ClimateWorks Foundation is a team of researchers, strategists, collaborators, and grant-makers who are committed to climate action and believe in the power of collective philanthropy. A non-governmental organization that works globally, ClimateWorks collaborates with funders, regional and research partners, and other climate leaders to strengthen philanthropy’s response to climate change.
The ClimateWorks team is united in their commitment to climate action, bringing combined expertise in climate science, public policy, economic and social development, and strategic philanthropy.
ClimateWorks collaborates with a wide range of funders, NGOs, and climate leaders from around the world to accelerate climate action.
ClimateWorks Foundation is a US-based 501(c)(3) public charity. The foundation files an Internal Revenue Service Form 990 annually that provides detailed information about their organization and finances.
ClimateWorks was established in 2008 to help philanthropy meet the challenge of global climate change.
In 2007, The William and Flora Hewlett Foundation, The David and Lucile Packard Foundation, The Energy Foundation, The Doris Duke Charitable Foundation, The Joyce Foundation, and the Oak Foundation came together to explore how philanthropy could have greater impact in the effort to mitigate dangerous climate change. Their findings were published as Design to Win: Philanthropy’s Role in the Fight Against Global Warming, a groundbreaking report that identified priorities for intervention globally and charted an ambitious course for climate philanthropy.
Committed to seeing these strategies put into action, three foundations — Hewlett, Packard, and McKnight — created ClimateWorks in 2008, with the goal of increasing philanthropic impact on climate change. During their first six years, ClimateWorks made hundreds of grants worldwide, helped build capacity in key regions, and collaborated with a network of partners to support research, policy advocacy, outreach and public engagement, all with the aim of reducing the emissions that cause climate change.
In 2012, ClimateWorks began to take stock of what was working and what could be improved, both organizationally and programmatically. They found that many of the assumptions that went into the original strategy design were sound. Philanthropic donors were playing an increasingly influential role in the race to stabilize the climate. Successes confirmed that strategic philanthropic investments could help shape public policy, private sector engagement, and public support, hereby helping to reduce carbon emissions, at scale. ClimateWorks’ global scope and focus on key regions were also real strengths, as was their technical rigor and focus on public policy.
It also became clear that some aspects of ClimateWorks’ programs and organizational model could be refined. For example, they concluded there was an opportunity to engage with broader networks of partners, share strategies and knowledge more widely, and support more coordination among funders.
In 2013, guided by the lessons of their early years, ClimateWorks updated their strategic plan with the central goal of increasing philanthropy’s impact on the climate challenge. They took on a bigger role to help leading climate funders coordinate and redoubled their efforts to work with partners around the world to grow climate philanthropy and reduce the emissions that cause climate change. They continue to experiment, learn, and adapt as they seek to make their best contribution to a prosperous, sustainable, low-carbon future.
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