Frequently Asked Questions about the CASE Global Reporting Standards
The CASE Global Reporting Standards are a common set of standards, guidelines, and definitions for reporting the results of educational philanthropy activities at schools, colleges, and universities across the globe.
Previously referred to as the CASE Reporting Standards and Management Guidelines, the new book (available in print and for the first time, through a digital subscription) represents worldwide standards for institutional fundraising, with new definitions for educational philanthropy and important guidance around gift counting, funds received, new funds committed, and donor control and influence.
The CASE Global Reporting Standards are an example of CASE and its members’ leadership in shaping internal institutional policies for counting, reporting, and recognizing philanthropic contributions.
All professions have standards; advancement is no different – and CASE is the leader for advancement standards (fundraising, and increasingly alumni relations and marketing and communications), and has been promulgating Standards since 1982.
Philanthropic support is a critical revenue stream which requires educational leaders to understand standards exist and enable effective leadership in this area and to mitigate risk. Educational philanthropy and advancement are increasingly a global endeavor and the need for educational institutions to have the ability to benchmark with their most appropriate peer institutions has never been more important. Standardizing key metrics for educational institutions anywhere in the world means all institutions can now benchmark against each other using the suite of CASE AMAtlas tools. In addition, regional supplements for Australia and New Zealand, Canada, Mexico, Singapore, United Kingdom, and the United States provide opportunities for regional comparisons to complement the global perspective.
Donors want to know that their contributions to institutions are being stewarded ethically and transparently. Institution leaders want to ensure their advancement efforts follow the principles and standards set across the profession, and in service of institutional mission. The increasing complexity of gift agreements warrants closer monitoring of those instruments so that they remain consistent and viable in alignment with the goals of the institutions they support.
This is at the heart of CASE’s mission: to be a catalyst for advancing education worldwide by inspiring, challenging, and equipping communities of professionals to act effectively and with integrity to champion the success of their institutions.
Creating and adhering to a set of methods, standards, and guidelines for reporting fundraising activities allows schools, colleges and universities to represent the work of all institutions in honest and clear ways. Having a set of guidelines means that CASE can use them as the underpinning of its ongoing work to guide the profession, ensure integrity and consistency in educational advancement work, and to support CASE’s own work in data collection and reporting. Consistency and transparency in reporting makes global benchmarking possible.
For the first time, The CASE Global Reporting Standards will include chapters from Asia-Pacific, Latin America, and Europe which are applicable to CASE’s global membership and address the needs of institutions and members in key markets around the globe.
Also, for the first time, the CASE Statement on Ethics and the CASE Principles of Practice will appear within the pages of the standards book. The CASE Principles of Practice were all recently updated by the CASE Commissions for Philanthropy, Communications and Marketing, and Alumni Relations and provide global guidelines for those professions.
Within the standards themselves, guidance on donor control and donor influence, new metrics for funds received and new funds committed, and further clarification on sponsored research grants are among the more significant changes made within the new global edition.
Finally, the CASE Global Reporting Standards will appear in print and digital form for the first time in its history. Because this and future editions will be digital, it means CASE and the advancement disciplines will be able to respond to changes in the profession in a more timely and rolling basis.
The CASE Global Reporting Standards are being slowly incorporated into CASE Insights surveys. Starting with the CASE Insights Voluntary Support of Education survey for FY22 results in 2022, you will see new optional questions reflecting the CASE Global Reporting Standards. Optional questions will also be incorporated into other CASE Insights surveys as those surveys launch in 2022 and 2023.
In some cases, implementing the new standards will require the drafting of new survey questions. In others, it will mean the modification of an existing question. One of the great opportunities (and challenges) to standardization is the ability to make meaningful comparisons across CASE’s global suite of benchmarking surveys. In achieving this goal, CASE and the CASE Insights team will take care not to disrupt or dilute the analytical value that comes from longitudinal data, working closely with our members and volunteers to determine how best to introduce the new standards with minimal disruption to long-term trend reporting. In some cases, this may mean capturing additional data to supplement current standards for a period of time. While the exact methods will be determined during the implementation process, the goal is to ensure our data meet current and future needs.
Standards are a living entity, a reflection of the times and a recurring commitment to operating in ways that are transparent, replicable, and commonly understood. Although the act of reviewing, studying and updating the CASE Global Reporting Standards will be undertaken in structured intervals, the true work of integrating them into the way advancement professionals measure and report on their institution’s initiatives will be an ongoing journey--- that CASE will be there to support every step of the way.
For the most current guidance, check out the documentation for the individual survey you are participating in.
At the direction of the CASE Board of Trustees and in fulfillment of CASE’s strategic plan, a working group consisting of senior advancement professionals has been meeting since July 2018 to review and update the Reporting Standards and Management Guidelines.
The working group is representative of all institutions in the CASE membership and endeavored to represent the interests of the entire profession in their work and deliberations. The group was co-chaired by Matthew Eynon, Vice President for College Advancement, Franklin & Marshall College and Brian Hastings, President and CEO, University of Nebraska Foundation.
The group members followed best practices to develop a set of standards and guidelines which help to ensure consistent and transparent reporting of institutional fundraising and alumni engagement by revisiting longstanding areas in advancement and exploring those new areas that have emerged in recent years.
In addition to the working group, practitioners from Australia, New Zealand, Canada, Mexico Singapore, the U.K. and the U.S. were each charged with developing supplements to the book that addressed regionally specific nuances that diverged from the global standards and/or required more clarity.
Orders for both the digital subscription and the print edition of the CASE Global Reporting Standards are available now. Ordering for the Spanish-language edition will be available in April 2023.
Currently a committee of volunteers is working with the CASE Insights team to review the CASE Global Reporting Standards and make recommendations for clarifications or additions.