The BNP Paribas Wealth Management 2014 Individual Philanthropy Index measures and reflects the commitment of philanthropists in four regions – Europe, Asia, the Middle East and the United States. Scores are based on three main criteria: the amounts donated, innovation, and the effort invested by the philanthropists to promote their chosen causes.
The Index is derived from a survey of over 400 High Net Worth Individuals in the four regions, each with investable assets valued at $5 million or more. The survey was carried out by Forbes Insights between October and December 2013.
The BNP Paribas Individual Philanthropy Index is accompanied by a report from Forbes Insights setting out the background to the survey and detailing the analysis performed. It is further illustrated by personal stories of some of the world’s best-known philanthropic givers. This year’s publication explores the importance of timing to the philanthropic journey.
Among the top causes in the world, respondents from Europe, Asia and the Middle East cite the environmentwhereas health is the predominant cause for the United States – a cause cited as top cause in 2013.
This year the question asks about both regional and worldwide causes, and health remains the top local cause.
The Middle East and the United States also stand out by selecting social change as one of the top three issues for philanthropy in the world.
The Index shows that the motivations of the philanthropists surveyed vary among the four regions and are largely rooted in local history and culture.
· In the United States and the Middle East, it is first and foremost personal ties and experience linked to the chosen cause that motivate philanthropists, mentioned by 22% and 29% respectively of those interviewed in the two regions.
· In Asia, the main motivator, cited by 19% of respondents, is the desire to give something back to society.
· In Europe, the altruistic desire to help others, is mentioned by 22% of respondents, comes out as the top motivator.
Regarding the urgency of philanthropic giving:
· 79% of those polled describe the worldwide need for philanthropicgiving as ‘urgent’ or ‘extremely urgent’.
Regarding the progression of the amount devoted to their philanthropic initiatives:
· Philanthropists’ relative view on the current state of their wealth can encourage them to increase their giving: this is the case for over 50% of respondents in the US and Asia and 72% of those surveyed in the Middle East.
· In Europe, the picture is less clear-cut, with 40% stating that the current state of their wealth encourages them to increase their giving whilst an equal number indicate that their perception would drive them to reduce their giving.
Regarding the time-frame for achieving results:
· The Middle East is the region where philanthropists take the longest-term view. More than half of all philanthropic donors are prepared to wait more than 25 years to see the impact of their philanthropic actions.
· Donors in Asia, the United States and Europe expect to see faster results, i.e., in under 10 years. Among these, the region with the highest proportion of philanthropic donors expecting to see the effect of their actions within this time-frame, is Asia (69%).