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AFP Announces Legacy Leaders Grants for Research on Planned Giving

(Feb. 4, 2008) AFP has funded two important research projects through its Legacy Leaders Planned Giving Research Grants program.

With wealth now being disseminated from an increasing number of assets and sources, and with the inter-generational transfer of wealth estimated in the trillions of dollars, planned giving has become an important aspect of philanthropy for both charities and donors. AFP and Legacy Leaders—an international gift-planning firm—have partnered together to offer researchers the funds necessary to conduct studies on issues related to planned giving.

The first grant, in the amount of $14,756, was awarded to Adrian Sargeant, the Robert F. Hartsook Professor of Fundraising at the School of Public and Environmental Affairs at Indiana University in Indianapolis, and Jen Shang of the Center on Philanthropy at Indiana University. The project, “Identification, Death and Bequest Giving,” will explore how individuals who are considering making or have made planned gifts identify with the organizations they want to support. Identification, or how a donor relates to an organization, has become an increasingly important aspect of donor relations, and the study should offer practical recommendations to fundraisers on how to develop appeals and tailor communications messages.

The second grant, in the amount of $4,200, was awarded to Russell James, Ph.D. with the Department of Housing and Consumer Economics at the University of Georgia in Athens, Ga. James’ research, “Causes and Correlates of Charitable Giving in Estate Planning,” will review five waves (1996-2006) of the University of Michigan Health and Retirement Survey, involving more than 100,000 people. The study will be the first comprehensive longitudinal analysis of charitable bequest behavior among older adults. The research seeks to uncover the factors associated with individuals adding or removing a charitable bequest to their estate plans.

“Legacy Leaders is highly motivated to fund these two research projects because they not only will expand our knowledge of planned giving, but also will allow us all to develop more effective techniques to inspire individuals to make planned gifts,” says Michael J. Rosen, CFRE, executive vice president of client development at Legacy Leaders.

Results from both studies will be released later in the year.

More information about the Legacy Leaders Planned Giving Research Program can be found on the AFP website by clicking on “Research and Statistics.”

Founded in 1995, Legacy Leaders works with North American nonprofit organizations that want to get the most from planned giving products and services. The company focuses on the implementation of bequest, annuity and life insurance solicitation programs.

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