Nora A. Tufano


Planning Climate Philanthropy: Finding Funding for Local Climate Adaptation Plans

Advised by Matthew Kiefer

Nearly every local climate plan in the United States is, in some way, funded by philanthropic sources, whether through direct underwriting of government programs, capacity building, sponsorship of academic research, or support for not-for-profit advocacy organizations. This exchange represents an extension of the historic and ongoing dialogue between public sector planning and philanthropy, which remains a relatively opaque phenomenon. This thesis argues that there is a need for holistic evaluation of philanthropic programs in the public interest rather than solely programmatic or internal analysis. With this goal, I examine foundation-funded climate programs in Boston to determine their success at leveraging future funding, creating policy change, and furthering equitable outcomes. Utilizing this analysis, this thesis puts forth a framework for the evaluation of future funding and best practices for identifying needs moving forward into the next phase of climate philanthropy for adaptation.

Overlay of an early hand-drawn map of Boston, Massachusetts atop contemporary shore outline map of Boston and  Boston Bay.
 Labels include Dorchester Neck, Roxbury, Charles River, Charlestown, Winisimmit, Noddles Island, Hog Island