Philanthropy as spending: why we should expect more of living philanthropists

Looking through a batch of stories to be published in the next Alliance eBulletin, I was struck by a piece on UK foundations and philanthropists’ plans for grantmaking this year and next. While just over half of foundations recently surveyed by the Association of Charitable Foundations (ACF) expect grantmaking to be lower this year than last, 87 per cent of living philanthropists expect levels to be as high or higher.

Why the difference? A half-day symposium in London on ‘Surviving and Thriving During a Recession’ on Monday (29 June) gave me some insights into the reasons behind this. Jointly hosted by the European Association for Philanthropy and Giving and J P Morgan’s Private Bank, the opening session featured a foundation leader, Clare Thomas of City Bridges Trust, and a private philanthropist, Frederick Mulder, who is founding chair of The Funding Network Their views accurately reflected, and enlarged on, the trends noted above.

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