The Philanthropy Tree of Community Foundations from Ancient to Contemporary Times. Roots and Branches of US and Italian Foundations

  • Angela BesanaEmail author
  • Annamaria Esposito
  • Martina Treu
Conference paper
Part of the Springer Proceedings in Business and Economics book series (SPBE)


Democracy, theatre and khoregia are key-words of classical Athens, where performing arts were combining creativity with the efficient management and matching grants of private sponsors, who were communities. From ancient to contemporary times, community foundations play the same role of khoregia for the survival of big and small communities in different geographies, from US to Italy. Community foundations are grant-makers whose aim is to engage citizens and communities, develop and improve their quality of life. Their fundraising has roots in relationships within relevant territories and communities. Their fund-giving has branches in any leading projects for their communities. They supply resources, and, above all, they support the creation of networks that put together main stakeholders in a specific territory with the classical benchmark of khoregia. The aim of this paper is to highlight the role of khoregia in ancient times and community foundations in contemporary times, both of them supporting development and, foremost, culture: from education to heritage. The methodology includes the analysis of mission statements and reports, and a cluster analysis of 2013’s accounting data of the biggest USA and Italian community foundations. Thanks to cluster analysis, economic performances are highlighted together with fundraising and fund-giving. The result consists of the comparison between USA and Italian foundations for different performances and focus on culture.


Khoregia Community foundations Marketing Economics Cluster Culture 


  1. Bandera, L., (2013). La filantropia comunitaria negli Stati Uniti: dalla Cleveland Foundation ai giorni nostri, «Percorsi di secondo welfare» in 11 April 2015.
  2. Barbetta, G.P., Colombo, L., & Turati, G. (2012). The impact of Fiscal rules on the grant-making behavior of American foundations. Atti online della Riunione Scientifica Annuale della Società Italiana degli Economisti (Matera, 18–20 ottobre 2012) in 11 April 2015.
  3. Canfora, L. (2004). La democrazia. Storia di un’ideologia. Bari: Laterza.Google Scholar
  4. Carnelli, L., & Vittori, F. (2015). La comunicazione delle fondazioni al tempo dei social media in 11 April 2015.
  5. Christ, M. R. (1990). Liturgy avoidance and antidosis in classical Athens. Transactions of the American Philological Association, 120, 147–169.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  6. Christ, M. R. (2006). The bad citizen in classical Athens. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. Conn, D. (2013). Social Media Marketing for Community Foundations: Analyzing Engagement and Determining Best Practices in 11 April 2015.
  8. Davies, J. K. (1967). Demosthenes on liturgies: A note. The Journal of Hellenic Studies, 87, 33–40.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. Davies, J. K. (1981). Wealth and the power of wealth in classical Athens. North Stratford, NH: Ayer Reprints.Google Scholar
  10. Esposito, A., & Besana, A. (2018). US community foundations: Building a generous society in challenging times. Journal of Nonprofit & Public Sector Marketing, 30(2), 200–227. Google Scholar
  11. Ferrucci, F. (2010). Capitale sociale e partnership tra pubblico, privato e terzo settore. Il caso delle fondazioni di comunità. Milano: Franco Angeli.Google Scholar
  12. Foley, H. (2003). Choral identity in Greek tragedy. Classical Philology, 98(1), 1–30. Google Scholar
  13. Franzon, M., & Pezzi, E. (2010). Le fondazioni comunitarie in Italia: sviluppo e tendenze. Queste istituzioni, 158–159, 136–157.Google Scholar
  14. Gauthier, P. (1985). Les cités grecques et leurs bienfaiteurs (IVe-Ier siècle avant J.-C): contribution à l’histoire des institutions (Bulletin de correspondance hellénique, supp., 12.) Paris: École Française d’Athènes.Google Scholar
  15. Gernet, L. (1999). Les nobles dans la Grèce antique. In: Droit et institutions en Grèce antique. Paris: Flammarion.Google Scholar
  16. Grönroos, C. (1994). From marketing mix to relationship marketing: Towards a paradigm shift in marketing. Management Decision, 32(2), 4–20.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  17. Hodgson, J., Knight, B., & Mathie, A. (2012). The New Generation of Community Foundations, Coady International Institute and Global Fund for Community Foundations, with support from the International Development Research Center, Canada, in 11 April 2015.
  18. Isgrò, E. (2011). L’Orestea di Gibellina e gli altri testi per il teatro, In M. Treu (Ed.). Firenze: Le Lettere.Google Scholar
  19. Kennedy, R. F. (Ed.). (2017). Brill’s companion to the reception of Aeschylus. Leiden: Brill.Google Scholar
  20. Kilmurray, A. (2014). Literature Review of Community Foundations. Johannesburg: Global Fund for Community Foundations.Google Scholar
  21. Knight, B. (2013). The case for community philanthropy: How the practice builds local assets, capacity and trust- and why it matters. London: Global Alliance for Community Philanthropy.Google Scholar
  22. Lanza, D. (1977). Il tiranno e il suo pubblico. Torino: Einaudi.Google Scholar
  23. Lanza, D. (1997). La disciplina dell’emozione. Un’introduzione alla tragedia greca, Milano: Il Saggiatore.Google Scholar
  24. Lovejoy, K., & Saxton, G. D. (2012). Information, community and action: How nonprofit organizations use social media. Journal of Computer-Mediated Communication, 17(3), 337–353.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  25. Malcangio, L., Treu, M., & Trimarchi M. (Eds.) (2007). Archeologia, turismo e spettacolo, Strumenti per la valorizzazione dei Teatri Antichi del Mediterraneo sul mercato del turismo culturale, Quaderni Formez, n. 56.Google Scholar
  26. Mazany, T., & Perry, D. C. (2014). Here for good: Community foundations and the challenges of the 21st century. London: Routledge.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  27. Mazzoni, S. (2013). Edipo Tiranno all’Olimpico di Vicenza (1585) (pp. 280–301). IV: Dionysus Ex Machina.Google Scholar
  28. Mitchell, J. (1920). The comedies of Aristophanes, Acharnians. London: John Murray.Google Scholar
  29. Pickard Cambridge, A. W. (1968). The dramatic festivals of Athens, 2nd edition. Revised and updated by J. Gould and D. M. Lewis. Oxford: Oxford University Press.Google Scholar
  30. Treu, M. (2007a). Vicence à la grecque: Oedipe Roi et le Théâtre Olimpico. In D. Foucault, & P. Payen (Eds.), Les Autorités. Dynamiques et mutations d’une figure de référence à l’Antiquité (pp. 327–335). Grenoble: Éditions Jérôme Millon.Google Scholar
  31. Treu, M. (2007b). Poetry and politics. Advice and abuse. The Aristophanic chorus on the Italian Stage. In: E. Hall, & A. Wrigley (Eds.), Aristophanes in performance 421 BC-AD 2007: Peace, birds and frogs (pp. 255–266). Oxford: Legenda.Google Scholar
  32. Treu, M. (2013). Who’s afraid of Aristophanes? The troubled life of ancient comedy in 20th-century Italy. In D. S. Olson (Ed.), Ancient comedy and reception (pp. 945–963). Berlin: De Gruyter.Google Scholar
  33. Treu, M. (forthcoming). The tell-tale chorus. In S. Caneva, & M. Reig (Eds.), Choralities in ancient Greece: New approaches. Berlin/Boston: DeGruyter.Google Scholar
  34. Violini, L., Vittadini, G. (2012). La sfida del cambiamento: Superare la crisi senza sacrificare nessuno. Milano: Bur.Google Scholar
  35. Wilson, Peter. (2003). The Athenian Institution of the Khoregia: The chorus, the city and the stage. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Angela Besana
    • 1
    Email author
  • Annamaria Esposito
    • 1
  • Martina Treu
    • 1
  1. 1.IULM UniversityMilanItaly

Personalised recommendations