Next Gen Donors


The Frey Chair for Family Philanthropy program at the Johnson Center for Philanthropy, and 21/64, a nonprofit consulting practice specializing in next gen and multigenerational strategic philanthropy, have released Next Gen Donors: Respecting Legacy, Revolutionizing Philanthropy.

This first-of-its-kind research examines the next generation of major donors and studies this crucial group directly through interviews. Study participants were carefully screened to ensure that they are 21 to 40 years old and that fit study criteria to be considered high-capacity donors.

This research endeavors to find understand how next gen major donors think about philanthropy. Their conversations revealed four key findings:

  1. Next Gen major donors are driven by values, not valuables. While often portrayed as entitled, Gen X and Millienial donors revealed themselves to be mindful of the responsibility their wealth creates, seeking to balance family legacy with assessing the challenges of the world today.
  2. They want impact they can see and they want to know how their involvement contributed to that impact.
  3. They want to go “all in,” sharing not only their time, talent, and treasure, but also their ties. They want to develop close relationships with the organizations and causes they support. Next Gen donors learn about causes through their peer networks, and they believe in collaborating with peers to increase impact.
  4. Next Gen donors are actively thinking about their identities and legacies as philanthropists.

“They want to make philanthropy more impactful, more hands on, more networked. While these next gen donors want to change things fundamentally, they want to do so in responsible ways, honoring the past while improving the future. They take their roles as major donors seriously. And as they grow into these roles, they are also eager to be taken seriously,” writes the report’s authors. Sounds like we’re in good hands.

Download the full report at http://www.nextgendonors.org.

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