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AFP Member Benefit: Research that Links Theory to Practice

June 23, 2011

(Sept. 22, 2008) The best way to make a good decision is to have a solid grasp on best practices. That is especially true in fundraising, when the quality of information about giving trends and “what works” has a major bearing on the bottom line.

AFP continues to work for a solid body of knowledge and best practices unique to the fundraising profession and is a leader in the advancement of research on fundraising and philanthropy. The goal is to light the way for better strategies for bringing donors on board with the mission of your organization.

In other words, we cultivate solid theory about fundraising and help you make use of this information in the job you do day to day.

AFP’s current research initiatives include the following:

AFP's State of Fundraising

The AFP State of Fundraising survey was developed in response to the events of Sept. 11, 2001. The association has planned a series of reports to track fundraising levels among AFP members' organizations.

Think Tanks on Fundraising Research

The AFP Research Council, in collaboration with several other philanthropy-related organizations, periodically conducts Think Tanks on Fundraising Research. The purpose of these is to encourage a constructive dialogue between scholars and practitioners on philanthropy and fundraising.  Learn more

Research Grants/Research Agenda

AFP awards grants of up to $10,000 for research related to philanthropy and fundraising. Guidelines for applying for a grant are found under AFP Research Grants. For information on research priorities of the AFP Research Council, visit AFP's research agenda and policy.

AFP's Skystone Ryan Research Prize

Each year the Research Council Prize Jury selects an author of a book that advances our knowledge of fundraising and philanthropy. The winning author receives a $3,000 award made possible by Skystone Ryan, Inc. For more information, visit our page about the Research Prize.

Compensation and Benefits Survey

AFP collects data on members' salaries and benefits. Results are published annually. The AFP Compensation and Benefits Report can be found in the Member Gateway section of the AFP website. A summary of findings is found here.

Fundraising Effectiveness Project

U.S. and Canadian charities can learn more about their fundraising strengths and weaknesses and how their results compare to other organizations by participating in the second Fundraising Effectiveness Project (the FEP survey is sponsored by AFP and the Urban Institute's Center on Nonprofits and Philanthropy in Washington, D.C.)  Follow this link for more information on FEP.

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