Roger Kaufman Awards 2019: Civil society, Megarregions, Market-making innovation
The 2019 Roger Kaufman Awards went to new categories of social impact: Civil Society Organizations (Never Again Rwanda), Mega regions (AriSon - Arizona-Sonora) and a new category of Ideas and Concepts with -among others- The Prosperity Paradox by Christensen, Ojomo and Dillon and The Third Pillar, by Raghuram Rajan.
Never Again Rwanda (NAR) is a peacebuilding and social justice Non-Governmental organization, which was founded in 2002, in response to the 1994 genocide against the Tutsi.
The founders started with an idea of creating a safe space for the youth and university students to open up about their trauma and past pain, in order to promote healing of the then-fractured society. The idea later grew into an organization after the founders had an opportunity to work with the National commission for fight against genocide to organize the 10th anniversary of the 1994 genocide against the Tutsi
commemoration. NAR was officially registered in 2008 and since then, it has grown from only two to seven pillars to include; Peacebuilding, Governance & Rights, Education, Research & Advocacy, Sustainable Livelihood, Great Lakes program and Youth engagement.
The Ari-Son Mega region Council is a bi national council of local elected officials from Arizona and Sonora who work with stakeholders from all levels of government and the business community to increase dialogue and strengthen strategic cross-border economic development efforts.
The Mega region was created by an agreement signed between mayors of Sonora and Arizona in 2014. The objective is to expand local government connections, best practices, provide a forum to elevate the voice of local leadership on bi national policy matters, and identify areas for opportunity and collaboration.
In August of 2016, the Ari-Son Mega region Council was formally recognized by the League of Arizona Cities and Towns as an official affiliate group of the organization providing an ongoing forum to advance local binational relations among the cities of Arizona and Sonora.
Ideas and Concepts
This new category seeks to showcase the importance of new research, ideas and concepts in promoting and effecting value-adding social impact. Among the 2019 candidates are:
Christensen, the author of such business classics as The Innovator’s Dilemma and the New York Times bestseller How Will You Measure Your Life, and co-authors Efosa Ojomo and Karen Dillon reveal why so many investments in economic development fail to generate sustainable prosperity, and offers a groundbreaking solution for true and lasting change.
Global poverty is one of the world’s most vexing problems. For decades, we’ve assumed smart, well-intentioned people will eventually be able to change the economic trajectory of poor countries. From education to healthcare, infrastructure to eradicating corruption, too many solutions rely on trial and error. Essentially, the plan is often to identify areas that need help, flood them with resources, and hope to see change over time.But hope is not an effective strategy.Clayton M. Christensen and his co-authors reveal a paradox at the heart of our approach to solving poverty.
While noble, our current solutions are not producing consistent results, and in some cases, have exacerbated the problem. At least twenty countries that have received billions of dollars’ worth of aid are poorer now.Applying the rigorous and theory-driven analysis he is known for, Christensen suggests a better way. The right kind of innovation not only builds companies—but also builds countries. The Prosperity Paradox identifies the limits of common economic development models, which tend to be top-down efforts, and offers a new framework for economic growth based on entrepreneurship and market-creating innovation.
Christensen, Ojomo, and Dillon use successful examples from America’s own economic development, including Ford, Eastman Kodak, and Singer Sewing Machines, and shows how similar models have worked in other regions such as Japan, South Korea, Nigeria, Rwanda, India, Argentina, and Mexico.
The ideas in this book will help companies desperate for real, long-term growth see actual, sustainable progress where they’ve failed before. But The Prosperity Paradox is more than a business book; it is a call to action for anyone who wants a fresh take for making the world a better and more prosperous place.
As a former central banker, Rajan gives special attention to the community’s role in financial markets and goes so far as to defend long-ago prohibitions on usury. Neighbors helping neighbors represents a form of saving, creating a reciprocal obligation to be repaid when the tables inevitably turn. Small, young firms tend to get more and better loans when fewer banks are present, perhaps because less competition means a higher likelihood of retaining a firm’s business as it grows. This leads to a crucial, more generalizable point: “Relationships seem to be stronger when the members of the community have fewer alternatives, for it gives the members confidence that they will stay mutually committed.” The modern market’s greater abundance of choice is not without trade-offs.