NEW CENTURY – New Challenges
The 21st century presents an unprecedented set of challenges – and opportunities – for business. The global economy has been crippled by a spike in world oil prices, growing food shortage, specter of climate change, global financial meltdown, and the Great Recession. At the same time, rapid growth in emerging markets and the developing world has rendered conventional strategies, focused primarily on the established markets in the US and Europe, virtually obsolete. Continued growth in emerging markets is threatened, however, by poverty, inequity, environmental destruction, and growing social unrest. It is becoming increasingly clear that innovation on an unprecedented scale will be the watchword for the future: Corporate and business strategies aimed at simply adapting current products and technologies for application in the emerging and developing markets of tomorrow will not be up to the challenge – economically, socially, or environmentally. Increasingly, competitive success will hinge on driving innovation from the bottom up, by incubating new, clean technologies and business models, starting in the underserved space at the base of the world income pyramid (BoP). Serving the BoP sustainably requires “leapfrog” green innovation: the incubation today of the distributed, sustainable infrastructure of tomorrow. Ultimately, such “Green Leap” innovation might “trickle up” to the top of the pyramid, presenting enormous growth and profit opportunities through what is now being called “reverse” innovation..
The mission of the Emergent Institute is to dramatically increase the number and success of intrapreneurs and entrepreneurs focused on socially inclusive and environmentally sustainable business development for the 21st century. We aim to make the Kanakpura campus in Bangalore the hub for these activities, along with field-based affiliates in India and partners around the world.