Foundation Grants to Arts and Culture, 2015

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Beginning with this snapshot of arts funding, Foundation Center’s annual analyses of arts and culture grantmaking will adopt a broader approach to capturing information about arts funding. While previous analyses focused only on those grants identified as having a primary purpose of arts, the new strategy looks at both the primary and secondary purposes of a grant. For example, a grant awarded to a youth organization to develop leadership skills in adolescents through a local community theater program may be tagged with both an arts and youth development code. In previous years if this grant had been coded as having a primary focus of youth development, it would not have been included as an arts grant. Now, with the new strategy this grant would be included in the arts analysis. Because the distinction between the primary and secondary purposes of a grant is in many cases arbitrary, this strategy will ensure that all arts-related grants will be included in our analyses going forward. Also please note that for consistency, any comparisons between 2014 and 2015 giving use this new approach.

In 2015, giving by the approximately 86,000 active US foundations rose 5 percent to $62.8 billion. Among 1,000 of the largest US independent, corporate, community, and grantmaking operations included in Foundation Center’s 2015 FC 1000 data set, however, arts and culture funding remained stagnant; it also did not keep pace with the rise in overall foundation giving in the sample (up 3 percent). Actual grant dollars for arts-related activities in 2015 were higher compared to the previous year; however, arts and culture continued to rank sixth among foundations’ funding priorities. The share of overall support targeting arts and culture has been ranked sixth among foundation priorities since 2011, using the new approach to capture information about arts funding.

Highlights

Foundation Center offers these key findings from GIA’s sixteenth snapshot of foundation giving to arts and culture. The definition of arts and culture used for this snapshot is based on Foundation Center’s Philanthropy Classification System and encompasses funding for the performing arts, museums, visual arts, multidisciplinary arts, humanities, historical activities, arts services, folk arts, public arts, and cultural awareness. The findings in this snapshot are based on analysis of two closely related data sets. The analysis of the distribution of 2015 arts and culture giving uses the latest FC 1000 dataset,1 while the analysis of changes in foundation giving for the arts between 2014 and 2015 use a matched set of foundations that are consistent between the FC 1000 for each of those two years.2

FIGURE 1. Percent of grant dollars by major field of giving, 2015.

Arts funding as a share of total dollars remained the same in 2015. Among the 1,000 largest foundations included in Foundation Center’s grants sample for 2015, arts giving totaled $2.6 billion, or 9 percent of overall grant dollars. Compared to the previous year, share of dollars and share of number of grants remained basically unchanged.

Foundation funding for arts and culture was stagnant in 2015. Among a matched set of leading funders, arts funding as a share of overall giving did not change between 2014 and 2015, lagging behind a 3 percent increase in overall giving by these foundations.

The size of the median arts grant was up. The median arts and culture grant size — $30,000 — increased from $25,000. However this was still below the $33,600 median amount for all foundation grants in the latest year.

Large grants account for more than half of arts grant dollars. Large arts grants of $500,000 and more captured 58 percent of total grant dollars for the arts in 2015, down from 61 percent in 2014.

Relative to most other fields, a larger share of arts grant dollars provided operating support. In 2015, general operating support accounted for 20 percent of arts and culture grant dollars. The share is lower than the 23 percent for general operating support reported for arts grants dollars in 2014; however, the share is higher than the 16 percent share awarded to general support for overall giving.

The share of funding by top arts funders remains steady. The top twenty-five arts funders by giving amount provided 37 percent of total foundation arts dollars in 2015, consistent with 2014. The share of arts giving accounted for by the top funders has remained consistent for the past decade.

Please note: It is important to keep in mind that the foundation grantmaking examined here represents only one source of arts financing. It does not examine arts support from earned income, governments, individual donors, or the business community. This analysis also looks only at foundation arts support for nonprofit organizations, and not for individual artists, commercial arts enterprises, or informal and unincorporated activities.

FIGURE 2. Change in giving by major field of giving, 2014 to 2015.

Specific Findings

Overall foundation dollars for the arts. The foundations included in Foundation Center’s 2015 FC 1000 data set awarded 19,638 arts and culture grants totaling just over $2.5 billion, or 9 percent of overall grant dollars (figure 1). This share was consistent with 2014. Similarly, the share of number of arts grants remained nearly unchanged at 12.4 percent. Among a matched subset of 892 funders, grant dollars for the arts did not change between 2014 and 2015, compared to a 3 percent increase in grant dollars overall. Among the other top-ranked subject areas by grant dollars, only education and human services reported an increase (figure 2).

The impact of exceptionally large grants. Every year and in all funding areas, a few very large grants can skew overall totals, creating distortions in long-term grantmaking trends. In 2015, sixteen arts and culture grants provided at least $10 million, and instances where these grants had a notable impact on grantmaking patterns are identified throughout this analysis. Yet despite the potential fluctuations caused by these exceptional grants, Foundation Center data in all fields have always included them, providing consistency over time. (In addition, Foundation Center provides statistics based on share of number of grants, which are not skewed by exceptionally large grants.)

FIGURE 3. Arts grant dollars by foundation type, 2015.

Corporate foundations represent an important source of support for arts and culture. Corporate foundations account for 8 percent of US private and community foundations, and the larger corporate foundations included in the 2015 grants sample provided 6 percent of grant dollars for the arts (figure 3). Actual grant dollars totaled $160.4 million. By number, corporate foundations allocated 2,704 grants, or 14 percent, of the overall number of arts grants in 2015. Please note that these figures do not include direct corporate giving; the amount that corporations contribute to the arts is undoubtedly higher.

FIGURE 4. Arts and culture, giving to subfields, 2015.

Grants by Arts Subfield

Funding for performing arts accounted for one-third of all foundation art dollars in 2015 (figure 4), surpassing the share reported for museums (29 percent). From the start of the 1980s until 1997, the performing arts have consistently received more foundation support than museums. However, museums surpassed the performing arts by share in the late 1990s to early 2000s and several times in recent years (2010, 2013, and 2014). More study would be needed to adequately understand the underlying reasons for the shifts in share between these two fields of activity. These reasons could include, for example, the entry onto the scene of new and large arts funders, extraordinarily large grants, the contribution of valuable art collections, and new capital projects at museums.

Giving to performing arts. In 2015, among a matched set of funders, performing arts grant dollars increased 8 percent compared to 2014, while the number of grants rose 7 percent. A total of 8,315 grants were awarded for the performing arts by foundations in the set — close to double the number reported for museums. In general, the average performing arts grant tends to be smaller in size than the average museum grant (around $100,000 versus $170,000). The largest share of giving to the performing arts supported theaters and performing arts centers. One of the largest performing arts grant in the latest sample was a $10 million award from the Minneapolis Foundation to Yale University to renovate its School of Music’s Hendrie Hall/Adams Center. Included within the performing arts is support for performing arts education, which totaled $99.2 million in 2015. (See “Giving to multidisciplinary arts” below for a figure on foundation grant dollars supporting other types of arts education.)

Giving to museums. In 2015, museums benefited from 4,183 grants totaling nearly $740 million awarded by the 1,000 largest foundations included in the FC 1000 data set. Nearly half of funding supported art museums. Among a matched set of funders, grant dollars allocated to museums dropped 31 percent between 2014 and 2015, while the number of grants was down 32 percent. This was in large part due to a significant number of grants, some of them exceptionally large, awarded in 2014 for the “Grand Bargain,” which would enable the Detroit Institute of Arts to hold its collections for the public in perpetuity.

Giving to the humanities. In 2015, the humanities benefited from 848 grants totaling $172.2 million awarded by the 1,000 largest foundations included in the FC 1000 data set.3 Funding for this area accounted for 7 percent of arts grant dollars in 2015, down slightly from the 8 percent share captured in 2014. Among a matched set of funders, grant dollars awarded for the humanities declined 4 percent, while the number of grants awarded was down 14 percent.

Giving to multidisciplinary arts. The share of arts giving for multidisciplinary arts rose to 9 percent in 2015 from 8 percent in 2014.4 Grant dollars awarded for multidisciplinary arts also increased 6 percent between 2014 and 2015 among the matched set of funders. Among the various subcategories of multidisciplinary arts, arts education (excluding performing arts education) totaled $110.2 million in the latest year.

Giving to the visual arts. Among a matched set of funders, grant dollars for the visual arts and architecture decreased 34 percent between 2014 and 2015, while the number of grants for the field declined 29 percent. The visual arts and architecture benefited from $137.3 million in 2015, including a $1.8 million grant from the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation to the Cleveland Museum of Art to support residences for conservators of Chinese painting and to endow the position of a Chinese painting conservator.

Giving to historic preservation. Support for historic preservation increased 2 percent between 2014 and 2015 among a matched set of funders, while the number of grants awarded held steady.5 Overall, historic preservation benefited from 1,459 grants totaling $154.2 million in 2015.

TABLE 1: Distribution of grants by support strategy, 2015*

Support strategy Dollar amount % No. of grants %
Capacity-building and technical assistance 85,888,314 3.4 552 2.8
Capital and infrastructure 329,624,291 13.0 989 5.0
Building acquisitions 1,207,500 6
Building and renovations 88,613,880 3.5 243 1.2
Capital campaigns 57,472,027 2.3 159 0.8
Collections acquisitions 1,375,650 0.1 8
Collections management and preservation 21,959,395 0.9 39 0.2
Equipment 6,122,131 0.2 57 0.3
Facilities maintenance 2,070,744 0.1 5
Information technology 2,777,020 0.1 28 0.1
Land acquisitions 6,275,000 0.2 4
Rent 40,000 1
Other capital and infrastructure 159,402,005 6.3 461 2.3
Financial sustainability 248,851,348 9.8 727 3.7
Annual campaigns 3,584,732 0.1 38 0.2
Debt reduction 10,400,700 0.4 5
Earned income
Emergency funds 284,394 4
Endowments 120,545,267 4.7 75 0.4
Financial services 146,000 2
Fundraising 50,016,702 2.0 427 2.2
Sponsorships 681,469 15 0.1
Other financial sustainability 66,574,084 2.6 168 0.9
General support 509,882,288 20.1 4,896 24.9
Individual development and student aid 85,899,212 3.4 464 2.4
Leadership and professional development 28,890,820 1.1 144 0.7
Network-building and collaboration 48,324,847 1.9 255 1.3
Policy, advocacy, and systems reform 23,918,035 0.9 201 1.0
Advocacy 7,414,201 0.3 103 0.5
Coalition building 1,051,000 4
Equal access 788,265 20 0.1
Ethics and accountability 1,576,718 0.1 5
Grassroots organizing 2,842,581 0.1 12 0.1
Litigation 200,000 1
Public policy and systems reform 4,969,167 0.2 13 0.1
Other policy, advocacy, and systems reform 8,734,133 0.3 65 0.3
Publishing and productions 122,822,868 4.8 950 4.8
Product and service development 2,720,000 0.1 12 0.1
Program development 534,187,277 21.0 4,424 22.5
Public engagement and marketing 38,039,494 1.5 305 1.6
Research and evaluation 66,556,188 2.6 170 0.9
Other specified strategies 56,318,504 2.2 533 2.7
Not specified 776,374,267 30.6 7,195 36.6
Total 2,537,835,770 100.0 19,638 100.0

Source: Foundation Center, 2017. Based on all grants of $10,000 or more awarded by 1,000 of the largest foundations representing approximately half of total giving by all US foundations.

* Grants may occasionally be for multiple support stategies, e.g., for new works and for endowment, and would thereby be counted twice.

Grants by Support Strategy

An important caveat to report with regard to the allocation of foundation dollars by specific support strategy is that for roughly 31 percent of arts grant dollars in the 2015 Foundation Center sample, the support strategy could not be identified. This means that modest differences in percentages may not be reliable. (The grant records available to Foundation Center often lack the information necessary to identify the support strategy. For example, it is often the case that the only source of data on grants is the 990-PF tax return, and this tends to be less complete than other forms of grant reporting.)

The arts compared to other foundation fields of giving. The three largest categories of support tracked by Foundation Center are program support, general operating support, and capital support.

Program support accounted for the largest share of arts grant dollars in 2015 (22 percent of all arts funding). Special programs and projects typically receive one of the largest shares of arts and culture grant dollars and grants. In fact, the same is true in most of the major fields, such as health and education, where program support consistently accounts for one of the largest shares of funding.

General operating support received the second largest share of arts grants dollars. The shares of grant dollars and number of grants allocated for this support strategy in 2015 were higher for arts and culture (20 percent and 25 percent, respectively) than the overall share directed to operating support by FC 1000 foundations, which accounted for roughly 16 percent of grant dollars and 20 percent of the number of grants.

Capital support accounted for the third largest share of arts grant dollars. Similar to general support, the share of grant dollars allocated for this type of support was also higher for arts and culture (13 percent) than for grants overall (6 percent). Grants for capital support are larger on average than awards for program and general operating support, and exceptionally large capital grants can have a pronounced effect on the distribution of funding by support strategy.

Arts grants by specific types of support. Table 1 provides a breakdown of more specific support strategies within the larger support categories and lists both the specific dollar value and number of grants made in each type. As for all data in the “snapshot,” it is important to keep in mind that this table includes only grants of $10,000 or more awarded to organizations by a sample of the top 1,000 foundations by total giving. It is also important to note that approximately 31 percent of the arts grant dollars in this sample did not have a specified support strategy.

TABLE 2: Arts grants by grant size, 2015*

Grant range No. of grants % Dollar amount %
$5 million and over 54 0.3 $462,893,609 18.2
$1 million – under $5 million 397 2.0 670,260,376 26.4
$500,000 – under $1 million 533 2.7 339,879,333 13.4
$100,000 – under $500,000 3,483 17.7 627,870,955 24.7
$50,000 – under $100,000 3,178 16.2 196,032,752 7.7
$25,000 – under $50,000 4,465 22.7 136,703,847 5.4
$10,000 – under $25,000 7,528 38.3 104,194,898 4.1
Total 19,638 100.0 $2,537,835,770 100.0

Source: Foundation Center, 2017. Based on all grants of $10,000 or more awarded by 1,000 of the largest foundations representing approximately half of total giving by all US foundations.

Grants by Grant Size

Median grant size. The median or “typical” grant amount for arts and culture in 2015 was $30,000, which was below the median amount for all foundation grants ($33,600).6 The median amount for arts and culture had remained consistent at $25,000 since the early 1990s, and this is the first year we have seen an increase in the median grant amount in recent years. More study would be required to determine whether this year’s increase is an iso-lated occurrence or whether there is an upswing in the size of arts grants.

Small and midsized grants. Roughly two-thirds (61 percent) of all arts grants in the 2015 sample were for amounts between $10,000 and $49,999 (table 2), nearly unchanged from the 2014 share. The share of midsized arts grants ($50,000 to $499,999) also remained fairly consistent, accounting for about one-third of arts grants.

Large grants. The share of large arts grants ($500,000 and over) increased slightly from 4 percent of the total number of arts grants in 2014 to 5 percent in 2015. Their share of total grant dollars remained consistent at 58 percent. Overall, foundations in the sample made 125 arts grants of at least $2.5 million in 2015, up from 120 grants in 2014.

In addition to a $10 million award from the Minneapolis Foundation to Yale University for performing arts, noted earlier, examples of other especially large grants in 2015 include Robert W. Woodruff Foundation’s $21 million award to the Robert W. Woodruff Arts Center for capital improvements and their endowment; Shelby Cullom Davis Charitable Fund’s $15 million grant to the California-based Sonoma Academy to support a new theater and/or its Grange building program; and a $10 million grant to the Smithsonian National Museum of African American History and Culture from The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation to establish endowments supporting the museum’s directorship and curatorial research centers.

The twenty-five largest arts funders. The top twenty-five arts funders by giving amount provided 37 percent of the total arts dollars in Foundation Center’s 2015 sample (table 3), consistent with 2014. Overall, the share of giving accounted for by the top twenty-five arts funders has fluctuated between 33 and 39 percent since the end of the 1990s.

TABLE 3. Twenty-five largest arts, culture, and media funders, 2015

Rank Foundation State Number of arts grants Arts grant dollars Total grant dollars Arts as percent of total dollars Arts capital support dollars* Arts other support dollars*
1. Andrew W. Mellon Foundation NY 289 $199,600,354 $297,916,513 67.0 $22,299,500 $192,304,854
2. Lilly Endowment IN 47 91,076,036 604,359,799 15.1 23,524,040 90,069,496
3. Ford Foundation NY 269 83,202,267 593,314,285 14.0 3,100,000 46,024,133
4. Samuel & Jean Frankel Foundation MI 3 51,316,705 125,255,802 41.0 100,000
5. Windgate Charitable Foundation AR 194 42,578,026 85,303,141 49.9 12,349,584 28,255,448
6. Robert W. Woodruff Foundation GA 5 37,905,237 145,788,758 26.0 37,905,237 20,855,237
7. Minneapolis Foundation MN 55 36,266,573 74,711,707 48.5 65,074 34,948,588
8. John S. and James L. Knight Foundation FL 107 33,137,600 152,174,618 21.8 7,525,000 12,972,000
9. Moody Foundation TX 11 27,102,859 63,102,131 43.0 1,697,628 18,834,638
10. Freedom Forum DC 2 26,169,933 26,169,933 100.0 26,169,933
11. Shubert Foundation NY 464 25,955,000 27,650,000 93.9 21,850,000
12. Brown Foundation TX 179 25,286,932 61,348,640 41.2 2,233,100 14,617,082
13. Shelby Cullom Davis Charitable Fund DE 8 23,733,333 108,570,049 21.9 17,000,000 550,000
14. Doris Duke Charitable Foundation NY 92 22,847,239 70,943,848 32.2 10,000– 19,411,771
15. Hess Foundation NJ 53 21,820,165 75,808,665 28.8 16,469,225
16. Annenberg Foundation CA 98 21,715,978 48,559,507 44.7 221,947 6,559,023
17. Walton Family Foundation AR 59 20,945,147 351,865,505 6.0 16,918,395
18. Silicon Valley Community Foundation CA 293 20,709,467 823,303,453 2.5 1,205,875 3,822,538
19. San Francisco Foundation CA 157 18,092,382 117,943,946 15.3 215,000 6,884,938
20. William and Flora Hewlett Foundation CA 94 17,934,800 408,622,930 4.4 1,700,000 16,389,800
21. Ahmanson Foundation CA 59 17,652,520 52,048,020 33.9 45,000
22. Wallace Foundation NY 40 17,394,708 53,129,784 32.7 2,596,500
23. John Templeton Foundation PA 51 16,943,959 167,644,375 10.1 8,555,380
24. Community Foundation for Greater Atlanta GA 232 16,943,924 125,277,885 13.5 10,000 1,127,682
25. Oregon Community Foundation OR 167 16,884,536 81,059,123 20.8 957,908
  Total   3,028 $933,215,680 $4,741,872,417 19.7 $131,061,985 $607,289,569

Source: Foundation Center, 2017. Based on all grants of $10,000 or more awarded by 1,000 of the largest foundations representing approximately half of total giving by all US foundations.

* Grants may provide capital support and other types of support. In these cases, grants would be counted in both totals. Figures include only grants that could be coded as providing specific types of support.

Top foundations by share of arts giving out of overall giving. Of the foundations that committed large percentages of their grant dollars to arts and culture, many are the smaller foundations in the sample (table 4). Among the top one hundred foundations ranked by share of arts giving out of total giving, about half (fifty-two) gave less than $5 million in total arts grant dollars in 2015.

TABLE 4. Top 35 foundations by share of arts giving out of overall giving, 2015

Rank Foundation State Fdn Type* Number of arts grants Arts grant dollars Total grant dollars Arts as percent of total dollars Arts capital support dollars** Arts other support dollars**
1. Freedom Forum DC OP 2 $26,169,933 $26,169,933 100.0 $26,169,933
2. David H. Koch Charitable Foundation KS IN 1 10,000,000 10,000,000 100.0 $10,000,000
3. Ann and Gordon Getty Foundation CA IN 211 8,424,000 8,424,000 100.0 8,370,000
4. SHS Foundation NY IN 45 5,809,098 5,809,098 100.0 1,675,798
5. Johnson Art and Education Foundation NJ IN 2 3,975,607 3,975,607 100.0 2,075,607 3,975,607
6. Dunard Fund USA, Ltd. IL CS 6 7,164,600 7,174,600 99.9 7,164,600
7. Lloyd Rigler Lawrence E. Deutsch Foundation CA IN 16 9,175,500 9,219,760 98.5 4,245,000
8. Jerome Foundation MN IN 74 2,929,647 2,986,147 98.1 2,929,647
9. Colburn Foundation CA IN 43 5,970,000 6,175,000 96.7 10,000 210,000
10. Muriel McBrien Kauffman Foundation MO IN 82 9,428,895 9,913,895 95.1 950,000 5,427,500
11. Howard Gilman Foundation NY IN 118 12,165,000 12,930,000 94.1 445,000
12. Shubert Foundation NY IN 464 25,955,000 27,650,000 93.9 21,850,000
13. Andy Warhol Foundation for Visual Arts NY IN 132 10,150,221 11,174,721 90.8 75,000 8,353,696
14. Packard Humanities Institute CA OP 10 7,778,181 8,678,181 89.6 4,600,000 2,480,500
15. Burnett Foundation TX IN 14 9,758,800 12,352,976 79.0 9,758,800
16. Sue and Edgar Wachenheim Foundation NY IN 17 10,036,500 12,726,500 78.9 10,036,500
17. Kovner Foundation FL IN 11 15,008,425 20,329,891 73.8 315,000
18. Herb Alpert Foundation CA IN 39 4,379,047 6,028,662 72.6 1,127,800
19. Wortham Foundation TX IN 36 7,062,493 9,832,493 71.8 3,439,160
20. James F. & Marion L. Miller Foundation OR IN 75 11,144,011 15,933,404 69.9 55,000 6,263,011
21. J. Paul Getty Trust CA OP 50 5,016,033 7,230,023 69.4 3,946,533
22. Andrew W. Mellon Foundation NY IN 289 199,600,354 297,916,513 67.0 22,299,500 192,304,854
23. Elizabeth Morse Genius Charitable Trust IL IN 11 961,667 1,501,667 64.0 150,000
24. Harold & Arlene Schnitzer CARE Foundation OR IN 24 1,759,150 2,823,283 62.3 280,000
25. Alex and Marie Manoogian Foundation MI IN 2 800,000 1,375,200 58.2 800,000
26. Gilder Foundation NY IN 34 4,881,000 8,516,000 57.3
27. Joseph & Sylvia Slifka Foundation NY IN 17 4,350,000 7,772,950 56.0 4,350,000
28. Fan Fox and Leslie R. Samuels Foundation NY IN 119 4,289,000 7,652,429 56.0 1,224,000
29. Avenir Foundation CO IN 11 10,820,000 19,370,000 55.9 6,600,000 4,220,000
30. Robert H. Smith Family Foundation VA IN 19 4,291,795 7,822,130 54.9
31. Willard and Pat Walker Charitable Foundation AR IN 9 1,845,000 3,385,000 54.5 260,000 1,585,000
32. Geraldine R. Dodge Foundation NJ IN 137 5,706,800 10,669,300 53.5 30,000 5,706,800
33. Chartwell Charitable Foundation CA IN 23 3,010,000 5,985,000 50.3 1,400,000
34. Windgate Charitable Foundation AR IN 194 42,578,026 85,303,141 49.9 12,349,584 28,255,448
35. Florence Gould Foundation NY IN 37 3,765,033 7,558,710 49.8 3,089,825

Source: Foundation Center, 2017. Based on all grants of $10,000 or more awarded by 1,000 of the largest foundations representing approximately half of total giving by all US foundations.

* IN = Independent; OP = Operating; CS = Corporate

** Grants may provide capital support and other types of support. In these cases, grants would be counted in both totals. Figures include only grants that could be coded as providing specific types of support.

Giving for International Cultural Exchange

Grant dollars supporting international cultural exchange increased 37 percent between 2014 and 2015 among a matched subset of funders. In 2015, foundations awarded 100 grants related to international cultural exchange totaling $13.8 million. Among the largest awards was a $750,000 general operating support grant from Foundation to Promote Open Society to Arab Fund for Art and Culture (AFAC) in Beirut, Lebanon. AFAC funds individuals and organizations in cinema, performing arts, literature, music, and visual arts across the Arab world and globally.


NOTES

  1. Foundation Center’s 2015 FC 1000 set includes all of the grants of $10,000 or more reported by 1,000 of the largest US independent, corporate, community, and grantmaking operating foundations by total giving. For community foundations, the set includes only discretionary grants and donor-advised grants (when provided by the funder). The set excludes grants to individuals. This set accounts for approximately half of giving by all of the roughly 86,000 active US grantmaking foundations. Grant amounts may represent the full authorized amount of the grant or the amount paid in that year, depending on the information made available by each foundation.
  2. Between 2014 and 2015 the composition of the FC1000 changed, which could distort year-to-year fluctuations in grant dollars targeting specific issue areas. To account for these potential distortions year to year, Foundation Center has analyzed changes in giving based on a subset of 892 funders for which we had 2014 and 2015 data.
  3. Included within the humanities is funding for art history, history and archaeology, classical and foreign languages, linguistics, literature, philosophy, and theology.
  4. Included in multidisciplinary arts is funding for multidisciplinary centers, arts councils, artists’ services, arts administration, arts exchange, and arts education.
  5. Included in historic preservation is funding for projects to acquire, protect, and maintain for the enjoyment and edification of current and future generations buildings, structures, objects, sites, or entire districts that have historical, architectural, archaeological, or cultural significance.
  6. The median — meaning that half of the grants are above and half are below the amount — is generally acknowledged to be a more representative measure of the typical grant than the mean, or “average,” because the median is not influenced by extreme high or low amounts.