11 Trends in Philanthropy 2020

What place should philanthropy hold in a democratic society?

Across our field, in politics, in business, and in our communities, Americans are questioning the very nature of philanthropy and probing its core value. These questions ask who has the responsibility — or the right — to tackle complex problems like poverty and climate change. They ask how nonprofits and funders are evolving in response to community needs. They ask what is just, and they ask what is kind.

These questions are not new; they have been at the heart of our sector since the beginning. Rather, they are renewed in our modern context. They are shaped by and interpreted through the spectrum of larger world forces — like justice, socioeconomic inequality, civil trust, and compassion — that we’re grappling with today.

Now, for the fourth year in a row, experts and thought leaders from the Dorothy A. Johnson Center for Philanthropy explore 11 trends in philanthropy for 2020 to help you anticipate and embrace what’s next.


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Johnson Center for Philanthropy


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January 2020


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History, Role in Society