founded on the belief that philanthropy has the power to transform.

For more than three decades we have provided consulting and program management services to help families and individuals, foundations and other philanthropies, and companies increase the impact of their philanthropy. We serve as consultants and thought partners to ambitious funders who embrace innovative thinking in their efforts to find levers of change. We help our clients articulate their philanthropic visions, values, and goals; create strategies to achieve those goals; and ultimately achieve long-term, positive impact on the social and environmental issues that matter most to them.

TPI has been central to a number of seminal efforts in the field, and we have gained a reputation as original thinkers with deep knowledge of the philanthropic landscape. As a nonprofit philanthropic advising practice, our mission from the very beginning has included promotion of effective philanthropy through thought leadership, cutting-edge research, philanthropic education programs, and field-building initiatives. We continue to fuel the growth of high-impact philanthropy locally, nationally, and across the globe.

Learn more about TPI’s founder, Peter Karoff.

Highlights from Our History