Poverty: A Stumbling Block or a Stepping Stone?

Published on 29th November 2005

On a field routine, I visited a farmer who had some cows enclosed in a wooden shelter. On hearing us talk, one cow desperately tried to have a glimpse of us. But since the wooden wall was a barrier, the cow hoisted herself onto the wall using the fore limbs and peeped at us on the opening above the wall. The cow could not see us through the wall, but her efforts made her see us. Is it possible for us to look beyond poverty as a scourge and see opportunities yonder?

The question is not whether globalization is good or bad, or whether small or large corporations can tackle problems more efficiently. Instead, it is what works. NGOs, large domestic firms, multinational corporations, governments and even the poor themselves can come together through entrepreneurial activities and work to solve the problem of poverty. New and creative approaches to convert poverty into an opportunity should be found. This process starts when consumers are respected as individuals and equally important joint problem-solvers.

Big business, civil society and government should forget partisanship and work to engineer real motors of economy to create wealth and small businesses. It also calls for law and order.

Join us in this issue which gives prominence to the role of business in fighting poverty.


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