Over the last three years, the Global Philanthropy Forum focused on the things driving us apart: the pervasive loss of trust, the rise of illiberal democracies, the pressures of globalization. In 2020 we will turn our attention to a critical global problem that challenges us all but that can only be solved by coming together – climate change.

Now, more than ever, philanthropists, change-makers, and social investors can step up and share resources to solve the biggest problem of our time. The urgency is upon us and the failure to act will have existential consequences to life as we know it.

Climate change impacts everything our community cares about. As global temperatures continue to rise and extreme weather events become more frequent, agricultural yields will decline and food security will be threatened. There will be direct implications on health as changes in the environment will alter individual well-being and be a driver of disease migration. As resources become scarcer, conflicts will increase and areas of peace that were once secure may be put into question.

The world’s most vulnerable populations will be the most affected and with women making up 70% of those living below the poverty line, they will be hit first and hardest. The World Bank estimates that 143 million people in the world’s poorest areas will be displaced by 2050 due to water scarcity, crop failure and rising sea levels. Infrastructure, employment opportunities and social services will need to be put in place so that human rights for climate refugees are ensured.

However, there is reason to be hopeful. We are excited and encouraged by the emerging leaders of the next generation who refuse to wait for change.

  • They demand action and are at the forefront of the solutions to these problems. Boyan Slat invented a device that uses natural oceanic forces to collect ocean plastic at a much higher rate, putting us on the path for a plastic-free ocean by 2050.
  • They call for greater accountability and transparency while creating inclusive opportunities to join their movements. Isra Hirsi, co-founder of the US Climate Strike, stresses the importance of intersectionality in the movement for climate justice.
  • They inspire and unite. Greta Thunberg, who was once the lone participant of the Fridays for Future youth climate strike, galvanized more than 1.6 million young people around the world to join her in taking to the streets in a call to protect our planet.

Together we will take their lead - not just to explore these critical challenges but strive for solutions and seek spaces for collective impact. With less than 2% of philanthropic funding going to combat climate change, funders are presented with the challenge to collaborate more and in smarter ways to meet ambitious targets and rally support from all sectors.

Philanthropy is uniquely positioned to bring multi-sector actors together to build coalitions and catalyze impactful change. It can advocate, transcend political differences and build alliances for equitable energy and climate policy decision-making. It can support sustainable solutions to reduce the impact of climate change and increase resiliency. It can invest in building a green economy and reducing carbon emissions.

At the 2020 GPF conference we will seek ways to harness the power of philanthropy to beta test big ideas and innovations in policy, society, science, technology, financing and humanitarian aid to find solutions that address the challenge of climate change and help us build a better tomorrow.



About the Global Philanthropy Forum

Since its founding in 2001, the Global Philanthropy Forum (GPF) has grown into a diverse community of purpose-driven philanthropists, grantmakers and social investors from all over the globe. Each spring, we have an opportunity to come together – alternating between Silicon Valley and Washington, DC – to celebrate our collective successes, learn from our failures and discuss solutions to our most pressing challenges.

At GPF, the person sitting next to you is as informed, engaged and committed as the person on stage. GPF members come prepared both to teach and learn. There will be plenty of time to assess strategies, share lessons learned explore creative partnerships that will advance your social goals.

Event Information

Conference Eligibility 

Conference invitations are not transferable. This gathering is intended for individuals who have made a significant commitment to philanthropy, donors who have established family foundations and executives of corporate, private or public foundations based in the US and overseas. For these individuals, conference includes membership to the Global Philanthropy Forum.

Conference attendees are established and emerging philanthropists and investors who seek to advance individual opportunity globally and to improve the quality of life through strategic giving and investing. The conference has been designed to create a safe environment where attendees may learn from one another and share best practices.

If you would like to nominate someone to attend based on the eligibility guidelines above, please fill out this application or contact Claire McMahon [email protected], +1.415.293.4633

Register Online

All conference attendees must register online and we encourage you to register early.

Conference Pricing

$2,200 Early Bird Registration - available through 5/1/20 only
$2,450 Conference Registration

Cancellation and Wait List Policy 

Conference fees are fully refundable through 6/30/20 and 50% refundable between 7/1–8/14/20. Conference fees are not refundable after 8/14/20. Conference space is limited. If we are unable to accommodate you at the time of registration, your name will be added to our wait list and we will contact you if space becomes available.

Hotel Accommodations

The 2020 GPF Conference will be held at The Claremont Hotel in Berkeley, CA. To reserve your room, please call The Claremont at +1.510.843.3000 and let them know you are attending GPF to receive our group rate. We recommend reserving a room for the nights of September 13, 14, and 15 since the forum begins early in the morning on the 14th and adjourns early in the afternoon on the 16th.

Visa Information

GPF participants and speakers are expected to secure their own visa to gain admission into the United States. Please consult the Consular section of the U.S. Embassy closest to you at your earliest convenience in order to avoid any last minute delays. Should you need a letter confirming your participation at the GPF Conference please contact Claire McMahon at [email protected] or +1.415.293.4633