Developing Value in emerging markets

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Having avoided the kids with Star Wars obsessions while growing up, I've never really gotten into the business of sequels, although there are clearly some who believe there is never too much of a good (bad, or indifferent) thing. On the assumption that a good sequel adds depth and complexity to a story you've already fallen for, I think I'm onto a winner with Developing Value 2 - a research project that hunts for "emerging-market businesses that have achieved investment-grade status through good environmental, social and governance practices."  It's an initiative of my colleagues at IFC and the good folks at SustainAbility - see the initial call for cases on both of our websites.

"From conceptual and anecdotal to substantiated and quantified" is the way we describe the role of DV2 in promoting the business case for sustainable development in emerging markets. The objective is to help emerging market companies understand how they create value and then whom to communicate it to (and in what form). Another Davos 100 list with no emerging market representation indicates the magnitude of the challenge. Is it because the authors didn't look or the emerging market companies didn't communicate?

But out of adversity... comes opportunity. Wal-Mart has to be the poster child - just look at how its policy has changed over the past year. Marks and Spencer too. So many retail facing companies are reorientating themselves towards sustainability-driven operating models that there is talk of turning ships and marketplace principles. We want to ensure emerging market companies share in the upside from this trend - there are plenty already making a difference. If you know of others - is the address to send them to.

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