(4) 10.30 John Lippincott (Louvre II-III, 26.04)


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(4) 10.30 John Lippincott (Louvre II-III, 26.04)

  1. 1. CAEI CONFERENCE 2012 – BRAZIL ALLIANCES FOR INTER-AMERICAN HIGHER EDUCATION: PHILANTHROPIC ORGANIZATIONS FUNDRAISING FOR HIGHER EDUCATION: TEN UNIVERSAL PRINCIPLESIt is a great pleasure to be here with you in Brazil and a great honor to share this stagewith Governor Aleman, Mr. Slim, and Dr. Padron.I am John Lippincott, president of the Council for Advancement and Support ofEducation – also known as CASE. CASE is one of the largest associations ofeducational institutions in the world, with nearly 3,500 members in 70 countries.We are a not-for-profit, non-governmental membership organization, supported primarilyby member dues and fees.CASE is headquartered in Washington, DC and has offices in London, Singapore andMexico City. We formally established CASE America Latina last year and currentlyhave some 50 member institutions in this region.CASE focuses on alumni relations, fundraising, communications and marketing insupport of schools, colleges and universities. We provide our members withprofessional development, research, publications, standards and advocacy.Let me begin by congratulating the conference organizers on recognizing the importantrole that philanthropy can play in support of universities in the Americas and of theircollaborative, international efforts.I am not going to talk with you about the responsibility of philanthropists. We have twomajor donors on this panel who not only understand that responsibility, but havedemonstrated it through their corporate, foundation, and personal giving. Instead, Iwant to talk about our responsibility in seeking private support on behalf of ouruniversities, whether it is for internationalization efforts or other purposes. With that inmind, I’d like to share with you ten principles of fundraising drawn from CASE’s workwith universities around the world.But first, I want to offer a brief note about vocabulary. I recognize that in Latin Americathe word “philanthropy” is strongly associated with the concept of charity and withreligious traditions of serving people in need. And in that regard, I fully agree with Mr.Slim and others, who have suggested that donations to education are moreappropriately described as “private social investment.”For the purposes of today’s discussion, I will use both terms interchangeably. When Ispeak of “philanthropy” or of “private social investment,” I am talking about individuals,foundations, and corporations contributing their own resources to advance a commongood – in this case, higher education. 1
  2. 2. And that leads to the first of the ten principles I want to share with you today regardingfundraising. For higher education to be successful in raising private funds, it must makea compelling case for private support. That compelling case must connect thepersonal interests and passions of the donor with the capabilities of the university or aconsortium of universities.Often the case centers around the role that universities play in addressing a publicgood. Everyone in this room recognizes that societies benefit enormously from abroadly educated citizenry, and both Governor Aleman and Mr. Fuentes have spokeneloquently on this point. High levels of educational attainment translate into robusteconomies, productive workforces, and vibrant democracies.Universities also contribute to the public good through their research agendas –research that addresses such issues as public health, economic development, culturalenhancement, and environmental preservation.And universities contribute to the quality of life in their localities through direct andindirect community service programs.You also know that, despite the obvious and enormous public good our societies derivefrom universities, governments around the world are finding it increasingly difficult tofully finance higher education access and quality, as both costs and demand escalate.And therein lies the central argument for fundraising in support of higher education:private donations can serve a public good by supplementing – not replacing –government funds to enhance quality and access at colleges and universities. Ofcourse, each university or consortium must customize this general case to fit with itsvision and the donor’s passion.The second principle I want to emphasize with regard to fundraising on behalf of highereducation is the importance of a comprehensive approach.A high-performing program of sustainable fundraising is based on individual giving,foundation giving and corporate giving. Over-reliance on any one of these fundingsources leaves an institution highly vulnerable to changes in the capacity, willingness,and priorities of a particular donor or donor community. So let me say a few wordsabout all three sources.Individual giving to higher education normally comes from alumni, families of students,community leaders, and other friends of the institution.The proportion of philanthropic support an institution receives from individuals will varywidely. In a mature market, such as the United States, with a strong tradition ofphilanthropy and well-established alumni programs, individual giving often makes upmore than half of all donations. 2
  3. 3. Here in Latin America, individual giving to universities is still an emerging trend. We arefortunate to have two individuals on this panel who are helping to lead that trendthrough their own contributions to universities from which they and their family membersgraduated. We also have the wonderful example of an individual’s gift nearly a decadeago to Austral University in Argentina that I believe still holds the record as the largest inthe region.Some individual donors are motivated by a spirit of giving back to the institution, asense of repaying the institution for what it has done for the donor in the past. Otherswill be motivated by their belief in what the institution can do in the future – for individualstudents or for society at large.Individual giving is rarely if ever motivated by the need to replace government funding orto close a gap in the operating budget; indeed, any sense that the institution is infinancial trouble will discourage most donors from investing at all.Donors want to have impact, and so they will give to institutions that they believe candeliver results. Donors also want to feel they are in a partnership with the institution andthe government, and that each is doing its fair share. This is true of individual donors aswell as foundations and corporations.So let me now turn briefly to foundation giving. Given the many different types offoundations, this is a complex subject worthy of a session unto itself. I’ll just say a wordor two about what I would describe as private, active foundations in the tradition of theBill and Melinda Gates Foundation or Ford or MacArthur or the Carnegie Corporation orthe Tinker Foundation, whose mission is to promote social development here in LatinAmerica.These major foundations are increasingly focused in their grant-making onpredetermined projects, programs, and priorities. For universities, that means doing theresearch to find the connections between a foundation’s areas of emphasis and theinstitution’s areas of expertise.In the case of the Gates Foundation, making that connection is particularly challenging.Gates does not accept unsolicited proposals, so their program officers will approach auniversity or consortium only after it has demonstrated a high level of capability in anarea of importance to the foundation.The good news is that education is high on the list of funding priorities for foundationsthroughout the Americas. A recent survey of Brazilian foundations, for example, foundthat 81 percent included education as a major focus for their grantmaking.Like foundation giving, corporate giving is moving away from a generalized sense ofsocial responsibility to a much more strategic and mission-driven approach. 3
  4. 4. Fortunately, universities are particularly well-positioned to identify connections to thecorporate mission, including through workforce development, applied research, andtechnology transfer.Universities would do well to approach corporate giving as if it were venture capital bymaking the case that the donation will offer a substantial return on investment in theform of measurable and sustainable impacts.In much of Latin America, corporate giving is currently the dominant form of privatesocial investment in higher education.Among notable and commendable examples are the efforts of Banco Santander, boththrough its Santander Universities program as well as through the consortium itsponsors, Universia. As one representative of Santander Universities recently put it, thebank firmly believes that “the best way to invest in the future is to invest in highereducation.”The third principle I want to highlight is that fundraising needs to be strategic. I havejust talked about how corporations and foundations have become more strategic in theirgiving. Similarly, universities and consortia need to be strategic in their asking.In particular, they need to establish a clear linkage between the funds they are raisingand the mission and vision for the institution or the organization.The emphasis on mission and vision not only provides inspiration to prospective donors,it helps ensure that gifts truly advance the organization and not simply the agenda of agiven donor.A clear set of priorities for private support, a clearly articulated case statement, andclear donor agreements can help an institution avoid potential conflicts – with the donoror with internal constituencies – and to avoid gifts that end up costing the institution farmore than the value of the donation.The fourth principle I want to emphasize is that the fundraising program should beintegrated with other aspects of an institution’s external relations program. Alumnirelations, community relations, communications and marketing all have a role to play insetting the stage for fundraising efforts.When all of these functions are focused on the same goals, articulating the samemessages, and engaging the same key constituents, there is far greater likelihood thatfinancial support will follow. We are seeing, for example, some very successful andinnovative alumni relations programs at Mexican universities, which have in turn led tosuccessful fundraising campaigns.The integration of external relations programs ties into my fifth principle, which isengagement. Study after study demonstrates a high correlation between active 4
  5. 5. engagement with an organization and giving to the organization. Not only arevolunteers more likely to give, they are likely to give more and more often.Engagement can take many forms. In addition to hands-on involvement in the work ofthe organization, engagement may involve serving on governing and advisory boards,offering informal counsel on a periodic basis, or making connections with other keyconstituents.At minimum, engagement requires ongoing communication to ensure that individualdonors or the representatives of foundations and corporations feel well informed aboutan institution’s progress in general and the use of their gifts in particular.In the interest of time, I am going to move quickly through the remaining five fundraisingprinciples and will be happy to address any of them in more detail during the questionand answer period.Fifth on my list, then, is that successful fundraising programs are long-term. Theyrequire upfront investment and a commitment to maintaining the effort over time. Afterall, most major gifts to universities result from many years of donor cultivation.The fundraising effort must not only be long-term, but also highly professional, numbersix on my list. That means hiring dedicated staff, providing them with the necessarytraining, and following best practice in the field.Related to best practice is my next principle and that is ethical practice. Successfuland sustainable fundraising depends, first and foremost, on a relationship of trustbetween the donor and the fundraiser. Trust is earned and maintained through theconsistent demonstration of honesty and integrity in all interactions with donors andprospective donors.I commend the work of the Group of Institutes, Foundations and Enterprises here inBrazil and the Mexican Center for Philanthropy, with which Governor Aleman isaffiliated, for their efforts to promote ethical fundraising.Trust is also engendered through accountability, which is my next principle.Accountability means that institutions deliver on what they promise, that they measurewhat they deliver, and that they are transparent about what they measure.Successful fundraising also depends on careful research. As noted earlier, corporateand foundation giving is usually targeted to specific areas; therefore, fundraisers needto spend the time to discover those areas of interest.Similarly, they need to conduct research in order to understand the willingness and thecapacity of individual donors to make a gift. While this kind of research requires anexpenditure of time and money, it saves time and money in the long run by enablingfundraisers to focus their efforts on the most likely prospects. 5
  6. 6. To this point, in a major fundraising campaign at an American university, 1 percent ofthe donors will contribute almost 90 percent of the money. Therefore, knowing whomight be among those 1 percent is extremely important.My tenth and final principle is that successful fundraising requires a culture of askingas well as a culture of giving. Latin America has a strong culture of giving, although notnecessarily in support of higher education. That can change.We have seen dramatic progress, for example, in private giving to higher education inthe United Kingdom in recent years. This occurred for two principle reasons.The government launched a program to match private gifts to universities with publicfunds, and those incentives proved very appealing to donors.The other reason for growth in giving to higher education in the United Kingdom is thatuniversities there have been working closely with CASE to develop a culture of asking.Let me conclude these ten principles, then, with the single most important point I wantto make: the greatest predictor of fundraising success is the number of times anorganization asks.There are many reasons for optimism that these ten principles of fundraising can besuccessfully applied in support of the internationalization of universities throughout theAmericas and, specifically, in support of universities here in Latin America.Not only is wealth growing in this region, but so too is philanthropy.One study indicates that the share of social investment in Latin America fromcorporations and foundations tripled between 2004 and 2007.Moreover, as I noted earlier, education is a major priority for that investment. A recentBrookings Institution study found that Latin America tied with the Asia-Pacific region incontributions to education from U.S. corporations.And there are a growing number of examples of successful university fundraisingcampaigns in Mexico and elsewhere in the region.There is also plenty of evidence that foundations, corporations, and individuals will fundinternational efforts.Often these are based at a single institution and take the form of study abroad programsand regional research centers – like the Rockefeller Center on Latin American Studiesat Harvard with which Mr. Slim and Mr. Aleman have been associated.There is less evidence of private support for consortial and multilateral efforts.It would appear that most of those programs are currently funded by governmentagencies interested in regional development, trade, and cultural exchange.It is not that these efforts are unworthy or unappealing to private funders. 6
  7. 7. In fact, many foundations look for evidence of collaboration in the proposals theyreceive, although that collaboration may be within a national rather than an internationalframework.Nonetheless, there are some encouraging signs; witness the support from the FordFoundation and Lumina Foundation for CONAHEC, one of the sponsors of thisconference.And while I am optimistic about the potential for fundraising in support of inter-Americanuniversity consortia, I see three primary challenges in meeting the ten principles Ioutlined earlier.One is clear leadership.In order to have the kind of strategic approach and the kind of engagement I described,it is important that there be an individual with the credibility and the responsibility torepresent the consortium in working with potential funders.The second challenge is consistency.In order to conduct the kind of highly professional, ethical, transparent, and focusedfundraising I have described, the members of the consortium must themselves beconsistent in the application of those principles and in their articulation of the purposesof the program.The third challenge is sustained commitment.Participating institutions must demonstrate that they intend to remain actively engagedwith the consortium for the long-term in order to convince potential funders that theproject represents a good investment of their resources.If those challenges can be addressed, then I think the potential to increase the level ofphilanthropic support for collaboration among universities across the Americas isenormous.And while most of that funding will likely come from foundations and corporations, Iwould not rule out the potential for funding from individuals who have a strongconnection to and belief in the purposes of the consortium.Your cause is a noble one. Engaging universities in North-South alliances to addresspressing social issues and international understanding – or as Canada’s GovernorGeneral David Johnston put it “the diplomacy of knowledge” – holds enormous promisenot only for our hemisphere but for our world. 7
  8. 8. Therefore, I applaud you on the purposes of this conference and on your recognitionthat philanthropy – or private social investment – will be essential to the success of yourefforts. Thank you. 8