Centre for Philanthropy, University of Kent

Many funders prefer to pay for something tangible, like a building, so we are delighted and grateful that Pears Foundation has decided to fund a lecturing post. We are confident this investment will have a positive impact beyond those who choose to study with us, but also on all those lives affected in the careers of students who go on, or go back, to leading positions in the charity and philanthropy sector.
Dr Beth Breeze, Director, Centre for Philanthropy
We hope this post will contribute to a better understanding of the role of private giving in contemporary society, and offer practical ways to help grow an even stronger culture of British philanthropy for the future.
Sir Trevor Pears CMG

Long established in the United States, Philanthropic Studies is a relatively new field of academic study in the UK.

In 2016, Pears Foundation supported the establishment of the UK’s first dedicated university teaching post in the field of philanthropy as part of our efforts to strengthen the field and the voluntary sector in general. The Masters course in Philanthropic Studies, developed by this post, is now an established offer at the University and is open to anyone working in the fields of fundraising and grant-making through a combination of online learning and study days on campus. 

Pears Foundation continues to support the Centre for Philanthropy as a leading hub for research, teaching and public engagement, ensuring that its research has practical application and is being used to inform and improve practice. Working in close partnership with the charitable sector, the Centre conducts research on a range of topics including fundraising, major donors, giving across the lifecourse, corporate philanthropy and the relationship between philanthropy and social justice.

Like many of the Foundation’s programmes in higher education, a key aim of our partnership with the Centre for Philanthropy is to strengthen the links between academic study and practitioners in the field. The aim is to educate students who wish to pursue a career in the charitable sector or related fields including the emerging philanthropy advisory sector, practitioners already working in the sector, and individual philanthropists who wish to gain a better understanding of the role of philanthropy and improve the effectiveness of their giving.