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  • Microsoft turns focus to emerging markets, by Todd Bishop

    Microsoft Corp.’s research unit is turning to social scientists in a new effort to understand the long-term possibilities for computer technology in developing countries. A Microsoft Research lab, to be inaugurated tomorrow in Bangalore, India, plans to employ anthropologists, ethnographers and others to observe and document the lives of people in India’s rural villages. Kentaro Toyama, a 35-year-old Microsoft computer-science researcher who will lead the lab...

    Seattle Post-Intelligencer
  • Investors Start to Eye Africa, by Ernest Harsch

    Usually, when investors look around for someplace to put their money, Africa is practically invisible. But at a time of uncertainty in global financial and capital markets -- and with natural resources such as oil in high demand -- a few are starting to give more than a passing glance in Africa’s direction. In fact, inflows of foreign direct investment (FDI) to African countries increased in 2003 by 28 per cent from the year before, from $12 bn to $15 bn. This put Africa ...

    Africa Renewal
  • Water Socialists Are All Wet, by Fredrik Segerfeldt

    There may be a solution to what had been an insoluble problem. In recent years, a small number of developing country governments have turned to the private sector for help and have introduced market-oriented reforms in the water sector. Overall, the results have been encouraging. The reforms have had limited scope - 97 percent of all water distribution, after all, is still in government hands - but millions of new households in such diverse locations as Argentina, Cambodia, Guinea, Morocco...

    Cato Institute
  • A model for water provision in urban Africa?

    The bulk of the US $300 million invested in Senegal’s water partnership has come from World Bank loans made to the Senegalese government. And the World Bank seems pleased with its project, noting in an evaluation report in December that the Senegal case is regarded as a model of public-private partnership in sub-Saharan Africa. One of the main criticisms of utility privatisation is that once the water system is being run to make profits, price hikes usually follow which hit...

    Sub-Saharan Africa
  • GE sees light in the developing world, by Alex Ritson

    GE is simply seeking opportunities by following new markets, [Ferdinando Beccalli-Falco] says. Growth in the western world is growth that is somewhat limited. Nowadays, the market is in so-called developing countries. The market is in China, the market is in India, the market is in the Middle East. We do go where there is a need for infrastructure creation because GE is an infrastructure company. We supply power generating equipment, we supply locomotives, we supply aircraft engines....

    BBC News
  • Sustainable approaches to healthcare

    Governments and non-profit aid organisations need to create a market for drugs, build better healthcare delivery systems, and keep trained medical personnel from leaving the developing world if they are to improve health in the world?s poorest countries, according to panelists who spoke at a Wharton Social Impact Management conference in January. Story available here. ...

    The Financial Express
  • `The fortune is indeed at the bottom of the pyramid`: Interview with Ratan Tata, by T N Ninan and P

    The fastest growth, Ratan Tata says, does indeed lie at the bottom of the pyramid and discusses his group?s plans to get to it, including a fundamental re-look at how products/services are produced. Interview available here. ...

    The Business Standard
  • Kraft, Kellogg eye emerging markets

    International expansion is key for the two of the largest U.S. food companies, company executives said on Monday, but it comes with its share of risks. Speaking at the Reuters Food Summit, Kraft Foods Inc., the largest U.S. food company, said it plans to push deeper into emerging markets this year, but breaking into India has proven to be more of a challenge than anticipated. And Kellogg Co., the world’s largest cereal maker, said it was taking a cautious approach on China due to cost consid...

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