In her book, The New Fundraisers: Who Organises Charitable Giving in Contemporary Society? , Dr. Bess provides a global overview of the purpose and history of fundraising, with in-depth data from an extensive study of UK fundraisers. The book is an empirically-based and theoretically-informed account of the makeup and role of fundraisers, how fundraising works in practice and what kinds of skills and training make for effective fundraising professionals.
"Writing this book was a labor of love because I feel strongly that fundraising is a crucial yet overlooked, and often misunderstood, profession," said Breeze. "I hope that the book helps to challenge the illogical position whereby charities are widely admired, but the people who bring in the funding that enables charitable activity to take place, are not."
Commenting on Dr. Breeze's award-winning book, the prize jury commented that, "this excellent volume was selected because of its value as a research study that centers itself outside of the United States. Dr. Breeze's book argues that fundraising is about much more than simply 'raising funds' by asking donors, as the process must also include the complex work of cultivation by the practitioner. Prior to now, most researchers have focused on individual donors, their characteristics and their motivations. Dr. Breeze flips the script and, through empirical research, helps us understand the fundraiser. We commend Dr. Breeze for strong research and an accessible book that can forward our field."
Each year, the AFP Research Council awards the Skystone Partners Prize for Research to the author or authors of a book that contributes substantially to the knowledge and understanding of fundraising or philanthropic behavior. The award is made possible by an endowment established by Skystone Partners, an international fundraising consulting firm, through the AFP Foundation for Philanthropy to encourage advancement in research that extends the knowledge of fundraising and philanthropy.
"I am absolutely thrilled to be awarded the AFP Skystone Partners Research prize," said Breeze. "The books written by previous winners are amongst the most treasured items on my bookshelf, so I am truly honored to be in such company."
"Beth's book is a valuable new resource to our field," said Elizabeth Knuppel, President and CEO of Skystone Partners. "Her research emphasizes the strengths required for an exemplary fundraising professional, and will serve to assist nonprofit leaders around the globe in understanding our noble profession, as well as identifying, developing and supporting the fundraising role in their organizations."
Breeze is a senior lecturer on social policy and director of the Centre for Philanthropy at the University of Kent in the UK. She worked as a fundraiser and charity manager before co-founding the Centre for Philanthropy at the University of Kent, where she now leads a team conducting research and teaching courses on philanthropy and fundraising. She has written the annual Coutts Million Pound Donor Report, co-authored Richer Lives: Why Rich People Give, The Logic of Charity: Great Expectations in Hard Times, and co-edited The Philanthropy Reader.
AFP presented the Skystone Partners Prize for Research at its board meeting before the 55th AFP International Fundraising Conference in New Orleans, April 14, 2018.
"I am absolutely thrilled to be awarded the AFP Skystone Partners Research prize, The books written by previous winners are amongst the most treasured items on my bookshelf, so I am truly honored to be in such company."-Dr. Beth Breeze