Books, Reports and Articles - 2004
center on wealth and philanthropy
“The Inheritance of Wealth and the Commonwealth: The Ideal of Paideia in an Age of Affluence”
Paul G. Schervish. Philanthropy Across the Generations (Dwight F. Burlingame, ed.). New Directions for Philanthropic Fundraising, no. 42, Winter 2003, pp. 5-24. Cathlene Williams, Lilya Wagner (Coeditors-in-Chief)
The transmission of philanthropy across the generations is the transfer of a spiritual agency of material capacity, care for others, and a process of conscientious decision-making and choice. The intergenerational transmission of philanthropy is less a matter of shepherding heirs to become caretakers of existing philanthropic instruments and endeavors as it is a matter of guiding heirs to become agents who reconstitute for their own time and in their own way the relation between wealth and the commonwealth. In the first section of the paper I draw on an essay by John Maynard Keynes to set the stage for an understanding of the material and cultural conditions in the offing during the early twenty-first century. In the second section, I summarize several elements of the material heritage we will leave our children, including a substantial transfer of wealth, and indicate the implications of these trends for the historical circumstances of wealth and philanthropy that our heirs will face. The third section examines the meaning of moral biography as the confluence of material capacity and moral compass, and how our calling today is to provide our heirs the opportunity to conscientiously shape their own moral biographies tailored to the distinctive characteristics of the future in which they will live. In the fourth section, I explore two elements of how we might best go about to help our children and grandchildren form their own moral biographies. I focus especially on the communication of paideia, the Greek ideal of formative education and the meaning of culture, as the ideal of our teachings and on discernment as a process of decision making aimed at clarifying one’s philanthropic resources, purposes, and mode of implementation. In the conclusion, I exhort those in my generation to make it our vocation to help our children freely discover their own vocation.
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"Methodology is Destiny: The Effect of Survey Prompts on Reported Levels of Giving and Volunteering."
Paul G. Schervish, Patrick Rooney, and Kathryn Steinberg. Nonprofit and Voluntary Sector Quarterly, vol. 33, no. 4, p, December 2004 pp. 628-654.
In a random telephone survey, five groups of at least 800 people responded to several different surveys related to the amount of time and money they had given in the last year. This study found that those respondents who were given the longer and more detailed surveys were likely to remember more of their charitable contributions than those presented with less detailed surveys.
"St. Louis Metropolitan Area Wealth Transfer Estimates: 2001-2055."
Issued by the Gateway to Giving Coalition and based on a study prepared John J. Havens and Paul G. Schervish. November, 2004.
The Center on Wealth and Philanthropy has developed and tested a new methodology that enables the estimation of the transfer of personal wealth from 2001 through 2055 for states and large metropolitan areas. Analogous to its national estimate of $41 trillion of wealth transfer, the state and metropolitan area estimates are developed by microsimulation for 2% low growth, 3% medium growth, and 4% high growth scenarios. Like their national counterpart, the state and metropolitan area estimates are derived from an expanded and updated 2004 Wealth Transfer Microsimulation Model (WTMM) developed and housed at the Center. Using 10-year intervals the expanded model estimates the number and value of final estates (i.e., estates without a surviving spouse) and their distribution among estate fees, charitable bequests, estate taxes, and heirs - all cross-tabulated by categories of net worth of the final estates. The expanded model also estimates the number of millionaires spawned from the 2001 population and the value of their wealth at the end of each reporting decade. At the invitation of the St. Louis Metropolitan Association for Philanthropy, the Center recently applied this localized method to the St. Louis area. The technical background and published reports are available for download.
"Wealth and Philanthropy."
Paul G. Schervish. In Philanthropy in America: A Comprehensive Historical Encyclopedia, edited by Dwight F. Burlingame. Santa Barbara: ABC-CLIO, 2004. 505-509.
This concise encyclopedia article explains the new physics of philanthropy based on a projected continuation of charitable giving at unprecedented rates over the next fifty years.
"Wealth Transfer Estimates for African Americans Households."
John J. Havens and Paul G. Schervish. October 21, 2004
This study presents new information on wealth and wealth transfer within the African-American community. The first section presents an overview of the findings. The second section presents selected statistical patterns and trends in income, wealth, and philanthropic giving among African-American households. This section includes estimates of the amount and distribution of wealth among African American households. It provides an essential context for understanding the estimates of wealth transfer presented in the third section. The third section deals with the capacity of African American households to make charitable gifts and to leave charitable bequests in the 55 year period from 2001 to 2055. Using an expanded and updated version of the CWP's Wealth Transfer Microsimulation Model (WTMM), the report presents the first estimates of wealth transfer among African American households.