Matthew Gerken

Matthew Gerken joined American Philanthropic after serving as a program officer at the Intercollegiate Studies Institute, where he organized the Institute’s first-ever collegiate debating symposium. He studied intellectual history as an undergraduate at Yale, and has experience in education, event planning, and foundation research. An Illinois native, he currently resides in Wilmington, DE, with his wife.

donor surveys
How to use donor surveys as part of your development strategy

Surveying donors is a low-cost and effective way to engage your donors and draw them deeper into the life of your organization.

stop giving
Why your donors stop giving

You fight to retain donors, but every year some of them lapse. Do you know why they stop giving?

Troubleshooting midlevel donor programs

Are you overlooking your mid-level donors in your acknowledgment procedures? Maybe you’re overlooking major donors, too.

4 ways foundations make bad decisions

If you work for a foundation, you probably don’t get much negative feedback. As a neutral party, I’m here to tell you what your grantees won’t.

root causes, history, historian
The root causes of problematic giving

So much philanthropic giving is concerned with identifying and tackling “root causes.” And yet, few people know the history of this effort—or its resounding failure over time.

planned-giving inquiry, planned-gift inquiries
20 minute-fundraising fix: surprise planned-giving inquiry

Millions of Americans are updating their wills and estate plans. Here’s a 20-minute fix for you to update your response to planned-giving inquiries.

random samples, random sampling
Random samples—what to do when yours aren’t: data analysis, part three

Random sampling is hard to achieve in human studies. That doesn’t make it useless, but does affect its utility The third in a three-part series on how nonprofits can use data to aid their fundraising

data, data analysis
Data the backseat driver: data analysis, part two

Data is a backseat driver, and good leaders often have to act with too little data. The second in a three-part series on how nonprofits can use data to aid their fundraising

data analysis
Data as a philosophical field: data analysis, part one

Data is not self-interpreting. The first in a three-part series on how nonprofits can use data to aid their fundraising.

Charity, rich and poor: an interview with Benjamin Priday

Benjamin Priday, a doctoral candidate in economics at Texas A&M, researches charitable giving an economics. We reached out to learn more about his work.