Regional Differences in Philanthropy | René Bekkers

Posted on September 3, 2013 in Publications

This paper explores regional differences in philanthropy, narrowly defined here as the contribution of money to nonprofit organizations.1 Across the globe, the practices and traditions in philanthropy differ strongly from one place to another. There are striking differences not only in the size and nature of philanthropy between nations but also in the methods used to contribute to nonprofit organizations. Data from an extensive Eurobarometer survey from 2004 on civic engagement that will be discussed in more detail in this paper, show that the proportion of the population reporting donations to at least one out of 14 categories of nonprofit organizations
varies from 20% in Spain to almost 80% in the Netherlands. Recent evidence from the Gallup World Poll (CAF, 2011) shows that the proportion of the population reporting donations to charity in the course of a calendar year varies from 79% in the UK to 7% in Greece. The figures for Spain and the Netherlands, the lowest and highest scoring countries in the Eurobarometer survey, are 24% and 75%, respectively.

In Part 1 of this paper hypotheses on regional differences in philanthropy are examined and the empirical evidence available on these hypotheses is reviewed.  In Part 2 the methodological problems involved in testing hypotheses on regional differences are examined.


Working paper

Bekkers, R. (2012). Regional Differences in Philanthropy. Paper presented at the 41st Arnova Conference, Indianapolis, November 15, 2012.

The first part of this paper is forthcoming in Routledge Companion to Philanthropy, edited by J. Harrow, T. Jung & S. Phillips. Routledge.

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