Working on the 2014 India Philanthropy Report

A Consultant in our Mumbai office shares his experience as part of the team contributing to the 2014 India Philanthropy Report.

Earlier this year, I was staffed on a very exciting project – helping research and write Bain’s India Philanthropy Report 2014. Since 2010, Bain has published a report about the state of philanthropy in India each year, covering trends around giving coupled with opinions of leading HNWIs and non-governmental organizations (NGOs). We collaborate with Dasra in this endeavor, India’s leading strategic philanthropy foundation, to research and write the report.


For this year’s report, we focused on a specific focus area within the philanthropic sector – the Indian government’s strategic investments in reproductive, maternal, newborn, child and adolescent health (RMNCH+A) to reduce maternal and child mortality. The “+” refers to the recent focus on adolescent health because of the growing realization that measures applied in adolescence prevent complications for mothers and their children. In our paper, we reviewed the current sector landscape and identified areas where further action is needed to achieve RMNCH+A targets like child mortality rate and underage pregnancy rate, among others. Global attention from organizations like United Nations affiliates and the World Bank has provided a much needed impetus for government efforts in lagging developing countries. This paper aimed to identify the key initiatives and investments needed to achieve levels seen in developed countries by 2035.

Working on this report was a great experience! I enjoyed working on a Bain case focused on the social sector and really appreciated the opportunity to learn more about this important topic. Another colleague and I were led by senior leaders in this challenging assignment as we worked with Dasra to understand how they wanted to impact the sector, with support from Global non-profits like USAID and the KIAWAH Trust.

In the first phase, our conversations with government organizations, NGOs and corporates were extremely insightful and shed light on the challenges faced by the healthcare sector in addressing basic needs of the rural poor. We even discussed the potential impact of technology innovators like Embrace that sought to provide infant warmers at 1% of the market cost. Discussions with experts who understood how India tackled challenges like Polio and AIDS in public health and the rapid expansion of the microfinance sector helped us identify success factors that needed to be replicated for the space to achieve maturity. It became extremely apparent to us that philanthropy could be a game-changer.

In the second phase, we wanted to share our learnings through the well-established platform of the India Philanthropy Report. We worked with local and global Bain teams to spread the message through online and print media. It is with the tireless effort of all involved that we hope we produced a product that does this important cause justice.

Please click here to read more about the India Philanthropy Report 2014, and to download the full report.

Harshvardhan D, Consultant in Mumbai


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