Rethinking the base of the pyramid: Social responsibility, sustainability and the role of entrepreneurs

Abagail McWilliams, Rodney C. Shrader, David Van Fleet

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter

Abstract

The base of the pyramid (BOP) represents a massive market, but not a wealthy one and the persistence of profound poverty highlights the universality of social needs and problems that can be addressed through corporate social responsibility (SR) and sustainable business models. MNCs are often called upon to provide goods and services to the BOP, but it remains unclear whether large firms will provide the most social value possible. In this study, we examine the BOP through the lenses of SR and sustainability and conclude that the incentives of large firms from economically dominant countries (EDCs) drive them to follow a SR model globally, while the incentives of entrepreneurs allow them to embrace sustainability as a differentiation strategy in BOP markets.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationVolume 3
Subtitle of host publicationSustainability, Ethics, and Entrepreneurship
PublisherWorld Scientific Publishing Co. Pte Ltd
Pages13-31
Number of pages19
Volume3-4
ISBN (Electronic)9789814733311
ISBN (Print)9789814733304
DOIs
StatePublished - Feb 1 2017

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Economics, Econometrics and Finance(all)
  • Business, Management and Accounting(all)

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    McWilliams, A., Shrader, R. C., & Van Fleet, D. (2017). Rethinking the base of the pyramid: Social responsibility, sustainability and the role of entrepreneurs. In Volume 3: Sustainability, Ethics, and Entrepreneurship (Vol. 3-4, pp. 13-31). World Scientific Publishing Co. Pte Ltd. https://doi.org/10.1142/9874