Can you create business and social value through the same enterprise? Does sustainable development and good business go hand in hand? Yes, it can! I have been working on these issues for the last 18 months at UNDP and am happy that tomorrow - coinciding with the UN MDG Summit - a number of the world's leading business networks and initiatives are coming together to rally business energy and expertise around inclusive business models.
What are inclusive business models? These are business models that involve poor people as consumers, employees, suppliers or distributors, and offer a powerful and sustainable way to fight poverty. There is a strong overlap with the Base of the Pyramid (BOP) and Social Enterprise concepts. Separating these different perspectives can be an academic exercise, however more convincing are hearing real cases. So let's hear what the leaders in the field report.
Audio, video and other resources from the workshop will be posted at Business Fights Poverty over the next few days. So follow there, and I will post some key take-aways here.
UPDATE from 22 September 2010:
There is a wealth of valuable information coming out of this event, here some selected highlights:
- Statement of Helen Clark, UNDP chief, at the World Business Development Awards (WBDA)
- The ten 2010 WBDA wining companies/initiatives
- New report: The MDGs: Everyone’s Business