European foundations give 5 bn to research and innovation

European foundations give 5 bn to research and innovation

Private foundations across Europe account for at least 5 billion Euros of spending to research and innovation. That is the result of the EUFORI Study, a large research project commissioned by the European Commission. Experts from 29 countries contributed to the project, which was coordinated by researchers from VU Amsterdam. 1,591 foundations in the field of Research & Development participated in the study, which was conducted in 27 EU countries, Switzerland and Norway. The synthesis report and 29 national reports are available at EUFORI’s...

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Only moderate health benefits of being a volunteer

Only moderate health benefits of being a volunteer

Volunteering has only small beneficial effects on the health, subjective well-being and social networks of volunteers. Whereas previous studies found volunteers to be healthier and happier as well as to have a stronger social network, the issue of causality is often not addressed adequately. It could very well be that healthier and happier people with stronger networks are selected into volunteering. In order to disentangle selection effects from causal effects, researchers of the Center for Philanthropic Studies at VU Amsterdam examined six panel survey datasets from countries across Europe. Starting or stopping with voluntary work is associated with changes in subjective health, subjective well-being and the strength of one’s social network, but the effects are small. A large part of the variance between volunteers and non-volunteers can be attributed to selection effects. The publication “Welfare impacts of participation”, which is part of the EU-funded research project Impact of the Third Sector as Social Innovation (ITSSOIN), is available...

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PS – Philanthropy Seminars

PS – Philanthropy Seminars

The Center for Philanthropic Studies at VU University Amsterdam organizes PS – Philanthropy Seminars. Through Philanthropy Seminars, the Center exchanges results of research on philanthropy with practitioners in the philanthropy sector.   ———————————————————————————————————————————————————————- Previous seminars:   Measurement of donor trust, and its importance to fundraising by Professor Chris Burt University of Canterbury, New Zealand Numerous studies have found relationships between aspects of donor decision-making and donor trust.  Perhaps the strongest of these relationships is the association between a donor’s perception of a charity’s trustworthiness and their willingness to make a donation to the charity.  Given the importance of donor trust for fundraising, it is argued that charities should be regularly evaluating trust perceptions in their donor population.  Unfortunately, many of the options available for the measurement of donor trust have both methodological and practical limitations.  These limitations are discussed, and research on a technique termed donation splitting is described.  Results from the use of donation splitting are discussed in term of evaluating the impact of a charity’s financial management on donor trust, and in terms of delivering trust building advantages. Government subsidies and international relief and development work Organized jointly with NCDO, the national  expertise and advisory centre for citizenship and international cooperation The Dutch government announced severe budget cuts in subsidies for NGOs working in the field of international relief and development. How will these budget cuts affect fundraising efforts and levels of private giving? Will declining subsidies be compensated by increasing donations? René Bekkers will present recent and ongoing research at the Center for Philanthropic Studies about the influence of changes in government subsidies on giving to international relief and development work. Details about the venue and time of the seminar will be announced later....

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René Bekkers new director of the Center for Philanthropic Studies

René Bekkers new director of the Center for Philanthropic Studies

As of January 1, 2014 René Bekkers is the new director of the Center for Philanthropic Studies at VU University Amsterdam. Bekkers (1974) continues the work of the Center’s founder, Theo Schuyt. Schuyt remains Professor of Philanthropic Studies and Bekkers remains Professor Social Aspects of Prosocial Behavior. As the new director, Bekkers will continue the Center’s research on Philanthropy in the Netherlands, that Schuyt started at VU University Amsterdam. Since 1995 the Center publishes ‘Giving in the Netherlands’, the biennial macroeconomic study of sources and destinations of philanthropy, based on microdata about households, corporations and endowed foundations, and on additional data on charity lotteries and bequests. The Dutch government funds the research. The next edition is planned for publication in 2015. Bekkers: “I am extremely proud that I can continue this line of research. Giving in the Netherlands shows the societal significance of philanthropy. Because of its longitudinal design and its rich set of measures it is unique in the world, and of great scientific value.” In the past years the research at the Center for Philanthropic Studies has increasingly focused on Europe. In 2007 the European Research Network on Philanthropy (ERNOP) was founded at VU University Amsterdam. The ERNOP counts about 100 members in 20 countries. In 2011 the Center published ‘Giving in Evidence’, a comparative study of philanthropic sources of funding for universities and other higher education institutions. Currently the Center coordinates the EUFORI study on European Funding for Research and Innovation, conducted by a consortium of experts in 29 countries in Europe. The Center will continue this international line of research in the coming years. Schuyt remains the chair of ERNOP until 2018. In 2014 Bekkers will start a two-year European study on the impact of volunteering on volunteers and society at large. Bekkers is Professor Social Aspects of Prosocial Behavior since January 2013, supported by the Van der Gaag Foundation of the Royal Netherlands Academy of Arts and Sciences. He has been involved in the Giving in the Netherlands research since 2001, obtained his PhD at te Department of Sociology at Utrecht University in 2004, and came to VU University Amsterdam in 2008. His research examines causes and consequences of philanthropic behavior using a combination of longitudinal panel surveys and experiments. Theo Schuyt is sinds 2001 professor of Philanthropic Studies at VU University Amsterdam. More information about René Bekkers is at his blog,...

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