Most of the research in this area is approached from the business or the individual level; thus, we have a fragmented understanding of philanthropy in family enterprises. This article presents a systematic review of the literature on the subject. Based on 55 sources published between 1988 and 2014, we explain the drivers of this behavior, the vehicles used to practice it, and the outcomes tied to the practice of philanthropy in family enterprises. We identify gaps in our understanding and provide ideas for future research.
Family leaders must have the courage and stamina to create an inclusive, participative, and results-driven culture in the family and business, supported by the right policies and systems. Such a foundation will set the stage for a family legacy which both sustains across multiple future generations, and grows along the way with each group driving growth and diversification and making its own mark.