Impact of giving

Cambridge turns philanthropy into impact. Now more than ever, our work takes place on a global scale. We build computers in Cambridge, grow tomatoes in Mexico, nurture leaders in Africa, empower education in India, and help protect cultures, languages and species across the planet.

Impact of giving

Philanthropic impact stories

Find out how Cambridge is working to solve the challenges we face in today's world. None of the examples described here would be possible without Cambridge’s philanthropic supporters. Their philanthropy sets the brilliant minds working at Cambridge free to pursue new ideas and change the world.

 
 
 
 
 
Philomathia Africa Programme gift agreement signing in Trinity Hall on 4 February 2018. Image by Stephen Bond Photography
A programme launched jointly by the University, Trinity Hall and the Philomathia Foundation will create new research and teaching collaborations with African universities, scholars and students in the social sciences to help seek solutions to some of the world’s most intractable challenges.
Professor Paul Lane (image courtesy of the REAL Project, Uppsala University)
Professor Paul Lane has been appointed as the inaugural Jennifer Ward Oppenheimer Professor of the Deep History and Archaeology of Africa at the University.
Students at a graduation ceremony
The campaign for the University and Colleges has reached the £1 billion mark, enabling Cambridge to respond to the new and complex challenges facing the world.
A member of the Nanomaterials and Spectroscopy group in the Department of Engineering
A gift of £90,000 from The Parasol Foundation Trust to the Cambridge Commonwealth European and International Trust at the University of Cambridge will create two scholarships for outstanding graduate students to undertake studies in science, technology, engineering or mathematics subjects over the next three years.
Heong Gallery at Downing College with, inset, donors' names inscribed on the Gallery's wall
The 31 Colleges of Cambridge leave a lasting impression on all who pass through them. Philanthropy offers a chance to leave a lasting impression on the Colleges.

Testimonials

Discover why philanthropy matters and how it makes Cambridge better still. Hear from our donors about their philanthropic motivations and from those who have been supported by such gifts during their time at the University.

 
 
 
 
 
The Dawsons in front of the Senate House
When Peter and Christina Dawson endowed the Jean Thomas PhD Award at St Catharine’s College they made a permanent and profound contribution to the lives of countless young scholars.
Rebekah Scheuerle
Rebekah Scheuerle is a second-year Gates-Cambridge Scholar at St John’s College. She is undertaking a PhD in the BioScience Engineering Group in the Department of Chemical Engineering and Biotechnology.
Rhys Jones, Wolfson Scholar and PhD in History student
Rhys Jones is studying a PhD in History as a Wolfson Scholar.
Gifford Combs is shown at his admittance to the Guild of Benefactors
Ask Gifford Combs, MPhil (Queens’ 1983), what type of projects he likes to support philanthropically and he will use an interesting word: “orphans”.
Charlotte Owens is pictured with College friends
Charlotte Owens (Selwyn 2014) is an undergraduate Philosophy student. She is from Brighouse in West Yorkshire and is the first student from her sixth-form college to go to Cambridge University. She was encouraged to apply after participating in the HE+ programme in 2013.

Gift announcements

Cambridge owes its world-leading excellence in research and teaching to the generosity of its supporters. Our history is synonymous with a history of far-sighted benefaction, and the same is as true today as it has ever been.

 
 
 
 
 
The Bennett Institute for Public Policy will address emerging global patterns of inequality and social unrest by offering a unique combination of deep research, high-level training and effective policy engagement. 
A leading multidisciplinary think tank, the PHG Foundation, will become part of the University of Cambridge from 1 April this year, with a focus on making science work for health. This has been made possible by a philanthropic gift from the Hong Kong-based Hatton Trust, which has recognised the University’s global eminence in science, medicine and the humanities alongside the pioneering policy development work of the Foundation.
The gift marks a defining moment in the mission of the University to improve sports facilities and recognise the many wide-ranging benefits sport gives to all who take part.
The University of Cambridge has received an £85 million gift from the estate of Ray Dolby, founder of Dolby Laboratories and its world-renowned Dolby Noise Reduction, Dolby Surround, and successor audio signal processing technologies, which have revolutionised the audio quality of music, motion pictures, and television worldwide. 
Thanks to a $10 million endowment from Arcadia, the charitable fund of Lisbet Rausing and Peter Baldwin, a world-leading initiative in Cambridge is now developing unique new approaches to some of the biggest challenges facing the planet today