"Billionaire couple raises $42m for Chinese university - Tue, Mar 02, 2010 China Daily/Asia News Network
Billionaire Duan Yongping and his wife Liu Xin donated US$30 million fundraising money to their alma mater Renmin University of China on Sunday, the Xinhua News Agency reported.
Forty-nine-year-old Duan, who ranked 71st on the Forbes rich list in 2003, received his master degree in Econometrics from Renmin University of China, and Liu also studied there majoring in journalism.
They also donated to Zhejiang University, where he was an undergraduate. He made his fortune founding 'Xiao Ba Wang' (Little Champion Emperor) and 'Bu Bu Gao' (Ever Higher Steps) selling electronics products like DVD, then Mobiles, etc."
Good to learn of such charitable acts by the rich and famous in China.
Lessons for me are:
1. Chinese valued education a lot. Anytime donation made to promote university is welcome. The couple have shown their appreciation for their alma mater in giving the endowment and hopefully they are put to good use!;
2. they have done it before and had continued to perform this type of charitable act with their wealth. This is great as it is not a one-time, headline grabbing spurt of the moment action. You have to still ask for efficiency and effectiveness when donating to a charitable cause. Stringent measurement must still be put in place to monitor how the money is spent and the return on investment made!!;
3. while I applaud the rich who donate to charitable cause, especially on educational matter, I feel that investment must be made in 'post-education' follow up and monitoring process. i.e. what do the graduates do after they graduated with the help of these scholarship money or bursary or research grant! When you track, people will be more careful on how they spend it. It is not uncommon to find charitable organizations 'abusing' the goodwill of the donors by splurging on themselves instead of the causes championed!
May Mr. and Mrs. Duan continued with their good work and good hearts!!