The growth of Asian-American philanthropy

Members of a new class of affluent Asian-Americans, many of whom have benefited from booms in finance and technology, are making their mark on philanthropy in the United States. They are donating large sums to groups focused on their own diasporas or their homelands.

The growth in philanthropy by Asian-Americans parallels a surge in the Asian population in the United States. From 2000 to 2010, according to the Census Bureau, the number of people who identified themselves as partly or wholly Asian grew by nearly 46 percent, more than four times the growth rate of the overall population, making Asian-Americans the fastest growing racial group in the nation.

Pradeep Kashyap, vice-chairman of the American India Foundation, one of the largest and most successful of the new Asian philanthropies, is an immigrant and former senior executive at Citibank. He described this shift as “the journey of becoming American. … They see their mainstream American peers giving and they say, ‘I’m going to do that.’ ”

Asian cultures have a strong tradition of philanthropy in the broadest sense, though it has usually involved donations to relatives, neighbors, churches and business associations. Many Asian immigrants have not immediately embraced the Western-style practice of giving to large philanthropic institutions, organizers said.

[New York Times]

 

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