The future of philanthropy:
The evolution from charitable giving to charitable living

Insights from 4,000 donors into the trends shaping philanthropy


Donors' evolving attitudes and beliefs

How philanthropy’s up-and-comers are bringing a fresh perspective that is shaping donor behavior.

Donors' behaviors and tools for the future

How the methods and mechanics of giving are changing as donors prioritize social good.

In one donor's words

Caroline Vannatta and her husband

Millennial, high school teacher—and philanthropist of the future

In our recent look into the future of philanthropy, one theme was clear: Millennials like donor Caroline Vannatta are shaking things up.


To understand where philanthropy is headed, Fidelity Charitable conducted an initial survey of 3,055 charitable individuals in March 2020. We then conducted a subsequent survey of nearly 1,000 individuals in January 2021 to detect any shifts in donor attitudes and behaviors related to the COVID-19 pandemic and other events of 2020. In this report, we will consider our findings through four key themes and offer a few predictions for how trends of today could shape the philanthropy of tomorrow.