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Giving Smarter: Philanthropic Opportunities to Advance Bipolar Disorder Research

People of all ages, ethnicities, and backgrounds endure the intense shifts in mood and energy levels bipolar disorder (BD) causes. Severe, repeated manic and depressive episodes can strain relationships, make it difficult to hold a job, and create a devastating ripple effect on people’s lives, making them feel like they are not in control.

Bipolar disorder affects roughly 3 percent of the world’s population. While BD is common, its cause is unknown, and because there are vast differences in how people experience bipolar disorder, it can take years to get the correct diagnosis. Like many other diseases, research for BD is underfunded, but there are ways philanthropic investments in the field can advance progress and improve our understanding of BD, and get to better interventions to help people regain control of their lives.  

This Giving Smarter Guide by the Center for Strategic Philanthropy (CSP) builds on the Survey of Lived Experiences released in 2018. Here, CSP takes a detailed look at the BD research and funding landscape and makes recommendations for how philanthropy can advance the field.