July 20, 2022

The Future of Domestic Philanthropy in India

Growing domestic philanthropy is critical for India’s advancement. What could spur Indians with wealth to give more and propel CSR programmes to the next phase of their maturation? This report, written in collaboration with Bain & Company, focuses on these two groups and how their giving can make a greater impact.

By: Anant Bhagwati, Karan Singh, Sudarshan (Sudy) Sampathkumar, Sambit Patra, Jasleen Kaur
piggy banks in Indian market

(Photo: gajendra/Adobe Stock)

Written in collaboration with

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India’s social sector stands at a tipping point. Despite economic uncertainty and the continuing impact of COVID-19, Indian philanthropy has continued to grow. Alongside that growth have come new understandings of how philanthropy can make a difference in society – of how funders can have an impact with their gifts. The wealthiest givers will play a pivotal role in whether Indian philanthropy achieves its potential for social impact. Consider what might happen if the wealthiest in India donated the same percentage of their net worth per year as their peers in the United States? Under that scenario, in which India’s growing middle class and mass affluent also increase their giving, total giving would reach $58 billion in 2026.

growth in Indian philanthropy over next five years

In this report on the future of Indian philanthropy, we focus on two especially large and important categories – the wealthiest givers and corporates, through their corporate social responsibility (CSR) investments – and how they can achieve much more impact with their giving. Based on our conversations with 61 donors, NGO leaders, CSR heads, and sector experts about what’s driving their giving and how they’re seeking to make a difference, we consider whether such an extraordinary level of growth could actually happen, and we document some themes that emerged from our conversations.

The short answer is – it could, and here’s how.

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The Bridgespan Group would like to thank the JPB Foundation for its generous and ongoing support of our knowledge creation and sharing work.