The purpose of this study is to shed light on how private domestic organisations provide financing to development in India, to examine how these private resources are allocated and to identify the issues and geographical areas that are being targeted. The survey, which was shared with some of the largest Indian philanthropic organisations and companies providing funding on CSR, was carried out by the OECD Centre on Philanthropy and is designed to identify the scope and scale of domestic philanthropy in order to assess how to unleash the potential of further partnerships in support of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) detailed in the United Nations’ Agenda 2030.
Economic growth, domestic regulation on Corporate Social Responsibility and global interest in India’s development are transforming the role of domestic philanthropic giving. Domestic philanthropic funding has at least matched international philanthropic funding in recent years, with close to USD 1.8 billion in domestic spending between 2013 and 2017. Education, health and rural development attracted the largest funding. Some other areas, like gender equality, receive very limited funding.
An analysis based on comparable data covering three sources of funding for development in India – namely, domestic philanthropy, international philanthropy and ODA – shows some overlaps and opportunities for collaboration. Health and education clearly stand out as two main priority areas for philanthropy and CSR in India. There is scope for more coalitions and to explore how to achieve impact at scale when it comes to these areas. For water supply and basic sanitation, there are important overlaps in funding amongst ODA, international and domestic philanthropy, as well as CSR and public spending. This suggests potential for more large scale partnerships between ODA donors, private donors and the public sector.
Over the past three decades India has experienced strong economic growth, with a concurrent increase in personal wealth. These economic trends may well increase the potential volume of money available for philanthropic giving in India. In addition, the introduction of the Indian Companies Act of 2013, mandating higher corporate spending towards specific areas, has led to the expansion of philanthropic giving from Indian corporations. However, the precise quantification of domestic philanthropic giving in India is still incomplete, and remains challenging.