Tag Archives: global poverty

Book Review: The Boy Who Harnessed the Wind

Book by William Kamkwamba and Bryan Mealer, HarperCollins, 2009. Reviewed by Barbara Merz. This book was my companion while delayed at an airport recently. Right beside the Starbucks café at LAX airport waiting for my flight to Sydney I noticed an advert with a small Afghani girl with bright eyes and a determined face. It read ‘Role Model.’ Fellow travelers were stopping by, perhaps jarred by the message. The poster was part of a broader … Continue reading

Posted in Book Reviews, Issue 6: Autumn 2010 | Tagged , , , , , , , , | Comments Off

Suffering

by George Packer, The New Yorker; January 25, 2010. When news of the earthquake that killed more than 200,000 Haitians hit the wires in mid January, humanitarian experts knew the final devastation toll would be grim. The extent of the damage of a natural disaster is always compounded by the weakness of existing infrastructure – both physical and political. For years international development observers have reported that Haitians are the poorest people of the Western … Continue reading

Posted in Ethics, Issue 6: Autumn 2010 | Tagged , , , , , , | Comments Off

A Partial Marvel: Microcredit may not work wonders but it does help the entrepreneurial poor

The Economist; 18 July 2009. Has microcredit delivered on its promise to lift borrowers out of poverty? Academics have had a hard time finding evidence to answer this question. Part of the challenge of studying the impact of microcredit is selection bias. A scientific survey requires that you compare those who get a microcredit loan with a control group of similar people facing the exact same economic hardships and external market constraints. Microcredit loans may … Continue reading

Posted in Issue 4: Spring 2009 | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | Comments Off

Does Microlending Really Help the Poor?

The BBC World Service; radio broadcast; 29 July 2009. To listen to the voices of borrowers, lenders, and regulators engaged in microcredit BBC radio reporter Jo Fidgen goes to the streets in Zambia. She uncovers the “debt trap” into which some Zambian borrowers have fallen. According to one microcredit borrower who runs a sewing shop: “After I pay off the interest on my loan every month, there is no money left to invest in my … Continue reading

Posted in Issue 4: Spring 2009 | Tagged , , , , , , , | Comments Off

Emerging Markets, Emerging Models: Market-Based Solutions to the Challenges of Global Poverty

The Monitor Group; March 2009. Although microfinance may be the best known example of serving low-income groups through a market solution, many other models are now emerging to serve a large and growing population of poor people. Half the world’s population lives on less than $2 per day: that is 2.6 billion people. During the last few decades of increasing aid the livelihood for those at the “bottom of the pyramid” has not gotten better. … Continue reading

Posted in Issue 4: Spring 2009 | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | Comments Off

Book Review: Creating a World Without Poverty

Book by Muhammad Yunus. Reviewed by Barbara Merz. Creating a World Without Poverty could easily have been a retrospective. After all, its author has plenty to reflect upon. Instead, the book is unmistakably forward-looking. This book presents a compelling vision for the future of capitalism. It envisions a market where social businesses emerge to address social issues. Muhammad Yunus could have rested on his laurels when he was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize in 2006. … Continue reading

Posted in Book Reviews, Corporate Responsibility, Ethics, Issue 4: Spring 2009, Social Enterprise, Social Investment | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , | Comments Off

Book Review: The Life You Can Save: Acting Now to End World Poverty

BY Peter Singer, Text Publishing , Melbourne; 2009. Reviewed by Dr. Michael Liffman, Director, Asia-Pacific Centre for Social Investment and Philanthropy, Swinburne University. Peter Singer’s latest book should be one of his least controversial – and, paradoxically, therefore one of his most important. Singer’s ideas inevitably excite heated debate, largely because, notwithstanding their extraordinary lucidity, logic and respect for facts, they rest on premises – the priority of avoiding suffering, the interests of animals, the … Continue reading

Posted in Book Reviews, Issue 3: Autumn 2009 | Tagged , , , , , , , | Comments Off