Spotlight on Climate Funding Strategies

Our "Spotlight on Climate Funding Strategies" provides an overview of ten different ways to engage in climate philanthropy.

How to use this website


Clicking on one of the icons in the interactive graphic below will take you to a short introduction as well as case studies for the respective funding strategy. If you want to jump directly to the case studies, click on the tiles at the bottom of this page.



Strategic Litigation

Conducting legal analysis, identifying and pursuing law cases that have impact beyond the individual case

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Public Engagement

Raising awareness of underreported issues, direct calls to action and behavioural change, petitions, media campaigns

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Political Advocacy

Background analysis, policy design, engagement of decision-makers, developing evidence for policy change 

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Direct Support

Supporting action directly on the ground (in a given locality) e.g. humanitarian aid, expenses for local ecosystem protection, building schools

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Grassroots Support

Empowering marginalised groups, movement building, civil disobedience, bottom-up initiatives

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Exchanging knowledge and best practices, building coalitions, creating consensus, strengthening infrastructure for closer collaboration

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Sharing information and making it accessible, building narratives, shaping social norms and values

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Capacity Building

Education, vocational training, transferable skills, peer exchange, developing ideas

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Research & Development

Scientific research, technological development, assessment of problems and development of innovative solutions

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Providing risk capital, mission-related investments, engaging in shareholder activism

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Most funders agree that climate change is an urgent problem. But many are new to the topic and do not know where to start. Moreover, few foundation leaders are convinced that their strategies to address climate change are "very effective" (Orensten et al. 2022, p.22). This gap between the awareness of the climate crisis and the self-attested ineffectiveness of funding strategies calls for new approaches. Funders need to try out strategies new to them or to the region and specific climate issue that they are working on.

Continue reading if you are looking for an easy entry into climate philanthropy, or if you want to better understand other climate funders. The following pages provide practical insights from 15 European and seven US funders. They inspire you to rethink your current funding strategy and to consider new partnerships.


Case Studies for Empowering


Orensten, Naomi; Malmgren, Katarina; Lopez, Maria (2022): Much Alarm, Less Action. Foundations & Climate Change. The Center for Effective Philanthropy. Cambridge, MA. Available online at, checked on 8/8/2022.


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What is it about? The Spotlight explained in 2 minutes!

Project funding by Vertical Stiftung



Please direct your inquiries, comments, feedback or questions related to the Spotlight to
Dr Johannes Lundershausen and/or Louis Wilß.

Phone:  +49 30 120 878 420
Email: lundershausen(at)activephilanthropy(dot)org
Email: wilss(at)activephilanthropy(dot)org