Thursday, April 03, 2008
For the past 25 years, Paul Polak has wondered about two questions: What makes poor people poor? And what can they do about their poverty?
In working towards the answers, Polak founded the organization, International Development Enterprises. IDE is a different kind of non-profit organization which is dedicated to ending poverty in the developing world not through handouts, but by helping poor farmers invest in their own success.
In 2007, Polak took his mission a step further when he founded D-Rev. This organization's goal is to design affordable technology for dollar-a day customers and developing markets where they can be sold profitably and sustainably at a fair market price. The mission is to help the 90% of the world that lives at the "Base of the Pyramid" to work their way out of poverty.
On February 28, 2008, Polak released his book entitled "Out of Poverty: What Works When Traditional Approaches Fail". Hailed by The Economist as a "wise and engaging new book", Polak tells why traditional poverty eradication programs have fallen so short, and how he and his organization developed an alternative approach that has succeeded in lifting 17 million people out of poverty.
Polak plans to begin a book tour soon - but in the meantime, if you want to hear his thoughts, check out eClips' most recent interview with Paul Polak.
You can also check out NPR's recent interview with Polak entitled Tackling Global Poverty His Own Way