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Book Review: Why Philanthropy Matters - WSJ.com
March 27, 2013 | WSJ | By LESLIE LENKOWSKY

A Buffett Rule Worth Following
WHY PHILANTHROPY MATTERS
By Zoltan J. Acs
(Princeton, 249 pages, $29.95).

entrepreneurs were as philanthropic as those born into wealth, if not more.

This surprising fact propels "Why Philanthropy Matters," by Zoltan J. Acs, a professor at George Mason University. Mr. Acs has spent his career studying how entrepreneurs operate and what role their business ventures play in the economy. In his new book, he focuses on another kind of contribution they make, one that, he argues, is as essential for prosperity as the products and services they create.

Successful entrepreneurship, he writes, requires a steady stream of innovations. The best places to develop them are privately funded research universities, medical centers and other kinds of institutions—like libraries and laboratories—that are insulated from competitive and political pressure. He cites, among other examples of nurtured innovation, the agricultural advances developed in land-grant universities during the 19th and 20th centuries and the contributions made to the information age by the students and faculty of Stanford University. As important as industrial research may be, the university has become, since the 1980s, "the source of new knowledge to be transferred to the private sector."

But there is more to the logic of entrepreneurial charity than hatching innovative ideas. As Mr. Acs notes, the success that certain entrepreneurs achieve when they disrupt old industries and establish new ones can bring big rewards, resulting in disparities of income and wealth. Without the philanthropy that would underwrite scholarships or other sources of opportunity, the public might not long tolerate such differences.

In "The Gospel of Wealth" (1889), Andrew Carnegie urged his prosperous contemporaries to avoid "hoarding great sums" and to give their "surplus" wealth away during their lifetimes, to strengthen an economic system that might thereby produce some riches for all. In the more measured tones of an economist, Mr. Acs is making much the same point: A capitalist economy not only enables but requires philanthropy. Through it, entrepreneurs can support the kinds of institutions that generate discoveries and that provide pathways for other people to make their own fortunes.

Mr. Acs buttresses his argument with a variety of examples, including those of billionaires—among them, Michael Milken and David Rubenstein —who have followed Bill Gates and Warren Buffett by committing themselves to giving at least half of their wealth to charity and whose charitable enterprises are aimed at creating opportunity for others. (Eli Broad, for instance, subsidizes charter schools and management reforms to improve urban education.) In Mr. Acs's view, America's ability to combine entrepreneurial capitalism and philanthropic uplift is rare among developed nations.
Andrew_Carnegie  billgates  book_reviews  books  capitalism  Colleges_&_Universities  creating_opportunities  David_Rubenstein  disequilibriums  disruption  Eli_Broad  entrepreneurship  innovation  knowledge_economy  moguls  Michael_Milken  philanthropy  society  Stanford  symbiosis  technology_transfers  Warren_Buffett 
march 2013 by jerryking
A letter to capitalists from Adam Smith - FT.com
January 9, 2012 7:03 pm
A letter to capitalists from Adam Smith

By David Rubenstein
David_Rubenstein  Carlyle_Group  private_equity  Adam_Smith  capitalism 
january 2012 by jerryking
For Deals, Wall Street Goes East - NYTimes.com
September 28, 2011, 6:48 pm Mergers & Acquisitions | DealBook Column
For Deals, Wall Street Goes East
By ANDREW ROSS SORKIN

“The interest among Western institutional investors to getting exposure to China, Brazil and India is clear. It’s a big mind shift,” said Sarah Alexander, president of the Emerging Markets Private Equity Association. And she added, they’ve been looking farther afield. “You’ve got Indonesia on the map, Colombia, Peru.”
Andrew_Sorkin  Carlyle_Group  Wall_Street  private_equity  institutional_investors  emerging_markets  globalization  David_Rubenstein  dealmakers  Blackstone  frontier_markets 
september 2011 by jerryking

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