It got a little easier for nonprofits to find information about donors in 2012. Fifteen grant makers agreed in collaboration with the Foundation Center to speed up the release of their grants information and hope that others will follow. And Markets for Good, a project of the William and Flora Hewlett and the Bill & Melinda Gates foundations and the company Liquidnet, was unveiled to share information on what foundations are learning.
A new national fundraising day made its debut on the Tuesday after Thanksgiving—and beat its organizers’ expectations. About 2,600 charities from all 50 states joined the #GivingTuesday campaign, which encouraged consumers to open their wallets one more time after shopping on Black Friday and Cyber Monday. The brainchild of Henry Timms, deputy executive director of New York’s 92nd Street Y, the event prompted a spike in online donations. Blackbaud, Network for Good, and Paypal reported $12.8-million in donations, a 55-percent jump from $8.3-million on the same day a year earlier.
Talia Frenkel/American Red Cross
Center for Disaster Philanthropy
Nonprofits and foundations that aid victims of natural disasters can now get help to ensure they respond in the most effective way. The Center for Disaster Philanthropy—headed by Bob Ottenhoff, former chief executive of GuideStar, a publisher of data on charities—aims to get more information to donors and help them pool their money so their gifts can make a bigger difference. Just months after it opened, the new center cut its teeth on Superstorm Sandy, setting up a recovery fund and compiling information about who was giving where.
The Rise of Philanthropy Studies
In a sign that scholarship on the nonprofit world has matured, Indiana University’s trustees voted to create a school of philanthropy, the first in the nation. The decision was the latest move in the university’s effort to build a serious academic program in the discipline. It followed the May graduation of five students (above) who earned the nation’s first bachelor’s degrees in philanthropic studies.
And in December, another Midwestern institution, the University of Chicago, received $4.8-million from the John Templeton Foundation to lead a “science of philanthropy” project that will study why people give and aim to improve the effectiveness of fundraising.
Clive Mason/Getty Images
Big Giving Gains Momentum
The megarich made some big public gifts in 2012, and signs are strong that billionaire philanthropy is picking up. Twenty-three more families signed the Giving Pledge, committing to donate at least half their fortunes. George Lucas (above) said this fall that he would give to charity most of the money he eventually makes from the sale of his Star Wars franchise. Mark Zuckerberg, the 28-year old Facebook co-founder, pledged $500-million to the Silicon Valley Community Foundation, while Mortimer Zuckerman, the New York Daily News publisher, committed $200-million to Columbia University.
More from Outlook 2013: 5 Nonprofit Low Points in 2012 | 5 Things That an Eventful Year Taught Charities | 5 From the Nonprofit World Who Will Influence Public Policy in 2013 | 5 Things That Will Change the Way Nonprofits Work in 2013 | 5 Nonprofit Innovators to Watch in 2013