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Expand chart
Reproduced from the Harvard Kennedy School's Hauser Institute for Civil Society at the Center for Public Leadership; Paula D. Johnson, et. al, 2018, "Global Philanthropy Report." Chart: Axios Visuals

In proportion to its GDP, the Netherlands has more wealth in charitable foundations than any other nation in the world, according to The Global Philanthropy Report by the Harvard Kennedy School; Switzerland is #2.

By the numbers: Overall, U.S. philanthropies are the wealthiest, with $890 billion in assets. But as a share of GDP, the Netherlands and Switzerland each have substantially more invested in charities than the U.S. or anywhere else.

  • On average, U.S. foundations spend a greater share of their assets than either Switzerland or the Netherlands — 9%, according to the report. This "spend rate" highlights the share of foundations' money that has the potential of making more immediate social impacts.
  • American charitable foundations spend a lower percentage of their wealth than foundations in countries like Spain and France, which on average spend about a third of their philanthropic assets on their social programs, grants, administrative costs and supporting third parties.

Our thought bubble, per Axios’ Felix Salmon: In countries like Canada and Ireland that have robust social safety nets, the need for permanent philanthropic capital is lower — which could be why foundations in those nations have less in assets.

The big picture: The study found that philanthropy is on the rise around the world, thanks in part to global economic growth. And more than 90% of charitable spending worldwide comes from European and U.S. foundations.

Go deeper:

Go deeper

Instagram's boss faces Congress' questions on harm to teens

Photo illustration: Shoshana Gordon/Axios. Photo: Matt Winkelmeyer/Getty Images for WIRED

The head of Instagram will find himself in Congress' crosshairs for the first time Wednesday in the one area lawmakers have shown they are willing to pass tech regulations — protecting youngsters online.

Why it matters: Republicans and Democrats have found common ground in grilling tech companies on how their products harm children, especially after revelations in The Wall Street Journal about Instagram's potential harm to the mental health of teen girls.

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Experts fear a bad flu season on top of COVID

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

Public health officials are warning that the U.S. may be on the verge of a dangerous double whammy: COVID and flu, spreading simultaneously.

The big picture: The Delta variant is still circulating across the U.S., and the Omicron variant isn't far behind. On top of that, experts see potential warning signs of a bad flu season, which could leave millions of Americans vulnerable and strain health care resources.

Updated 2 hours ago - World

Australia joins U.S. in diplomatic boycott of Beijing Winter Olympics

Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison. Photo: Darrian Traynor/Getty Images

Australia is joining the U.S. in a diplomatic boycott of the 2022 Beijing Winter Olympic Games in protest of human rights abuses committed by China's government, Prime Minister Scott Morrison confirmed Wednesday.

Driving the news: After the Biden administration's announcement that U.S. officials won't attend the Games due to the ongoing genocide of Uighurs and other Muslim minorities in the Xinjiang region of China, Morrison said at a Sydney briefing that Australia would follow suit as "it's the right thing to do."