Rob Katz

BoP Heavyweights Bishop, Edwards and Tooley Coming to NYC

If you are based in or around New York – or have plans to travel there in the coming months – you may be interested in two upcoming events that feature base of the pyramid subjects and experts.

The first is tomorrow night, 20 January, at the Demos Institute. The event, “Can Market-Based Models Save the World?” is a debate between two heavyweight authors. Taking the “yes” position will be Matthew Bishop, US Editor of The Economist and co-author of Philanthrocapitalism: How the Rich Can Save the World. The “no” position will be argued by Michael Edwards, Distinguished Senior Fellow at Demos and author of the newly published Small Change: Why Business Won’t Save the World.

There have been few public debates on the subject of market-based approaches to poverty, and these two thoughtful authors will each undoubtedly bring a data-driven, thoughtful perspective. I will be attending, and hope to see some NextBillion readers there. If you are unable to attend, I plan to write about the event after the fact.

The second must-see event is a book talk featuring BoP education expert James Tooley on Feburary 11. Sponsored by the John Templeton Foundation, the reception and book talk will center on Tooley’s 2009 book, The Beautiful Tree. While researching private schools in India for the World Bank, and worried that he was doing little to help the poor, Tooley wandered into the slums of Hyderabad’s Old City. Shocked to find it overflowing with tiny, parent-funded schools filled with energized students, he set out to discover if schools like these could help achieve universal education.

Tooley will be joined by The Atlantic’s Clive Crook, whose research and writing I have come to count on for mainstream coverage of BoP and development related topics.

These events are among many others posted on the Take Action page of NextBillion – I encourage you to take a look and see if events are happening in your area soon. And if you are planning an event that should be listed, please let us know via e-mail or comment below.

Agriculture, Investing