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Patterns in foundation grant making form the background context of many nonprofit organizations’ grant-seeking efforts and are potentially of considerable interest to them as competitive grant seekers.

 

This post will explore shares of total annual foundation funding in terms of various types of applicants identified in the Foundation Center’s Foundation Giving Trends series. Later post will explore other related trends in foundation grant making.

 

Shares of Total Funding: The Losers

In exploring trends in foundation grant making during 2005-2009, among the Losers in terms of their total dollar shares of annual foundation funding were:

  • Education – down from 24.0% to 23.3%
  • Human Services – down from 14.8% to 13.1%
  • Arts and Culture – down from 12.5% to 10.5%
  • Science and Technology – down from 3.1% to 2.6%
  • Religion – down from 2.5% to 2.0%
  • Social Sciences – down from 1.2% to 0.9%

 

Within these trends, the biggest losers were Arts and Culture (down 2.0% of the total), Human Services (down 1.7% of the total), and Education (down 0.7% of the total).

 

Naturally, the shares each type of applicant fluctuated considerably year-to-year, and selecting different start- and end-points will yield different results. For the two points selected here, only the trend-line for Science and Technology followed a consistently downward slope.

 

  Shares of Total Foundation Funding

(% of Total Dollars)

Categories

2005

2006 2007 2008

2009

Arts and Culture

12.5%

12.2% 10.6% 12.5%

10.5%

Education

24.0%

22.5% 22.8% 21.8%

23.3%

Human Services

14.8%

13.8% 14.9% 12.5%

13.1%

Religion

2.5%

2.2% 2.1% 2.2%

2.0%

Science and Technology

3.1%

2.9% 2.9% 2.6%

2.6%

Social Sciences

1.2%

1.4% 1.4% 1.2%

0.9%

Shares of Total Funding: The Winners

In exploring trends in foundation grant making during 2005-2009, among the Winners in terms of their total dollar shares of annual foundation funding were:

  • Health – up from 20.8% to 22.6%
  • Public Affairs – up from 11.2% to 11.8%
  • Environment and Animals – up from 6.3% to 7.4%
  • International Affairs – up from 3.6% to 5.5%
  • Other – flat at 0.1% to 0.1%

 

Within these trends, the biggest Winners were International Affairs (up 1.9% of the total) and Health (up 1.8% of the total). Once again, the trend lines would change if different start- and end-points were selected. For the points selected, none of the trend lines had a consistently upward slope.

 

Shares of Total Foundation Funding

(% of Total Dollars)

Categories

2005

2006 2007 2008

2009

Environment and Animals

6.3%

6.0% 6.8% 8.6%

7.4%

Health

20.8%

23.0% 22.7% 22.9%

22.6%

Int’l Affairs, Development, Peace

3.6%

5.3% 4.5% 5.7%

5.5%

Public Affairs, Society Benefit

11.2%

10.7% 10.9% 10.0%

11.8%

Other

0.1%

0.1% 0.4% 0.1%

0.1%

 

Later posts will look at shares of total numbers of grants awarded in terms of the same varied types of applicants during 2005-2009, and then at the most recently reported status of such distributions of foundation grant awards compared against the background historical trends.

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