Arts Philanthropy


When marketing helps individual and societal well-being, Special issue of the Journal of Philanthropy and Marketing; Deadline 31 Jun 2022

POSTING TYPE: Calls: Journals

Author: Rita Kottasz

Call for Papers – Special Issue

Journal of Philanthropy and Marketing

Arts Philanthropy: When marketing helps individual and societal well-being

Guest Editors of the Special Issue:

  • Michela Addis, Università degli Studi di Roma Tre
  • Andrea Rurale, Bocconi University

Abstracts due: 31st June 2022

Manuscripts due: 31st August 2022

Finding innovative models to raise arts philanthropy is a top priority for any society and thus us. Innovative ways to stimulate arts philanthropy might be beneficial for the arts organizations and – due to their crucial role for the societal well-being – as a consequence for the entire society. Such a lesson emerges from the recent Covid-19 crisis that these actors face worldwide.

Arts organizations globally have been subject to the ongoing disruptive impact of the global pandemic. The Johns Hopkins Center for Civil Society Studies (2021) estimated that American arts organizations lost $17.97 billion due to national lockdowns, further compounded by significant global employment loss, with an estimated 2.3 million roles in creative occupations lost between April and July 2020 (Florida and Seman, 2020). A safe resumption of activities in the cultural and creative sectors is also a priority across the EU, with the Commission publishing EU guidelines in June 2021. The support of arts organizations is mandatory for every policymaker and an invitation both for corporate and individual donors, especially in a scenario where the recovery is neither easy nor quick (Johns Hopkins Center for Civil Society Studies 2021; Rurale et al. 2020). Thus, successfully stimulating and managing arts philanthropy is one of the critical challenges for arts organizations (Turrini and Voss 2020).

To deal successfully with such a challenge, arts organizations must urgently revise how they deal with arts philanthropy. The latter is indeed part of a global revision, which might regard their offers, processes, or business model (Addis and Rurale 2020). As arts organizations have to reimagine their present to build their future, several aspects need to be addressed concerning arts philanthropy.

The first key issue is the specific features of philanthropy differentiating the latter from fundraising and other forms of giving. Fundraising has always been an essential source of sustenance in the cultural industries. While sponsorship funds are provided explicitly in return for expected benefits, philanthropy is the act of giving with no expectations: donors – whether they are individual or corporate – are oriented to making good to society. Marketing has been consistently more focused on understanding the drivers of fundraising rather than philanthropy. For instance, 101 papers published in the Journal of Philanthropy and Marketing between 2001-2021 present “fundraising” in their abstract, while only 32 papers in the same period present “philanthropy”. However, more recently, such a distinction between fundraising and philanthropy emerged as somehow artificial, especially in the artistic and cultural industries. Indeed, a philanthropic orientation emerges in the decision path of even the most commercially-oriented corporates giving to arts organizations (Daellenbach 2012). At the same time, philanthropic campaigns successfully stimulate individuals based on personal gains (Robert 2013). Further, payroll giving is a tool based on tax incentives (Romney‐Alexander 2002), as tax deducibility acts as individual motivation. Indeed, donors are increasingly attracted by making their behaviours highly visible through communication and promotion, thus making “high impact” philanthropy (McGee 2006). Along with fundraising, other forms of giving have emerged in the managerial practices and scientific literature, such as causerelated marketing, non-profit sponsorship, volunteer-time contributions given by company employees, and research dollars provided to nonprofits. They all constitute giving traditionally regarded as being based on exchange, differently from pure philanthropic giving (Burlingame 2001). Indeed, arts philanthropy differentiates from other kinds of giving because of the expected absence of exchange; it is just a simple donation act. Nonetheless, there is space to argue such an assumption (Frumkin 2006; Moir and Taffler 2004). Redbourne and Watkins (2015) have recently stated that a donors-centred approach based on philanthropy should replace the more traditional organizationcentred approach based on fundraising, focusing on the individual perspective. At least three questions arise from the definition of philanthropy: (1) Does the absence of expected benefit apply to arts philanthropy also when investigating the givers’ goals in a broader strategic perspective and the long term? (2) How does the goal of philanthropic behaviours combine with marketing, which typically leverages value creation and exchange? (3) Whether arts philanthropy is not a gift but an achievable goal, what are the competencies and professional skills that emerge as relevant in organizations (see the “fundraising culture” proposed by Herrero and Kraemer 2020)? Those questions are still open.

The aspect presented above relates to another critical element, which refers to the effects of arts organizations and their relationships. “The winner takes all” principle significantly affects any arts organization. Indeed, arts organizations play in several markets, which are interrelated through clear and indirect network externalities (Rochet and Tirole 2003, 2006). Furthermore, arts organizations generate both economic value and create the identity of a population and a territory – i.e. the identity value. They generate new creativity that is beneficial for any other industry and sector – i.e. the creative value – and contribute to individual and collective well-being – i.e. the wellbeing value – (Addis and Rurale 2020). Consequently, the revenue models of arts organizations might not be the only ones relevant for their performances. Arts organizations deal with much more complex missions and governance than any other profit organization (Burlingame 2009).

Happiness and well-being have long attracted the interest of economists and scholars worldwide as the main goals of every activity. Well-being is defined as the “good mental states, including all of the various evaluations, positive and negative, that people make of their lives and the affective reactions of people to their experiences” (OECD 2013: 10), and it encompasses three main aspects, namely Satisfaction with Life, Affect, and Eudaimonia (Dolan and White 2007; Stiglitz, Sen, and Fitoussi 2009; OECD 2013). These concepts are essential in the post-Covid scenario because they are often claimed to legitimate the invitation of supporting arts and culture. Thus, the relevance of arts organizations for well-being is a new element deserving further consideration. Arts organizations generate a much broader range of benefits for the society in which they are embedded and their beneficial effects for all society. However, how these measures can assess the performance of arts organizations represents a topic that still needs much work of investigation.

Once the measurement issue of success has been developed, the strategies and policies to achieve that success needs further investigation. For instance, one of the most exciting toolkits to find and stimulate donors are embedded in the online world. Social media and social networking significantly contribute to creating the future of arts philanthropy (Miller 2006), as the case of Facebook shows (Lucas 2017). Whether arts organizations are ready to get the online advantage is a topic deserving attention.

A fourth aspect of the phenomenon of arts philanthropy refers to the ethical decision-making process. The complex mission of any arts organization aimed at developing excellent innovative projects while developing audiences and maintaining the customer relationships portfolio raises a moral dimension of their output. Indeed, the potential to fulfil some stakeholders’ needs might come at the expense of other stakeholders, communities, and ecosystems, while arts organizations should benefit all stakeholders in the long run. Towards that end, the four ethical principles Beauchamp and Childress (2001) established in biomedics more than 40 years ago might support arts managers in dealing with complex situations like those being faced today. Therefore, arts organizations could inspire their decisions to the “Do no harm,” Do as much good as possible,” “Do respect people autonomy,” “Treat people with fairness” principles.

Finally, arts philanthropy is known to be intensely dependent on community relevance. This is the case, for instance, of young African American donors (Jackson 2001). The latter should act as a key driver of the intention (Burlingame and Smith 1999). Being the latter strongly related to engagement, the recent studies on customer engagement (Verhoef, Reinartz, and Krafft 2010) and brand engagement (Addis 2020) provide valuable insights in understanding both the drivers and the consequences of art philanthropy: if on the one hand, engagement should drive arts philanthropy, on the other hand, it could have a positive impact on the strength of the relationship as well on other consequences of engagement: people and companies who are active donors for arts organizations might play a relevant role as donors for other organizations and might show their engagement in other fields. Indeed, historically important American philanthropists were entrepreneurs who have made their fortunes (Acs and Phillips 2002). More recently, the sense of belonging to the university community has been found to play a key role in driving employee donation behaviours (Shaker, Kienker and Borden 2014). Understanding whether arts philanthropy is just one of a broad range of consequences of engagement might be critical insight for policymakers and organizations that strongly depend on these behaviours, especially in the post-Covid era. Such an issue is especially relevant for policymakers, for which their nations’ philanthropy is a priority (Madden 2006). However, previous studies clearly show a strong impact of cultural differences in philanthropy: for instance, participation in informal personal networks, a belief in the norm of reciprocity, and interpersonal trust, which drive philanthropic acts (Layton and Moreno 2014), might greatly vary among countries and cultures.

In line with the focus of the Journal of Philanthropy and Marketing, we welcome both conceptual and empirical papers. Manuscripts can adopt quantitative or qualitative methodologies or other alternative techniques used off and online. All disciplinary, theoretical and methodological perspectives are welcomed. We aim at stimulating research in four key areas:

  1. Shedding new perspectives on the goals of arts philanthropy, both at the individual and the societal levels and the challenges and opportunities for marketers and the arts organizations;
  2. Examining the trends of arts philanthropy after the pandemic;
  3. Investigating the constraints and the obstacles related to the success of arts philanthropy for the well-being of societies;
  4. Advancing our understanding of arts philanthropy and how decisions are made from several points of view: arts organizations, organizations and individuals who provide resources, policymakers, other stakeholders in the ecosystem.

Manuscripts addressing a broad range of research questions are welcome. Topics include, but are not limited to, the following:

  1. What is arts philanthropy, and how does it differ from fundraising? What are its key determinants?
  2. Do these factors and the dynamics vary across different cultures?
  3. What is – if any – the relationship between arts philanthropy and ethics?
  4. Does arts philanthropy differ from philanthropy in other fields? What are its specific features, if any?
  5. What does a cross-cultural perspective add to our understanding of arts philanthropy?
  6. What are the enabling conditions of arts philanthropy at the macro, meso, and micro levels?
  7. Who are the stakeholders involved in successful arts philanthropy? Do they generate an ecosystem? How does the global value chain affect arts philanthropy?
  8. What are the mistakes to avoid when dealing with arts philanthropy?
  9. What policies and marketing actions can arts organizations, companies and individual donors, policymakers, and other stakeholders apply to promote arts philanthropy approaches that target social well-being?
  10. Is a short-term view conflicting with a long-term view of arts philanthropy and its effects?
  11. How should the success of arts philanthropy be measured? How should the multi-sided market be taken into account?
  12. How arts philanthropy relates to customer and brand engagement?
  13. What is the relationship between arts philanthropy and community relevance? How can the latter be an asset for arts organizations?
  14. What is the relationship between arts philanthropy and entrepreneurship after Covid-19?
  15. How should arts organizations relate to their philanthropic givers? Should the latter be included in their decision processes?
  16. How do digital environments, social media, and UGC might support arts philanthropy?
  17. What are individuals’ emotions related to arts philanthropy? Can arts organizations leverage them?
  18. What is the donor-centred approach exactly? How does it drive managerial and marketing strategies and practices?

These themes are not exhaustive. Other relevant research questions are welcome.

Instructions for submission

Abstracts and Covering letters should be submitted by email, for consideration to:

Prof. Michela Addis –
Prof. Andrea Rurale –

Abstracts due: 31st June 2022

Structured abstract guidance

Please submit an abstract of around 400-500 words using the following structure.

  • Purpose – What ethical dilemma, challenge, or question will the paper will address?
  • Approach and methodology – how does the paper build a new theory (conceptual paper) and/or how did you design your study (research paper)?
  • Findings – What new theory does the paper present (conceptual) and/or the findings from the study (research paper)?
  • Originality – How does this paper contribute to ethical knowledge and ethical literacy in fundraising, including recommendations for applied professional ethics (if relevant/appropriate)?

Manuscript Submission

Submission materials should been prepared following the Author Guidelines.

Manuscripts should be submitted online at

Special Issue Authors should select ‘Special Issue Article’ and indicate the issue title when prompted

For further help with submissions, please contact:

Manuscripts due: 31st August 2022


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