Philanthropy, social media, tax havens, open internet: Recent news highlights for global prospect researchers


The Guardian explored what social media accounts reveal about the global affluent in an article called, “Yachts, jets and stacks of cash: super-rich discover risks of Instagram snaps.”

BNP Paribas released its fourth annual Individual Philanthropy Index. This report explores motivations for giving and philanthropic priorities in regions around the world.

The 2016 Global Philanthropy Forum was held last week in California. Videos from the conference are now available online.

On, Jake Hayman asked, “Will Charities Disown The ‘Panama Papers Philanthropists’?”


Photo: Headquarters of Mossack Fonseca, focus of the “Panama Papers” leak. By Valenciano (Own work) [CC BY-SA 4.0 (], via Wikimedia Commons (


Roundup of International Prospect Research News

Euro coins and banknotes

According to the New York Times today, “European leaders said… they had reached a deal meant to resolve Greece’s debt crisis and avert a historic fracture in the Continent’s common currency project.”

The French business magazine Challenges released its annual list of the 500 largest fortunes in France last week. Right now, you can view the whole list in the magazine’s print version and details about the top 20 fortunes on the magazine’s website. The full list will be posted online on Thursday, 16 July.

Caixin reported “nearly half of A-Shares” on the Shanghai and Shenzhen stock exchanges stopped trading in the midst of recent market crash. Forbes reported that the crash “ended the billionaire standing of dozens of entrepreneurs that can now only more modestly called ‘rich.’ ”  The Wall Street Journal reported that many Chinese stock investors are switching to real estate in light of recent events.

Results of an Urban Land Institute survey showed Shanghai is “the top Chinese city for real estate investment,” according to news coverage in Mingtiandi.

India’s outsourcing industry is faltering. reported house prices in Dubai will “rebound in late 2016, early 2017.”


Photo: By Avij (talk · contribs) (Own work) [ECB decisions ECB/2003/4 and ECB/2003/5 or Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons


Bon voyage! Resources for your next fundraising trip to France

Display Screen At A Paris Airport

Continuing the France theme that kicked off last week on the IFI blog (Start Here: Researching Prospects in France), here are some resources for gift officers who are new to fundraising in France.

Do you need some reading material for the long flight? Two great places to start are “A Brief History of Fundraising in France,” from SOFII and “Les fonds et fondations en France de 2001 à 2014,” a 22 June 2015 report released by the Fondation de France and L’Obseratoire.

You also may want to read up on French business etiquette. A good place to start is, “Where lunch is vitally important,” an article about Parisian business lunches (and other travel tips) that ran on the BBC website last month. Two other useful guides are “Ten Tips on French Business Etiquette” and the France section of The Culture Crossing Guide, “a community built resource for cross-cultural etiquette and understanding.”

Are you flying into Paris? The My Airports app from Aéroports de Paris includes coverage of Charles de Gaulle International Airport. The app provides airport information and maps, scheduled departures and arrivals, updates on flight changes, and more. Aéroports de Paris provides fee-based access to wifi and business workstations. Click here to find these resources and to learn about usage costs.

Traveling by train into or around France? SNCF’s website provides train travel information and reservations.

Want to avoid major holidays on your trip? has this list of official French holidays.

Need help with your passport while you are in France? Here is a list of services for American citizens provided by the US Embassy in Paris.

Bon voyage!


Photo: By Uploader. (Self-photographed) [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

Launching a global fundraising program, part 1


If you work for a private school, college, or university in the United States, your institution likely has enrolled hundreds – if not thousands – of international students over the years. The ties your institution has with these former students may be very weak, however. Many institutions have said goodbye to international students at graduation, never to be in touch again.

Times are changing. Some form of global fundraising is becoming the norm for most educational institutions in the United States. Schools that only focused on domestic fundraising in the past are now interested in reaching out to international constituents.

If this situation seems familiar to you, you probably are wondering how to put a successful international fundraising program into place where you work, given your institution’s particular set of budget and staffing limitations. The first step is to create a solid strategic plan for your global fundraising efforts. To help you start this process, here are a few questions to consider:

Are there specific cities or countries around the world where your institution has large concentrations of alumni?

When was the last time someone from your institution visited those countries? Five years ago? Ten years ago? Never? If you have been out of touch with alumni in a particular country for a long time, it might be best to start out by building a strong volunteer network there.

Where do your top international donors currently live?

Where are the international wealth hubs? If your goal is to raise large gifts from principal donors, then you need to not only look at the places where you have constituents, but also see where those places overlap with concentrations of global wealth.

Of all your international constituents, who are your best potential prospects? A brief wealth screening can help you answer this question.

How up-to-date is the contact information for your international alumni? In some places, this information may be very current. In others… not so much. To help you tackle data quality problems, please see this previous blog post about dealing with the accuracy of names and addresses in your database.

What are your institution’s long-term global priorities outside of fundraising? If you only have a handful of alumni in a particular country, it may not make sense to send fundraising staff there. On the other hand, if that country is a place where your institution is planning to establish a research facility, develop international study programs for its students based in the United States, or start recruiting more students in the next few years, you might find it worthwhile to have a fundraising effort there. You also may consider doing outreach in conjunction with Admissions representatives, department heads, and other institutional executives.

Start here: Researching prospects in France

Tour eiffel at sunrise from the trocadero

This post is part of an International Fundraising Intelligence series about sources that can give you context for researching prospects and doing fundraising in different countries around the world. (To see previous posts in the series, select “Start Here” from the “Previous Blog Topics” drop-down menu on the right-hand side of your screen.) Full prospect research in these countries will require many different sources, but the ones highlighted in these posts will help you orient yourself, whether you are new to international prospect research or a fundraiser who is just starting to work with prospects living in a particular country. If you need further assistance with your global fundraising efforts, please contact IFI.

Le top 100 des plus grandes fortunes de France en 2015

The new edition of Capital magazine’s list of the 100 largest fortunes in France.

MeilleursAgents real estate price heat map

This map on the MeilleursAgents real estate website shows average prices per square meter for properties around France. You can search the MeilleursAgents website by address to find specific price ranges and home sizes where your prospects live.


The website of this French-language magazine provides timely updates about French business and industry news.

Centre Français des Fonds et Fondations

This organization, known in English as the French Foundation Center, provides information about 250 member foundations in France. Although some information on the center’s website is in English, most is in French.


Photo: By Tristan Nitot ( [GFDL (, CC-BY-SA-3.0 ( or CC BY-SA 2.5 (], via Wikimedia Commons

Engaging international alumni (April 2015)