Take Three Pounds of Poverty

BY DAWN TAN
Jul 26, 2011

Philanthrocapitalism. Impact investing. Creative Capitalism. Call it what you will, social entrepreneurship is the new buzz phrase on the economic landscape that is turning water into wine, pig’s ears into silk purses and, yes, it promises to feed the multitudes. 

So what is wrong with creative capitalism? Well, when you think about it, nothing, really, as long as at the end of the day it genuinely betters the lot of underprivileged and under-represented communities and individuals who have to live on $1 or $2 a day. While the jury remains out on the matter of definitions or whether social entrepreneurship ultimately exploits or serves, I have no doubt that at the bottom of the pyramid, for those whose lives have improved, for the men and women who have a reliable income stream and who now live with dignity and renewed self confidence, for the communities with new enthusiasm for their future or those whose children can attend school regularly, the ends may just end up justifying the means.