To uphold our promise to society, philanthropy must be a leader in seeing our shared humanity and working together for the greater good. Positive change doesn’t always come easily, especially in times of division and mistrust. It often requires action from a broad coalition of people and groups who sometimes disagree. The magic happens at the intersections where we can build common ground. The Council is working to be that intersection, a place where you can find fellow travelers who may see the path differently yet still want to reach the same destination.

Building Common Ground is one of the three core pillars of The Council's work, and this is how we will achieve that goal.

What we're doing

We’re committed to bringing the best of what already exists to our members through partnerships and threading best practices into existing Council work, including through internal capacity building work with Resetting the Table. Our programming will facilitate peer learning, amplify bright spots, and cultivate leaders who can learn and scale this work across the country. For example:

  • An eight-month Bridging Differences Leadership Cohort offered in partnership with the Greater Good Science Center (starting in April 2023);
  • A landscape scan and publication highlighting the ways funders are working to build common ground (mid-2023);
  • Opportunities to engage in conversations at our Leading Locally conference in June 2023; and
  • Sector-wide convenings on how to connect and collaborate across difference. 

Get Involved

We hope our members will apply what they are learning through their engagement with us to the work they do in community, whether that is by facilitating and participating in interactions that decrease polarization or directly funding work to build common ground.



Connect with Council Staff

Kristen Scott Kennedy

Vice President, Strategy and Organizational Effectiveness and Chief of Staff

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