Presented by the Center for the Future of Museums with the DAM Professional Network

The Changing Shape of Giving: Philanthropic Trends and the Future of Museums

Online Town Hall Webcast
Thursday, June 13, 2013

Time was when civic amenities such as museums, the opera, orchestras and non-profit theaters attracted charitable gifts because...well, because. Because “culture” is a social good and giving made you feel good. Because nonprofits were presumed to operate in the best interest of their communities. Because everyone else in your social circle gave to the same organizations. And maybe because you got a tax deduction.

As a result, for nearly four decades the volume of private charitable giving in the United States was remarkably stable at around 2% of Gross Domestic Product. But this stability may be at an end. Join a lively online conversation to learn more about how museums need to act now to engage philanthropists who are bringing new motivations and expectations to their support.

How Will I Benefit?

By participating in this program, attendees will be better able to:

  • Plan successful strategies for cultivating charitable gifts for the institution
  • Make realistic decisions about the role philanthropy will play in future funding streams
  • Assess how institutions may have to realign internal staff and other resources to meet donor expectations regarding reporting on outcomes

Who Should Attend

Museum directors, CFOs and other senior staff responsible for planning & resource allocation; development staff; audience research and evaluation staff; independent professionals and staff of consulting firms advising museums on financial strategies and fundraising.


  • Elizabeth Merritt, founding director, Center for the Future of Museums, American Alliance of Museums
  • Jacob Harold, president & CEO, GuideStar
  • Laura MacDonald, CFRE, Benefactor Group


  • Greg Stevens, assistant director, professional development, American Alliance of Museums