The rich feel no more obligation to donate than their less wealthy counterparts.
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High income donors are twice as likely as mainstream donors to give to the arts, says a report into donor behavior published by New Philanthropy Capital (NPC). Research comparing the philanthropic behaviour of high income donors with a household income of over £150k, to mainstream donors – defined as those earning less than that amount – has revealed that only 7% of mainstream donors give to the arts, but this doubles to 14% for the higher income group. 61% of higher earners were likely to give via a social event, compared with only 37% of the mainstream group. The take-up of membership schemes was found to be unrelated to income, with roughly 20% in each group preferring this as their method of donation. However, charities’ failure to provide evidence of impact and explain how donations are used is where donors feel that organisations underperform. The ‘Money for Good UK’ report estimates that an untapped £665m could be released for UK charities from those who would start giving or give more if this information was readily available. It was also found that 60% of the general population donates less than £50 to charity a year, with the report suggesting policy makers should think about what might raise the expectation for people to give, particularly among well-off donors, who currently feel the same level of obligation to donate as mainstream givers.