What is a social enterprise?

By Mal Warwick In a study of 430 ventures in India financed by the Rockefeller Foundation and the International Finance Corporation (an arm of the World Bank), Intellecap defined a social enterprise using the following criteria: 1. For-profit: They operate …

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Innovation in Africa

Recently Mal Warwick posted an article here highlighting the widespread innovation in sub-Saharan Africa (“Who are the innovators?” May 10, 2014).  In the same vein, a South African technology writer named Toby Shapshak (pictured at right) recently delivered a TED …

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Bootstrapping change in Africa

A review of The Bright Continent: Breaking Rules and Making Change in Modern Africa, by Dayo Olopade @@@@ (4 out of 5) By Mal Warwick It starts with the title itself — Dayo Olopade’s challenge to the prevailing sentiment that sub-Saharan Africa …

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Paul and Mal are on the road

Paul Polak and Mal Warwick, coauthors of The Business Solution to Poverty, are attending the annual conference of the National Collegiate Inventors and Innovators Alliance (NCIIA), in San Jose, California. On March 20, they delivered the keynote to a pre-conference …

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Is microfinance the answer?

By Mal Warwick Microfinance has taken quite a beating in recent years, as evidence has accumulated that its impact falls far short of the impressive gains predicted in its heyday after Muhammad Yunus was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize in …

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And the winner is . . .

Rob Lavoie of Calgary, Alberta, Canada, has won the Net Impact $5,000 Business Solution to Poverty Challenge. His entry was the unanimous choice of the three judges, Paul Polak and Mal Warwick, coauthors of The Business Solution to Poverty, and …

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Spring Health featured in Indian business press

Filling Up Fast By Vikas Kumar Business Outlook India Three companies show why providing safe drinking water in India can be a sustainable business Sarvajal Started in 2008 Investment so far Rs 40 lakh Customers per day 100,000 Waterlife Started in 2006 No. of …

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A treadle pump success story

Editor’s note: International Development Enterprises (iDE), founded in 1981 by Paul Polak, pioneered the commercial introduction of the foot-operated treadle pump to poor farmers in the Global South. In the 1980s and 90s, iDE sold 1.5 million pumps — about half …

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A simple pump feeds a family of 20

Editor’s note: This is the fifth of seven case studies from the files of iDE Ethiopia which we’re posting here to spotlight the human reality that motivates our work and gives it meaning. The people featured in these vignettes are …

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