Not to be confused with charity or humanitarian intervention, philanthropy used in economic development focuses on community economic initiatives to restore local business ownership and encourage the strategic use of local resources while empowering community pride for long-term sustainability. The city of Grand Rapids, Michigan, has flourished beneath the partnership of individual philanthropy and “place-rooted” foundations dedicated to improving the status and overall development of the city. Organizations like Grand Action and The Right Place, Inc. have leveraged the combined efforts of a number of local philanthropists to fund larger development projects within the city center to create a community that attracts, retains, and fosters innovation and has created a midwestern hub known for its support and achievements in the arts and sciences. As illustrated in this paper, the models and concepts used to revitalize Grand Rapids can be and have been replicated in other areas to create positive and sustainable urban economies.
Rowan, Heather M.
"The Influence of Philanthropy in the Economic Development of Grand Rapids,"
SPNHA Review: Vol. 15
, Article 9.
Available at: https://scholarworks.gvsu.edu/spnhareview/vol15/iss1/9