Is it right that US billionaires are creating foundations to confer power and privilege on to future generations?  A BIG question and one that would not appear to have a consistent answer when it comes to the world of larger family businesses.

Billionaires such as Warren Buffett and Bill Gates have vowed to leave only limited money to their children – instead committing the bulk of their fortunes to philanthropy.  And, philanthropy is a major way that family businesses contribute to society as a whole and the communities in which they are based, although many don't shout about it and just get on with giving in a quiet, understated way.

Philanthropy through vehicles such as foundations has been seen as more successful in preserving wealth for families for generations than passing it down the family line,   But the passing on of wealth, and the impact on families is a difficult balancing act.

Nobody wants to create family members who grow up with a sense of entitlement and fail to reach their own potential so planning can help.

A good article that looks into the way that philanthropy can be used as a way to guide and empower the next generations.