2006 in Ideas

The New York Times Magazine has 74 ideas. Among them: For-Profit Philanthropy.

Welcome to the world of brand-enhancing, profit-making, tax-paying philanthropy. Its proponents argue that weve become so accustomed to the idea that philanthropy has to operate within the confines of certain legal strictures that weve lost sight of what really matters: the good you foster, not necessarily how you go about fostering it. As the economist Susan Raymond argued in the journal On Philanthropy in September, We are beginning to understand that old categories commerce, capitalism and philanthropy do not serve the new generation of either social problems or market opportunities. In this spirit, Richard Branson, the founder of Virgin, announced plans this year to invest personal profits estimated at $3 billion in the clean-energy industry. And in addition to Googles venture, theres also the work of Pierre Omidyar, the founder of eBay, who has created the Omidyar Network, a charitable venture that finances for-profits and nonprofits alike.

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Rajesh Jain

An Entrepreneur based in Mumbai, India.