ERNOP: Study reveals state of our knowledge – and ignorance – on European giving

The European Research Network on Philanthropy (ERNOP) has produced what is probably the clearest and most reliable account of European philanthropy to date – but, as it acknowledges, ‘best yet’ does not mean ‘best possible’. Paradoxically, in fact, it probably says more about what we don’t know than about what we do.

The research, led by ERNOP executive director Barry Hoolwerf and ERNOP president Prof Dr Theo Schuyt of the Center for Philanthropic Studies at VU University in Amsterdam, has resulted in a factsheet that provides information about bequests, giving by individual households, foundations, corporations, and charity lotteries in 20 European countries.

The publication, say the authors, ‘aims to stimulate researchers, policymakers and philanthropy professionals in fostering research on philanthropy and to inspire them to exchange knowledge and information’.

The researchers have come up with a total figure for giving in Europe across 20 countries of €87.5 billion in 2013. The UK and Germany account for the biggest proportions, at €25.3 and €23.8 billion respectively.

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