Pay-as-you-go technology for the rural poor

“How M-KOPA unlocked pay-as-you-go solar in rural Kenya” is a recent article for the website Gigaom by Katie Fehrenbacher about the growth of a fascinating rural solar business that uses Kenya’s home-grown banking-by-text system, M-PESA. The cost reported in this article (US$0.46 per …

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What does genius look like?

A review by Mal Warwick of Mountains Beyond Mountains: The Quest of Dr. Paul Farmer, a Man Who Would Cure the World, by Tracy Kidder @@@@@ (5 out of 5) Pulitzer- and National Book Award-winning author Tracy Kidder has been writing …

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Picture of the Week 2013-8-30

Children in poor countries are typically put to work at an early age. Most leave school before grade five. Here, a Nepali child gathers firewood for sale. This girl’s family may be dependent on the additional cash her work brings …

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Picture of the Week 2013-8-16

To residents of rich countries, the amounts of cash changing hands in market transactions may seem so small as to be inconsequential. However, the pennies this Ethiopian farmer earns from selling her produce on the street in town each week …

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Must reading about global poverty

Poor Economics: A Radical Rethinking of the Way to Fight Global Poverty, by Abhijit Banerjee and Esther Duflo Reviewed by Mal Warwick @@@@@ (5 out of 5) Public debate about the way to combat global poverty has ricocheted between two …

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Picture of the Week 2013-8-2

One company that has set out on the path described in The Business Solution to Poverty is d.light design, which was conceived in the Stanford course Entrepreneurial Design for Extreme Affordability. Solar lanterns like the one pictured here in Tanzania …

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The Last 500 Feet

by Paul Polak Developing new practical and profitable ways to cross the last 500 feet to the remote rural places where poor families now live and work is the first step towards creating vibrant new markets that serve poor customers. …

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