Today’s economy is in a state of disequilibrium due to forces from globalization and automation to inequality and climate change.These forces have benefited some in the short-term, but many people are still unable to fully participate in the economy. Global value chains made up of suppliers, consumers, and employees account for approximately 60% of economic activity and wield considerable influence over the ability of firms and individuals to profit from the system. However, many global businesses do not incorporate economically disadvantaged people, excluding them from the upward movement of the economy and leaving the potential of a large section of the population untapped by business ventures. In an inclusive economy, the largest corporations partner with enterprises of all sizes to create shared value for the betterment of society.
The inclusive economy ecosystem is comprised of actors that promote biodiversity and ecosystem services, sustainable production and consumption, inclusive economic growth, and human dignity. The inclusive economy ecosystem is propelled by the interactions among three types of entities: 1) corporations, 2) entrepreneurs and 3) enablers. Expand the descriptions below to learn more.
Inclusive corporations incorporate intentional social and environmental practices to increase competitiveness and foster societal well-being. Inclusive business practices can be related to employees, suppliers, distributors, or consumers. By applying socially responsible practices in core operations and value chains, inclusive corporations use their influence to accomplish a multiplier effect when it comes to their societal impact.
Inclusive entrepreneurs are small and mid-sized enterprises (SMEs) that create innovative new processes, products, or services that address and improve the quality of human life at the micro or macro level. Inclusive entrepreneurs respond to market failures with transformative innovations aimed at solving social problems while maintaining financial sustainability.
Enablers serve as a critical yet invisible actor in the inclusive economy. People, culture, and technology act as the institutional, market, and socio-economic ‘glue’ that binds, catalyzes and accelerates interactions and innovation. Enablers facilitate collaborations and connections; transfer knowledge; generate and share new knowledge; devise various forms and stages of financing; implement supportive policies; and much more.