Guest Articles

January 8

James Militzer

NextBillion’s Most Influential Articles of 2023: Announcing the Three Winners of our Annual Contest

As 2024 gets underway, we’d like to announce the results of NextBillion’s annual “Most Influential Article of the Year” contest. A yearly tradition since 2012, the contest highlights 12 of our most-read articles from the past year, giving readers an opportunity to vote for the ones that influenced their thinking the most.

This year’s contest featured a strong slate of articles, covering a diverse array of topics ranging from systems change to decarbonization, in sectors that included energy, agriculture, finance and more. (You can access all the articles in the contest at this link.)

So without further ado, here are the three winners, as selected by our readers.


First Place

Repairing Electronics: A Circular Economy Solution for Reducing E-Waste and Building Resilience in Rural Africa

In our top-voted article of 2023, Sofia Ollvid at SolarAid explores a SolarAid program that is training technicians in Africa to repair solar devices, offering a promising solution to the problem of electronic waste.


Second Place

Taking Inspiration from Innovation: Key Insights from Eight Entrepreneurs Making an Impact in Emerging Markets

In second place, an article from Brigit Helms at Miller Center for Social Entrepreneurship highlights insights from social entrepreneurs in Miller Center’s Clean Water and Climate-Smart Agriculture program, who discuss their innovations and lessons learned.


Third Place

Analyzing Menstrual Health and Hygiene Through a Market-Based Lens: A New Report Assesses the Landscape in the Global South

In third place, an article from Lucie Klarsfeld McGrathLouise Berthault and Jeanne Charbit at Hystra discusses research that sheds light on the market for menstrual health and hygiene solutions in eight emerging economies.


As always, we invite you to read (or re-read) these three outstanding pieces — and all 12 of the articles in the contest. Many thanks to all the readers who voted — we’re grateful for your ongoing support and engagement. And special thanks to the authors of these winning articles, the other authors whose articles were featured in this contest, and all the guest writers whose work we published in the past year. Your insights drive NextBillion’s coverage, and we’re looking forward to working with you in 2024. We welcome all our readers and writers to contact us if you’d like to discuss a potential guest article or other type of collaboration in the coming year. Happy 2024!


James Militzer is the managing editor of NextBillion.

Image adapted from a photo by Jason Dent.




Agriculture, Energy, Environment, Finance, Investing, Social Enterprise, Technology, WASH
accelerators, decarbonization, digital inclusion, energy access, financial inclusion, food security, hygiene, impact investing, infrastructure, microfinance, off-grid energy, renewable energy, scale, smallholder farmers, solar, systems change, waste