Hands-on solutions to world poverty

Hands-on solutions to world poverty

Workshops to be held September 29 to October 4, 2003 will seek to generate “cooperative partnerships” on major issues facing developing countries.

A PHONE CALL from Steve Troy to In Business brought us news of an international conference at the University of Colorado to foster sustainable solutions – as well as a for-profit “social enterprise” called Sustainable Village. Troy brings sound credentials to both endeavors – having been founder or cofounder of over 20 businesses including Jade Mountain, Real Goods and Planetary Solutions.

The Conference -to be held in Boulder September 29 through October 4, 2003 – is titled: An International Forum Connecting People with Hands-on Solutions to World Poverty. “Sustainable Resources 2003 will provide a new platform of exchange where poverty issues faced by the developing world can be addressed globally and served locally,” says Troy’s website. The sessions “will provide unique opportunities for nonprofits, NGOs, funding agencies, educators, engineers, business people … to meet, learn from each other, network, discuss new approaches for outreach, and create new partnerships. One of the goals of the forum is to establish a collaborative marketplace where participants can match their skills and needs to work more effectively for sustainable development.” The preliminary program, lists such topics as: Natural Capitalism for A Small Planet, Systems Thinking for Community Decision Making, Energy through Enterprise, Selling Solar in the Developing World, Business Creation with Appropriate Technology, and Sustainable Development and the Social Implications of Technology.

With a current population of six billion, the world is becoming a place in which human populations are more consuming, more polluting, more connected, and in many ways less diverse than at any time in history, points out the organization’s website. In the next two decades, almost two billion additional people are expected to populate the Earth, a number roughly equivalent to the world’s total population in 1940. It is estimated that 95 percent of that growth will take place in developing or underdeveloped countries.


Troy describes his Sustainable Village as a “social enterprise, where all profits are reinvested to fund microenterprise and renewable energy projects in developing countries. Via the internet Sustainable Village links “a thriving global network of partners who share ideas and resources” and is making available a PDF catalog listing 10,000 appropriate technology products.”

For more information about Steve Troy and his projects, the contact information is Sustainable Village, 717 Poplar, Boulder, Colorado 80304; E-mail: Steve@sustainablevillage.com. (Websites – sustainableresources.org; and sustainablevillage. com.) The following invitation from the website appears under a heading, Reaching Further:

“Complementing the partnership between microenterprises, and their supporting organizations, our mission is to forge new connections that will enable businesses to locate the resources they need, increase their customer base and expand their efforts into new places and markets.”

Copyright J.G. Press Inc. May/Jun 2003

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