The Chronicle of Philanthropy has in-depth report on major giving in the current climate and highlights a noticeable increase in the number of anonymous large gifts.
A great article for all major donor fundraisers as it gives some good examples of why people give major gifts, their underlying motivations and how they can change over time.
Take this quote for example:
"He (Robert Sharpe Jnr, Fundraising Consultant) says he is aware of a woman who pledged $1-million in exchange for an arts center naming part of its facility in her honor. The woman recently called to reassure the group that the cash was still on the way, but she asked that her name be removed and that the gift be considered anonymous. Slapping her name on something by making a large gift would be “unseemly and gauche,” she explained, at a time when many people are suffering."
The increase in anonymous gifts is also put down to a desire to avoid further requests for support from other non-profits.