Something that's actually good

Peter Uvin of Tufts University distils a set of 8 principles for companies operating in emerging markets, based on learnings from the work of development organisations; his colleague (and a former McKinsey partner), Dr. Bhaskar Chakravorti, responds to them from a business perspective (via Tufts MIB).

It's a great conversation that touches upon the operational, strategic and even psychological challenges of emerging markets.

Two key points from the first principle, 'All Action is Political':
  • "Managers on the ground have short time horizons: they know they are on the job for a short stint before they prove their ability to thrive under adversity and then move 'up' to more prestigious markets...rather than thinking holistically and longer-term about the broader impact of their commercial initiatives."
  • "If the local socio-political system is characterized by a lack of transparency, profound structural inequalities, deeply engrained types of social discrimination, widespread arbitrariness, omnipresent corruption or pervasive structural violence, then your actions will normally reinforce those features, even if unintentionally."

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