Journal of Business Ethics 161 (1):211-229 (2020)

Abstract
With over three billion people currently living below the poverty line, finding better ways to lift people out of poverty is a concern of scholars from a range of disciplines. Within Management Studies, the focus is on developing market-based solutions to poverty alleviation through Bottom/Base-of-the-Pyramid initiatives. To date, these have enjoyed limited success, sometimes even exacerbating the problems they attempt to solve. As a result, there is a growing academic and practitioner push for a third iteration—BoP 3.0—that moves closer to a sustainable development model of poverty alleviation. Through a grounded theory study of 21 Philippines-based organizations implementing poverty alleviation initiatives at the community level, this paper seeks to add to the existing suite of tools and guidance in the BoP field. It does so by questioning how these organizations approach the development and implementation of market-based approaches to poverty alleviation. Our results suggest that these organizations adopt a more community-centric approach, focusing on the creation of a self-reliant community before all else. We find this to be the result of a deeper understanding of the drivers of poverty in the communities they work with. Through the extrapolation of key themes and issues in our data, we propose a new conceptual model for building BoP 3.0 initiatives. This model consists of three intertwined theoretical dimensions: understanding issues as matters of concern; identifying limitations; and navigating time. These elements are linked by three active phases that allowed the organizations to move from one dimension to the next: sensemaking; entrainment; and investment.
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DOI 10.1007/s10551-018-3938-7
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