7 things you may not know about Bill Gates' annual letters


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Every January, U.S. billionaire philanthropist Bill Gates releases his annual letter, a must-read for global development observers, professionals and officials.

Here are 7 things you may not know about Gates’ annual letters.

  • Ideas about innovation to help all lead healthy happy lives will be of great benefit to the financially wealthy as well. Clean environment, organic food, lower polluting industries, clean water, clean air and peaceful living are no longer dreams and aspirations of the green radicals (but thanks to them for awareness raising). These things are basic requirements for survival for all - think about the poor communist party leaders and their families suffering from air pollution in Beijing, think about the poor families of Dow and Monsanto leaders having to eat chemically laced food, think about the poor Fukushima nuclear power leaders who have to live with their reckless irresponsible lack of foresight.
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  • Thanks to Bill Gates for the great contribution giving to the Developing Countries.for their Development(I think has to be divides the Roles: lwt we know who is funding for the Agriculture, who is for the Indutries, who is for Education and who is for Healhy Life, healthy Cities & safety Roads & Technology development?).
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  • With the Principle of do it well or don’t do it, I would like to express my idea hereby calling attention of all Funding Fellows that it’s better to follow what’s done as Project and checking ihow many is ts Cost, because today there’re many NGOs, and some of them are parasites(Some are of local NGOs & others Internationals as well);
    Anyway for the Development of the Developing Countries are needed Investments for useful Projects(creating/giving jobs which will improve, affecting positively to the others Sectors, as the Education, Health, Agriculture, Industries and the rest which are results of Economic improvement will follow) and that is what is needed from those who are funding.
    Then very important is also the Political Stability & Stable Security is that condition which comes as the first and should be prioritized( if there is no Stable Security, therefore no-one will invest creating jobs); Therefore Developing Countries need Stable Peace Building with Political Stability and to realize that is needed Super-Powers & UN to solve existing problems with Aim of Real, Stable & Durable Peace Building and this is what is needed from Politicians for Political Stability and Durable Peace Building.
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7 things you may not know about Bill Gates' annual letters

  1. 1. 7 things you may not know about Bill Gates’ annual letters
  2. 2. Every January, U.S. billionaire philanthropist Bill Gates releases his annual letter, a must-read for global development observers, professionals and officials. Here are 7 things you may not know about Gates’ annual letters.
  3. 3. Bill Gates started issuing an annual letter in 2009 as per the suggestion of U.S. businessman and fellow billionaire philanthropist Warren Buffett, who pledged in 2006 most of his wealth to the foundation and four charities formed by his family. Buffett, a trustee of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, also issues an annual letter addressed to Berkshire Hathaway shareholders. “I won’t be quoting Mae West or trying to match his [Buffett’s] humor, but I will try to be equally candid.” - Bill Gates, 2009
  4. 4. Bill Gates’ annual letter should not be mistaken for the Gates Foundation’s annual report, which mainly talks about where it spent its money and how in the past year. The annual letter serves as more of an advocacy tool, especially to argue the importance of foreign aid in saving lives, improving agriculture and, overall, eradicating poverty. “The public may not prioritize keeping foreign aid at high levels because so many of them have not heard how effective it is. Some formed their image of foreign aid during the Cold War, when money was sent to buy the allegiance of a dictator with very little control to make sure it was well spent. We need to get the successes to be far more visible than they are today.” - Bill Gates, 2010
  5. 5. Aside from foreign aid, innovation is a dominant theme of Gates’ annual letters. He argues that technological advances, and therefore funding them, is essential to improving lives in the developing world. That’s not surprising given his background as one of the world’s modern technology pioneers. “Advances in science have played a huge role in improving the living conditions in the rich world over the past century. Technology is also a personal passion of Melinda’s and mine. So we try to point scientific research toward the problems of the poor, like agriculture. This is why we tend not to fund other important things like building health clinics or roads, which are better left to governments.” - Bill Gates, 2009
  6. 6. Through infographics and easy-to-understand graphs, Bill Gates’ annual letters do a good job in presenting and explaining progress in global health or impact of foreign aid investment. (And sometimes he gives a dash of humor when presenting them.) “Over the past 50 years childhood deaths have dropped dramatically. Take a look at Chart 1, which is one of my favorites. (I hope you didn’t think you were going to get through this letter without some figures being thrown at you.)” - Bill Gates, 2009
  7. 7. Gates’ annual letters typically talk about the different focus areas of his foundation. But in 2014, he focused his letter on debunking myths about foreign aid, and called on everyone “to help get the word out on all these myths,” namely that the poor are deemed to stay poor, foreign aid is a big waste, and saving lives leads to overpopulation. “Melinda and I are struck by how many people think the world is getting worse. The belief that the world can’t solve extreme poverty and disease isn’t just mistaken. It is harmful. That’s why in this year’s letter we take apart some of the myths that slow down the work. The next time you hear these myths, we hope you will do the same.” - Bill Gates, 2014
  8. 8. Gates makes predictions about global development. In 2010, he said he foresees at least one scalable innovation in energy (particularly one that is cheaper than coal and emits zero greenhouse gases) will surface over the next two decades and be installed widely in two decades thereafter; in 2014, he said he believes that by 2035, “there will be almost no poor countries left in the world,” based on current definition of poverty, and that all countries will have child mortality rates as low as those in the United States and United Kingdom in 1980 (or about 15 per 1,000 deaths). “I have believed for a long time that disparities in health are some of the worst inequities in the world — that it is unjust and unacceptable that millions of children die every year from causes that we can prevent or treat. I don’t think a child’s fate should be left to what Warren Buffett calls the ‘ovarian lottery.’ If we hit this goal of convergence, the ovarian lottery for health outcomes will be closed for good.” - Bill Gates, 2014
  9. 9. The annual letters indicate what Bill and Melinda Gates will do for the rest of the year, such as the plan in 2009 to increase the percentage of their foundation’s spending to 7 percent ($3.8 billion) from slightly above 5 percent ($3.3 billion) previously and the launching in 2012 of www.thegatesnotes.com, a website featuring Bill Gates’ thoughts about his trips and meetings with “someone interesting” as well as commentaries from other global development innovators. “Unfortunately, many people believe the opposite [on foreign aid] — that money spent on development is wasted, or that it doesn’t get lasting results. Melinda and I will spend a lot of time in the coming year explaining why they’re mistaken. The relatively small amount of money invested in development has changed the future prospects of billions of people — and it can do the same for billions more if we make the choice to continue investing in innovation. We will repeat that message over and over in our speeches and interviews, and on gatesfoundation.org and gatesnotes.com, because we are convinced that when people hear stories of the lives they’ve helped to improve, they want to do more, not less.” - Bill Gates, 2012
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