Revealed: Meet the world’s biggest philanthropists
Here, we look at some of those who have already handed out billions.
1. Bill & Melinda Gates
\nArguably the face of philanthropy, the Gates couple has dedicated more than $31bn, or 40-plus percent of their wealth, to solving global social problems through the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation. The pair also has been influential in convincing other wealthy individuals to contribute.
2. Warren Buffett
\nThe CEO of conglomerate Berkshire Hathaway and the third richest man in the world has said he would eventually give away more than 99 percent of his wealth, currently about $60bn. He has already given more than one-third and co-created the Giving Pledge with Bill and Melinda Gates.
3. George Soros
\nThe investor’s philanthropic organisation, Open Society Foundations, supports democracy and human rights in more than 100 countries. He has given about $12bn – almost half of his net worth – to projects including protecting minorities and safeguarding media freedom.
4. Carlos Slim
\nThe Mexican telecoms tycoon has increased his charitable giving in recent years, contributing more than $8bn to his main two foundations - despite saying in 2010 that charities "don't solve anything" and he could make a bigger impact by creating jobs.
5. Chuck Feeney
\nThe Duty Free Shoppers cofounder has given away $7bn - virtually all of his wealth. He has particularly focused on academic and research facilities, as well as campaigns to abolish the death penalty, advance racial equality and improve care for seniors.
6. Walton Family
\nThe family behind the world’s largest retail company, Wal-Mart Stores, topped up their trust used to finance philanthropy with an additional $400m worth of shares transferred on the eve of 2016. The three surviving siblings of Sam Walton have given away a total of nearly $6bn.
7. Eli & Edythe Broad
\nThe low-profile couple, who have been married nearly 60 years, have given away $4bn - more than half of their wealth - to their self-titled foundation that supports entrepreneurship in education, science and the arts.
8. Li Ka-shing
\nThe Hong Kong business magnate’s Li Ka-shing foundation has donated nearly $2bn to education and healthcare projects, with 87 percent of them in China, making him the biggest philanthropist in Asia. Li, who is worth an estimated $32bn, has called the foundation his third son.
9. Azim Premji
\nIndia’s third richest person, worth about $14.6bn, has been ranked the most generous Indian for three consecutive years, according to the Hurun India Philanthropy List. The 70-year-old chairman of IT company Wipro has donated more than $2bn to school education.
10. Jon Sr. & Karen Huntsman
\nThe chemicals billionaire and his wife have given away more of their money than they've kept ($1.5bn), mostly to cancer research and their church. Huntsman has said that he dislikes people who say they are going to make donations in their will rather than while they are living.