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Category: Past Events

The Creating Value for All report was presented in Port-of-Spain, Trinidad & Tobago, on April 15, 2009, in the framework of the Youth Forum of the Americas and in collaboration with the Young Americas Business Trust (YABT). The report was launched during a special session of the Youth Forum dedicated to ‘CRS and Inclusive Business’, which was introduced by the Assistant Secretary General of the Organization of American States, Ambassador Albert R. Ramdin, and gathered about 80 young entrepreneurs and leaders of youth organizations from Latin America & the Caribbean.

Overview

The Creating Value for All report was presented in Port-of-Spain, Trinidad & Tobago, on April 15, 2009, in the framework of the Youth Forum of the Americas and in collaboration with the Young Americas Business Trust (YABT). The Report was launched during a special session of the Youth Forum dedicated to “CRS and Inclusive Business”, which was introduced by the Assistant Secretary General of the Organization of American States, Ambassador Albert Ramdin, and gathered about 80 young entrepreneurs and leaders of youth organizations from Latin America & the Caribbean.

Issues discussed included how corporate social responsibility and inclusive business models are relevant for the youth and how important it is for the private sector to work together with governments and civil society. The session also benefited from the presence of the GIM case author from Trinidad & Tobago, Ms. Melanie Richards, who briefly talked about the two Caribbean GIM case studies (Denmor Garment in Guyana and Mt Plaisir Estate Hotel in Trinidad & Tobago), which are being used regularly in SME trainings in the Caribbean.

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Documentation

 

The ”Growing Inclusive Markets” Initiative is expanding its network of developing country Research Fellows commissioned to investigate and write up 50 case studies of inclusive business models across regions, sectors and types of companies. From July 13-15, UNDP gathered 28 Southern academics in Bratislava, Slovakia, to kick-off an intensive case study writing process to be undertaken over the next five months in the Research Fellows’ home countries.

This pool of 28 highly qualified Research Fellows covers 20 countries, including Senegal, Sudan, Iran, Bangladesh, Vietnam and Kyrgyzstan, to name a few, and represents renowned institutions such as the Lagos Business School in Nigeria, the Indian Institute of Management in Bangalore, and the American University in Cairo. This pool of local academics will complement the first wave of 18 Research Fellows hired in 2006 to produce the first case studies of the Initiative.

From July to December 2009, these Research Fellows will be examining opportunities, challenges and solutions for doing business with the poor from the perspective of small, medium-sized and large companies operating locally, nationally and internationally, with the following research questions in mind: How is value created and distributed? Who creates and distributes value, and how? What value is created and distributed?

By early 2010, the “Growing Inclusive Markets” initiative will have produced around 100 short descriptions of inclusive business models across 40 countries, more than 100 full case studies, short videos clips, synthesis notes analyzing patterns according to different variables, and a specific report on inclusive business models in Eastern Europe & the CIS. Beyond these tangible outputs, important expected outcomes of this research process will include capacity building and joint creation of knowledge about inclusive business models, the expansion of a network of inclusive business researchers around the world, and concrete action inspired by cases.

 

Overview

Over 130 legislators, NGO leaders, business and international development actors gathered in the Capitol Building for the launch of Creating Value for All: Strategies for Doing Business with the Poor, which highlights the potential win-win of wealth creation while pursuing human development.

The ground-breaking report offers strategies and tools for companies to expand beyond traditional business practices and bring in the world’s poor as partners in growth. Part of UNDP’s Growing Inclusive Market’s initiative, the report draws on extensive case studies and demonstrates the effectiveness—both for human progress and for wealth creation—of more inclusive business models.

“This is not primarily about charity, but about business making profits and pursuing business interests that also benefit the poor,” said UNDP Administrator Kemal Derviş who hosted the panel discussion. “Sustainable business has to be profitable.” He noted that while it has taken a long time to agree that development and private entrepreneurship must go hand in hand, private direct investment has increased and now the private sector agenda, as illustrated by the work of the Growing Inclusive Markets Initiative, is one of the pillars of UNDP’s human development agenda.

He also stressed the important of looking at the gender in the private sector’s development role. Many entrepreneurs are women and many of potential customers and employees are women. To that effect, UNDP’s Regional Bureau for Africa Gender Unit and the GIM Initiative are looking to develop programmes involving women entrepreneurs.

Administrator Derviş was joined on the panel by bipartisan members of the House of Representatives’ Appropriations Committee—Nita Lowey (D-NY) and Jo Ann Emerson (R-MO), two leading development agency heads—James Kunder, Acting Deputy Administrator of USAID, and Jean-Michel Severino, Director General of the Agence Française de Développement, as well as John Sullivan, Executive Director of the Center for International Private Enterprise.This impressive group reflected the multi-stakeholder interests of the GIM initiative and its call for cooperation between businesses, governments and civil society organizations.

“This report goes beyond artificial distinctions,” said Jean-Michel Severino, Director General, Agence Française de Développement, specifically referring to the portrayal ofprivate corporations as agents of public policy and the evidence of private sector engaging with governments. He also praised the concrete processes for involving the poor in business models and new ways of financing the private sector discussed in Creating Value for All.

Congresswoman Nita Lowey stressed that development cannot be done by government alone—the poor need to participate in the market and, as is described in the report, empowering the poor to improve their lives through economic advancement is the approach that is needed.

Congresswoman Jo Ann Emerson congratulated UNDP for the publication of the Growing Inclusive Markets report and noted that it sets a “great framework” for discussion on the role of business and development.

James Kunder, Acting Deputy Administrator of USAID,said the Creating Value for All report “challenges us to increase interactions with the private sector.”He emphasized the need for better infrastructure and capitalizing on the resources of the poor as both consumers and producers.

John Sullivan, Executive Director of the Center for International Private Enterprise, encouraged business leaders to engage in policy dialogue with governments and to build political will for reform. Taking from the recommendations at the end of Creating Value for All, Sullivan laid out three steps to follow for building political will:

    1) identify initial conditions (the poor about barriers that are not obvious to the elite),
    2) mobilize business associations, think tanks and other civil society coalitions, and 3) generate specific policy recommendations.

Issues surrounding private sector involvement were addressed during the question and answer period, including how to encourage a private sector role in areas of conflict. Solid macroeconomic policies, functioning courts and orderly legal systems are fundamental to a thriving business environment. Yet not all countries have the stability needed to establish such basic protections. The panelists agreed that conflict is a greatest single obstacle to sustainable development, and that the public and private sector should strengthen the sharing of risks in a conflict situation.

UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon recently issued a call to action on the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs), urging an international effort to accelerate progress and to make 2008 a turning point in the fight against poverty. By the autumn, UNDP expects that over 50 countries will have launched Creating Value for All, dovetailing with the Secretary-General’s MDG call to action to take place on September 25 in the United Nations General Assembly.

Contact Details

UNDP Washington Liaison Office
1775 K St., NW, Suite 420,
Washington, DC 20006
Tel: 202-331-9130
Fax: 202-331-9363
http://www.us.undp.org/index.shtml