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In Defense of Charity and Philanthropy

11 Pages Posted: 8 May 2000 Last revised: 25 Mar 2013

Joseph S. Fulda

affiliation not provided to SSRN


Some recent literature, mindful of the inefficiencies of the nonprofit sector, suggests that the benevolent man may do more good for his fellow by investing his money in the market than by giving to charitable and philanthropic concerns. One paper goes so far as to suggest that the miser - who makes *no* use of his money - does more good than the philanthropist. We take issue with this, starting by distinguishing between 501 (c)(3) organizations and charity, continuing by distinguishing between the two separate enterprises, charity, on the one hand, and philanthropy, on the other, and arguing that the role of the philanthropist in exercising moral leadership in the free society is central to its operation.

The original is included, as the author holds the copyright, it was authored pre-2007, and there was no agreement--express or implied--not to use the publisher's PDF.

Keywords: charity, philanthropy, investment, miser, markets, morals, non-profit sector, 501 (c)(3) organizations

Suggested Citation

Fulda, Joseph S., In Defense of Charity and Philanthropy. Business and Society Review, Vol. 104, pp. 179-189, Summer 1999. Available at SSRN: or

Joseph S. Fulda (Contact Author)

affiliation not provided to SSRN ( email )

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