Conversations On Philanthropy
Emerging Questions on Liberality and Social Thought

Heather Wood Ion

HEATHER WOOD ION is a chief executive and cultural anthropologist who holds dual degrees from Oxford University and specializes in turning around troubled organizations. Her doctoral research on social and cultural recovery from disasters has been applied to assist communities and corporations in trouble all over the world. She has turned around communities locked in adversarial paralysis, social service agencies, corporations that have lost their mission, and start-ups unable to cope with growth. For the last seven years of his life, Jonas Salk, MD, relied on Heather Ion as his editor, sounding board and collaborator on issues of international health policy, and in establishing the science of hope. Dr. Ion’s book, Thirdclass Ticket, has been translated into Italian, Hindi, Japanese, and Chinese, and is currently being made into a feature film. Another book, with Saul Levine MD, Against Terrible Odds, applies her knowledge of social and cultural recovery to the profound issues of individual resilience. Dr. Ion has served on numerous boards and national initiatives, including The Valeo Initiative, in collaboration with the Center for Healthcare Improvement and the Veterans’ Health Administration. She currently serves with Athena Charitable Trust, is Founder of the nonprofit Epidemic of Health and is a contributing editor to Conversations on Philanthropy. (REV. 2010)


Conversations Volume Year Contribution Title
Volume XArticleConsequentialism and Philanthropy: The Legacy of a Revolutionary
Volume IX2012Book ReviewThe Information: A History, A Theory, A Flood
Volume VIII2011ArticleSocial Learning, Civility, and Complex Societies
Volume VIII2011Book ReviewHeart of Dryness: How the Last Bushmen Can Help Us Endure the Coming Age of Permanent Drought
Volume VII2010CommentsThe Myths of Philanthropy: A Reflection by Heather Wood Ion
Volume VII2010Book ReviewThe Burden of Bad Ideas: How Modern Intellectuals Misshape our Society
Volume VI2009Book ReviewWe Make a Life by What We Give
Volume VI2009Book ReviewBegging for Change: The Dollars and Sense of Making Nonprofits Responsive, Efficient, and Rewarding for All
Volume III2006ArticleDancing the Measures of Transformation

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