The Giving Tree: The State of Corporate Philanthropy

Oct 31, 2012 5:00 AM ET

The annual Giving in Numbers report reveals corporate philanthropy is on the rebound. But when it comes to giving, money's not everything

In 2009, companies reported the biggest retreat in corporate giving, which wasn't really a surprise, considering that was the year that the United States economy was at its most perilous state since the Great Depression. But corporate philanthropy has rebounded strongly, with 60 percent of companies reporting increased giving levels in 2011 to reach a median total giving of $21.2 million, according to the annual Giving in Numbers: 2012 Edition report. Issued by the Committee Encouraging Corporate Philanthropy (CECP) in association with the Conference Board, the report, now in its eight edition, is the field's leading analysis of corporate giving. Last year, total giving increased across all industries, with the Consumer Staples and Health Care sectors at the top of total giving growth.

"Giving in Numbers is the home, year after year, for the most comprehensive account of corporate societal engagement, which comes directly from company-provided data," said Charles Moore, CECP's executive director. "Our analysis this year shows that companies are becoming more focused about their giving: from larger grants to a smaller number of organizations; to giving where they have community connections; to using the skills and expertise of the business to build their community engagement."[1]

Click here to continue reading and comment

Reynard is a Justmeans staff writer for Sustainable Finance and Corporate Social Responsibility. A former media executive with 15 years experience in the private and non-profit sectors, Reynard is the co-founder of MomenTech, a New York-based experimental production studio that explores transnational progressivism, neo-nomadism, post-humanism and futurism. He is also author of the blog 13.7 Billion Years, covering cosmology, biodiversity, animal welfare, conservation and ethical consumption. He is currently developing the Underground Desert Living Unit (UDLU), a sustainable single-family dwelling envisioned as a potential adaptation response to the future loss of human habitat due to the effects of anthropogenic climate change. Reynard is also a contributing author of "Biomes and Ecosystems," a comprehensive reference encyclopedia of the Earth's key biological and geographic classifications, to be published by Salem Press in 2013.