New research from Barclays Private Bank finds ‘lack of faith’ between wealthy individuals and charities is a major barrier to giving

18 November 2019
  • 'Barriers to Giving’ report reveals barriers to giving amongst high net worth individuals (HNWIs)
  • Charitable donations outside the US amount to less than 1% of HNWIs annual income

Barriers to Giving, a new report released today by Barclays Private Bank, finds a ‘lack of faith’ between high net worth individuals (HNWIs) and charities is one of the greatest obstacles to philanthropy outside the US.

Recent figures revealed that almost half (47%) of multimillionaires outside the US donate less than 1% of their annual income to charitable causes compared with 2.1% within the US which is having a considerable impact on charitable funding. If every individual in this group was to increase donations to 1% of their income, there would be an additional £800 million in annual global funding for charitable organisations.

New research, commissioned by Barclays Private Bank and undertaken by global intelligence business Savanta, identifies an underlying sense of ‘us and them’ between HNWIs and charities, driven by a lack of understanding and poor communication. This has a detrimental impact on the potential for HNWIs and charities to develop mutually beneficial partnerships over the longer term.

One in four wealthy individuals state a lack of faith in how charities are run, and a lack of control over how money is used as major reasons that prevent them from donating more to charity. Scandals involving reputable charities have furthered this lack of trust and the assumption that such issues are widespread within the sector.

Charities’ current perceptions and methods of engaging with HNWIs are also identified in the report as barriers to major giving. The assumptions that HNWIs often demand ‘too much control’ over their donations and that they can ‘always give more’ are cited as contributing factors to the problematic ‘us and them’ mentality.

Barriers to Giving also found that:

  • 75% of HNWIs believe philanthropy is a responsibility of those wealthier than themselves
  • 54% believe that it is the responsibility of the government or state to support charitable organisations’ causes
  • 42% believe that making extra donations wouldn’t be large enough to have a significant impact
  • 23% of HNWIs cite a lack of knowledge, experience and contact with the charity sector as a hurdle to overcome when considering large donations

Emma Turner, Director, Philanthropy Service at Barclays Private Bank, said: “Barriers to Giving reveals a lack of alignment on how HNWIs and charities can collaborate to deliver real change. We are committed to supporting our clients to map out giving goals that align to their values and personal ambitions, with the same careful consideration that goes into making any other investment. We know that life’s success isn’t just about financial gains. Philanthropy – using your money for good – is an investment which delivers a different, but equally important kind of return.”


Notes to editors

The full report can be read here. Please contact the Barclays press office for any regional versions of the release.

For further information
Alejandra Quintela Sanchez - alejandra.quintelasanchez2@barclays.com
Emily Stead - emily.stead2@barclays.com

About Barriers to Giving
Barriers to Giving was authored by Savanta on behalf of Barclays Private Bank. It is based on three main strands of research, conducted in Q2 2019. The first is a survey of more than 400 HNWIs in key wealth markets outside the US including the UK, France, Germany, Italy, Saudi Arabia, UAE, Hong Kong, Singapore and India. All participants held assets of £5m or more. In addition, data on the charitable giving of ultra high net worth individuals (UHNWIs) – people with assets of more than £30m – was sourced from Wealth-X. To help interpret and contextualise these findings, Savanta interviewed more than 25 experts and intermediaries from across sectors connected with philanthropy. They included philanthropy authors and academics, philanthropy consultants and intermediaries, family office professionals and private client lawyers.

About Barclays Private Bank
Barclays Private Bank is part of a British bank with an international footprint that’s been supporting clients and driving innovation since 1690. As the Private Bank, we bring the breadth and scale of what we do as a banking group to our individual clients, channelling this know-how and reaching out across our network to unlock broader capabilities. Barclays Private Bank clients can enjoy a dedicated Private Banker along with banking, investing, lending, strategic solutions and wealth advisory services. Our track record includes access to market opportunities and financing from the Investment and Corporate Bank, strong historical performance of discretionary investments against industry benchmarks, and unrivalled access to philanthropy advice to highlight just a few.

About Savanta
Savanta provides the intelligence that underpins better decision making. With five global offices and 260 staff, we bring the benefits of scale. But with us, it’s personal. Our specialist Practices with their deep expertise and nimble teams built around individual clients make the Savanta experience feel more like working with a smaller, ‘boutique’ agency. Savanta offers clients a full range of intelligence services, including:

• Research and Insight – tailored solutions built using specialists from Savanta’s Industry and Methodology Practices
• Data collection and analysis – access to consumer and business respondents globally through a proprietary technology platform
• Intelligent products – including the BrandVue and MarketVue reputation tracking solutions

Learn more at https://www.savanta.com