Remote video URL
Giving Innovation Summit: Are Fewer People Giving to Charity, or Are They Just Giving Differently?

Analysis of recent data has suggested that the proportion of Americans donating to charity has been declining in recent decades. While researchers have sought to determine the decline’s causes, many within the charitable giving sector have also begun to ask whether the decline should be more properly understood as a rechanneling, as some givers have moved away from donating to tax-exempt nonprofits and toward making direct contributions through other channels, such as crowdfunding, person-to-person giving, and mutual aid networks.

Join the Urban Institute’s Center on Nonprofits and Philanthropy for a virtual Giving Innovation Summit on these issues with leading researchers and practitioners. We will examine evidence of the decline in certain forms of charitable participation and explore its potential causes. We will also ask how the evidence might prompt us to reconsider how we track forms of generosity, and how it might spark fresh thinking on the motivations for and challenges involved in measuring giving.




Support for this event is provided by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. For more information on the Urban Institute’s funding principles, go to

We strive to host inclusive, accessible events that enable all individuals, including individuals with disabilities, to engage fully. Please email [email protected] if you require any accommodations or have any questions about this event.

Date & Time Tuesday, June 28, 2022

Speakers and Agenda
Tuesday, June 28, 2022
  • Tené Traylor, incoming Vice President, Center on Nonprofits and Philanthropy, Urban Institute
Why Giving Matters
  • Ann Mei Chang, Chief Executive Officer, Candid
  • Asim Khwaja, Director, Center for International Development, Harvard University; Board Member, GivingTuesday
  • Terence Lester, Founder and Executive Director, Love Beyond Walls
  • Faith Mitchell, Institute Fellow, Urban Institute (moderator)
Exploring the Decline in Charitable Participation
  • Caroline Lee, Professor of Sociology, and Faculty Director, Landis Center for Community Engagement, Lafayette College @carolinewlee
  • Elizabeth Lynn, Project Director, Shifting Ground, Lake Institute on Faith and Giving at the Indiana University Lilly Family School of Philanthropy
  • Jonathan Meer, Mary Julia and George R. Jordan, Jr. Professor of Public Policy, Texas A&M University
  • Benjamin Soskis, Senior Research Associate, Urban Institute (moderator) @BenSoskis
Has There Been a Decline or a Rechanneling of Giving?
  • Tyrone McKinley Freeman, Associate Professor of Philanthropic Studies, Indiana University Lilly Family School of Philanthropy @mckinleytyrone
  • Alix Guerrier, Chief Executive Officer, DonorsChoose @alixguerrier
  • Tyesha Maddox, Assistant Professor, Fordham University @TyeshaMaddoxPhD
  • Laura Tomasko, Policy Program Manager, Urban Institute (moderator) @lauratomasko
  • Benjamin Soskis, Senior Research Associate, Urban Institute @BenSoskis
Urban Institute Speakers
  • Institute Fellow
  • Senior Research Associate
  • Senior Policy Program Manager
  • Vice President for Nonprofits and Philanthropy
    Interim Vice President for Research to Action Lab
    Senior Fellow