Article on Muslim Philanthropy by Matthew Bishop

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Crunch time for Muslim philanthropy. On a related point, 2012 is going to be a year of decision for Muslim philanthropists. There is a huge opportunity for them to strengthen civil society in the Arab Spring countries and work with the emerging entrepreneurs and social entrepreneurs there. Pakistan and Afghanistan are both in need of high-impact philanthropy. Yet with the honorable exception of the Aga Khan Foundation, too much of the giving from Muslim donors, including by some of the multi-billion-dollar foundations set up by the rulers of Gulf countries and their leading businesses, is still focused on traditional welfare and charity rather than social change. Yet change seems likely to happen with or without them, and if they do not help it along, it may well be at the expense of the Muslim wealthy. Perhaps this is an area where Turkey’s emerging philanthrocapitalists will show a lead to the rest of the Muslim world.

More at Matthew Bishop: The Year of Controversial Giving.

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