Advocacy, Rights & Civil Society: The Opportunity for Indian Philanthropy

This study published by Centre for Social Impact and Philanthropy (Ashoka University) in December 2018 reviews the changing trends in the funding of the non-profit sector in India, particularly in the recent context of the Government of India’s heightened attention on inflows from international donors. It examines the impact of these trends on local civil society organisations in India, on organisations that focus on rights and advocacy work as well as those that enable service delivery. The research is a qualitative exercise which complements the quantitative analysis conducted by Centre for Social Impact and Philanthropy and How India Lives on foreign funding flows. Over 30 interviews were conducted with Indian philanthropists, foreign funders, social organisations, and legal, financial and technical experts to bring in multiple perspectives on the topic. The interviews are aimed to understand both personal experiences as well as the broader trends in the sector. The report discusses significant areas of opportunities that have been identified for Indian philanthropists to play a larger enabling role in the non-profit sector, particularly by supporting certain kinds of rights and advocacy work that have a structural, longer-term impact. The end goal of the study is to support decision making by providing perspectives from multiple stakeholders on what lies ahead for the Indian social sector, as well as their hopes and expectations for the future of Indian philanthropy.

About the Centre for Social Impact and Philanthropy:
The Centre for Social Impact and Philanthropy at Ashoka University is India’s first academic centre focused on enabling a strategic and robust philanthropic ecosystem geared towards greater social impact. It informs sector strategy through credible research and data, convenes platforms for norm-setting and collaborative learning, and offers programmes that strengthen civil society capability and sustainability