The failure of community economic development

I began my professional working life in the field of ‘community economic development’ (CED) and ‘local economic development’ (LED). These models of development provide an important contribution to understanding the problems facing local communities, but they are often seen as a poor cousin to ‘real’ economic development. Whilst this is unfair, it is not completely…

The power of entrepreneurial role models

I used to see most businesspeople as men; white men with a leased BMW and a fancy office suite. They did ‘deals’ and were ultra-competitive, displaying a ‘profit above all else’ ethic. However, this all changed when, in 1987, I read Paul Hawken’s book ‘Growing a Business’. Hawken was one of the first to promote…

Does inclusive growth require inclusive business?

While the world’s economy continues to grow and poverty is on the decline, inequality is increasing and the exclusion of certain social groups remains a persistent problem. In response, governments and development agencies are paying greater attention to social inclusion as a core principle for development. While they have their problems, the Sustainable Development Goals…