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Patricia Lannen is a Program Director in the field of child protection at the UBS Optimus Foundation, a philanthropic grant-making foundation based in Switzerland that focuses of improving the lives of children facing adversity. Patricia is responsible for all of the Foundation's evidence-based violence prevention programs, and is involved in the Foundation's initiative to promote the integration of violence prevention into early child development programming. Since joining the UBS Optimus Foundation in 2008, she has coordinated the Foundation's global Optimus Study on child sexual victimization. In different countries around the world, this major initiative is aiming to prevent sexual abuse and to improve services for children who have faced such abuse. Prior to working with the UBS Optimus Foundation, she worked with children and adults on issues of psychosocial oncology at the Harvard Medical School's Dana Farber Cancer Institute in Boston. She has extensive experience in the management of large, multi-site projects with vulnerable populations. These projects have included epidemiological research as well as efforts aimed at intervention and prevention. Patricia holds a PhD in Psychology, and a Masters in Child Development and Clinical Psychology.




The Role of Private Philanthropy in Violence Prevention

The aim of this presentation is to illustrate the potential of philanthropy in fostering lasting social change and how this may be applied to the field of violence prevention.

The presentation will describe the comparative advantages of philanthropic investment including the ability to take risks, serve as an independent convener, capitalize on time-sensitive opportunities, build capacity in a field and exercise patience in waiting for a return on investment.  The presentation will provide historical and current examples, in which philanthropy was instrumental in building a field and creating lasting change.

The presentation will draw conclusions about the opportunities for philanthropy in the field of violence prevention including outlining the different kinds of field building investments already being made by foundations. The authors will describe cases of successful as well as failed attempts of philanthropy in the field in order to discern lessons learned and identify future opportunities for philanthropy in violence prevention.

This contribution will partially draw on an expert survey conducted with key academic experts, practitioners, investors and advocates from the fields of violence prevention and philanthropy.



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