Google.org Gets More Integrated with Google

More Branding for Less Money?

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Dr. Larry Brilliant On Monday, Google announced that Dr. Larry Brilliant from Google.org was changing positions and becoming the Chief Philanthropic Evangelist for Google itself. In other words, the aim is to make Google more philanthropic all around from the sound of it.

"I think this is the highest contribution that I can make both to Google.org and to fighting the urgent threats of our day: from climate change to emerging infectious diseases, to issues of poverty and health care," says Brilliant. "By focusing my energy outwards I hope to be able to spend more time motivating policy makers, encouraging public and private partnerships, and generally advocating for the changes that we must make as a global society to solve these problems."

Megan Smith will be taking over as General Manager at Google.org. Brilliant also says Google will be putting more engineers and technical talent to work on issues. Could the move really be a way to both consolidate operations and look good doing it? This is the thinking of some bloggers, anyway.

"I wonder if this closer alignment between business aims and philanthropic ones couldn’t also be seen as an anti-recessionary measure," says Anya Kamenetz at Fast Company. "Profits fell for the first time last quarter and the Goog has gone through quiet cutbacks in perks and personnel."

Not a bad point.

"By putting the wildly popular Brilliant out on the road more as a brand evangelist, adding to Smith’s job description, and tapping more Googlers’ 20% time for do-gooder projects, Google gets to shine its image and build its business at the same time for less cash. Good thinking!" says Kamenetz.

Doing more good for less money can’t be a bad thing. Interesting projects Google.org has been involved with include Flu Trends, RechargeIT, Clean Engery 2030, and PowerMeter.

Google.org Gets More Integrated with Google
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