“Creating a World without Poverty” – Muhammad Yunus and I share a vision of placing poverty into a museum in our lifetimes – so we don’t forget what it was. Many years ago I began dedicating myself to issues surrounding poverty and the environment after an extended trip through Asia and Africa in 2000. I began to wonder – what if you could harness the power of the free market to solve the problems of poverty, hunger, inequality?
My personal journey has taken me to many places on this planet in many capacities. As a young student growing up in the United States during the height of the cold war, I could not phantom why people on the other side of the world would want to kill me. Conflict and conflict management in international affairs became an underlying theme in everything I did. I visited the Soviet Union to dispel the myth. Later I became a professor of transition theory at the University in Kiev, Ukraine, worked in the State Department of the United States, launched an internet company, established a foundation and consulted international organizations such as the OSCE and the Council of Europe. I discovered there are many ways to tackle conflict. But where could I have the most impact?
Now, I am focusing my efforts nearly 100% on Social Business as a Social Entrepreneur – a pioneering model for nothing less than a new, humane form of capitalism. I understood that conflict prevention starts with reducing poverty. I have always liked the motto “Doing well by doing good” and am motivated by triple bottom line metrics – people planet profit.
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