NewsFeedNewsFeed

Our Staff Writers and Editors offer insights on the latest news, events, interviews and other happenings from the development through enterprise and base of the pyramid universes
Monday, March 31, 2008 — No Region Specified

Procter & Gamble's Partnership with Non-profit organisations is Proof that Local Markets can be Won

Source: World Business

Procter & Gamble's partnership with non-profit organisations is proof that local markets can be won over to new products. In 2003, a $20 million R&D and marketing project at Procter & Gamble (P&G) had reached a financial impasse after eight years of work. A decade earlier, the company had spotted an opportunity to supply a water-purifying product to the developing world, which, it was hoped, would increase the company's share of the mas...
TAGS:No Tags
Monday, March 31, 2008 — No Region Specified

Interview with Gelber Prize Winner Paul Collier

Source: Globe and Mail

LONDON - I think that economists have a responsibility to write in such a way to be read by ordinary people and by political leaders, the bearded and bespectacled Oxford professor says, in a quiet and careful tone, from his home in France. So I wrote a book that's very readable. That may not sound like a humble claim, but then Paul Collier has very clearly been read by a lot of people lately. His book, The Bottom Billion, argues plainly and often ru...
TAGS:No Tags
Friday, March 28, 2008 — No Region Specified

The In-betweeners

Source: The Economist

A lot is expected of the middle class in emerging economies. But they just want a quiet life. Two jars of chickpeas, 20 bars of soap, three packs of cigarettes and six sachets of shampoo-all these items and more are in stock at a village store five hours away from the Indian city of Hyderabad. It is the leanest of inventories, and yet it supports great hopes. Combined with a scrap-metal business, the store is just enough to lift its owners into the ranks of India'...
TAGS:No Tags
Thursday, March 27, 2008 — South Asia

4 Lessons to Learn from Tata's Nano

Source: Business Week Online

The announcement in January by Tata Motors of its newest car, the Nano, was revealing on many levels. The announcement generated extensive coverage and commentary, but just about everyone missed the Nano's real significance, which goes far beyond the car itself. But, OK, let's start with the car itself - particularly the price. At about $2,500 retail, the Nano is the most inexpensive car in the world. Its closest competitor, the Maruti 800, made in India by Maruti Udyog, sells...
TAGS:No Tags
Wednesday, March 26, 2008 — No Region Specified

A Tightening Jobs Market is a Hugely Powerful Engine for Poverty Reduction

Source: The Hindu

D. Murali and G. Padmanaban Chennai: Much has been talked about ?fortune at the bottom of the pyramid'. But do we find big corporates discovering the ?fortune'? Does it make good economics for the companies? At the very bottom of the pyramid there are no fortunes to be made because purchasing power is so low, says Mr Paul Collier, Professor of Economics and Director of the Centre for the Study of African Economies at Oxford University .
TAGS:No Tags
Wednesday, March 26, 2008 — No Region Specified

Social Innovation Fellows Program: Providing World-Class Support to the Next Great Generation of Wor

Source: Pop!Tech

This year, Pop!Tech will select up to twenty visionary change agents - chosen from around the world and from many different social-innovation fields - to participate in a unique, cutting-edge Fellows program designed to accelerate their impact. Fellows will participate (all-expenses paid) in the 2008 Pop!Tech conference, the visionary annual gathering of thought leaders and change agents that will convene October 22-25, 2008 in Camden, Maine. Fellows will also take part in a unique,...
TAGS:No Tags
Wednesday, March 26, 2008 — No Region Specified

Planet vs. People: A Green Dilemma

Source: The Wall Street Journal - Environmental Capital

Welcome, dear readers, to the court of the law of unintended consequences. Britain is mulling tougher labeling standards to make it more difficult for imported food to carry an organic label. The idea is to make it less appealing to air-freight in fruits and veggies from Africa, with their aircraft emissions, in order to save the developing world from the ravages of global warming somewhere down the road. But one group may come out the loser much sooner: poor farmers in ...
TAGS:No Tags
Tuesday, March 25, 2008 — No Region Specified

Citi Foundation Launches $11.2 Million International Microfinance Program

Source: Philanthropy News Digest

The Citi Foundation has announced a three-year, $11.2 million program in partnership with the Small Enterprise Education and Promotion (SEEP) Network in Washington, D.C., to advance the integration of microfinance into the mainstream economies...
TAGS:No Tags
Tuesday, March 25, 2008 — No Region Specified

Rockefeller Foundation Gives $500,000 to Develop 'Social' Stock Market

Source: The Financial Times

A social stock exchange where ethical investors can trade shares in worthy enterprises could be set up under plans announced on Friday. The exchange would aim to combine profitable trading with social or environmental missions. Clean technologies, healthcare, first world development projects and help for disadvantaged communities would be included in the exchange. The Rockefeller Foundation, one of the world's best-known philanthropic organisations, is p...
TAGS:No Tags
Monday, March 24, 2008 — No Region Specified

Engineers Without Borders Bring Tech to Villages Without Power

Source: Wired

A group of volunteer engineers are finishing the design for a home-brewed wind turbine that will bring electricity to off-the-grid Guatemalan villages by this summer. After the U.S. engineers finish the design, local workers in the town of Quetzaltenango will manufacture the small-scale turbine. It will produce 10-15 watts of electricity, enough to charge a 12-volt battery that can power simple devices like LED lights.They're replacing kerosene lamps, if anything at all,&q...
TAGS:No Tags
Monday, March 24, 2008 — No Region Specified

How private health care can help Africa

Source: McKinsey Quarterly

How private health care can help Africa ? A study of sub-Saharan Africa's health care sector finds that the private sector plays a significant-and growing-role in meeting Africa's health care needs. The increasing demand could translate into $20 billion of additional investment to the region's private-sector health care infrastructure over the coming decade. Health care provision will account for half of the total investment o...
TAGS:No Tags
Friday, March 21, 2008 — No Region Specified

Thoroughly Modern Do-Gooders

Source: The New York Times

Fashions in goodness change, just like fashions in anything else, and these days some of the very noblest people have assumed the manners of the business world - even though they don't aim for profit. They call themselves social entrepreneurs, and you can find them in the neediest places on earth. The people who fit into this category tend to have plenty of r?sum? bling. Bill Drayton, the godfather of this movement, went to Harvard, Yale, Oxford and McKinsey before found...
TAGS:No Tags
Thursday, March 20, 2008 — No Region Specified

China's First SRI Fund Close to Launch

Source: China's First SRI Fund Close to Launch

The first Chinese mutual fund to invest in socially responsible companies in the country is expected to launch by the end of the month. Industrial Fund Management last week received government approval for the fund, but was forced to scale back its expected size and delayed its launch to the end of the month because investors were wary of committing their money into an equity fund while stock prices are falling, the Shanghai-based company said. The fund will ...
TAGS:No Tags
Thursday, March 20, 2008 — No Region Specified

Classmate PC Coming to U.S., European Retailers

Source: News.com

More low-cost laptops are headed to a retailer near you. Intel plans on expanding the distribution of its inexpensive, school children-friendly Classmate PC to U.S. and European retail outlets, according to a Reuters report on Wednesday. The Classmate will sell for $250 to $350, Lila Ibrahim, general manager of Intel's emerging market platform group, told Reuters. Apparently Intel has already been conducting pilot programs using the devices in classrooms in ...
TAGS:No Tags
Thursday, March 20, 2008 — No Region Specified

Poor are Sidelined on Climate

Source: The International Herald Tribune

The mantra from businesses and politicians in the developed world is that technology will provide a solution to rising global emissions. Indeed, they say, fighting global warming can be good for business. General Electric has rightly staked a claim to be an environmental leader by selling wind turbines. Wal-Mart is going green by asking its suppliers to evaluate their emissions as they manufacture Wal-Mart products. Trading in carbon emissions can certainly be profitable: In a month o...
TAGS:No Tags
Wednesday, March 19, 2008 — No Region Specified

Missions that Matter

Source: The Statesman

The Hyderabad round of the Global Social Venture Competition was, writes Kamalika Bhattacharya, all about using expertise to innovative for the greater social good. The Global Social Venture Competition is an unprecedented partnership that brings together the academic and financial worlds to support the creation of sustainable social ventures. The GSVC awards go to business plans or models that represent the highest, most integrated financial and social returns. Each year, ...
TAGS:No Tags
Wednesday, March 19, 2008 — No Region Specified

Engineers Without Borders Bring Tech to Villages Without Power

Source: WIRED

A group of volunteer engineers are finishing the design for a home-brewed wind turbine that will bring electricity to off-the-grid Guatemalan villages by this summer. After the U.S. engineers finish the design, local workers in the town of Quetzaltenango will manufacture the small-scale turbine. It will produce 10-15 watts of electricity, enough to charge a 12-volt battery that can power simple devices like LED lights. They're replacing kerosene lamps, if anything at a...
TAGS:No Tags
Wednesday, March 19, 2008 — No Region Specified

Challenging Systems: Partnerships between Business and Social Entrepreneurs

Source: International Business Leaders Forum

Businesses and social entrepreneurs could form successful partnerships as long as their engagement is based on solid partnering principles At a three day conference in Denver, Colorado, Muhammad Yunus (Nobel prize winner, Founder of the Grameen Bank and father of the Micro-credit movement) spoke of A World without Poverty: Social Business and the Future of Capitalism to a packed audience. In his speech he gave the view that poverty was not inevitable but it was the...
TAGS:No Tags
Tuesday, March 18, 2008 — No Region Specified

Company Lessons in Reaching the World?s Poorest

Source: Financial Times

Christian Seelos, director of the platform for strategy and and sustainability at IESE business school, is winner of an essay competition sponsored by the Financial Times and the International Finance Corporation on the private sector's role in development. This is his essay: Abstract Recent research on business models that target the ?Bottom of the Pyramid' (BOP), the vast untapped potential market made up of the world's poorest peo...
TAGS:No Tags
Tuesday, March 18, 2008 — No Region Specified

Como Hacer Buenos Negocios con Consumidores con Bajos Recursos

Source: Infobaeprofesional.com

No s?lo el cart?n y el papel son reciclables. Eso lo saben bien los cartoneros, que acceden a la telefon?a celular a trav?s de aparatos reciclados con una financiaci?n especial que les permite usar un servicio que de otro modo les resultar?a inaccesible. Ellos son parte del 70% de la poblaci?n de Am?rica Latina que gana menos de u$s3.000 por a?o, es decir no m?s de u$s8,2 por d?a, pero que a?n as? son consumidores activos y esperan acceder a bienes y servicios como cualquier otro se...
TAGS:No Tags
Monday, March 17, 2008 — No Region Specified

Nestle Releases the Company's First Creating Shared Value Report

Source: CSR Wire

March 17, 2008 - Nestl? has launched the company's first Creating Shared Value report, including new figures on the impact of its business activities on the environment and society across the world. In 2007, Nestl? reduced its direct greenhouse gas emissions by 16% compared to ten years ago, and its overall water withdrawal by 28%, while at the same time increasing the total volume of goods produced by 76%. In 2007, Nestl? invested over CHF 100 million in environment-related industrial impro...
TAGS:No Tags
Monday, March 17, 2008 — No Region Specified

An Entrepreneurial Path to Peace

Source: Business Week

By providing small businesses with incubators, Israeli industrialist Stef Wertheimer hopes to give Israelis and Arabs economic opportunities that will lead to peace. About five years ago, Stef Wertheimer came across Gamila Hiar, a Druze woman with no formal education who had learned the ancient art of making soap from wild herbs and olive oil as a child. At the time, Hiar was supplementing her family's income, producing about 500 soap bars a week, from a corner in a room underneat...
TAGS:No Tags
Friday, March 14, 2008 — No Region Specified

The BoP Beckons: Why grassroots design will determine the winners in developing markets

Source: Stanford Social Innovation Review

By Joshua Weissburg ?Spring 2008 How do you go about delivering reliable energy to poor, off-the-grid villages in India? If you're an established energy company, you don't. Enter Decentralised Energy Systems (DESI Power), a young, India-based power company that built a biomass gasification plant that runs on inexpensive agricultural residues such as ipomoea, a weed plentif...
TAGS:No Tags
Friday, March 14, 2008 — Sub-Saharan Africa

Book review: ?The Bottom Billion? by Paul Collier

Source: My Heart's in Accra

I've got a hip-high pile of books by my bedside, including several manuscripts written by good friends. But after Paul Collier's talk at TED , his book moved to the top of the pile, and I spent a rainy Saturday diving into his new book, The Bottom Billion. It was time well spent. Collier has dedicated the ...
TAGS:No Tags
Thursday, March 13, 2008 — South Asia

A Cellphone with no Flips, no Folds - Just a Very Low Price

Source: International Herald Tribune

PARIS: It looks a bit like a child's toy, a walkie-talkie circa 1975, a cheap plastic throwback to the good old days when telephones were made for talking. But to Spice Ltd., a telecommunications company in the world's fastest-growing phone market, this new product embodies the latest, greatest innovation in cellphone technology today: a handset priced at less than $20. Spice, which is based in Noida, India, unveiled what it is branding the People's Pho...
TAGS:No Tags
Wednesday, March 12, 2008 — No Region Specified

The New Face Of Hunger

Source: The Washington Post

The price of food is soaring. The threat of hunger and malnutrition is growing. Millions of the world's most vulnerable people are at risk. An effective and urgent response is needed. The first of the Millennium Development Goals, set by world leaders at the U.N. summit in 2000, aims to reduce the proportion of hungry people by half by 201...
TAGS:No Tags
Wednesday, March 12, 2008 — No Region Specified

Skoll Foundation Adds Eleven Pioneering Organizations to its Global Portfolio of Leading Social Entr

Source: The Skoll Foundation

PALO ALTO, Calif.-March 11, 2008-The Skoll Foundation today announced Skoll Awards for Social Entrepreneurship for 11 organizations working around the world in the areas of tolerance and human rights, health, environmental sustainability, peace and security, and economic and social equity. The recipients, who will each receive three-year grants of $1,000,000, join a growing global network of Skoll social entrepreneurs, now numbering 59, who have created innovative, proven solutions? for tackl...
TAGS:No Tags
Tuesday, March 11, 2008 — No Region Specified

Small Loans, Significant Impact

Source: The Washington Post

NEW YORK -- Se?oras! calls the banker, summoning her borrowers to attention at their first loan-repayment meeting. The small-business borrowers -- day-care providers, clothing sellers, jewelry makers -- crowd into the living room where their children are napping, eating cereal and watching TV. They are part of a nascent lending program created by Muhammad Yunus , a Ba...
TAGS:No Tags
Monday, March 10, 2008 — No Region Specified

For Good, Measure

Source: The New York Times Magazine

Philanthropy?s largest problem these days probably isn?t a lack of big gifts. Over the past few years, new records have been set in the number of individual donations of $100 million or more, and talking with those in the philanthropic community who advise potential donors reveals a sense of widespread anticipation that many billions of dollars, earned during the recent boom in the hedge-fund and private-equity markets, will soon pour into the social sector. At a moment of widespread economic...
TAGS:No Tags
Monday, March 10, 2008 — No Region Specified

What Microloans Miss

Source: The New Yorker

Making loans and fighting poverty are normally two of the least glamorous pursuits around, but put the two together and you have an economic innovation that has become not just popular but downright chic. The innovation???microfinance???involves making small loans to poor entrepreneurs, usually in developing countries. It has been around since the nineteen-seventies, but in the past few years it has seized the imaginations of economists, activists, and bankers alike. The U.N. declared 2005 th...
TAGS:No Tags
Friday, March 7, 2008 — No Region Specified

CNN Heroes: Peanut Farmers Get a Big Hand from Simple Device

Source: CNN

In 2002, Brandis was helping a friend repair a water treatment system in a Mali, Africa, village. There, he encountered a woman whose hands were bleeding from shelling peanuts to support her family -- and this was not uncommon. In Africa alone, women spend 4 billion hours a year shelling peanuts by hand, according to the Peanut Collaborative Research Support Program. A sun-dried peanut is like a little rock. It's that hard, says Brandis. Cracking t...
TAGS:No Tags
Friday, March 7, 2008 — No Region Specified

The Consumers of the Future

Source: Atlantic Community

The so called ?next billion? consumers come from Brazil, China, India, Eastern Europe and even parts of Africa and Asia and represent the largest untapped consumer market in the world. The Boston Consulting Group estimates that these new consumers already spend over a trillion dollars a year although they have barely entered traditional consumer markets yet. The individuals who make up this new consumer market are neither especially affluent nor particularly poor, however most are young and e...
TAGS:No Tags
Friday, March 7, 2008 — No Region Specified

Tata Plans World's Largest Wimax Network

Source: Business Week

The Indian telco plans a system of 3,000 base stations to deliver limited or full broadband service to 110 cities. Tata Communications is planning the world's largest commercial Wimax rollout, with full coverage in 15 cities across India. The Indian telco has contracted US vendor Telsima to build the network, which it expects to capture 200,000 retail customers in 2009. The network of 3000 base stations will provide limited coverage for enterprises in 110 citi...
TAGS:No Tags
Friday, March 7, 2008 — No Region Specified

Brands and Creative Capitalism

Source: Hindustan Times

At the recent annual World Economic Forum, Davos, the redoubtable Bill Gates spoke of ?creative capitalism??an approach where governments, businesses, and nonprofits work together to stretch the reach of market forces so that more people can make a profit, or gain recognition, doing work that eases the world's inequities. There is an increasing recognition and acceptance of this new and more complex definition of business. And at a different level, it could be the harbinger of a new way o...
TAGS:No Tags
Friday, March 7, 2008 — No Region Specified

Entrepreneurs in Brazil: Betting the Fazenda

Source: The Economist

SETTLE down at one of S?o Paulo's sushi bars and before long you will overhear a discussion about a start-up business making energy from obscure weeds, or some other bright idea for relieving members of the country's growing middle class of their disposable income. A field study of this kind displays a strong sample bias, but the point is clear: Brazil does not lack go-getters. Yet according to a more thorough survey backed by the International Finance Corporation (IFC), a sister orga...
TAGS:No Tags
Thursday, March 6, 2008 — No Region Specified

An Empty Revolution: The Unfulfilled Promises of Hugo Ch?vez

Source: Foreign Affairs

Summary:? Even critics of Hugo Ch?vez tend to concede that he has made helping the poor his top priority. But in fact, Ch?vez's government has not done any more to fight poverty than past Venezuelan governments, and his much-heralded social programs have had little effect. A close look at the evidence reveals just how much Ch?vez's revolution has hurt Venezuela's economy -- and that the poor are hurting most of all. FRANCISCO RODR?GUEZ, Assistant Profess...
TAGS:No Tags
Thursday, March 6, 2008 — No Region Specified

The Only Nonprofit That Matters

Source: Fortune Magazine

(Fortune Magazine) -- Peter Mukasa needs $250 to buy some hooch. Care to help a guy who's down on his luck if he promises to pay it back? Oops, too late. Mukasa, the owner of a closet-sized liquor store in the Ugandan village of Makindye, posted his funding request on Kiva.org one afternoon in mid-November. Within hours, ten lenders ponied up $25 each to help the man stock his shelves. Case open, case closed. That's how quickly things happen at the hottest nonprofit on the...
TAGS:No Tags
Thursday, March 6, 2008 — Latin America

Grupo Salinas Founder and Chairman Ricardo B. Salinas Addresses FIU Highilighting Opportunities at t

Source: IT Business Net

With a presentation entitled Selling to the Poor: a 100-Year Success Story, Mr. Salinas shared some of the entrepreneurial and social development opportunities of businesses that focus on low-income consumers, a market referred to by University of Michigan Business School Professor C.K. Prahalad as the Bottom of the Pyramid. The best solution to the problem of poverty is to create wealth, argued Mr. Salinas. We need to look for new entrepre...
TAGS:No Tags
Wednesday, March 5, 2008 — No Region Specified

Why Business Models and Market Mechanisms Alone Are Not the Answer for Social Entrepreneurs: Lessons

Source: CSTS (Santa Clara University)

In the field of social entrepreneurship there is a tendency for some to view profits or earned income models as the pivotal element in the sustainability and scaling up of social mission organizations.? The Global Social Benefit Incubator has worked with more than seventy organizations around the world. Twenty-five percent of its alumni organizations have scaled up significantly and an additional fifty-five percent are sustaining their valuable social mission impacts with what appear to be vi...
TAGS:No Tags
Wednesday, March 5, 2008 — No Region Specified

Question Box: The Internet Ror Remote Places, No Literacy Or Keyboards Required

Source: Boing Boing

The Question Box is a project from UC Berkeley's Rose Shuman to bring some of the benefits of the information on the Internet to places that are too remote or poor to sustain a live Internet link. It works by installing a single-button intercom in the village that is linked to a nearby town where there is a computer with a trained, live operator. Questioners press the intercom, describe their query to the operator, who runs it, reads the search results, and discusses them with the questio...
TAGS:No Tags
Wednesday, March 5, 2008 — South Asia

In India, How Do Rooftop Gardens Grow?

Source: The Wall Street Journal

HYDERABAD, India -- Can growing vegetables on India's slum rooftops and holding cooking classes in slum alleyways make a difference? That is the contention of a new program that's about to begin in a 100-acre slum in the capital city of India's southern state of Andhra Pradesh. The country has seen hundreds of programs over the years designed to combat malnutrition. The latest aims to clear out the garbage, create a patchwork of small organic farms to grow vegetables th...
TAGS:No Tags
Tuesday, March 4, 2008 — No Region Specified

Globalization Must Benefit Bottom Billion Of Poor

Source: Scoop

This year must be devoted to helping the bottom billion of the world's poorest to tap into global economic growth, Secretary General Ban Ki-moon told the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD) today. In a globalizing world, we require an international economic environment that fosters development, Mr. Ban said to UNCTAD's Executive Committee, which is gearing up for ...
TAGS:No Tags
Tuesday, March 4, 2008 — Sub-Saharan Africa

Negocios en mercados pobres

Source: Nacion.com

Crear riqueza es mejor que repartir riqueza. Dan raz?n a este planteamiento un n?mero creciente de personas que, en distintas partes del mundo, se empe?an en aportar al desarrollo de los pa?ses menos favorecidos. La creencia tradicional es que los negocios se enfoquen en la parte de la poblaci?n con recursos. Seg?n el Banco Mundial, el sector privado descuida la oportunidad de negocios que representan los 4.000 millones de pobres que hay en el mundo, mercado que representa unos $5 ...
TAGS:No Tags
Monday, March 3, 2008 — No Region Specified

Lessons in development

Source: Financial Times

To judge by their activities, one might think some MBA students at Cornell's Johnson School in the state of New York were pursuing a degree in international development. Their projects range from water purification technologies for poor African communities to a sustainable tourism initiative in Croatia. Students are required to apply social, economic and environ...
TAGS:No Tags
Saturday, March 1, 2008 — No Region Specified

Concibe tu estrategia para los m?s pobres como una innovaci?n de negocio

Source: Gaceta de Los Negocios

Robert Katz I Responsable de inversiones en proyectos de BOP de Acumen Fund y analista del World Resource Institute. Juanma Roca Robert Katz, autor del famoso libro Los pr?ximos 4.000 millones y uno de los mayores expertos del mundo en la denominada base de la pir?mide o bottom of the pyramid (BOP), ha participado esta semana en una jornada organizada por la Fundaci?n Compromiso Empresarial y Accenture sobre C?mo hacer negocios en la base de la pir?mide.
TAGS:No Tags
  • Managing Partners

    William Davidson Institute
  • Sponsoring Partner

    Citi Foundation
  • Content Partners

    IADB
Subscribe to Our E-Newsletter

Email:  
For Email Marketing you can trust

Found an Article we're Missing?Found an Article we're Missing?

Submit An Article

TrendingTrending

Social MediaSocial Media

Facebook Twitter

Story Snapshot

CLOSE