LOS ANGELES, Sept. 6, 2017 /PRNewswire/ -- Major philanthropic giving by Chinese and Chinese Americans is soaring in the U.S. and China, fueled by a dramatic increase in the number of private charitable foundations from individuals and families in both countries.
Major gifts by Chinese Americans rose nearly fivefold, to just under $500 million, from 2008 to 2014, as the number of Chinese American foundations in the U.S. rose to nearly 1,300, a 418% increase from 2000 to 2014.
In China, philanthropic giving hit $16.7 billion in 2014 as the number of registered charitable foundations totaled 5,545, a 430% increase from 2006 to 2016, according to the China Foundation Center.
These and other trends are captured in "Chinese and Chinese American Philanthropy," a study released today that is the first academic undertaking to examine the size, motivation and impact of giving by Chinese and Chinese Americans in the U.S. and China.
"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, a partnership of UCLA's Luskin School of Public Affairs, the UCI Long U.S.-China Institute and Asian Americans Advancing Justice-Los Angeles.
The study examines the giving patterns of Americans of Chinese descent and of those in mainland China, Hong Kong, Taiwan and Macau. It identifies giving trends, motivations and the impact of those gifts of more than 60 philanthropists who gave an average of at least $1million in three individual years between 2008 and 2014. The full study and an online database of the philanthropists who were included in it appears on a new website, www.globalchinesephilanthropy.org.
The GCPI's goals are to improve U.S.-China relations by promoting dialogue and collaboration among philanthropists in the two countries, advancing the understanding of philanthropic giving in the U.S. and Greater China through academic research, developing philanthropy among the next generation of Chinese and Chinese American leaders in both public and private sectors, and advancing Chinese Americans and Chinese as positive, contributing role models in the U.S. and Greater China.
"We believe that mutual understanding and interaction among Chinese philanthropists and Chinese American and other American philanthropists can lead to positive exchanges of best practices and collaboration on issues of common concern," said John Long, "This is the first step in what we hope is a five-year effort to gain a broader understanding, and increase the awareness and impact of Chinese giving across the world."
Major gifts from Chinese American philanthropists accounted for 1.2% of all major philanthropic giving in the U.S. between 2008 and 2014 – proportional to their representation of the U.S. population, the study found.
Among its other findings:
The surge in the number of Chinese American foundations is relatively recent, with more than 80% of them being established since 2000.
Four Chinese American foundations (Cyrus Tang, J.T. Tai & Co., Chan Soon-Shiong and Clarence T.C. Ching) have more than $100 million in assets.
The number of private foundations in China jumped tenfold, to 3,980 in 2016, over the past decade.
The Lao Niu Foundation dispersed the most gifts of any private foundation in China in 2014, distributing more than $30 million.
In addition to identifying individual philanthropists, the study sought to learn – through personal interviews and research – what motivates them to give, how philanthropy can be encouraged and strengthened, and the barriers and challenges that remain.
The study also makes a number of recommendations to help facilitate greater understanding among philanthropists, community organizations, non-profit executives and policymakers.
The study's findings are being unveiled in a series of major conferences in cities in the U.S. and Greater China, beginning today with one at the Westin Bonaventure Hotel in Los Angeles. Similar events are planned in Hong Kong, New York, Beijing and other major cities in the U.S. and Greater China in the coming months.