Handbook of Universities and Regional Development
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Handbook of Universities and Regional Development

Edited by Attila Varga and Katalin Erdős

The Handbook on Universities and Regional Development offers a comprehensive and up-to-date insight into how academic institutions spur their surroundings. The volume sheds light on universities as regional development actors from a historical perspective by introducing institutional changes and discussing the interrelatedness of society, business and academia. It provides detailed investigations on various knowledge transfer mechanisms to help understand the diverse ways through which ideas and intellectual property can flow between universities and businesses. Detailed case studies from three continents (Europe, Asia, and America) demonstrate the highly contextual nature of the interactions between academia, industry and government.
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Chapter 7: Philanthropic support of higher education: major gifts from high net worth individuals

Emily I. Nwakpuda and Maryann P. Feldman


In search of additional sources of revenue, universities and colleges have cultivated individual donors to provide support to academic projects and initiatives. Major gifts (of at least $100,000) from private donors are typically lost in an aggregation of all types of philanthropy, rather than being considered as their own separate category. This chapter provides evidence of the contributions of high net worth individuals to university programs, with a focus on donors’ support of scientific research. We have documented 4794 announced major gifts to 835 degree-granting institutions, from 4,381 donors between 1995 and 2004. Major gifts to create scientific research centers are highlighted, because these gifts are rare, understudied, and link individual donors to the economic and regional development associated with these research centers. These considerations are relevant to modern institutions seeking to leverage high net worth donors, as major sources of scientific research and development funding are currently under threat.

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