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UK Giving Report 2022

June 28, 2022

The UK Giving report explores people's giving habits throughout the lockdowns of early 2021 and how they have changed with the easing of pandemic restrictions. These changing patterns continued into the first quarter of 2022, against the backdrop of the humanitarian crisis in Ukraine and the rising cost of living.This report highlights key trends that will assist charities, policymakers, and wider society to better understand the UK's changing giving landscape. The research is based on monthly interviews conducted online throughout 2021, as well as more recent polling from the first quarter of 2022 (c. 18,000 interviews in total). Some longer-term trend analysis is also included, using monthly data since May 2016. 

U.S. Gun Policy: Global Comparisons

June 10, 2022

The United States is witnessing another year of record gun violence, raising domestic and international scrutiny of its comparatively loose gun laws and placing pressure on lawmakers to enact meaningful reforms.

Building a Youth-Led Fund: Learning and insights frpm the Challenge and Change Fund

May 24, 2022

History illuminates the capacity and courage of young people to drive positive change in the world, but for far too long their ideas have been restricted or constrained within the structures of the broader social sector. Power is often held by adult-led social purpose organisations - be they funders, charities, enterprises, or public bodies - that end up speaking on behalf of young people and controlling or containing their ideas about what change is needed and how to make it.Challenge and Change set out to address this by moving decision-making power and resources to young people. It was intended as a youth-led fund dedicated to supporting the limitless energy of young campaigners who are affected by injustices and working tirelessly across England to create positive change. The fund's charitable purpose is 'advancement of citizenship' .Since the launch of Challenge and Change in 2020, many funders and social sector leads have reached out to Blagrave keen to understand the journey of the fund in its pilot year. This report has been produced by Blagrave and CfKE to share our learning with those working on, or interested in, supporting the development of youth-led funds.This report seeks to capture both the deeper reflections that this fund has generated as well as some of the finer details of design, launch, implementation, and review. This includes honesty about what went well, what didn't, and where there are further questions to reflect on.

Digital for Good: A Global Study on Emerging Ways of Giving - United Kingdom

May 5, 2022

The COVID-19 pandemic fundamentally altered many aspects of day-to-day life and the philanthropic sector in the United Kingdom (UK). Pandemic restrictions limited in-person interactions and accelerated an already growing digitalization of the UK philanthropic sector. However, past research found no conclusive evidence of the degree to which digital interactions will replace in-person fundraising. While 2020 witnessed a growth in online donations alongside a drop in cash donations, only a little more than a quarter of charities said digital fundraising was as effective as in-person fundraising.Key findings do affirm some pre-pandemic trends in giving methods in the UK. There was a marked increase in the proportion of people giving via website or app, which occurred at the same time as a decrease in donors giving via cash. Younger people donate online more than older adults, yet older age groups have also engaged more with online giving. On average, 60 percent of donors' gifts were made online in the 12 months prior to this study.Nevertheless, the findings also suggest that philanthropy will retain a human element. Most who used social media to request donations from family and friends also tended to make those requests in-person. And most British people expect that in the future we will give digitally rather than in cash, but almost half expected this to occur via in-person contactless donations tins.Overall, this report concludes that the post-pandemic fundraising landscape seems more likely to develop as a hybrid one, where online interactions complement—rather than substitute—offline interactions.

Enduring strengths: Analysing the UK’s current and potential economic strengths, and what they mean for its economic strategy, at the start of the decisive decade

April 28, 2022

Key to building a new economic strategy which can revitalise the UK economy after a decade of stagnation is understanding our current strengths, how these strengths evolve, and the trade-offs they present.The report uses global data on trade in goods and services and patenting to uncover where the UK's relative strengths lie; we study the extent to which these strengths have changed over time and compare with international peers; and undertake several deep dives into the areas in which the UK has developed a specialism. Finally we consider what the UK's mix of specialisms means for a wider economic strategy.

Civic Life Today: The State of U.K. Civic Engagement

April 7, 2022

The COVID-19 pandemic has affected all our lives and had a profound effect on what it means to engage civically. Through the lens of Points of Light's Civic Circle, this report highlights engagement trends in the U.K. today and quantifies how people support and give their time to the causes they care about. 

Ending Street Homelessness in Vanguard Cities Across the Globe: An International Comparative Study

April 5, 2022

Street homelessness is one of the most extreme, and visible, manifestations of profound injustice on the planet, but often struggles to achieve priority attention at international level. The Institute of Global Homelessness (IGH's) A Place to Call Home initiative, launched in 2017, represented a concerted effort to support cities across the globe to eradicate street homelessness. A first cohort of 13 'Vanguard Cities' committed to a specific target on ending or reducing street homelessness by December 2020. Our independent evaluation of this initiative found that:Two Vanguard Cities – Glasgow and Sydney – fully met their self-defined target reductions for end 2020. In addition, Greater Manchester, while it did not meet its exceptionally ambitious goal of 'ending all rough sleeping', recorded an impressive 52% reduction against baseline.Overall, there was evidence of reductions in targeted aspects of street homelessness in over half of the Vanguard Cities. In most of the remaining cities data limitations, sometimes as a result of COVID, meant that it was not possible to determine trends. In only one Vanguard City – Edmonton – was there an evidenced increase in street homelessness over baseline levels.Key enablers of progress in reducing street homelessness included the presence of a lead coordinating agency, and coordinated entry to homelessness services, alongside investment in specialized and evidence-based interventions, such as assertive street outreach services, individual case management and Housing First.Key barriers to progress included heavy reliance on undignified and sometimes unsafe communal shelters, a preoccupation with meeting immediate physiological needs, and sometimes perceived spiritual needs, rather than structural and system change, and a lack of emphasis on prevention. Aggressive enforcement interventions by police and city authorities, and documentary and identification barriers, were also counter-productive to attempts to reduce street homelessness.A key contextual variable between the Vanguard Cities was political will, with success in driving down street homelessness associated with high-level political commitments. An absolute lack of funds was a major challenge in all of the Global South cities, but also in resource-poor settings in the Global North. Almost all Vanguard Cities cited pressures on the affordable housing stock as a key barrier to progress, but local lettings and other policies could make a real difference.The impact of the COVID-19 crisis differed markedly across the Vanguard Cities, with people at risk of street homelessness most effectively protected in the UK and Australian cities. Responses were less inclusive and ambitious in the North American and Global South cities, with more continued use of 'shared air' shelters, albeit that in some of these contexts the pandemic prompted better coordination of local efforts to address street homelessness.IGH involvement was viewed as instrumental in enhancing the local profile, momentum and level of ambition attached to reducing street homelessness in the Vanguard Cities. IGH's added value to future cohorts of cities could be maximised via a focus on more tailored forms of support specific to the needs of each city, and also to different types of stakeholders, particularly frontline workers.

Owning the Conversation: Assessing Responses to Russian and Chinese Information Operations Around COVID-19

March 31, 2022

The crisis around COVID-19 and the resulting "infodemic" has been exploited by authoritarian regimes to spread propaganda and disinformation among populations around the world. The Russian Federation and the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) have used the pandemic to engage in information warfare, spread divisive content, advance conspiracy theories, and promote public health propaganda that undermines US and European efforts to fight the pandemic.In 2021, the Center for European Policy Analysis (CEPA) published two reports, Information Bedlam: Russian and Chinese Information Operations During COVID-19 and Jabbed in the Back: Mapping Russian and Chinese Information Operations During COVID-19, comparing how the Kremlin and CCP have deployed information operations around the COVID-19 pandemic, virus origins, and efficacy of the vaccines to influence targeted populations globally, using the infodemic as a diplomatic and geopolitical weapon. The CCP mainly spread COVID-19 narratives to shape perceptions about the origins of the coronavirus and often push narratives to shun responsibility. Meanwhile, the Kremlin recycled existing narratives, pushing and amplifying them via validators and unsuspecting people in order to sow internal divisions and further exploit polarized views in the West about the efficacy of vaccines, treatments, origins of new variants, and impact to the population. While the world has learned about new COVID-19 variants, such as Omicron, China and Russia have evolved their tactics to spread COVID-19 disinformation and propaganda and further sow doubt and confuse the population about the pandemic.As Russia and China's tactics evolve, this policy brief examines whether Western institutions, including governments, digital platforms, and nongovernmental organizations, have been able to counter information warfare around this unprecedented crisis. This paper examines a broad range of initiatives and responses to counter COVID-19 disinformation coming from Russia and China, and to strengthen societal resilience more broadly. Because addressing this challenge requires a whole-of-society approach, this report highlights government, technology, and civil society interventions, both in Europe and in the US, identifying what works and where there are existing gaps.Of note, the interventions and related assessments presented here are based on currently available data. It is important to highlight that governments regularly pass new regulations and measures, and digital platforms continue to evolve their policy, product, and enforcement actions in response to COVID-19 disinformation.

Foundation Practice Rating 2022: Assessing diversity, accountability and transparency in grant-making foundations

March 25, 2022

The Foundation Practice Rating (FPR) is an objective third-party assessment of UK-based charitable grant-making foundations in three key areas of practice – diversity, accountability, and transparency. The FPR is a new rating that will be published annually with the aim of creating an incentive for foundations to improve their practices in these three areas.This report describes how the FPR works and why, the findings from its first year of operation, and the response so far from foundations. It reveals the situation as it exists today, but it is hoped that it will also encourage future change that will lead to a stronger and more effective foundation and charity sector. 

Eliminating the UK’s reliance on Russian oil

March 22, 2022

The UK is reliant on Russian diesel. Just under a fifth of the diesel we consume comes from Russia, and this costs the country over £3 billion a year. Furthermore, the UK also sources 5% of its jet fuel supply from Russia. This has been the case for years, but what is new is the fact that our imports from Russia are now helping fund Putin's war in Ukraine. There is now a moral and energy security imperative, recognised by Government, to stop Russian imports as quickly as possible. This briefing paper sets out steps as to how this can be done. 

Untapped Opportunities for Climate Action: An Assessment of Food Systems in Nationally Determined Contributions (NDCs)

March 22, 2022

A summary report providing a synthesis of the 14 country assessments with recommendations and priority actions.

Confronting the Climate Crisis with Food Systems Transformation: Stories of Action from 14 countries

March 22, 2022

Integrating food systems transformation into the Nationally Determined Contributions (NDCs) – the national climate actions at the heart of the Paris Agreement, is critical to delivering on interconnected ecological, biodiversity, health, economic, social, and cultural goals. Taking a food systems approach builds climate resilience and results in a diversity of context-specific solutions for food production, distribution, consumption, and waste. Yet, food systems are rarely prioritized in climate policy. This catalogue of global Case Studies complements a suite of publications that are designed to centre food systems transformation in future climate debate and policy.