Tag Archives: bop

Lessons for toilet builders from the history of India’s cookstove development efforts

Vaishnavi Chandrashekhar has written a superb critical analysis looking back at the history of India’s development efforts to provide viable, feasible, and desirable solutions to the myriad unmet needs of the common man. Using cookstoves as her narrative theme, she explores the challenges of base of the pyramid product development and marketing, and draws lessons […]

Posted in Assumption filter, Base of the Pyramid, Business Models, Consumer Behaviour, Design, Emerging Markets, India, Indigenous & Traditional, Innovation Planning, Marketing, Perspective, rural, South Asia, Technology, User research | Also tagged , , , , , | Leave a comment

Floating Upwards: The Bottom of the Pyramid Segment is No More

Pew Research Center’s latest results on global income distribution show some rather large shifts among the lowest income segments. The Bottom of the Pyramid or Base of the Pyramid (BoP) segment, defined as those who live on less than $2.50/day has just lost a significant percentage of the population. While one can quibble that $2.50 […]

Posted in African Consumer Market, Analysis, Base of the Pyramid, Consumer Behaviour, Economy, Emerging Markets, global, Income, Marketing, Perspective, Prepaid Economy & Informal Sector, Research | Also tagged , , , | 2 Responses

The values gap in banking the unbanked

Back in 2008, after my first deep dive into the African consumer market, on behalf of Samsung, I’d identified something I called the “values gap” as an intangible barrier between the first world’s consumer brands, and the mindset and worldview of the majority market, then referred to (erroneously) as the “Bottom of the Pyramid.” The […]

Posted in African Consumer Market, Assumption filter, Banking, Base of the Pyramid, Consumer Behaviour, Design, Frameworks, Innovation Planning, Perspective, Prepaid Economy & Informal Sector, Process, UCSD, User research | Also tagged , , , , , | Leave a comment

People, Pesa & Place: A Multidisciplinary lens for innovation in social & economic development

This original Venn diagram visualizing the sweet spot of innovation success is a familiar one, with as many variations as there are practitioners. One of the most common is the one below, where business, people (or, as often, design) and technology replace the human centered qualities of viable, desirable and feasible. I’ve used them both […]

Posted in Assumption filter, Base of the Pyramid, Consumer Behaviour, Culture, Design, Ecosystem, Frameworks, Innovation Planning, Perspective, Prepaid Economy & Informal Sector, Process, Research, Systems, UCSD, User research | Also tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Response

Part 4: The visual documentation of the original research on rural economic behaviour

I have uploaded a PDF synopsis of the fieldwork conducted during the original Prepaid Economy research including approach and methodology.  Also documented are the different ways those in the rural economy manage their ‘investments’. These images support the observations documented in Part 2 and my thoughts on rural Indian cow ownership have been fleshed out […]

Posted in About, Africa, Airtime, Alternative currency, Assumption filter, Banking, Base of the Pyramid, Business Models, Cashless transactions, Consumer Behaviour, Culture, Economy, India, Indigenous & Traditional, Informal & Flexible, Livestock, Philipines, Projects and Reports, Research, Rural Economy, Sub Saharan Africa, User research | Also tagged , , , , , , | 1 Response

Part 3: Synthesis and Insights from original research on rural economic behaviour

One can conclude from synthesizing the data collected across the geographies and the range of “BoP” income levels that rural households demonstrated similar patterns of behaviour in their management of household expenses on irregular income streams. These are: the rapid conversion of cash into tangible assets such as goods or livestock, the  subsequent storage of […]

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Part 2: The Observations made during original research on rural economic behaviour

One can roughly consider the relative income (or wealth) across three regions where observations were conducted on a continuum where the Indian village was the ‘wealthiest’ while the Malawians were living closest to the edge. However, on synthesizing the combined data collected across geographies, patterns of financial behaviour emerged that showed similarities of intention and […]

Posted in Africa, Alternative currency, Assumption filter, Banking, Base of the Pyramid, Business Models, Cashless transactions, Consumer Behaviour, Culture, Economy, Indigenous & Traditional, Informal & Flexible, Livestock, Projects and Reports, Research, Rural Economy, User research | Also tagged , , , , , , , , , | 1 Response

Reflecting on this blog’s genesis after 5 years

I started this blog in late December 2008, in earnest and every day during the first prototype fieldwork for The Prepaid Economy project, one of the iBoP Asia Project’s first batch of Small Grant winners from the ASEAN region. For the first 5 months of 2009, this blog was on the mainpage of my website […]

Posted in About, Africa, Airtime, ASEAN, Assumption filter, Base of the Pyramid, Business Models, Collection, Consumer Behaviour, Design, Economy, Flexibility, global, Income, India, Indigenous & Traditional, Informal & Flexible, Kenya, Migrant worker, Mobile platform, Philipines, Projects and Reports, Research, South Asia, Strategy, Sub Saharan Africa, urban, User research, Value | Also tagged , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Dangerously obsolete: questioning the use of the all purpose label “The BoP”

Siim Esko wrote a short piece on his blog that inspired me to write out these thoughts. Since much of his work focused on the BoP in India and I’ve recent East African experience with the demographic, it was but natural for us to compare and contrast the challenges and the conditions of the lower […]

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Timely and relevant or obsolete? Kotler’s BoP in India

Syamant just sent me this Business Standard article on Philip Kotler’s Centre of Excellence to open near New Delhi to focus on the BoP specifically. That is, the Bottom of the Pyramid which was the title of CK Prahalad’s seminal book on high volume, low cost markets in the informal economies of the developing world. […]

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