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February 02, 2015

Boston College Center on Wealth and Giving to Wind Down

Boston College's Center on Wealth and Philanthropy, which has provided in-depth data and analysis on the charitable behavior of the very rich for 45 years, will close by the end of the year, The Boston Globe reports. The move is triggered by the impending retirement of longtime center director Paul Schervish and associate director John Havens, who plan to depart once they complete their current research.

The center has been led for three decades by Mr. Schervish, a former Jesuit priest whose background in literature and sociology created a unique academic blend with Mr. Havens's training in science and economics. Under their stewardship, the center researched the psychological and spiritual motivations for giving and questioned assumptions that tax issues played a dominant role in philanthropic decisions.

"The center emerged and became a national force because of Paul Schervish’s leadership and his commitment to the study of philanthropy, and there are different approaches to what happens when a center with that kind of strong director decides to move on," Boston College Provost David Quigley said. "In this case, it makes sense that as Paul retires, the center will slowly sunset its work."