Title: The Moral Marketplace: How Mission-Driven Millennials and Social Entrepreneurs Are Changing Our World
Author: Asheem Singh
Publisher: Policy Press
Publication Date: 31 January 2018
Genre: Non-Fiction (Adult), Business & Investing
In The Moral Marketplace, Asheem Singh charts the evolution of social enterprises, their structures and processes as well as the challenges that they face. As is well known, traditional philanthropy is never enough to deal with social problems (they also face donation fatigue) and governments continue to fall short. Hence, the provision of market-based solutions to deal with society’s pressing needs by attempting to earn profits whilst driving change.
Contrary to the common belief that social enterprises began with Mohammad Yunus’ Grameen Bank, they have been around since the 1460s with the Italian church-backed financial institutions, Monte di Pieta (Mounts of Piety) which used a form of pawn broking to source capital for the poor. They have since taken various forms and are found across several sectors including co-operatives, ethical and/or responsible financing methods, charities etc.
The book is well-researched and includes interview quotes from industry players. The illustrations are drawn from across the globe but notably from the UK. He also includes anti-liberal opinions from various quarters who dispute imposing metrics on social causes and public spaces. The book has nine main chapters that deal with aspects of dealing a socially-conscious organisation with his own recommendations at the end of the chapters. They can be treated as standalone essays and read in no particular order.
The Moral Marketplace seems like an introduction to the cultures, philosophies and innovations that have and will shape this movement. However, Singh uses highbrow language and assumes that the readers have some familiarity with the subject. Though it may presumably be a slim volume, it will require some time investment to enjoy.
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Note: The book was kindly provided by the publisher via NetGalley. All opinions expressed are mine.