CASE Report Reveals Record Growth in Philanthropic Giving to Australian and New Zealand Institutions
The Council for Advancement and Support of Education released a report today that shows record growth in overall
fundraising results and increased investment in advancement operations in 2017 among institutions in Australia and New
Charitable Giving to Universities in Australia and New Zealand reports that participating institutions say new funds
secured1 grew by 15 percent from 2016, reaching AUD650 million in 2017. This is the first time that institutions crossed
the AUD600 million mark in the CASE survey’s six-year history. Other key findings:
• Annual fund2 income secured increased by 51 percent at non-Go8 institutions from 2016 to 2017, while Go83 institutions
saw an increase of 17 percent during the same time period.
• Cash income received4 was AUD519 million in 2017, which marks the first time the total amount has crossed the half a
billion mark in the history of the survey.
• Total value of largest cash gifts received by universities increased for the third consecutive year, reaching AUD116
million in 2017, an increase of 36 percent over 2016.
Go8 institutions saw a significant rise in the value of largest gifts, with a 57 percent increase in 2017 over 2016;
non-Go8 institutions saw a significant rise in the value of largest non-bequest pledges with a 31 percent increase from
2016 to 2017.
Jon Paparsenos, Chair of the Group of Eight Chief Advancement Officers and Vice President, Philanthropy (Alumni,
Engagement & Development) of UNSW Sydney, says that this cultural shift of increase in generosity reflects greater recognition of
universities as vehicles for positive change. “While many institutions are in a state of flux as we navigate how best to
strategically engage our alumni community, ongoing research will reveal how our investments in this space will impact on
those relationships and subsequent development strategies,” says Paparsenos. “I foresee many innovative approaches
surfacing in the coming years.”
Investments in staffing and overall fundraising activity5 in 2017 were AUD92 million – a 17 percent increase over 2016 –
while investment in alumni relations staff and activity6 were AUD49 million. In terms of costs, alumni magazine
production and distribution costs decreased for non-Go8 institutions from 2016 to 2017 by 27 percent whereas production
and distribution costs for Go8 institutions decreased by 9 percent.
Tricia King, Vice President of Global Engagement for CASE, says that the significant growth in philanthropic success has
provided impetus for capacity building.
“Australia and New Zealand are leading the way by achieving remarkable, record-setting levels of philanthropic giving to
higher education,” says King. “CASE has been impressed by a sector that is growing at a rapid rate. We have enjoyed
working to support our communities and their inspirational, ambitious leaders. As a response to meet the growing demand
for the upscaling of skills in this region, our CASE Asia-Pacific Advancement Conference will be held in Australia for
the first time in 2019.”
Paparsenos noted that while participation in the survey has grown during the last six years, he encouraged all
institutions to participate in the survey, which is vital in contributing to a more robust dataset.
“This survey provides academic and advancement leaders with an understanding of the investments and outcomes of
engagement,” says King. “A greater participation rate will contribute to stronger results and enable advancement
practitioners to build a better case for support in their work.”
The report also highlights trends in philanthropic giving within the higher education sector based on analysis done on
data collected from 24 institutions in Australia and one institution in New Zealand over three years (2015, 2016 and
2017), constituting half of the total number of institutions in the region.
Next year’s Charitable Giving to Universities in Australia and New Zealand survey is scheduled to be administered in the
first half of 2019. Notes to editors
1 New funds secured: New funding secured by the institution, including new donations received and new confirmed pledges
not yet received but excluding payments of pledges made in previous years. This does not include bequest pledges but
includes bequest received.
2 Annual funds: Gifts obtained through mass participation often directed to general operations and/or designated
3 Group of Eight: The Group of Eight (Go8) is a coalition of research-intensive Australian higher education institutions
(refer to the Go8 website for further information https://go8.edu.au/
4 Cash income received: Income received by the institution including payments received towards pledges made in previous
years, excluding new pledges where payment has not been received.
5 Investment in fundraising: The costs associated with the efforts to gather new funds secured and cash income received.
It includes the cost of the staff (staff expenditure) undertaking the fundraising and the other costs (non-staff
expenditure) of running and maintaining the fundraising operations. When the cost of both staff expenditure and
non-staff expenditure is combined this equals the total fundraising expenditure.
6 Investment in alumni relations: The costs associated with engagement activity with alumni and community, including
staff and non-staff expenditure.
About the Charitable Giving to Universities in Australia and New Zealand Survey The Charitable Giving to Universities in
Australia and New Zealand Survey is annually commissioned by the Council for Advancement and Support of Education in
Europe. Presenting findings from the Charitable Giving to Universities in Australia and New Zealand Survey 2018, the aim
of the research is to provide a picture of charitable giving to a group of 25 universities in Australia and New Zealand
between 2015 and 2017.
This is the sixth survey of this kind and participation has increased from eight to 25 universities from 2012 to 2017.