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Global good works – Wave of the future

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Nonprofit groups this year will become more numerous, prominent and powerful than ever, The Economist magazine predicts in its annual forecast.

The world has 30,000 international nonprofits, up from just a handful 50 years ago, plus millions of domestic nonprofits.

Russia for example has 65,000, compared to almost none a decade ago, the report says, while in the U.S., nonprofits employ 8 percent of the workforce.

Nonprofits are growing rapidly in poor countries, where wealthy governments prefer to fund nonprofits rather than funneling dollars to poor, corrupt and dictatorial regimes, the report says.

Many nonprofits have political agendas and are savvy at publicity, although measuring their power can be tough.

Bigger nonprofits, such as Oxfam, Care, Doctors Without Borders, Greenpeace and Amnesty International already have more clout than some smaller governments.

International networks of single-issue nonprofits are becoming like multi-issue political parties, The Economist says, and nonprofits are forming alliances with businesses, with private investors expected to team up with aid-related nonprofits in emerging markets.

For full story, go to The World in 2001.

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