Washington, D.C., and Williamsburg, Va.—GuideStar USA, Inc., the premier source of nonprofit information, today announced its intent to enhance its core mission—to revolutionize philanthropy and nonprofit practice—by partnering with the well-regarded strategy consulting firm Hope Consulting to conduct and market test research on what drives charitable giving. The research was made possible by generous funding from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, the William and Flora Hewlett Foundation, and Liquidnet, an institutional trading marketplace.
The research will be led by GuideStar and Hope Consulting and guided by an advisory council of leading organizations in the philanthropic sector, including:
- Katya Andresen, Chief Operating Officer, Network for Good
- Jacob Harold, Program Officer, the William and Flora Hewlett Foundation
- Darin McKeever, Senior Program Officer, the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation
- Laura McKnight, CEO and President, Kansas City Community Foundation
- Kat Rosqueta, Executive Director, Center for High Impact Philanthropy at the University of Pennsylvania
- Cynthia Strauss, Director of Research, Fidelity® Charitable Gift Fund
- Brian Walsh, Director of Liquidnet for Good, Liquidnet
- Kim Wright-Violich, President, Schwab Charitable
"With this partnership and research, we are forging ahead in how we understand and provide information about philanthropy," said Bob Ottenhoff, GuideStar's president and CEO. "The research will undoubtedly inform GuideStar's strategic focus as an organization and shape how we provide our core offerings of nonprofit data and information to the world."
GuideStar understands that enabling smarter charitable giving requires a better understanding of the behaviors, motivations, and needs of individual donors, foundations, and those who advise them. Hope Consulting's research will shine a light on this area, which has long been misunderstood or in doubt. Ultimately, the research will allow GuideStar to provide donors with information they can use to funnel more charitable dollars to high-performing nonprofits. The findings will also be generally available to the sector, where it can inform a range of philanthropic organizations and innovations.
"Our original Money for Good research found that, while many donors say they care about how well nonprofits are performing, very few try to give to the most effective organizations," said Hope Neighbor, founder and CEO of Hope Consulting. "We hope that this groundbreaking project will pave the way for original thinking around enabling individual donors and foundations alike to give to the most effective organizations."
The research, which will rely in part on GuideStar data, will be conducted in six phases, with the initial kick-off in the next few weeks and the conclusion nine months hence. Hope Consulting is planning a variety of research methods, including qualitative and quantitative research and market testing.
"If you are contacted by the Hope Consulting research team for this project, I hope that you will agree to participate," added Ottenhoff. "This research could truly change the way the nonprofit practice thinks about charitable giving, for the better."
About Hope Consulting
Hope Consulting, www.hopeconsulting.us, is a boutique strategy firm. In its social sector practice, Hope Consulting works with the nation's leading nonprofits and foundations to craft fact-based strategies for social change.
GuideStar, www.guidestar.org, connects people and organizations with information on the programs and finances of more than 1.8 million IRS-recognized nonprofits. GuideStar serves a wide audience inside and outside the nonprofit sector, including individual donors, nonprofit leaders, grantmakers, government officials, academic researchers, and the media.
Lindsay J.K. Nichols