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Comparison of full-function charities in four OECD Countries

Friday 6 September 2013, by Nathalie DROAL

The philanthropic sector employs in average 4% of working people in western countries, which means more than the automotive industry. To our knowledge, there does not exist a study that makes a difference between « lightweight » organizations ( surviving with contributions and givings of small amounts) and those that are able to receive legacies and donations and therefore able to make significant investments.

We tried to measure the importance of these latters (that we may call the « full-function » philanthropic sector) in 4 countries : France, United Kingdom. [1] Legacies and donations are indeed necessary to create charities providing fundamental service to society (clinics, university, research centers…).

For France, we therefore did not take into account the 1,3 million of so called « associations » that cannot receive legacies or donations [2] although they employ 1,8 million of people (but half of their income comes from public subsidies, the rest mainly comes from services invoiced).

Data are below, with explanations and sources. We would be happy to receive observations and suggestions because this is an area where official statistics are still missing, especially in France.

Full-function philanthropic organizations
United StatesUnited KingdomGermanyFrance
Name501(c)3CharitiesPublic interest, charity or religious organizationsFoundations
Total number 1 100 000 [3] 163 000 [4] 19 000/200 000 [5] 900 [6]
Private givings 300 bn $ [7] 9 bn £ [8] 2 to 6 bn € [9] 1 bn € [10]
Income/budget More than1 400 bn [11] 59 bn £ [12] 15 bn € [13] 5 bn € [14]
Assets More than 2 600 bn $ [15] 220 bn £ [16] 100 bn € [17] 14 bn € [18]
Employees 13 000 000 [19] 857 000 [20] 60 000 [21]

Footnotes

[1Figures only includes England and Wales, Germany and United States.

[2Exceptions are : public interest recognized associations (only some twenty in France), religious associations, associations with an exclusive assistance, charity, scientific or medical research goal, approved family association organizations, associations depending on local Alsace Moselle law. These organizations must as well have a legal personnality.

[32011 data, The Chronicle of Philanthropy :http://philanthropy.com/article/Number-of-Charities-Dropped/131330/

[5There are 19 000 foundations, which are almost all of public interest. There are also 20 000 charity companies and 600 000 associations, whose at least one third can be presumed charity for the german definition and therefore benefits from the same fiscal regime as foundations. Source : study of Andreas Richter and Anna Katharina Gollan published by the European Lawyer.

[62011 data produced by the Fondation de France Observatory. There are 600 public interest foundations and 300 corporate foundations. The sheltered foundations under the aegis of officially recognized foundations do not have legal personnality and therefore are not taken into account in this study. The other figures given here for France include nonetheless the sheltered foundations.

[7« Giving USA 2012 » study. Corporate givings only represent 5% of total givings.

[8« Giving USA 2012 » study.

[9According to the 2010 study « Corporate Foundations in Germany », from the Bundesverband Deutscher Stiftungen (foundations german association) foundations receive approximately 2 billions givings each year. According to the 2008 MacKinsey study, « Gesellschaftlichen Wandel gestalten » the global givings amount (included associations and charity companies) is about 6 billions euros.

[10Fondation de France and Centre français des fonds et fondations study: « Les fonds et fondations en France de 2001 à 2010 ».

[112009 study of the Congressionnal Research Service : « An Overview of the Nonprofit and Charitable Sector ».

[13Foundations only. Source : 2010 study « Corporate Foundations in Germany » of Bundesverband Deutscher Stiftungen.

[14Fondation de France and Centre français des fonds et fondations study: « Les fonds et fondations en France de 2001 à 2010 ».

[15Enquête de 2009 du Congressionnal Research Service : « An Overview of the Nonprofit and Charitable Sector ».

[17Foundations only. Source : 2010 study « Corporate Foundations in Germany » by the Bundesverband Deutscher Stiftungen.

[18Fondation de France and Centre français des fonds et fondations study: « Les fonds et fondations en France de 2001 à 2010 ».

[19Number of employees in the non profit sector.

[21Fondation de France and Centre français des fonds et fondations study : « Les fonds et fondations en France de 2001 à 2010 ».

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