Donations by top 50 US donors fell again in 2023, sliding to $12B — Mike Bloomberg, Phil and Penny Knight, and Michael and Susan Dell led the list of biggest givers.

The top 50 American individuals and couples who gave or pledged the most to charity in 2023 committed US$12 billion to foundations, universities, hospitals and more. That total was 28% below an inflation-adjusted $16.5 billion in 2022, according to the Chronicle of Philanthropy’s latest annual tally of these donations.

The Conversation U.S. asked David CampbellAngela R. Logan and Michael Moody, three scholars of philanthropy, to assess the significance of these gifts and to consider what they indicate about the state of charitable giving in the United States.

What trends stand out overall?

David Campbell: As was the case in 2022, more than one-third of these big gifts – $4.4 billion – went to donors’ personal foundations. Another $764.3 million flowed into donor-advised funds. Also known as DAFs, these charitable savings accounts make it possible for donors to reserve assets such as cash, stocks and bonds for future […]

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