In 1997, Fondation de France created an Observatory to monitor the various forms of philanthropy in France and how these are evolving. The Observatory is for all actors interested in the nonprofit sector: donors, researchers, the media, etc. The work of the Observatory also includes the wide dissemination of philanthropy and its practices, especially by educating people about philanthropy.
Surveys on donor profiles, corporate support and responsible behavior in companies, as well as on the economic impact of French foundations and their founders, all provide greater insight in the various forms of engagement for the common good. They also show how philanthropy contributes to the social and economic vitality of a country.
To understand the challenges of philanthropy, the Observatory has chosen a global approach, at European and international levels. It examines philanthropic practices outside France and analyzes the various behaviors and approaches adopted in a range of countries and communities. It also highlights the links that can be found in a sector where international exchanges intensify, with a view to extending and expanding the positive impact of philanthropy on an increasingly globalized society.
Philanthropy Observatory surveys
Foundations and endowment funds in France
Since 2001, the Philanthropy Observatory has developed and passed on its expertise, via its surveys of foundations and endowment funds. The leading player in the French nonprofit sector, Fondation de France has a comprehensive view of this rapidly expanding sector and presents here data and key issues.
Charitable giving in France
Since 2000, reviews on donations (Panoramas de la générosité) carried out regularly by the Philanthropy Observatory focus on charitable giving and volunteering in France. These national surveys analyze donor profiles, the various types of donations and the behaviors associated with making a donation.
Loneliness in France
Since 2010, Fondation de France has published an annual report on loneliness in France (Solitudes en France). These studies have revealed the extent of this trend and its impact on our society, especially for the most vulnerable. In that regard, Fondation de France suggests, identifies and supports projects, whose aim is to meet the challenge of a society that rejects exclusion.
Philanthropy and communities
The work of Fondation de France, the leading player in the French nonprofit sector, is constantly embedded in local communities. The Philanthropy Observatory provides a detailed analysis of data on donations in the various regions.
Philanthropy and companies
Corporate support is good for the common good! Fondation de France reviews the ways in which companies are committing to charitable activities and engaging with them. True, the net growth of companies’ philanthropic activities can be explained in part by tax incentives, but many other criteria come into play.
Philanthropy, strategies and themes
Is there such a thing as a French-style philanthropy? There may well be but one thing is certain: the practice of philanthropy is expanding rapidly in France. Drawing on its expertise, Fondation de France is analyzing this national trend.
Europe and further afield
Philanthropy knows no borders and the Philanthropy Observatory has led a number of investigations in France and abroad to establish differences and similarities between France and Europe in this sector.