Tocqueville Platform: learning & innovation in philanthropy & civil society

Le 12 nov 2013

Fondation Tocqueville

The Tocqueville Platform is a central vehicle for achieving the foundation’s mission. The aim of the Platform is to offer university students instruction on the value and benefits of engaging civil society to create effective philanthropic and social investing to address societal problems. It consists of two major and inter-related initiatives: the diffusion of a modular philanthropy curriculum through a network of Master-level courses and an inter-university Challenge for innovative and effective solutions promoting civil society engagement to achieve social change. The curriculum will be launched in France and be expanded internationally in subsequent years.

The aims of the Platform are to significantly expand the number of individuals engaged in innovation in civil society and effective philanthropic and social investing. It is envisioned that his initiative will develop into an open source on line resource under the Tocqueville Foundation and brand at a later stage.


The Tocqueville Foundation, in cooperation with university partners, will provide pedagogical materials designed to develop attitudes, skills and experience necessary to address social problems through civil society initiatives in France and globally. The Foundation has developed a ‘best practice’ pilot modular curriculum of core and complementary optional modules for a 15 – 24 hour course that each participating institution can adapt to its requirements. The Foundation will make available a pool of lecturers to enrich the course offering and organize a launch workshop on the course for professors from participating institutions. We will encourage schools to share resources and allow students to attend sessions among partner schools.


The initial consortium of schools developing the material includes HEC Paris and ESCP. HEC and ESCP have already created educational programs on management of philanthropic projects and institutions in partnership with the Tocqueville Foundation and United Way. Sciences Po will join the network in the winter-spring term 2014. The Foundation anticipates expansion of the consortium in France, Europe, the United States and Asia in 2014.


The Challenges mobilises students to address local and global issues by civic engagement and innovation in civil society and through philanthropy and other forms of social investing. Challenge participants will be selected, primarily, from the Tocqueville Platform course members, who will compete nationally between schools with final selection of Challenge winners at an international level. The Challenge will be launched as a pilot project in France in the winter/spring of 2014 and be expanded internationally in 2014-2015.


The Fondation Tocqueville will assume initial financial support for the curriculum and the prize. The Foundation will establish an international corporate and philanthropic support community, which will provide the major portion of financial and mentoring resources to support the Platform in France and internationally.