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Professor Yunus on “social business†and the conquest of poverty: a dissenting view


  • Roy Grieve

    () (Department of Economics, University of Strathclyde)


In his new book Professor Muhammad Yunus, Grameen Bank founder and Nobel Peace Prize Laureate, proposes a novel strategy for the elimination of poverty worldwide. This strategy relies on the presumed effectiveness of what he calls “social business†in transforming the nature of the capitalist system, which thus (he supposes) will become capable of achieving all desired social improvements. We take the view however that the concept of “social business†is empty and irrelevant, and that Yunus’s thesis in fact implies the untenable proposition that (apparently) all social problems could be resolved by cost-covering interventions – thus denying that a significant role exists for charitable or governmental actions, which, in reality, are indispensable.

Suggested Citation

  • Roy Grieve, 2008. "Professor Yunus on “social business†and the conquest of poverty: a dissenting view," Working Papers 0813, University of Strathclyde Business School, Department of Economics.
  • Handle: RePEc:str:wpaper:0813

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Morduch, Jonathan, 1999. "The role of subsidies in microfinance: evidence from the Grameen Bank," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 60(1), pages 229-248, October.
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    More about this item


    social business; not-for-profit sector; Yunus;

    JEL classification:

    • D21 - Microeconomics - - Production and Organizations - - - Firm Behavior: Theory
    • D64 - Microeconomics - - Welfare Economics - - - Altruism; Philanthropy; Intergenerational Transfers
    • G21 - Financial Economics - - Financial Institutions and Services - - - Banks; Other Depository Institutions; Micro Finance Institutions; Mortgages
    • I39 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Welfare, Well-Being, and Poverty - - - Other

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