Global Health Ideas

Finding global health solutions through innovation and technology

New Report on Social Entrepreneurship

Yesterday at the Skoll World Forum a new report, Growing Opportunity, was released. I thought readers would be interested in their survey on social entrepreneurship, but I would only skim the health chapter as I found it lacking.

“WASHINGTON, Mar. 29, 2007 — Renewable energy, affordable and effective health care, and fighting climate change are just three of the major global problems currently being addressed by a new model of entrepreneurship, according to a new report by SustainAbility…Drawing on the results of a survey of more than 100 ‘social entrepreneurs’, “Growing Opportunity: Entrepreneurial Solutions to Insoluble Problems,” explores how business partnerships with these ‘social entrepreneurs’ offer benefits to both companies and communities.” Full press release.

This is the first report in what will be an annual series. If you don’t have time to read the report, you can find the key conclusions here. For a full copy in PDF version goto the GreenBiz website.

Health Chapter:
The survey does provide some good information, but the chapter on health was disappointing and lacking. Perhaps my expectations were too high, but I was put off by several things. First the health chapter highlighted the following thought: “For good or ill, there is a widespread and deeply held public unease at the role of private enterprise at the heart of healthcare delivery.”

growingopportunitycover.jpgI have no idea what this means and am not sure it is even true. It depends what part of the private sector? If we are talking about big pharma, sure, but that is only one piece in the healthcare delivery machine. And as far as non private sector options, there is equal if not more distrust and doubt in parts of governmental run healthcare whether that is in the US (the Walter Reed scandal comes to mind) or abroad where in many countries people purchase most of their healthcare from the private sector. For a sector/industry as complex as healthcare this quote is far too vague and general to be of any use. The lack of citations/references was also a bit troubling to me. I had other problems with the health chapter (email me if you want to hear additional thoughts), but that shouldn’t take away too much away from the overall report. I would still check out the survey portion. For another perspective on the overall report see Joel Makower’s thoughts.


Written by Aman

March 29, 2007 at 9:18 pm

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