The Donor Decision Lab

Raising income and engagement through decision science.

This masterclass will introduce you to the latest practice in decision science, combining behavioural economics, neuroscience, and evolutionary psychology. This science-based approach engages supporters and prospects more fully in your campaigns, delivering higher results. The masterclass will share a practical framework and a five stage model to take back to and share in your organisation.

Learn how very simple changes to fundraising messages online, in direct mail, in face-to-face solicitations, and even on static collection boxes can make massive improvements in the numbers of people giving and in the value of their gifts – results that challenge much conventional best-practice thinking. Through the session, you’ll learn to integrate behavioural economics into digital behaviour as well as how to appreciate and avoid your own biases.

You will explore results from real fundraising and campaigning projects carried out in the UK, Denmark, Egypt, the USA, and South Africa, including from a zoo that grew income from giving from £20,000 to £1.3M in 18 months – from people who don’t like zoos – and from a foodbank that raised £1.4M at one twenty-person HNWI dinner by getting CEOs to put together food parcels.

Learning outcomes

  • Understand the difference between System 1 and System 2 decisions
  • Learn to create a decision architecture for any programme
  • Find out how to improve supporter communications and commitment


Bernard Ross
Director, =mc consulting