The Global Wealth and Society programme seeks to identify the important role that the privileged have towards their respective society. In building this programme, we measure wealth, not by the amount of financial assets individuals amass but by the positive impact they create on society through sustainable projects. Projects that are close to their hearts and which they believe to affect their immediate society in a deep and profound manner.

Based on this philosophy of contribution and giving back to the society, we identify these individuals as “Champions of Philanthropy” as part of our Global Wealth and Society Awards Programme.

Over the next few weeks until early October, our research team will be adding new names to the list and will be reaching out to them as part of the awards evaluation process.

The list below profiles selected Champions and their shortlisted projects across Africa, the Americas, Asia, Europe and the Middle East . In doing so, the list also tracks the way they are investing and deploying their wealth to bring about positive impacts on the society that they operate in.

Ratan Tata

Former Chairman Tata Sons - India

ITE is a pedagogical framework to improve teaching and learning processes. It fosters 21st century skills and quality learning through projects in middle school children and adolescents in some of the most underprivileged geographies (91% rural). Students, mostly first-time computer users, create learning artifacts like weather charts and comparative charts on jute production or population density to deepen their learning of the subject matter. Currently, it served in 8 states, 209 schools & 25 learning centres, impacted over 26000 students and 2500 teachers

Nita Ambani

Chairperson and Founder, Reliance Foundation and Non-Executive Director, Reliance Industries - India

Bridge the development gap between rural and urban India. Committed to rural transformation, the programme works with small and marginal farmers and helps farming households that have limited livelihood options. RF BIJ has engaged directly with more than 62,000 families in more than 500 villages across 12 Indian states. RF BIJ has established the Centre of Excellence in Sustainable Agriculture in Mouda, Nagpur. The RF BIJ programme management system is ISO 9001:2015 compliant

Steve Hardgrave

Co-founder/CEO, Varthana - India

Varthana offers loans for infrastructure projects to affordable private schools in India and aims to expand access to and improve the quality of education in the country. Many schools utilize Varthana loans to renovate or expand infrastructure, such as the addition of a new library, playground, or lab. Other schools invest in teacher training programs, didactic materials, or improved learning solutions

"Shiv Nadar

Founder and Chairman, HCL Technologies Limited" - India

The Shiv Nadar Foundation was established in 1994 by Shiv Nadar. The Foundation is committed to the creation of a more equitable, merit-based society by empowering individuals through transformational education to bridge the socio-economic divide. To that purpose the Foundation has established institutions and programs in the underdeveloped disciplinary areas in India related to rural and urban education and art. The foundation pursues philosophy of 'Creative Philanthropy', a powerful which envisages creation of institutions that go beyond the lifetime of its founders and continue to impact future generations for many centuries to come.

Michael Bambang Hartono & Robert Budi Hartono

Managing Director, Co-Founders, Djarum Foundation - Indonesia

Scholarship and dedicatedathlete development program, coaching clinic to rural areas, Supporting badminton related world championship 5000 athletes fully sponsored until 2017. World's no 1 Mixed Double (Tantowi Ahmad/Lilyana Natsir) and one of World's no 1 Men's double (Kevin Sukamuljo) are from Djarum Foundation.

"Dato' Sri Tahir

Founder of Mayapada Group and Co-Chair, Tahir Foundation" - Indonesia

"Collaborate with UN refugee center (UNHCR)to provide cash assistance program for education and shelter covering 2 million refugees, and 10000 jackets for winter. He is the first Asian to work with UNHCR. The Fondation also contributes in bridging the gaps in health services, increasing capacity of effective organizations and programs, and fostering innovative solutions to persistent healthcare access problems and supporting educational institutes to nurture brightest talent in Indonesia. "

Akio Nitori

Chairman, Nitori Holdings - Japan

The main goal was to help graduate students from around Asia to attend Japan's top universities. In 2014 the foundation, which holds a 3.5% stake in Nitori worth more than $660 million, started making grants to colleges in the U.S., Taiwan and Vietnam for scholarships.

Yusaku Maezawa

President/Founder START TODAY CO., LTD. - Japan

With a mission to "support young artists as a pillar of the next generation of contemporary art, the Contemporary Art Foundation aims to contribute to the promotion of contemporary art by helping young artists and young musicians improve their skills. It also carries out activities such as holding contemporary art exhibitions, etc., to popularize and improve knowledge and education of contemporary art.

Manu Chandaria

Chairman and CEO, Comcraft Group - Kenya

Founded for over sixty years, Chandaria Foundation aims at helping the less privileged members of the society in eradication of Poverty alleviation and providing a sustainable environment for the community & the universe as a whole. The Foundation strives to elevate the community it lives in, through socio economic developments in Education, Health, Culture, Sports & Art, that are sustainable with a distinct bias in supporting children, handicap and the girl child as the family contributes as the voice of the voiceless.

Lee Joon Yong

Honary Chairman, Daelim Group - Korea

Foundation dedicated to the unification of the two Koreas with major focus on re-uniting families. Its Korean American Sharing Movement (KASM) empowers the future leaders of the Korean Peninsula. KASM cultivates leadership and understanding of building and developing human capacity.

Quek LengChan

Executive CEO and Chairman , Hong Leong Group - Malaysia

Improve educational outcomes for low income students, andprovide financial support for alleviating the plight of the abandoned and destitute elderly and children. The foundation identifies and develops innovative programmes that advance education and community development in Malaysia, in accordance with the charter of the Foundation. Providing grants for high impact, sustainable projects that aids the nation's poorest, it encourages community organisations to further the philanthropic mandate of the Founation.

"Lim Wee Chai

Executive Chairman and Founder, Top Glove Corp." - Malaysia

Founded in 2009, the foundation has donated roughly $5 million to various causes, with a focus on education. Recent beneficiaries include several Chinese-medium schools in Malaysia as well as Universiti Tunku Abdul Rahman, which received $70,000 in 2015 to create a chair for the Top Glove Professor of Chemistry.

Aliko Dangote

Founder and Chairman, Dangote Group - Nigeria

Some of the Foundation's activities in Nigeria include, N1 billion for Nigerian universities including N500 million for development of a business school in Bayero University and N100 million for the proposed Otuoke University in Bayelsa State. The Foundation also disbursed N230 million to women in Kogi State as a micro grant as part of the Kogi Human Capital Development initiative. In order to alleviate the suffering of communities in Jos suffering from effects of a prolonged ethno-religious crises in 2010, the Dangote Foundation made a donation of relief materials worth N50 million to the community leaders.

"Tony Onyemaechi Elumelu

Chairman, Heirs Holding" - Nigeria

Founded in 2010, the foundation aims at enpowerment of African entrepreneurship, promotion of leadership and creation of integrated entrepreneurial ecosystem. The flagship programme, the Tony Elumelu Foundation Entrapreneurship Programme is the largest African philanthropic initiative devoted to entraprenurship, representing a 10 year, $100 million worth of commitment to identify and empower 10,000 African entrapreneurs, create meaningful jobs adding $10 billion in revenues to African economy.

Jim Ovia

Chairman, Zenith Bank - Nigeria

The Jim Ovia Scholars programme, founded in 1998, provides aid to outstanding students during undergraduate and graduate study. The Jim Ovia ICT Entrepreneurs programme provides funding to the most promising five to 10 ideas a year, through a competitive bid process. The Jim Ovia Foundation has funded 1,500 scholarships totalling N100m ($200,000) since 2010, and supports IT skills programmes for marginalised young people, working with partners such as IBM and Google.

Theophilus Yakubu Danjuma

Founder and Chairman, South Atlantic Petroleum Limited - Nigeria

The TY Danjuma Foundation is committed to enhancing the quality of life of Nigerians by supporting initiatives that improve access to health and educational opportunities. TY Danjuma Foundation works mainly through Non Governmental Organizations and Community Based groups in Nigeria. Its strategy of working through partnerships is intended to build institutional capacity of groups, supporting innovation and ensuring that the funding provided meets the needs of the target beneficiaries and is culturally relevant. Core focus areas include community health and education initiatives, income acceleration to empower women and youth and policy advocacy.

" David Zuellig & Daniel Zuellig

Co-founders, Zuellig pharma group" - Philippines

The Zuellig Family Foundation is focused in imporving health conditions of the Filipino communities of rural areas by providing training programs for local govt. health poilcy makers to help drive improvements in health outcome related governence. The Foundation’s purpose is rooted in the Zuellig family’s long-standing business in healthcare and the core focus remains on directing phianthropic efforts to nationan-building via community healthcare.

"Vladimir Olegovich Potanin

Chairman, Interros"

"Since the establishment of the Foundation in 1999 education has been one of its major spheres of activity and priority issue as the organisation aims in improving social involvement in philanthropy and the need to nurture and encourage future leaders and those who will be able later not only to improve their own skills and knowledge but also to change life and environment around them for the better. A positive example of this approach is the Vladimir Potanin Fellowship Program which focuses on master degree students and professors. This Program logically builds on and follows the Federal Scholarship Program which was launched back in 2000 and encouraged student-led projects aimed to improve student life and address community needs and which was logically followed by The Vladimir Potanin Fellowship Program combines three components: fellowship contest for master degree students, grant competition for university professors who teach courses for master degree students, and Foundation School based on the principle of learning by doing, self government and networking."

"Amr Al-Dabbagh

Chairman and CEO, Al-Dabbagh Group" - Saudi Arabia

"London-based Stars Foundation supports locally-led solutions for children and young people in the 100 countries with the highest “under five” mortality rate. 2016 marked 10 years of the Foundation’s flagship Impact Awards, an awards programme recognising outstanding locally-led organisations working to improve the lives of children. Stars Foundation is also the convenor of the With and For Girls Collective, a group of organisations united by a common belief that girls are agents of change. Philanthropy University Berkeley-based Philanthropy University is a free, first-of-its-kind educational initiative for change makers in the social sector. Its 100X20 vision aims to impact the lives of 100 million people by 2020 by training hundreds of thousands of learners working for social good, elevating their cause and furthering their reach."

"Ho Swee Huat

Co-founder, Autism Association Singapore" - Singapore

Ho Swee Huat co-founded the organisation with a group of parents to autistic children in 1992, to identify and encourage the treamtment , education, welfare and acceptance of persons with autism in the society. It stimulates public awareness and understanding of autism, community involvement and support for persons with autism and their families. Through Eden Childcare centre, Eden school, Eden centre for adults and Eden activity club, the organisation serves to initiate, organise and support provision of a broad spectrum at services for people with autism in Singapore. Such services to encompass education, vocational and life skills training and residential care.