Global Philanthropists Circle

Inspiring, enabling and connecting philanthropists and social investors to create a better world.


The Global Philanthropists Circle (GPC) is a home for individuals and families from around the world to re-imagine how to address our society’s most pressing needs.

The Global Philanthropists Circle was founded in 2001 by Synergos Founder Peggy Dulany and her late father David Rockefeller Senior as a global network for leading philanthropic individuals and families to collaborate with and learn from their peers.

GPC members share Synergos’ commitment to create a more just, equitable, peaceful and regenerative world, as outlined in our Community Agreement. Leading with inner work, we nurture a deep trust among our members and cultivate a brave space to share challenges and shift perspectives as the role of philanthropy continues to transform.


Our Offerings & Advantage


The Global Philanthropists Circle is a community of over 400 philanthropists and social investors from more than 30 countries. Members exchange ideas to better understand poverty-related issues, share the successes and challenges of their philanthropic experience, and inspire one another as leading global changemakers. The GPC is a safe space where members seek and give input on difficult choices and complex questions. Many members say that meaningful connections are the most valued aspect of their participation in the network.

Three generation of the Rockefeller family at 2009 GPC Members Meeting

Circle membership is open to all members of the family. Inter-generational giving, the transfer of values, and family dynamics are regular topics of discussion and learning. Next Generation gatherings provide an opportunity for emerging philanthropists to share experiences on topics of interest to them and discuss their unique role in their family’s philanthropy and social investment.

Spiritual Civilization Affinity Group meeting in 2017

Programs include overseas learning journeys, workshops, site visits, week-long reflective retreats and informal gatherings designed to help members maximize peer learning. Members convene every year for Annual Meetings in Europe and United States.  Most of our in-person events have been postponed due to the covid-19 crisis, and we are holding virtual convenings instead.


Circle members have access to the tools and knowledge of Synergos’ unique, holistic approach to fostering collaborations, building trust, and implementing change processes that contribute to the scale and sustainability of social impact. The Synergos approach uses four elements to increase individual and collective effectiveness to address complex problems: personal reflection, systems thinking, bridging leadership, and collaboration.


The GPC encourages philanthropists to bring their whole selves to their philanthropy: their skills, connections, influence and willingness to listen. Retreats and reflective sessions provide ways for philanthropists to find their passion, understand their purpose and bring their heart, as well as their head, to their philanthropic work.


A dedicated Synergos staff person provides each GPC member with tailored support and counsel to help them meet their philanthropic and social investment objectives, as well as to improve their capacity as changemakers. Through Synergos Consulting Services, members can also receive more intensive support on a fee-for-service basis.

Outdoor bridging leadership exercise in Brazil

Bridging Leadership for Social Investment is a program for emerging philanthropists and social investors. To tackle complex and systematic social inequalities, participants learn how to embrace systems change, bridge gaps, and collaborate with multi-sector stakeholders including government, private sector and civil society.

Catalyzing collective action is at the core of what we do, and we curate dedicated spaces for the GPC network to come together and co-create new initiatives. Collaborative Communities convene members around certain topics to facilitate ongoing learning, connections, and action.  Current Collaborative Communities include climate philanthropy, impact investing, spiritual civilization, sustainable food systems and refugees and migration. Members can also engage with our Collective Action Lab model to quickly co-create prototype solutions with fellow GPC members. Labs are then invited to share their work and call to action with the GPC and wider Synergos network, creating opportunities for scaling and expansion.

  • Global Community & Peer Learning

  • Family Focus

  • Experiences & Programs

  • Inner Work & Self-Reflection

  • Partnership

  • Synergos Approach

  • Bridging Leadership Program

  • Collaborative Communities & Collective Action Labs


News & Insights

Report: 2018 with the Global Philanthropists Circle

Video: Inner Work: Becoming our most effective selves


GPC members retreat at Pocantico Hills


Membership in the Circle is by invitation only. A member of the GPC team will discuss the terms and benefits in more detail, so that Synergos and your family can determine whether participation in the Circle is appropriate for you.

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