Doing Good Well
What does (and does not) make sense in the nonprofit world


“A strategic, conceptual and highly readable book…Willie has done a masterful job keeping the content fresh and intriguing – and even infuses the book with his unique style of humor. His ideas are thought-provoking and accessible.”

William D. Green
Chairman & CEO, Accenture

“Doing Good Well is a wonderful primer on philanthropy and the nonprofit sector.

Willie’s provocative perspective on the donor, donor motivations, regulation, compensation, the rich/poor divide and social enterprises to name just a few, is enlightening and refreshing.

As president and CEO of the Association of Fundraising Professionals (AFP), I have personally witnessed Willie’s passion and commitment to the nonprofit sector. He was the Chairman of the National Volunteer & Philanthropy Centre in Singapore when we sought to setup AFP’s Singapore chapter. He and his colleagues have helped us and influenced the growth of AFP and fundraising in the region. His own fundraising experiences and knowledge of the sector provide the reader with special insights and observations, especially around accountability and transparency.

This book provides the reader a very clear understanding of philanthropy and nonprofits not just in Asia but around the world, for as Willie notes, philanthropy is “charity without borders.” He reminds the reader of the philosophy of Andrew Carnegie and combines this ageless wisdom with his own thoughts and experiences. At the same time, he peppers his book with interesting research from toilet NGOs to quirky quotes from his penchant for comics”

Paulette V. Maehara
President and CEO, Association of Fundraising Professionals

“Willie Cheng’s analysis of the challenges facing citizen organizations underscores the historic opportunity to build a thriving citizen sector worldwide. ”

Bill Drayton
CEO and Founder, Ashoka: Innovators for the Public

“A must-read for anybody who wants to understand philanthropy and nonprofits in Asia and beyond.”

Dr. Maximilian Martin
Global Head, Philanthropy Services, UBS AG

“Willie’s book may be viewed as “Charity 101.” It inspires charities to do better. However, on another and more important level, it challenges the reader with uncommon thinking on nonprofit paradigms. Whether you agree with some of his radical thinking or not, we should take our hats off to Willie for living his values and not following the herd with “easy” answers. This book will change the way charities think, work and live. ”

Fang Ai Lian
Chairman, Charity Council

“Willie burst onto the non-profit scene in Singapore in a substantive way when he became chairman of the National Volunteer & Philanthropy Centre (NVPC) in 2002 and left an indelible mark on the scene. If SALT, the magazine that he started was regularly looked forward to, it was not least because of his column which has stirred, provoked and moved the charity scene in Singapore.

He has a way of putting things within a framework, connecting seemingly unrelated dots in his attempt to make sense of all that is going on in and around the sector here and elsewhere. What is compelling is that he does not indulge in mere pontification, but backs up his conclusions with considered research into global trends. You may or may not agree with his resultant insights but you cannot ignore the thinking that went into it. He challenges your own thinking, and that is what the non-profit sector critically needs at this juncture more than ever– critical thinking around critical issues beyond the doing.

This book is a recommended read for all those who work in the sector, who are thinking of crossing into the sector as well as those who are contributors to and keen observers of the fascinating not-for-profit world.”

Tan Chee Koon
Former CEO, National Volunteer & Philanthropy Centre

“An amazing amount of research and ideas fused together. In a sense, this is the The Undercover Economist of the charity world. It provides the most complete and insightful account I have seen of what happened at the NKF. This should be a textbook for anyone who wants to better understand why charities work – or don’t. ”

Gerard Ee
Chairman, The New NKF (National Kidney Foundation)