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What Americans Think About Philanthropy and Nonprofits

This report from the Lilly Family School of Philanthropy at Indiana University examines these three questions:

  1. How does the American public perceive of philanthropy and the nonprofit sector?
  2. Does the American public see the philanthropic sector as trustworthy, transparent, and confident to solve societal issues?
  3. What does the American public know about philanthropy and how aware are they of contemporary debates within the nonprofit sector?

From these three broad categories of questions, this report contributes the following findings to our understanding of public attitudes and perceptions of philanthropy and the nonprofit sector:

  1. Americans generally define philanthropy as the giving of time and/or money to nonprofit organizations.
  2. Americans trust nonprofits more than government or business, but levels of trust in all three sectors of society are low.
  3. Americans do not know much about the philanthropic sector nor are they aware of many nonprofit entities or the rules that govern their activities.

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Office Space Survey of MCF Members

In March 2024, MCF surveyed members on their plans to move offices in the future, and if they want to share offices with others, and if they are open to hosting greater MN foundation staff at their