Saturday, October 04, 2008

India: The Place to Be (A Social Entrepreneur)

Where do top international social entrepreneurs focus their efforts? India is the clear number one choice, with over 75% of the top organizations working there. I started with my list of 16 international social entrepreneurs that won Fast Company's Social Capitalist Award and looked at the countries in which each of them works. Neither TransFair nor Witness had easy-to-find information about the countries in which they work on their web sites, so I narrowed my list to 14 organizations. 12 of the 14 remaining organizations work in India. Second place was a 3-way tie among Kenya, South Africa, and Tanzania, each of which have 8 high-impact social entrepreneurs working make their countries a better place.

Why is India the clear favorite for social entrepreneurs? The obvious answer is market opportunity. India has a population of 1.1 billion people, or 1/6 of the world's population. According to the CIA World Factbook, approximately 1/4 of these people, or about 300 million people, live below the nation's poverty line. GDP per capita at PPP is $2,500, or about $7 per day, which is high enough that market-based approaches to poverty alleviation can be effective. And industrial output is growing at 8.5% per year, so MNCs are eager to capitalize on growth and show good corporate citizenship in the process. So whether you're a for-profit or a non-profit, be prepared to answer the question "What's your India Strategy?"

Below is a list of countries with my own calculations of population (in millions) living below $1 per day, based off World Bank data, plus the number of Fast Company Social Capitalists working in the country. If you want to be a pioneer, you may wish to go to The Gambia, which has 0.9 million people living under $1 per day but no Social Capitalists. If, on the other hand, you'd like to enter a country that has a high number of Social Capitalists per capita, you might try South Africa, Cambodia, or any of several Latin American countries.


Country Population Below $1 (Millions)
# Social Capitalists
1) India 370.3 12
2) China 128.3 5
3) Nigeria 97.7 3
4) Bangladesh 62.2 2
5) Pakistan 25.9 5
6) Tanzania 21.7 8
7) Ethiopia 16.8 4
8) Indonesia 16.3 7
9) Brazil 13.8 6
10) Philippines 12.3 4
11) Madagascar 11.1 2
12) Ghana 9.9 5
13) Kenya 7.9 8
14) Niger 7.8 2
15) Zimbabwe 7.3 4
16) Mozambique 7.3 5
17) Zambia 7.2 4
18) Nepal 6.4 6
19) Rwanda 5.5 4
20) South Africa 5.0 8
21) Haiti 4.9 4
22) Venezuela
4.8 2
23) Cambodia 4.7 6
24) Burundi 4.1 2
25) Mali 4.1 3
26) Burkina Faso 3.7 3
27) Yemen
3.2 1
28) Colombia 3.1 6
29) Sierra Leone 3.1 3
30) Mexico 3.1 6
31) Cameroon 3.0 3
32) Peru 2.8 5
33) Central African Republic 2.7 3
34) Cote d'Ivoire 2.7 1
35) Malawi 2.7 4
36) Benin 2.5 3
37) Argentina 2.5 6
38) Nicaragua 2.4 6
39) Turkey 2.4 2
40) Ecuador 2.3 4
41) Egypt
2.2 3
42) Bolivia 2.1 4
43) Senegal 2.0 3
44) Guatemala 1.7 6
45) Lao PDR 1.5 4
46) El Salvador 1.2 5
47) Sri Lanka 1.1 4
48) Honduras 1.0 5
49) Gambia
0.9 0
50) Paraguay 0.8 4
51) Mauritania 0.7 0
52) Lesotho 0.7 2
53) Namibia 0.7 2
54) Swaziland 0.5 2
55) Botswana 0.5 3
56) Tajikistan 0.5 1
57) Azerbaijan 0.3 1
58) Georgia 0.3 2
59) Mongolia 0.3 2
60) Dominican Republic 0.3 4
61) Panama 0.2 2
62) Trinidad and Tobago 0.2 1
63) Costa Rica 0.1 2

1 comment:

Gonzalo A. Peña said...

Interesting article, Ryan. Social Entrepreneurship is one of my passions, so thank you for writing about it. Let me know if I can be of help.

Gonzalo
nicedeed.blogspot.com