Today, I am reporting to you from a GIZ topical conference, where we discussed „the future of economies and business“. We had here lot’s of experts and numerous programmes on sustainable private sector development and economic policy of GIZ from over 30 countries.
Here’s my personal summary of the event for you in four headlines:
1) Economic crisis in Europe – but don’t you worry in Africa, Asia and Latin America
The experts tell us that we are in trouble in Europe. But: according to them this issue will not affect the economies of developing countries and transition countries.
My comment: let’s hope they are right this time 🙂
2) “Knowledge sharing and Networks will be key modalities of German international cooperation in the future”
We had several strong statements on the need for more knowledge sharing and network building to enhance our own work with partners, including Ms Cornelia Richter, managing director of GIZ. She said that “The concept of sharing knowledge through communities and networks will certainly gain in importance”.
My comment: Let’s build on the considerable amount of experience and expertise that we already in this area – and let’s further develop our policies accordingly (e.g. the policy on copyright of GIZ material …)
3) Green innovation will only fly, if it creates jobs in partner countries
Whether its feedback from India or from Tunisia of from Algeria – In all countries decision makers seem to stress the fact, that the development of green businesses and industries will need to be measured against the amount and the quality of jobs it creates
My comment: This looks like another argument for looking into business models around open innovation, that may offer income opportunities in a distributed way (prime example for such distributed job-creation effects in Germany is solar energy, tells us keynote speaker Andreas Stamm of DIE: most of the jobs were created in the local plumber business, where people go on roofs and install the photovoltaic material)
4) New Ideas for ecologic and inclusive business development and growth
The economy of the future will be one that consists of inclusive and green businesses – that was the main argument of this session. I found most interesting the introduction of ”the innovation ecosystem” as a concept, which reminded me of the “open source ecosystem” discussion. According to the session, such an “innovation ecosystem are “partnerships between business and mission-driven organisations and/or adequate support institutions, through which partners from the different worlds get to know each other, and develop trustful relationships.”
Describing such an innovation ecosystems as a ‘public good’ character, the call was then made for policy-makers and donors roles as supporters of facilitators. For more info, see the report on “Measures to Support Inclusive and Green Business Models”.
My comment: Why only think of “public good” and “politicians”, and not also of “commons good” and “community self-governance” à la Ostrom? But let’s see, that might be the theme of next years’ “Fachtage Wirtschaftspolitik und Privatsektorentwicklung” 🙂
Stay tuned, yours, Balthas
Note: This text was first published on the blog of Balthas Seibold at the Alumniportal Germany (www.alumniportal-deutschland.org/en/). Check the blog ( register or login first). All blog entries represent the personal views and ideas of Balthas Seibold.