This year has marked a new era in fundraising, Julius Wolff-Ingham, chairman of the 2005 Institute of Fundraising Convention and head of fundraising at the Salvation Army, said at the opening plenary of the convention.
Held at the London Hilton Metropole, which just days before had been used as a triage and first-aid centre for victims of the Edgware Road tube bombing, the convention urged fundraisers to "break convention".
Wolff-Ingham described how events such as the tsunami, the floods in Boscastle, Make Poverty History and the recent London bombings had engaged the voluntary sector and spurred fundraisers into action.
Bernard Ross, director of consultancy The Management Centre, encouraged fundraisers to "think outside the box".
He quoted Bill Gates, who said: "In three years a product we make will be obsolete. The only question is whether we'll make them obsolete or if someone else will."
Despite many within the sector talking about the importance of running charities in a more business-like way, Ross said he wanted to see a move away from "management consultant-speak" in fundraising.
He also wanted fundraisers to be more creative.