Skip to main content

In our last episode of the year, we take a look at some of the key issues and trends affecting philanthropy and civil society right now and offer some thoughts on what to watch out for in 2023.


  •  The impact of the ongoing cost-of-living crisis and possible recession on philanthropy, everyday giving and the work of charities.
  • Polarisation and political division making it harder for philanthropy to engage constructively with criticism and the need for change.
  • More mainstream media focus on philanthropy. (And therefore more scepticism and critique?)
  • More big donors supporting efforts to develop everyday giving.
  • A new generation of celebrities (Youtubers, sports stars etc) reclaiming the word “philanthropy” for themselves? What impact might this have on wider perceptions of philanthropy?
  • More ultra-wealthy people make public pledges to give the majority of their wealth away.
  •  Blurring the lines between individual and corporate philanthropy more than ever
  • Ongoing tensions between “strategic” and “trust-based” philanthropy.
  • More donors and funders experimenting with models that enable them to shift power as well as money e.g. participatory methods, funding grassroots movements etc.
  • Debates about balancing urgency and patience in philanthropy.
  • Division in the Effective Altruism movement  in the wake of Sam Bankman-Fried’s downfall?
  • Tainted donations: will more organisations reject ‘bad money’, or will they try to find ways of justifying taking it in light of pressures on finances?
  • The balkanisation of social media in the wake of Elon Musk’s Twitter takeover.
  • Is cryptophilanthropy dead in the water?
  • Will nonprofits start to make use of new generative AI tools like Chat-GPT? What new possibilities and challenges will these bring?
  • Will layoffs and restructuring across many tech companies open up an opportunity for nonprofits to recruit new talent and skills?


Related Links

Learn from our past to better understand our future.

Philanthropy has a long and varied history. We’ve created bite-size chapters that you can jump in and out of to better understand philanthropy.