Philanthropy is the non-governmental practice of an elite which claims to have the ability to solve social problems itself. The practice was established during the 19th century in opposition to charity, which helped the needy, and democracy, which granted legitimacy only to those elected. Even today, philanthropy is practiced by those individuals who value a different form of social management, based on expertise acquired in other fields of activity.
This volume presents a vast overview of studies dealing with philanthropy on both sides of the Atlantic. By combining a historical perspective and observations of the contemporary philanthropic landscape, this work offers an analysis of philanthropy's rules and standards, and illustrates its progress towards greater professionalism and legitimacy.
A unique look at an activity whose media coverage has never been as great as now in the 21st century.
Alexandre Lambelet is a professor at the Haute école de travail social et de la santé in Lausanne (HETS/eesp). He is an associate member of the Centre de recherche sur l'action politique (Research Centre on Political Action) at the Université de Lausanne (CRAPUL).