As urbanisation grows, a class of the new poor is growing. These are millions of people around the world held up in slums. A majority of them live in poor conditions, no sanitary facilities, no safe drinking water and no jobs. Governments, Non Government Organisations (NGOs), social entrepreneurs are increasingly paying attention to these places to turn around their lives. But within these communities, there are potential entrepreneurs. Some of them emerge and do business successfully. A large number are waiting to exploit opportunities but conditions don't allow them to. Without jobs in slum areas, the consequences are alcoholism, drug abuse, unwanted pregnancies, and theft among others. The solution is still lies in entrepreneurship. It is entrepreneurship that will give slum areas jobs. The 12th Annual Entrepreneurship Conference seeks to explore how entrepreneurship can be used to address poverty and change lives of the people in the slum areas.
Research papers, case studies are invited on the above topic or on any of the following sub themes:
· Social Entrepreneurship
Social entrepreneurs are individuals and or organizations that undertake activities but with a social aim. Many complement the effort of Government in improving the welfare of poor people. Globally, social entrepreneurs are moving into areas where there are vulnerable people and helping them to improve their lives through starting up of business. This effort is complemented by NGOs, who are a form of social entrepreneurship. This sub theme seeks to bring out the effort of such organisations in assisting people in slums to change their lives.
· Women and Youth
Generally, in all communities, women and young people are more vulnerable. Slum areas are characterised by alcoholism, drug abuse, thefts, and a variety of undesirable social activities. Women and young people become victims of these such conditions. Women and young people cannot go out on their own in the night and are not expected to engage into meaningful economic activity. Despite this, women and youth still find themselves getting involved into entrepreneurial activities. What drives them? How can they protect themselves? Papers and cases dealing with such entrepreneurial activity are expected for this sub theme.
People in slum areas are inevitably people with less or little incomes and therefore are not expected to be able to raise money to undertake entrepreneurial activities. Finance is therefore one of the challenges they have. As slum dwellers, they are not expected to have collateral in form of building, and therefore a risky group to lend to. How can slum dwellers overcome the challenge of access to finance?
· New Ideas and new products for and from the poor
Poverty in slum areas means that people who live there cannot afford expensive products that are ordinarily available for the rich. This means that there is need for unique products that will be used to support vulnerable communities. What are these products? How can these products be used to improve the lives of the poor? Personal cases and experiences from such are expected to be shared at the conference.
· Incubating businesses in slum areas
Social entrepreneurs, Government and NGOs are lending support to people in slum areas to nurture them and enable them develop entrepreneurship. What is the motivation of such effort Who is doing it and what are the results? Many of these people support vulnerable people in establishing and managing businesses. Cases of such effort to nurture such people in slum areas are expected.