Is fundraising a profession?

Many fundraisers simply assume that fundraising is a profession (we have done precisely that in the first paragraph on our fundraising ethics page).

However, it is not certain that fundraising actually is a profession when assessed against the standard criteria.

Rogare's green paper (discussion paper) explores this issue, considering whether fundraising's ethics, body of knowledge, qualifications, client base and the degree of 'autonomy' practised by fundraisers, qualifies it for 'professionhood' and what the implications are if it falls short.

Next steps – exploring these issues

This green paper will be used as the basis for a task group of Rogare’s International Advisory Panel to explore issues raised. 

The purpose of this task groups is to:

  • ) 1. Identify the issues affected by fundraising’s perceived lack of professional status.
  • < 2. Identify how these issues, challenges and problems would be solved were fundraising to professionalise.
  • ; 3. Recommend whether fundraising needs to professionalise.
  • 4 4. Recommend what fundraising needs to do in order to professionalise.

As a starting point, the group will first consider:

  • ; a) Whether the Green Paper is comprehensive (does it raise the major/majority issues that need to be addressed)?
  • ; b) Does the Green Paper clearly identify the issues that are faced by the community (internally and externally)?
  • ; c) Are there any further knowledge gaps that can be identified for inclusion in future editions of the Green Paper?

The task group is co-ordinated by Cherian Koshy, director of development, Des Moines Performing Arts (USA), and comprises:

  • Kyla Amrhein – University of Alberta (Canada)
  • Ashley Belanger – Rhode Island Urban Defence League (USA)
  • Simona Biancu – ENGAGEDin (Italy)
  • Jennifer Brake – St Louis Public Radio (USA)

  • T. Clay Buck – Smith Center for the Performing Arts (USA)
  • Paula Dixon – Hazon Consulting (UK)
  • Lianne Howard-Dace – ChristianAid (UK)
  • Barbara O’Reilly – Windmill Hill Consulting (USA)
  • Valerie Pletcher – Brady Campaign (USA)
  • Lesley Ray – Mater Foundation (Australia)