Social Investment and Philanthropy

SIP60004 12.5 Credit Points Hawthorn


  • One semester, block mode or equivalent

Contact hours

  • 36 hours





Aims and objectives

This unit will introduce the history, core concepts and current issues in the fields of philanthropy, fundraising and social enterprise. It will introduce students to the major changes that are reshaping the role of philanthropy both internationally and in the Australian context. These include global economic realignments, the privatisation of community services; changed approaches to the resourcing of educational, scientific, research and cultural institutions; new patterns of wealth distribution and of inter-generational wealth transfer; greater expectations of the role of corporate citizenship and of corporate philanthropy; and a world-wide renewal of interest in the idea of ‘the civil society’.

The unit also aims to introduce students to the forces that are extending the meaning of philanthropy by encouraging the growth of new forms of 'social investment', in which commercial enterprise is being shaped by social as well as financial goals. Students will be introduced to create innovative, and sometimes hybrid, models of sustainable community services, environmental protection and social development, as well as new business opportunities.
Upon completion of this unit, students will be able to: 

1. Demonstrate a developed knowledge of the key concepts and debates in the field of philanthropy and social investment.
2. Apply problem solving and decision making methodologies to social impact issues to their own environment and situations.
3. Critique and evaluate the various facets of social investment practice.
4. Communicate proficiently in professional practice to a variety of audiences and use the basic tools and practices of social impact within project work.

Courses with unit

A unit of study in the Graduate Certificate in Social Impact (GC-SOCIMP)