The Sustainability Frontier
Edited by Urs P. Jäger and Vijay Sathe
Introduction to Part II
In Part II several scholars based in Latin America cover the common challenges that companies in Latin America must deal with. Among those external to the firm are poverty, crime, and the great social distance between those at the top of the income pyramid and those at the bottom. Internal challenges include patriarchal systems that can be a force for or against progress, functional silos within companies, influence of the owner families, and lack of a well-developed strategic planning discipline within companies. Included in this part of the book is a description of how some Latin American companies have dealt with the extreme social, political and environmental challenges they face. Part II also covers the opportunities Latin American companies have for creating and implementing sustainable strategies. In some cases, companies have leveraged natural resource endowments and a ‘community feeling’ for substantial gains. Among the questions addressed are the following: Why are some of the companies referenced in this part of the book successful? Which strategies are they following for getting closer to the sustainability frontier and pushing it out further? Part II is organized as follows. Chapter 4 shows how natural resources can be a curse as well as a blessing, and Chapter 5 addresses the challenges and opportunities in accessing the vast underserved markets at the base of the pyramid. The influence of informal markets is the subject of Chapter 6, followed by a discussion of the financial markets in Chapter 7.
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