the mif blog

Stories of inspiring entrepreneurs and organizations, discussion and commentary of new trends in private sector development, and the latest events and publications.

Corporate ‘venturing’ is producing tangible social impacts

By Elizabeth Boggs Davidsen

Companies are beginning to understand that they are uniquely positioned to scale up proven solutions to social and environmental problems, and that they have a role in addressing the challenges associated with poverty. The private sector played a key role in developing the recently launched Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), and companies are working to align their core business strategies with the global economic development agenda. The reasons are twofold. First, the most advanced companies no longer see corporate social responsibility activities as just a social duty and peripheral to core business. With half of global output, or 40% of market value, originating in emerging markets, companies realize that these markets are essential to the future of businesses that are seeking international opportunities and growth. 

Building Blocks to Provide Basic Services in Haiti: Targeting, Partnerships, and Flexibility

By Winsome Leslie

It is widely accepted that access to basic services is a key aspect of improving the lives of individuals at the base of the economic pyramid in any country. Unfortunately, basic services in Haiti are an outlier in two respects when compared with the rest of the Americas.

Ecatepec, Mexico: Here you can save for retirement

By Fermín Vivanco

Low-income, self-employed workers in Latin America and the Caribbean have been out of the spotlight of pension funds and the institutions that promote retirement savings. But now there are new initiatives that aim to change this. A story to analyze at Foromic in Santiago, Chile.

Breaking through to the C-Suite and Beyond: Chile Sets the Trend for Women

By Maria Teresa Villanueva

If women make up half of the population and almost half of professionals in Latin America and the Caribbean, why are not more women represented in senior management positions in businesses in the region? A study recently published by McKinsey & Co., Women in the Workplace 2015, estimated that in the United States, based on developments in the last three years, it will take 100 years before we have gender parity at the "C" levels—named for their acronyms in English (CIO, CFO, CEO)—which are the highest-level executive positions. The outlook for Latin America and the Caribbean appears to be even worse, given that its current share of women in management positions is only 6.4%, or one-third of the 19 percent share in the United States.

Coming Soon: Foromic in Santiago, Chile

By Elizabeth Terry

We are packing our suitcases and getting ready to launch the XVIII Foromic, the MIF’s largest annual event and the leading conference on microfinance and microenterprise in Latin America and the Caribbean. This year’s Foromic takes place October 26-28 in the dynamic city of Santiago, Chile.