On Friday the 15th of April, the Community of Giving hub had the pleasure of hosting breakfast with Dr Jason Franklin, a prominent philanthropist and academic from the United States. With his experience and research in next generation giving and innovation in philanthropy, Jason provided guests with a unique combination of personal and professional perspectives on wealth transfer in today’s giving climate.

With an estimated wealth transfer across generations of $2.4–3 billion between 2007 and 2061, Australia is seeing a significant shift in who is giving and their giving preferences. To be well-prepared for this, Jason emphasised how important it is to have early conversations with this next generation of funders and to aid in the education of young and emerging funders. Suggesting that there tends to be too much secrecy and not enough conversation around money and wealth, Jason encouraged guests to (where necessary) “ask the questions that aren’t polite”.

jason frankin presentatio

As new generations step into the giving arena, we are seeing a shift in their attitudes towards capitalism and power, as well as changing views on social, political and environmental issues.

In terms of understanding the preferences of young and emerging funders, these may be linked to generational groups; reflective of a funder’s relationship to their assets; or connected to legal or financial needs, such as flexibility for giving or tax regulations.

Through his research (focused primarily on the US), Jason has identified three types of funders: inheritors, asset builders and high-net-worth (HNW) individuals. Each of these groups has a different relationship to their assets and therefore a different approach to their giving; something we’d all do well to remember.

‘Not all next gen funders are the same.’

– Dr Jason Franklin

Jason’s final advice to professional advisers was around building thoughtful relationships with the next generation. Before that wealth rolls over, it is crucial that advisers build trust with prospective clients and refrain from making assumptions about their giving preferences and their family relationships.

We’re very grateful to have had Jason visit us during his time in Australia, and we look forward to welcoming him back on his next trip down under!


You can view Jason’s presentation slides here.
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