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Evolving Organizational Ties in Postsecondary Grant-Making: Drivers of Philanthropic Networks

Mon, April 12, 2:50 to 4:20pm EDT (2:50 to 4:20pm EDT), Division J, Division J - Section 3 Paper and Symposium Sessions


In higher education, philanthropic foundations have become strategic actors, mobilizing a network of advocates around their shared interests of completion reform. Yet, limited work has explored the organizational processes guiding philanthropic strategies. Using network data from 48 foundations active in Michigan, limiting grants to the postsecondary sector, and applying separable temporal exponential random graph modeling (STERGM), this study explores the evolution of higher education granting networks. Findings demonstrate the formation and persistence of ties are influenced by preferential attachment, where ties are more likely to form and persist if they are with highly connected actors, and homophily based on age, location, and advocacy involvement.