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How the Walter & Else Haas Sr. Fund Manages Grants Online

Posted by on April 11th, 2014
Posted in Blog, Nonprofit Web   

The Little Plug-in for Philanthropy’s Big Data

The Walter & Elise Haas Sr Fund came to Mission Minded to develop and launch an open-source WordPress plug-in that supercharges transparency in grant reporting.

Like many grantmakers, the Haas Sr. Fund operates its own proprietary system for recording, tracking, and publishing grants. Sharing that information — with its web audience and with peers in philanthropy — was a technical challenge as there was no direct route from desktop grant management software to dynamic publishing on the web.

Grantmaking data is complicated

Different naming conventions and classification methods between foundations made standardizing years’ worth of grant data overly costly and complicated. Grantmaking data at foundations such as Haas may have been literally available but, practically, it was difficult to access and even harder to assess as a component of greater philanthropy.

OpenhGrant in Action

The Walter & Elise Haas Fund asked Mission Minded to help them develop a free, open-source solution that any philanthropic organization could use.

The result is Open hGrant for WordPress, a plug-in that publishes grantmaking to a WordPress website using the standardized Foundation Center hGrant technical specification. This creates a big opportunity to collect, catalog, map, and analyze giving across multiple organizations around the country. Not only do grantmakers using the plug-in get an easy way to display searchable, sortable, customizable grant listings, they also can instantly share their data with the Foundation Center.

This transparency fosters effective collaboration, strategic planning, and engagement across the philanthropic sector for everyone’s benefit.

Open hGrant for WordPress is available for free download. You can see it in action on the Walter & Elise Haas Fund’s own Recent Grantmaking pages now. Hopefully, its use will encourage wider participation in open data initiatives, drive collaboration among philanthropies, and ultimately boost the capacity of grantmakers to further their missions.


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