In 2018, George Soros made the greatest ever “pledge” to democratic causes, a total of $18B or about half of his entire wealth, through the Open Society Foundation.

My understanding is that “The Giving Pledge” does not specify the NGOs to whom they need to donate the wealth they accumulated.

So why would Mr. Soros’ contribution to the betterment of our kind not get him onto the Giving Pledge list?

  • By "our kind," you mean the human species?
    – Obie 2.0
    Commented Nov 16, 2022 at 11:16
  • 1
    How is George Soros being or not being a member of a group dealing with charitable giving asking about politics or the political process?
    – Joe W
    Commented Nov 16, 2022 at 19:16
  • @JoeW Because he gave to "democratic causes", maybe?
    – user2578
    Commented Nov 16, 2022 at 21:00
  • 2
    @Obie2.0 OP may mean that, but Soros very specifically means Democratic (with a capital "D") causes, ie. politics for a specific political party in the USA.
    – SnakeDoc
    Commented Nov 16, 2022 at 22:40
  • 1
    @JoeW Also, George Soros' himself referred to himself as the "stateless statesman" clearly acknowledging his policy defining intention in the use of his donations. I also added that remark to the question, but someone felt it is important to delete that out of the question. Commented Nov 16, 2022 at 23:33

2 Answers 2


It seems George Soros gave an interview to the Chronicle of Philanthropy magazine in 2011 where he explained the decision not to sign on to the Giving Pledge. I don't think a full transcript of the interview has been published, so you'll need to make do with the Chronicle's edit:

Although his foundation often works on projects with other donors, Mr. Soros remains an individualist who deliberately sets himself apart from other philanthropists.

Take his decision not to sign the “Giving Pledge,” Bill and Melinda Gates and Warren Buffett’s effort to persuade other wealthy people to publicly commit at least half their money to charity.

Mr. Soros says he hasn’t signed because he believes it matters more how wealthy people give their money away, not whether they do it.

But the Giving Pledge is, after all, about rich people getting together to share lessons learned from their philanthropy.

When pressed, Mr. Soros concedes his decision is also due to “a personal quirk of mine,” an independent streak. “I don’t like to be put into classes,” the philanthropist says.

  • 3
    Not to mention no one, including Bill Gates nor Warren Buffett have actually made good on their pledges... and won't until after they die (if even then). So the "pledge" is really just a PR thing for the living... if any of the members actually believed what they were pledging, they wouldn't wait until death.
    – SnakeDoc
    Commented Nov 16, 2022 at 22:36

I think you misunderstand what The Giving Pledge is. It's not an exhaustive list of every wealthy individual to have pledged half of their wealth to charity, nor is it an exclusive club for individuals who have done so. It's merely a voluntary scheme whereby wealthy individuals pledge to donate half their net worth to charity.

The key word is "voluntary". Donating half your wealth to charities or NGOs (as George Soros has done) does not automatically make you a member of the Giving Pledge, nor do you have to be a member of the Giving Pledge in order to do that.

As for why George Soros hasn't signed up to The Giving Pledge in spite of his philanthropy, that's covered in CDJB's answer.

  • 7
    It's a frame challenge answer, addressing the central misunderstanding of the question: namely, that the Giving Pledge is something you're selected for by others, rather than being something you volunteer yourself for.
    – F1Krazy
    Commented Nov 16, 2022 at 16:30

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .