A Philanthropist Takes a Gamble on the Rising Generation of Entrepreneurs

A Venture Capitalist’s Venture Philanthropy 1

Zuma Press/Newscom

A foundation created by Peter Thiel, the venture capitalist, has created a new fellowship program that seeks to aid young entrepreneurs.

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close A Venture Capitalist’s Venture Philanthropy 1

Zuma Press/Newscom

A foundation created by Peter Thiel, the venture capitalist, has created a new fellowship program that seeks to aid young entrepreneurs.

Few issues have been as hotly debated in philanthropy as whether grant makers would be more effective if they adopted the methods of venture capitalists.

While many people have criticized this idea as encouraging donors to act in businesslike ways, others have argued that what characterizes investors in growth companies, such as a high tolerance for risk, close involvement with the projects they underwrite, an interest in performance-based evaluations, and clear exit strategies, would