Croatia

European Research Network on Philanthropy

Individual members

Gojko Bezovan
University of Zagreb
Faculty of Law – Chair of Social Policy
phone: +385 14 895 811
email: gojko.bezovan@ pravo.hr

Sources of philanthropy

In order to get a picture of the size and scope of the the philanthropy sector in a country, different sources of philanthropy are classified. In defining philanthropy, a definition is used that is being used in the longitudinal Giving in the Netherlands study, which defines philanthropy as ‘voluntary contributions by means of money, goods and/or time (expertise), given by individuals and private organisations (foundations, corporations and charity lotteries), and serving primarily the public good’. Note that in answering the question of who gives what to whom, ‘given to organisations’ is added, because the numbers focus on institutionalised philanthropy.

Giving by households (in vivo)

Three types of voluntary contributions are mentioned, namely money, goods and time. Although volunteering by individuals is an important part of the voluntary contribution of individuals, measuring and monetising voluntary work is still very much a work in progress. Moreover, the possibilities for monetising volunteering is questionable and still very much an academic debate. Therefore, volunteering by individuals will not be a part of the figures. Also data on in-kind giving is hard to find, and has been only be included if available.

Giving by individuals also does not include any taxes that are being redistributed to non-profits serving the public good, such as church taxes, tax redistribution schemes, or percentage philanthropy practices. Although these practices form an important source of revenue for many non-profits, the voluntary aspect of these practices is missing. 

Giving by bequest

Bequests, making donations to charitable organisations by means of a testament or will, are a specific income source in the income portfolio of non-profit organisations. Acclaimed as one of the drivers of ‘the new golden age of philanthropy’, the unprecedented expected intergenerational transfer of wealth provides major opportunities for non-profit organisations. As we can only rely on secondary sources, collecting data on bequests is more difficult than for in-vivo donations.

Giving by foundations 

Despite legal differences between European countries of what is considered to be a foundation, foundation giving is defined as monetary donations from a private non-profit organisation derived from an endowment. By only including donations derived from endowments, instead of adding the total expenditure by foundations, counting donations from individuals and/or other organisations twice is prevented.

Giving by corporations 

Although this overview excludes individual volunteering, some voluntary work is included nevertheless. For corporate giving we tried to include the total contribution by a company as calculated by the LBG model – one of the most commonly used methods by corporations (see www.lbg-online.net). This includes cash and in-kind donations in addition to the value of the work hours donated through employee volunteering schemes and any management costs incurred in implementing community investment initiatives. As a distinction between absolute giving (no returns from the recipient) and sponsoring (the recipient delivers a non-monetary return) cannot easily be made, sponsoring is also included.

Giving by charity lotteries

The final source of philanthropy comes from charity lotteries. Charity lotteries are not considered to be a conduit or form of individual giving, but specific organisations donating a considerable percentage of their revenue to charitable organisations. Also, charity lotteries are considered to be private players, independent from governments or politics. In many European countries, the revenue from (national) lotteries is redistributed to charitable organisations. However, in a number of cases they are a supplement to or replacement for government subsidies. As these lotteries are not independent organisations, for the purposes of this publication these lotteries are not included.

Philanthropic goals

For the aim of creating country profiles on giving, we have at least tried to include all the potential philanthropic goals. Next, we have provided broad categories that give a functional overview of significant philanthropic goals, instead of providing very detailed categories that might be considered independent categories in themselves in one country but do not exist in another, or might be considered too small.

For the aim of the country profiles the following categories have been used:

  1. Religion
  2. Health
  3. International aid
  4. Public and/or social benefit (national)
  5. Sports and recreation
  6. Culture
  7. The environment, nature and/or animals
  8. Education
  9. Other (not specified)

Data quality

In order to answer the questions of who gives what to which charitable goals, we must first ascertain how accurate the answers to these questions really are. In other words, we need to know whether the studies that have been carried out to collect data on giving by individuals, corporations, foundations and charity lotteries actually measure what they are supposed to. Regarding collecting data on giving, this is not always as easy as it might seem. Answers to questions on giving depend on the way those questions are asked, the number of prompts and the length of the survey. Different methodologies lead to different outcomes.

Therefore, in order to make a country profile on giving, all contributors were asked to describe the background to the data that were available in 2015 about giving in 2013[1]. They included the sources of the data collection (secondary sources or population surveys), the frequency of the data collection (if any) and the most recent year of the data collection. Regarding the target populations, the description of the data quality includes statements about representativeness, their response rates and validity. They further described the questionnaires they used, the instruments for data collection and their internal validity, but also the sources of the data (sponsors), their accessibility (public or private and the costs involved for retrieving the data), the locations, availability and studies carried out using the dataset. Finally, they gave a description about the background variables included in the dataset. With the aim of assessing the data quality, we used representativeness, validity, the availability of a classification in categories of philanthropic goals and whether the dataset includes some (relevant) background variables.

[1] The country profiles contain data that was available in 2015 on giving in a country in 2013. It might be that new data has become available more recently.

Introduction on Giving Research in Croatia

Gojko Bežovan[1]

The topic of philanthropy in Croatia is not adequately addressed as a research topic nor covered by empirical findings. There is a scarcity of research on philanthropy and statistical databases are very poor in this respect. It could be said that philanthropy is neither a research topic nor a policy issue in Croatia. It is only occasionally debated in public, usually in the context of specific activities concerning humanitarian aid or actions, often covered in the media, who highlight the negative image of humanitarian organisations. Providing humanitarian aid has often been accompanied by alleged misuses of donations, which has led to a negative perception of humanitarian organisations by the public. Therefore, in 2014 the Croatian Government initiated a proposal for a new act on humanitarian aid, with the main aim of increasing transparency in collecting and providing humanitarian aid. This proposal was based on the concepts, among others, of: defining clearer criteria for organisations to get permission to collect and distribute aid, and greater control over humanitarian actions and using donations (Ministry of Social Policy and Youth, 2014).

As regards the research on giving, as mentioned earlier, there is a lack of comprehensive and up-to-date research, as well as official statistical data.

The abovementioned proposal of the act on humanitarian aid in its introductory part serves as a source of information of a number of humanitarian actions undertaken, and on the value of donations over the last couple of years.

The data from official statistics are mostly not publicly available. The Croatian Central Bureau of Statistics (CROSTAT) collects data through the Household Budget Survey, which encompass several questionnaires. They include the following questions regarding donations:

  • Articles of food and beverages for personal consumption – gifts received and given
  • The value of received gifts in cash from persons outside households
  • Giving in cash to persons in the country and abroad
  • Voluntary contributions in cash to religious and humanitarian organisations

Data on individual and business tax deductions (tax incentives for donations) are collected by the tax administration of the Ministry of Finance, but are also not publicly available. According to the USAID 2012 CSO Sustainability Index, this benefit is rarely used in Croatia, both because the benefits are not widely known and because the process for claiming tax relief is very complicated. As a result, some citizens make donations to humanitarian campaigns without reporting them on their tax returns (USAID, 2013).

The BA thesis of Mirna Baši (Baši, 2014) gives an overview of humanitarian donations by telephone. Croatian Telecom (T-HT) guarantees the phone numbers for humanitarian actions can be called free of charge, based on proposals from organizers and on the decision of the committee[2]. The author shows an increase in humanitarian actions for which the phone number was approved from 2004, reaching a peak in 2010, followed by a decrease. However, the number of actions per year that can use this phone number is limited.

Earlier research (Bežovan, Zrinš?ak, 2007) indicated an increase in citizens’ donations to humanitarian causes, which was explained by the modern technological possibilities which make donations easier (e.g. via phone calls). According to the same research, 66.8 % of citizens gave donations in cash or in kind to humanitarian causes. Prior research by Bežovan (2005) showed that nearly 70 % of citizens donated money or other material goods.

More recent research, a follow-up of the CIVICUS CSI from 2011 (Bežovan, Matan?evi?, 2011), is somewhat reduced in data. It contains empirical findings on philanthropy in variables in the structure of the income of organisations, although the data on individual philanthropy, available in the previous SCI 2003-2005, are missing here.

Conclusion

Research on philanthropy in Croatia is still in its early stages of development, and there are very little available data, both in terms of research findings and statistical data. However, the available data sources do not make it possible to analyse the structure and amount of contributions by the various fields (uses of contributions). There are not even any reliable data on the total contributions from sources of contribution. Statistical data on private giving (partially collected by the National Bureau of Statistics) and on tax incentives for donations from individuals and businesses are not fully available. Deeper insight into the practice of giving in Croatia could be achieved by empirical field research with national coverage, and by different sources of philanthropy. An important step towards promoting philanthropy research in academia would be the institutionalization of this discipline at the university level (e.g. founding a Chair on Philanthropy).

Footnotes

 [1] Institute for Social Policy, University of Zagreb

[2] http://www.t.ht.hr/odgovornost/humanitarni-telefon/index.asp

Source

Bezovan, G. (2017) Research on Giving in Croatia. In: Hoolwerf, L.K. & Schuyt, Th.N.M. (eds)  Giving in Europe. The state of research on giving in 20 European countries. Amsterdam: Lenthe Publishers.

The country chapter can be downloaded here. The full study on Giving in Europe can be ordered at www.europeangiving.eu

Giving by households in Croatia

There is no available recent research on individual philanthropy in Croatia. The Civicus Civil Society Index (CSI) from 2005 provided an insight into the practice of individual giving in Croatia. Accordingly, 66.8 % of citizens gave donations in cash or in kind, with an average of 1.2 % of a person’s annual income (Bežovan, Zrinš?ak, 2007; Bežovan, Matancevic, 2010). This research stressed the problem of the socio-cultural environment, i.e. low levels of trust, which is not conducive to developing a philanthropic culture.

The Household Budget Survey (questionnaire), implemented by the National Bureau of Statistics, contains the following information:

  • Articles of food and beverages for personal consumption – gifts received and given
  • The value of received gifts in cash from persons outside households
  • Giving in cash to persons in the country and abroad
  • Voluntary contributions in cash to religious and humanitarian organisations

However, this information from the survey is calculated according to the total consumption of households, and there are no micro data on gifts and voluntary contributions.

Source

Bezovan, G. (2017) Research on Giving in Croatia. In: Hoolwerf, L.K. & Schuyt, Th.N.M. (eds)  Giving in Europe. The state of research on giving in 20 European countries. Amsterdam: Lenthe Publishers.

The country chapter can be downloaded here. The full study on Giving in Europe can be ordered at www.europeangiving.eu

 

 

Giving by bequest in Croatia

At the moment there are no available public data or research on giving by bequest.

Source

Bezovan, G. (2017) Research on Giving in Croatia. In: Hoolwerf, L.K. & Schuyt, Th.N.M. (eds)  Giving in Europe. The state of research on giving in 20 European countries. Amsterdam: Lenthe Publishers.

The country chapter can be downloaded here. The full study on Giving in Europe can be ordered at www.europeangiving.eu

Giving by corporations in Croatia

Corporate philanthropy is still a rather new and under-researched phenomenon in Croatian academic research.

Some more recent data from the Civicus Civil Society Index in Croatia from 2011 (Bežovan, Matancevic, 2011) contain findings on the approximate structure of income of CSOs, including income from indigenous corporate funding. Accordingly, 38.5 % of organisations receive donations from the corporate sector, which constitute on average 8 % of an organisation’s total income. In the previous CSI 2003-2005 research (Bežovan, Zrinš?ak, 2007), it was indicated that some better developed corporate players had started to develop the practice of corporate social responsibility, which was seen as an important contribution to the development of civil society, and to positive social change. Data from 2006 show that only five business organisations had registered their foundations, and that several business organisations regularly donated funds to other foundations (Bežovan, Zrinšcak, 2007; Bežovan, Matancevic, 2011).

The Croatian tax system provides incentives for donations, whereby businesses can donate up to 2 % of their income to the public good, which is tax-deductible. Some research insights suggest that only a few businesses use tax incentives for donations (Bežovan, Matancevic, 2010).

The web portal DOP[3] (DOP = Društveno odgovorno poslovanje; English = Corporate Social Responsibility) promotes corporate social responsibility in Croatia. One of the main goals of the project was setting up the National Network for CSR in 2010. This network assembles on a voluntary basis associations and other organisations from the public, private and civil society sectors, with the aims of increasing the number of business players implementing CSR, improving policy for CSR, raising public awareness and promoting CSR good practice. The ‘Indeks DOP’ (engl. CSR Index) database can be found on the DOP webpage.

Footnote

[3] http://www.dop.hr/?page_id=30

Source

Bezovan, G. (2017) Research on Giving in Croatia. In: Hoolwerf, L.K. & Schuyt, Th.N.M. (eds)  Giving in Europe. The state of research on giving in 20 European countries. Amsterdam: Lenthe Publishers.

The country chapter can be downloaded here. The full study on Giving in Europe can be ordered at www.europeangiving.eu

 

Giving by Foundations in Croatia

In Croatia, there are currently 216 registered foundations. A list of registered foundations (including information on their addresses, registration numbers, and tax numbers, as well as a short description of their aims and scopes) is publicly available in the ‘Book of Foundations’ on the Ministry of Public Administration webpage.

There is no recent research on foundations in Croatia. A study by Bežovan (2008), an action-oriented, empirical piece of research on the role, development and achievements of foundations in Croatia, was an important contribution to a more in-depth understanding of the environment in which Croatian foundations operate, their roles, and their strengths and weaknesses.

The Internet page ‘Za.Dobrobit’ (engl. For.Wellbeing)[4] serves as a platform for philanthropic initiatives and actions, as an innovative way of financing and supporting projects and initiatives from civil society organisations. At the same time, the aim of this webpage is to promote a culture of giving and advocating the common good. This platform can be joined by individual activists, associations and foundations. At the moment, there are 29 foundations registered on the Za.Dobrobit platform.

The National Foundation for Civil Society Development, the leading foundation for financing the programmes and projects of CSOs, publishes annual reports on their income and donations[5].

In 2012 the ODRAZ association, with support from EU funds, implemented the research ‘Assessment of capacities of community foundations in Croatia’ (Odraz, 2012)[6]. The main aims of this research were to assess the capacities of community foundations to benefit from the EU funds; to analyse the programmatic framework of the EU for philanthropy, and to analyse the importance of community foundations for smaller CSOs in rural areas. The research was based on secondary data (document analysis) and on field research in the form of questionnaires, focus groups and stakeholders’ meetings.

Footnotes

[4] http://www.zadobrobit.hr/

[5] http://zaklada.civilnodrustvo.hr/frontpage

[6] http://www.tacso.org/doc/hr20130204_cassessment.pdf

Source

Bezovan, G. (2017) Research on Giving in Croatia. In: Hoolwerf, L.K. & Schuyt, Th.N.M. (eds)  Giving in Europe. The state of research on giving in 20 European countries. Amsterdam: Lenthe Publishers.

The country chapter can be downloaded here. The full study on Giving in Europe can be ordered at www.europeangiving.eu

Giving by charity lotteries in Croatia

Giving by lotteries is regulated by the Act on Organising Games of Chance and Prize and by the Annual Government Regulation on Criteria for Establishing Beneficiaries and the Manner of Distribution of a Part of the Income from Games of Chance. It is administrated through different ministries, governmental offices and through the National Foundation for Civil Society Development (public foundation), with respect to a defined proportion for particular public needs.

The data on the structure and amount of those funds are publicly available in the annual reports of the respective administrative bodies (ministries, national foundations etc.). There is no complementary secondary research on this issue.

Source

Bezovan, G. (2017) Research on Giving in Croatia. In: Hoolwerf, L.K. & Schuyt, Th.N.M. (eds)  Giving in Europe. The state of research on giving in 20 European countries. Amsterdam: Lenthe Publishers.

The country chapter can be downloaded here. The full study on Giving in Europe can be ordered at www.europeangiving.eu

References and further reading

Baši?, M. (2014). Experience of donating through phone calls in Croatia (BA thesis) (in Croatian). Zagreb: Faculty of Law, University of Zagreb.

Bežovan, G. (2005). Civil Society (in Croatian). Zagreb: Nakladni zavod Globus.

Bežovan, G. & Zrinš?ak, S. (2007) Civil Society in Croatia (in Croatian). Zagreb: Hrvatsko sociološko društvo.

Bežovan, G. & Matancevic, J. (2010). The state of giving research in Europe. Croatia.

Bežovan, G. & Matan?evi?, J. (2011). Civil Society Index in Croatia ‘Building identity: future challenges for CSOs as professionals in the societal arena’. CIVICUS and CERANEO – Centre for Development of Nonprofit Organizations.

Croatian Parliament (2015) Proposal of the Act on humanitarian aid. Available from: http://www.sabor.hr/fgs.axd?id=43143

Ministry of Social Policy and Youth (2014) Act on Humanitarian aid – Theses. Available from: http://www.mspm.hr/djelokrug_aktivnosti/javna_rasprava/savjetovanje_s_javnoscu_i_zainteresiranom_javnoscu_povodom_izrade_nacrta_prijedloga_iskaza_o_procjeni_ucinaka_zakona_o_humanitarnoj_pomoci2

ODRAZ (2012) Procjena kapaciteta zaklada lokalnih zajednica u Hrvatskoj. Zagreb: ODRAZ

USAID (2013) 2012 CSO Sustainability Index for Central and Eastern Europe and Eurasia. USAID.

Webpage of the Croatian Bureau of Statistics. Available from: http://www.dzs.hr/default_e.htm