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CORPORATE GIVING CONTINUES TO GROW IN DOLLARS AND SOPHISTICATION
The Conference Board

June, 2012

The first analysis of 2011 corporate giving data, the most recent data 
available, reveals a majority of corporations worldwide have increased their giving year-over-year.  
According to the annual Corporate Giving Standard (CGS) survey, conducted by the Committee 
Encouraging Corporate Philanthropy (CECP) in association with The Conference Board, companies are 
driving toward restoring corporate giving to pre-recession levels. On top of this overall growth, three 
major trends emerged from the 2009-2011 data: 
• Corporate giving became  increasingly focused; 
• Employee matching gift and engagement programs were  high priorities; and 
• International giving was on the rise, largely driven by significant revenue growth abroad.
Key CGS indicators tracked through a matched set of companies that responded 2009-2011 include: 
• Median total giving was $24.4 million, which is slightly less than 2010 levels ($24.6 million) but 
well above 2009 ($22.6 million).  
• 60 percent of companies increased their total giving since 2009.
• 48 percent of companies increased their giving by more than 10 percent.  
• The consumer staples (25%) and health care industries (25%) had the largest percentages of
growth in giving.  
• Of the companies that saw increases in giving from 2009 to 2011, direct cash was the most 
prevalent form of giving (median percent change of 18%).  
“We are extremely proud to provide this first look at corporate giving programs each year,” said Charles 
Moore, Executive Director, CECP.  “We are optimistic about the levels of commitment we see from companies; not only are they continuing to give, but they are also doing so in more strategic and 
thoughtful ways in partnership with their employees and their communities.”
“The Conference Board is honored to join forces with CECP in the fielding of the CGS, which provides a 
snapshot of how the current corporate societal engagement program operates—including some 
important changes in strategy,” added Jonathan Spector, President and CEO, The Conference Board.  
“Companies are still waiting to see how the economy will rebound, and as such, corporate giving officers 
are pursuing new programs to make their giving more focused and in line with core business strategies.”
Tightening Focus, Widening Participation
Companies surveyed tended to concentrate their giving efforts on a single program area, with many 
focused on Education and Health and Social Services.  Only 4 percent of companies were highly 
dispersed in their giving (defined as less than 20 percent of giving in any single program area).  More 
than 31 percent of companies gave 50 percent or more to one program area and 81 percent of 
companies gave 20 percent or more to either Education or Health and Social Services. 
Giving in 2011 also continued to target programs close to companies’ business areas: For instance,
health care firms continued to give predominately to health and social science; information technology 
continued to concentrate on K-12 education; and financial companies remained focused on community 
and economic development. In these focused program areas, companies gave larger grants to a smaller 
number of organizations than in 2009 (a median of 78 grants, $31,000 in 2009; 62 grants, $37,000 in 
2011).
Employee matching-gifts policies changed as companies moved to include their workforce in their 
societal engagement: Over all, workplace giving campaigns were up (53% in 2009 to 59% in 2011), as 
were “dollars-for-doers” programs (57% in 2009 to 63% in 2011). Year-round policies, however, were
down (92% in 2009 to 77% in 2011).  
The global footprint of corporate philanthropy expanded as companies increasingly engaged with causes 
outside of their headquarter countries, predominately through employee engagement programs.  
Companies with increased giving since 2009 were more focused on international giving than their 
counterparts. These programs largely took the form of employee volunteer awards (increased from 28% 
in 2009 to 33% in 2011) and company-wide days of service (increased from 19% in 2009 to 26% in 2011).
Notably, family volunteering programs were up from 21% in 2009 to 26% in 2011.  
New Partnership; Record Giving Data
Beginning with the survey of 2011 contributions, the Corporate Giving Standard (CGS) survey is being 
conducted by CECP in association with The Conference Board. Through an unrivaled joint online survey tool, CECP and The Conference Board collect and are the first to report on an annual basis data on 
numerous aspects of corporate giving programs internationally.
The 2012 CGS received the largest number of responses to date: 214, including 62 of the top 100 
companies in the Fortune 500, far surpassing last year’s 184 respondents. The 2012 CGS also met 
another important milestone; it now contains more than $100 billion in corporate giving data collected 
since the survey launched in 2001, including cash giving, non-cash giving, volunteer programs, 
management and program costs, giving focus areas, and more.
About the Corporate Giving Standard Survey
The Corporate Giving Standard (CGS), conducted by the Committee Encouraging Corporate Philanthropy 
(CECP) in association with The Conference Board, is an online philanthropy measurement and 
benchmarking tool for participating companies. All figures referenced are inflation-adjusted and based 
on a matched-set of 144 companies responding to the CGS survey in 2009, 2010, and 2011. This 
matched-set of companies combined to give a total of $15.7 billion in cash and product giving in 2011, 
the most recent year of data available anywhere. CECP and The Conference Board will post a fuller 
analysis of this data, Giving in Numbers, 2012 Edition, this fall.  
About CECP
The Committee Encouraging Corporate Philanthropy (CECP) is the only international forum of business 
leaders exclusively focused on raising the level and quality of corporate societal engagement. 
Membership includes more than 180 global CEOs and chairpersons of companies that together account 
for over 40 percent of reported corporate giving in the United States.  
www.corporatephilanthropy.org
About The Conference Board
The Conference Board is an independent business membership and research association working in the 
public interest. Our mission is unique: To provide the world’s leading organizations with the practical 
knowledge they need to improve their performance and better serve society. The Conference Board is a 
non-advocacy, not-for-profit entity holding 501 (c) (3) tax-exempt status in the United States.
www.conference-board.org


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