Guides & Resources

Skystone Partners Prize for Research on Fundraising and Philanthropy - Submission Deadline is Nov. 15

Each year, the AFP Research Council awards the Skystone Partners Prize for Research to the author of a book that contributes substantially to the knowledge and understanding of fundraising or philanthropic behavior.

The Prize for Research is made possible by an endowment from Skystone Partners to encourage advanced research that extends the knowledge of fundraising and philanthropy.

SkystoneSkystone Partners is a national full-service fundraising consulting firm. Skystone Partners equips, supports, and empowers nonprofit leaders by elevating their skills and designing comprehensive, elegant solutions that transform fundraising results.

An invitation
Authors of published works on research in fundraising and philanthropy are invited to submit a book or monograph for the Skystone Partners Prize for Research on Fundraising and Philanthropy. Other individuals or organizations can nominate appropriate publications.

To be considered for the Prize, works must be:

  • A book or monograph of 50 or more pages.
  • Published by a commercial publishing house or a professional organization during the 23 months preceding the current deadline (October 1 of each year).
  • Based on either applied or basic research.
  • Reflect a standard publisher selection process without regard to the source and sponsorship of the research.

The jury will not consider unpublished theses or dissertations, self-published works, directories, op-ed pieces, editorials, or articles.

Prize winners receive a cash award of $5,000 and are honored at the AFP International Conference on Fundraising. A complimentary conference registration and travel stipend are available for award winners. The travel stipend is up to $1,500 for individuals who reside in North America and up to $2,500 for award winners who reside outside North America.

Next Application Deadline: November 15, 2023

Download: Skystone Partners Research Prize Submission Form

Judging Criteria
The following criteria are used by the Research Prize Jury in evaluating the submissions.

1.      Research-related content: 0 to 3 points (30%)

  • Qualifies as research by one of the following:
    • Contributing new insights, concepts, or practices based on rigorous investigation
    • Providing a more accessible or deeper understanding of existing findings
    • Applying known concepts in a different or under-developed domain
  • Is not merely the author(s)' opinions or an unsupported statement of well-known lore
  • Makes appropriate use of existing literature in the field

2.      Potential for significant impact on practice: 0 to 3 points (30%)

  • Is topically relevant and has widespread applicability for members of the Association of Fundraising Professionals
  • Adds value to the current body of knowledge by providing useful and practical information
  • Is engaging and thought provoking, either through original discovery or by synthesizing the work and experience of others

3.      Presentation: 0 to 3 points (30%)

  • Is written in an enjoyable, readable, and technically correct style
  • Clearly states and realizes its objectives
  • Follows a logical structure with logical arguments and content
  • Clearly and accurately references sources where appropriate

 4.      Bonus: 0 to 1 point (10%)

  • A discretionary bonus for reviewers related to overall quality or if the book makes a specialized contribution that is important, but does not fit into the previous categories.

Previous Research Prize Winners

Aaron Conley and Genevieve Shaker, Fundraising Principles for Faculty and Academic Leaders
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Beth Breeze, Ph.D., In Defence of Philanthropy
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Tyrone McKinley Freeman, Ph.D., Madam C.J. Walker’s Gospel of Giving: Black Women’s Philanthropy During Jim Crow
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2019-2020 (Dual Awardees)
Cassandra Chapman, Barbara Masser and Winnifred Louis, The Champion Effect in Peer-to-Peer Giving: Successful Campaigns Highlight Fundraisers More than Causes, Nonprofit and Voluntary Sector Quarterly, Oct. 2019.

Sara Konrath, Indiana University and Femida Handy, The Development and Validation of the Motives to Donate Scale, Nonprofit and Voluntary Sector Quarterly, April 2018.

Michael Moody and Sharna Goldseker, Generation Impact: How Next Gen Donors Are Revolutionizing Giving

Beth Breeze, The New Fundraisers: Who Organises Charitable Giving in Contemporary Society?

Dr. Lilya Wagner, Ed.D., CFRE, Diversity and Philanthropy: Expanding the Circle of Giving

Marilyn Taylor, Robert Strom, and David Renz, Handbook of Research on Entrepreneurs’ Engagement in Philanthropy: Perspectives

Penelope Cagney, CFRE and Bernard Ross, Global Fundraising: How the World is Changing the Rules of Philanthropy

Noah Drezner, Expanding the Donor Base in Higher Education: Engaging Non-Traditional Donors

Brian Sagrestano and Robert Wahlers, The Philanthropic Planning Companion

Robert M. Penna, The Nonprofit Outcomes Toolbox: A Complete Guide to Program Effectiveness, Performance Measurement and Results

Michael Rosen, Donor-Centered Planned Gift Marketing

Rachel M. McCleary, Ph.D., Global Compassion: Private Voluntary Organizations and US Foreign Policy Since 1939

Paul Brest and Hal Harvey, Money Well Spent: A Strategic Plan for Smart Philanthropy

Leslie R. Crutchfield & Heather McLeod Grant, Forces for Good: The Six Practices of High-Impact Nonprofits

Emily Barman, CONTESTING COMMUNITIES: The Transformation of Workplace Charity 

Marybeth Gasman & Katherine V. Sedgwick, Uplifting a People: African American Philanthropy and Education

Richard P. Chait, William P. Ryan and Barbara E. Taylor, Governance as Leadership: Reframing the Work of Nonrofit Boards

Lawrence J. Friedman and Mark D. McGarvie, Charity, Philanthropy, and Civility in American History

Diana S. Newman, CFRE, Opening Doors: Pathways to Diverse Donors

Lilya Wagner, Careers in Fundraising

Marilyn Fischer, Ethical Decision Making in Fund Raising

Katelyn Quynn and Ron Jordan, Planned Giving: Management, Marketing and Law

Honorable Mention:
Brian O'Connell, Civil Society

Robert Fry, Jr., Nonprofit Investment Policies: Practical Steps for Growing Charitable Funds

Honorable Mention:
David C. Hammack, Making the Nonprofit Sector in the United States

Kathleen Kelly, Effective Fund-Raising Management

Honorable Mention:
Dean R. Hoge, Money Matters: Personal Giving in American Churches

Dwight Burlingame and Dennis Young, Corporate Philanthropy at the Crossroads

Honorable Mention:
Virginia Hodgkinson and Murray S. Weitzman, Nonprofit Almanac: Dimensions of the Independent Sector

Albert Anderson, Ethics for Fundraisers

Douglas White, The Art of Planned Giving: Understanding Donors and the Culture of Giving

Honorable Mention:
Mary J. Oates, The Catholic Philanthropic Tradition in America

Dennis R. Young and Richard Steinberg, Economics for Nonprofit Managers

Mike Martin, Virtuous Giving: Philanthropy, Voluntary Service and Caring

Honorable Mention:
Robert H. Bremner, Giving: Charity and Philanthropy in History

Wesley K. Willmer, Winning Strategies in Challenging Times for Advancing Small Colleges

Lucy Rose Fischer/Kay Banister Schaffer, Older Volunteers: A Guide to Research and Practice

Joseph Mixer, Principles of Professional Fund Raising

Honorable Mention:
Kirsten Gronbjerg, Understanding Nonprofit Funding: Managing Revenues in Social Services and Community Development Organizations

Roger Lohmann, The Commons: New Perspectives on Nonprofit Organizations and Voluntary Action

Honorable Mention:
Peter Dobkin Hall, Inventing the Nonprofit Sector

Kathleen McCarthy, Women's Culture: American Philanthropy and Art, 1830-1930

Diana Tittle, Rebuilding Cleveland

Henry Rosso, Achieving Excellence in Fund Raising

Honorable Mention:
Eleanor Brilliant, The United Way: Dilemmas of Organized Charity

Fisher Howe, The Board Member's Guide to Fund Raising

James P. Shannon, The Corporate Contributions Handbook

Corporate Philanthropy Report, The Directory of Japanese Giving

Bruce Hopkins, The Law of Fund Raising

Honorable Mention:
R. Mark Dillon, Advancing Advancement: A Study of Fund-Raising Effectiveness Among Protestant Seminaries in the US

Ellen Condliffe Lagemann, The Politics of Knowledge

Nancy R. London, Japanese Corporate Philanthropy

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