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WINGSForum: Imagine — Monthly Calendar

Our monthly gatherings are purpose-built to challenge the status quo, reconceive the role of philanthropy as a catalyst for change, and share what we have learned to stimulate global progress.

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WINGSForum: Imagine — Monthly Calendar
WINGSForum: Imagine — Monthly Calendar

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About the Event

WINGSForum 2020: online discussions outline

The in-person gathering will shift from November 2020, to fall 2021, and a series of important virtual experiences will fill the gap!

The WINGSForum online events will combine diverse ways of virtual convening in order to have rich global conversations on the three themes of Power, Technology and Economy. These will take place on the following dates:

  • Power and the Role of Philanthropy: 24 November 2020, 13.00 - 15.30 UTC
  • Preparing for the digital transition: 18 February 2021, 13.00 - 15.30 UTC
  • Regenerative Stakeholder-driven Economic Models: 20 April 2021, 13.00 - 15.30 UTC

We are excited that the WINGSForum online program will not only lay the foundations for the in-person gathering and allow WINGS members the chance to connect meaningfully before we meet next year in Nairobi. They also mean that more people from all over the world can join these important discussions and help make critical progress on the important issues of our time.

Starting in November this year, we will begin a series of online events around each of the three Forum topics - Power, Technology and Economy. For each topic, we will have an inspiring plenary session with expert panelists who will challenge the status quo, and reconceive the role of philanthropy as a catalyst for change.

Don’t worry if you can’t join the plenary live - recordings will be made available. WINGS members will also have the opportunity to join exclusive workshops that delve deeper into the forum topics and help move the discussion of the plenary into concrete strategies and practices to help you address these challenges in your own work.


Power and the Role of Philanthropy

24 November 2020: 13.00 - 15.30 UTC

For far too long, power has existed within a top-down paradigm. Now, we see shifts towards more distributed models that root agency in individuals and groups of changemakers. In the wake of COVID 19, governments have exercised an increased use of central power while communities are illustrating the incredible potential of resilient organizations and local action. As we confront the long-term impact of the current crisis on the power distribution in society, we must seize the opportunity this crisis creates. We must rethink the way power is leveraged and distributed, first within the philanthropic sector, then with other actors of social change. The COVID-19 pandemic presents an opportunity to explore the limited adaptations in power distribution, the alternative and innovative ways to shift power dynamics and harness unrecognized power for social justice and the greater good.

Join us to explore how the philanthropic field needs to address and transform imbalanced power dynamics within the sector and beyond, many of which continue to be impacted by the ongoing pandemic. Hear from a panel of thought leaders on how power plays out in the philanthropic and nonprofit world, and what the strategies and practices are that can begin to shift these dynamics.

The open-access plenary session will be followed by exclusive workshops for WINGS members. These will have up to 10 participants from across the WINGS network. There will be workshops covering both Eastern and Western time zones.


  • Explore practical steps that can be taken to redress power imbalances in their work and relationships, at the society, organization and individual level.
  • Question how the impact of the pandemic might further entrench uneven power dynamics, and what steps can be taken by those working in philanthropy to mitigate this.
  • Examine the notion of ‘new’ power that leverages technology and new ways to organize social movements
  • Highlight the importance of protecting the agency of communities in new forms of working and new methods for philanthropy.

WINGS member workshops

Join a small group of peers to take the key messages of the plenary session and dive deeper into exploring your own role, and that of your organization, in shifting power dynamics within the philanthropic sector and beyond.

  • 1 December: 16.00 UTC
  • 2 December: 03.00 UTC
  • 7 December: 16.00 UTC
  • 8 December: 03.00 UTC

Preparing for the digital transition

18 February 2021: 13.00 - 15.30 UTC

Together we will examine the role of philanthropy in preparing for the digital transition and mediating society’s relationship with this transition. Collectively, we will imagine a new future in which values and rights are at the heart of technology and the digital transition embraces inclusivity, data rights, and ethical governance. We are in danger of pursuing technological advances at the cost of these things, and leaving behind communities without the access and skills to benefit from the digital revolution. This is the beginning of a new conversation about how to have a healthy digital society, and what the specific role of philanthropy is within this.

An exciting keynote speaker will kick off proceedings, helping us imagine the possible futures that lie ahead, in which digital transition prioritises people, their rights and our values.

This will be followed by a diverse panel to dive deeper into some of the key challenges and opportunities new technology presents for pursuing a just and equitable world. We will explore the specific role for philanthropy within this, and think through strategies and practices to help us adopt this. Stay tuned to find out more.


  • Examine the specific added value of philanthropy in new technology, and lay out the pathways to achieving this.
  • Explore how philanthropy might translate practices and approaches to funding in rights and justice to funding in digital rights and justice.
  • Imagine a new voice for philanthropy in empowering citizens within the mechanisms of technology governance that ensures the citizens’ rights are at the heart of technological innovation.
  • Explore the practical steps that must be taken to ensure the digital transition is inclusive and accessible to all.

WINGS member workshops

Join a small group of peers to take the key messages of the plenary session and dive deeper into exploring your own role, and that of your organization, in pursuing a just digital transition.

  • 22 February: 16.00 - 17.30 UTC
  • 24 February: 03.00 - 04.30 UTC
  • 2 March: 03.00 - 04.30 UTC
  • 5 March: 16.00 - 17.30 UTC

Regenerative Stakeholder-driven Economic Models

20 April 2021: 13.00 - 15.30 UTC

The inherent flaws of old economic models are beginning to be exposed as humankind has a better understanding of environmental impact and growing social inequalities. Governments, companies and communities are beginning to embrace new ways to measure “progress” and a more evolved concept of “value.” Together we will explore how zero-sum thinking has become ingrained in our economic DNA, and discuss how to break through to a new multidimensional definition of progress that can become the new way forward. Our keynote speaker and expert panel will help us imagine which new economic models might serve society better, and what the role of philanthropy is in implementing them.


  • Explore the possibility of new economic models in the future, and situate philanthropy’s role in both imagining and executing these.
  • Question how we might start to reconceptualize how we think about “progress” and “value” in the philanthropic sector and beyond.
  • Examine the prospect of embracing the Green economy, new financing models, impact investing and social economy.

WINGS member workshops

Join a small group of peers to take the key messages of the plenary session and dive deeper into exploring your own role, and that of your organization, in pursuing new economic models.

  • 27 April: 16.00 - 17.30 UTC
  • 29 April: 03.00 - 04.30 UTC
  • 5 May: 16.00 - 17.30 UTC
  • 6 May: 03.00 - 04.30 UTC

To make sure you’re the first to hear about these events, make sure you’re subscribed to receive WINGSForum updates where we’ll update our network with speaker announcements and the registration details.

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