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  • The biggest contract, by Ian Davis

    The great, long-running debate about business’s role in society is currently caught between two contrasting, and tired, ideological positions. On one side of the current debate are those who argue that (to borrow Milton Friedman’s phrase) the ?business of business is business?. This belief is most established in Anglo-Saxon economies. On this view, social issues are peripheral to the challenges of corporate management. The sole legitimate purpose of business is to c...

    The Economist
  • Africans ask: ’Why isn’t anyone telling the good news?’ by Abraham McLaughlin

    The way most newspapers and TV news tell it, there’s little going on in Africa except poverty, famine, disease, and even genocide. But there’s more to Africa than hardship. And there are growing efforts to try to present a fuller, more rounded picture of this continent to the world. For example: * Africa’s economies grew by more than 5 percent last year - their biggest expansion in eight years. Central Africa’s oil boom spurred 14.4 percent g...

    The Christian Science Monitor
  • GFUSA Tsunami Study Recommends Microfinance to Accelerate Recovery

    A targeted investment in microfinance services could help more than 100,000 people in four tsunami-affected countries to build, rebuild or resume family-sustaining businesses such as fishing, farming and merchant shops, according to a new study released by Grameen Foundation USA (GFUSA). The groundbreaking study, Recovery from Tsunami Disaster: Poverty Reduction and Sustainable Development through Mic...

    Grameen Foundation USA
  • Helping the poor by selling them stuff; poverty alleviation through private enterprise, by Rhett But

    This year the United Nations announced a major push to deliver unprecedented amounts of aid to the world’s poorest countries. U2’s Bono has appealed to fans at rock concerts to support the One Campaign, which aims to persuade the U.S. government to spend an additional one percent of its budget to assist Africa and other struggling regions, while Tony Blair has called for a massive charitable package for Africa. After last year’s devastating tsunami, relief pledges quick...

  • With Loans, Poor South Asian Women Turn Entrepreneurial, byt Cris Prystay

    Every morning, Sarjoni Nandyala puts a few bars of Unilever PLC’s Lifebuoy soap and sachets of Clinic shampoo in a canvas bag and sets off to sell them to her neighbors in this dusty farming village in southeastern India. For Mrs. Nandyala, who took out a $200 loan from a state-run microcredit agency to start her business, the work is challenging and the returns modest -- $16 a month is her average profit. But Hindustan Lever Ltd., Unilever’s Indian subsi...

    The Wall Street Journal
    South Asia
  • Waste Not, Want Not as Villagers Pioneer Use of Biogas in Cambodia, by Ker Munthit

    Nget Loun’s rickety old thatched house is typical of Cambodia’s impoverished countryside, but it holds a surprise inside: a state of the art, environmental-friendly gas stove. Off the grid as far as most utilities are concerned, her household and 29 others in this village get a steady supply of clean energy from human and animal waste, using a device that not only makes cooking less of a chore, but also keeps their gardens flourishing and helps save the forests.

    Associated Press
  • Social Entrepreneurs to Play Bigger Role in China

    BEIJING, May 20 (Xinhuanet) -- A country confronted with such problems as wealth polarization, insufficient resources for education in rural areas, China has much room in its civil society for social entrepreneurs to play a bigger role, said Dorit Lehrack, senior consultant with the China Association for NGO Cooperation (CANGO).

    Xinhua News (link opens in a new window)
  • GT Moves to Revolutionarise Rural Communication, by Ama Achiaa Amankwah

    A model communication centre developed for rural and peri-urban communities, under an Information Communication Technology, (ICT) project dubbed eCARE, has been envisaged to revolutionarise communication in the rural areas. eCARE is an acronym for e-commerce and renewable energy. The project seeks to increase access to ICT powered by renewable energy in rural and peri-urban areas of Ghana. eCARE has been a community phone project by Ghana Telecom since February 2005. ...

    Public Agenda (Accra)
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