Posts filed under ‘International’

Gates Pushing Investment in African Farms

Politico reports that Bill Gates was in Washington yesterday lobbying for increased aid to help poor farmers in Africa increase productivity. The billionaire philanthropist is framing the funding not as charity, but as an investment:

“This … has nothing to do with the old aid model of donors and recipients,” Gates said. “This is about catalyzing a business opportunity with enlightened investments.”

Gates promoted the Global Agricultural and Food Security Program, an initiative his foundation is funding — to the tune of $1.7 billion — to essentially turn small African farms into mini-businesses.

May 25, 2011 at 6:01 PM Leave a comment

Trends across the Pond

The UK’s Telegraph reviews the top ten emerging trends in British philanthropy on the occasion of the public opening of the home of William Morris, “Britain’s greatest philanthropist.”

The article notes among other things that “giving while living” is growing more popular, as is donating more and leaving less to the children.

April 27, 2011 at 7:00 PM Leave a comment

The “Black Hole of Philnathropy”

India’s The Economic Times surveys the current state of private and corporate philanthropy in India, and identifies the biggest obstacle to improvement a lack of information:

There is still much we do not know about Indian charity. For instance we have no trend data to say whether we are becoming more or less generous; whether, how, and how much new wealth is being channeled into philanthropy; and what is the likely impact, if any, of an intergenerational transfer of wealth on philanthropic giving?

April 16, 2011 at 7:01 PM Leave a comment

State of International Philanthropy

At the Huffington Post, an interview with Jane Wales, President and CEO of the World Affairs Council and Founder of the Global Philanthropy Forum. Among many other topics, she discusses the possible impact of recent social unrest across the Middle East:

Three broad trends have been changing relations within and among states and across sectors — the information revolution, economic globalization, and demographic shifts…It suggests real opportunity and real vulnerabilities. But these and other sweeping conclusions should be tempered by a deep understanding of cultural context.

Also at the Huffington Post: Suggestions for the future of Muslim philanthropy following the Fourth World Congress of Muslim Philanthropists in Dubai.

April 12, 2011 at 7:01 PM Leave a comment

The Giving Pledge Abroad

While recognizing the generosity of their own donations and the influence they have wielded with their Giving Pledge, Vanity Fair suggests the Bill Gates and Warren Buffett have erred in their evangelizing overseas:

If there is a flaw in the pair’s otherwise admirable undertaking, it’s exporting their vision for philanthropy to China and India. Last week, news broke that Buffett and Gates delivered the message of the Giving Pledge at a meeting in New Delhi…the New Delhi summit is seen by many as an extension of the philanthropic mission established in the U.S.; it also followed a similar meeting held with Chinese billionaires in September of last year.

Even with the best intentions at heart and sensitivity to respecting cultural differences, the conference carries a slightly condescending message. It implies somehow that Indian billionaires require the guidance of American billionaires to act responsibly, and in the best interest of their own society.

Our own feelings are that the newly rich in fast-developing economies like India’s will find their path of philanthropic development. However, if encouragement from abroad can hasten the development, Gates’s and Buffett’s initiative is worthwhile.

March 30, 2011 at 6:49 PM Leave a comment

Gates and Buffet in India

Bill Gates and Warren Buffet have made their long-promised trip to India, the Voice of America reports, meeting earlier today with Indian billionaires they hope to recruit for their Giving Pledge.

Although Gates and Buffet will urge the super rich to donate more, they will not push their own ideas on how it should be done.

Buffet says that charitable giving in India does not have to be done the same way as it is in the United States, but will happen in keeping with local culture.

The Wall Street Journal‘s India Realtime blog publishes comments Gates made today in New Delhi, explaining how his experience building tech giant Microsoft informs his philanthropy.

“Giving money and making money have a lot of similarities,” he said, in answer to a question from the media. “In my work at Microsoft, my job was hiring talented engineers to solve tough problems that look unsolvable and backing their work for five to 10 years and understanding what works and what doesn’t work…At the foundation, it is similar.”

Gates made the comments during a joint press conference with India science minister Pawan Kumar Bansal.

March 24, 2011 at 7:13 PM Leave a comment

CSR to Remain Voluntary in India, Everywhere Else

The English translation is a tad inelegant, but the Hindustan Times reports that a new law in India will allow corporate giving to remain voluntary. It seems a designated minimum had been considered:

The government is unlikely to thrust companies with a mandatory spend on philanthropy as was being debated earlier. The new Companies Bill will make a mention asking companies to spend  up to 2% of their net profits on corporate social responsibility (CSR) but may not make it mandatory under a specific clause.

We at Giving Click don’t follow Indian parliamentary politics very closely; we wonder how likely to become law such a requirement ever was. Not very, we suspect.

March 13, 2011 at 5:06 PM Leave a comment

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