Chinese, Chinese-American Philanthropy on the Rise, Study Finds

Chinese, Chinese-American Philanthropy on the Rise, Study Finds

Giving by Chinese and Chinese-American philanthropists is growing rapidly, a report from the Global Chinese Philanthropy Initiative finds.

The report, Chinese and Chinese-American Philanthropy (HTML or 239 pages, PDF), found that between 2008 and 2014, gifts of at least $1 million from Chinese Americans increased nearly fivefold, to $492 million — a number that includes Gerald and Ronnie Chan's $350 million commitment to the Harvard School of Public Health and Priscilla Chan and Mark Zuckerberg's $120 million pledge in support of Bay Area public schools. The majority of the gifts were made in support of higher education (66.4 percent of philanthropic dollars), followed by international affairs/development (15 percent), health (9.3 percent), and education (4.2 percent). Funded by the Lao Niu, Long Family, and Wallace H . Coulter foundations, the study also found that between 2000 and 2014, the number of foundations established by Chinese Americans grew some 418 percent — double the rate of increase for all foundations — to nearly thirteen hundred, with almost 80 percent of them established after 2000.

In "Greater China" — encompassing mainland China, Hong Kong, Taiwan, and Macau — major philanthropic gifts increased from $10.1 billion in 2009 to $16.7 billion in 2014, with nearly 62 percent going to K-12 and higher education. According to the China Foundation Center, the number of private foundations grew tenfold between 2006 and 2016, to 3,980.

A partnership between Asian Americans Advancing Justice – Los Angeles, the UCI Long U.S.–China Institute, and the UCLA Luskin School of Public Affairs, GCPI also highlights profiles of more than sixty philanthropists who gave an average of at least $1million in three individual years between 2008 and 2014.

"Major contributions by Chinese and Chinese American philanthropists are having a dramatic and positive effect — widening access to higher education, advancing innovations in health research and science, and supporting the arts and culture," said Stewart Kwoh, who heads the executive committee of the Global Chinese Philanthropy Initiative.

"Philanthropic Giving by Chinese and Chinese Americans Is Soaring." Global Chinese Philanthropy Initiative Press Release 09/06/2017. "Chinese and Chinese-American Philanthropy." Global Chinese Philanthropy Initiative Report 08/29/2017.