Rob Katz

Business Skeptical of the Millennium Development Goals

Fast Company’s Jessica Silverman reports from the UN in Friday’s FCNow blog. Ms. Silverman may represent business’ point of viewwhen it comes to issues surrounding the MDGs – that is, the MDGs are sowide-ranging and vague, they risk becoming trite. I don’t know if Icompletely agree with her, but I struggle to defend the current UN plan asanything more than more of the same. An excerpt:

As they rattled offthe eight seemingly trite goals of “The Millennium Development GoalsReport,” I could not help but find myself incredibly disillusioned by thegrimness of their release that there has been little or no improvement inpoverty-stricken nations. I walked into the room nervously expecting profound,intricate goals to breeze over my head, only to feel rather alarmed. These arethe ’experts’ designated to mediate world issues? More like figureheads.

Is this how business will approach development–by dismissinggoals like the MDGs–or will there be a convergence towards a businessapproach to poverty? We?ll see.