In the last three months multiple nonprofit and philanthropic publications have published forecasts for 2017. This post will provide the reader with several popular and credible online resources predicting the future of nonprofits and philanthropy for the year. You’ll notice similar predications from each of the sources but perhaps from slightly different perspectives. Glance at each, or peruse them to come to your own conclusions.
For the past eight years Grantcraft, a service of the Foundation Center, has published an annual industry forecast written by Stanford scholar and self-described philanthropy wonk, Lucy Bernholz. This year she addresses two major concerns:
- Boundaries between philanthropic and political activity are blurring as civil society’s norms of privacy and anonymity are used to shield political activity, which should be transparent in a democracy.
- Government surveillance and the commercial ownership of civil society’s digital infrastructure combine to threaten our rights to free expression and association.
You can download the full report, insights, forecasts, and worksheets, as well as past years here.
Inside Philanthropy, was founded by David Callahan in 2013, as an online news website for the nonprofit sector which focuses on transparency and accountability in philanthropy. This forecast is their second annual post with predications for the upcoming year covering twenty-five issues facing the third sector. Some of those topics include “how both the rising of supply and demand is changing the balance of power between key sectors of U.S. society. More funders are stepping forward, even as government is pulling back”.
The Council on Foundations posted their forecast in mid-December stating that “2017 will be a year of change, as orthodoxies in the field get tested and philanthropy steps up and into a more prominent national role”.
The Lilly Family School of Philanthropy has published The Philanthropy Outlook which forecasts total giving, examines changes in giving by source, and highlights specific subsectors such as education, health, and public-society benefit.