The emergence of Philanthrocapitalism

The Giving Pledge made by 38 American billionaires last Wednesday could be worth $115 billion if they fulfil their promise to give at least half their fortunes away.

The architects of the Giving Pledge, Microsoft founder Bill Gates and uber-investor Warren Buffett, kickstarted the revolution in 2006 when they made a public commitment to give their fortunes away. Now, through the Giving Pledge, one in 10 of America's 400 billionaires has committed to join them and make philanthropy a vocation.

If these billionaire philanthrocapitalists can follow Gates's example their giving could be world-changing. Through his own philanthropy (and cajoling of governments), Gates has driven a step change in the world's efforts to take on killer diseases in the developing world. As a result of these efforts, annual research spending on malaria has soared from $60 million a decade ago to nearly $2 billion today, which means that there is a real possibility of preventing the million deaths a year from this disease within the next decade.

With their business knowledge and willingness to support innovative ideas, as well as their money, these philanthrocapitalists could become the world's leading problem-solvers.

[Read article in The Guardian]

No comments: