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About Efosa Ojomo
Focusing his work at the intersection of innovation and economic development, Efosa Ojomo is on a mission to use business and disruptive innovation to create prosperity in frontier and emerging markets. A research fellow at the Clayton Christensen Institute for Disruptive Innovation, Ojomo works alongside colleague and mentor Harvard Business School Professor Clay Christensen in their shared goal to discover, develop and disseminate robust and accessible theory in the areas of disruptive innovation and general management. Ojomo’s body of work will ultimately help entrepreneurs, policy makers and development practitioners spur prosperity in their regions.
Specifically, Ojomo’s research examines how emerging markets in sub-Saharan Africa, Central and South America, and Asia can engender prosperity for their citizens by focusing on investments in market creating innovations, such as M-PESA, the mobile money transfer platform in Kenya. These innovations, which transform complicated and/or expensive products into simpler and less expensive products for populations who historically could not access them, are unique for their ability to spur long-term economic growth and create employment, a necessary condition for economic development.
Ojomo, who came to the U.S. from Nigeria to attend college, worked as an engineer and in business development for National Instruments for eight years following graduation. He soon realized his purpose was much larger than himself. Inspired by a young Ethiopian girl’s story of debilitating poverty, Ojomo started the nonprofit Poverty Stops Here. Since then, he has rallied hundreds of people around his vision and touched the lives of hundreds more. But his ambition is to transform lives; his work at the Christensen Institute is getting him closer to that goal.
Ojomo graduated with honors from Vanderbilt University with a degree in computer engineering. He earned his MBA from Harvard Business School.
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Clayton M. Christensen, the author of such business classics as The Innovator’s Dilemma and the New York Times bestseller How Will You Measure Your Life, and co-authors Efosa Ojomo and Karen Dillon reveal why so many investments in economic development fail to generate sustainable prosperity, and offers a groundbreaking solution for true and lasting change.
Global poverty is one of the world’s most vexing problems. For decades, we’ve assumed smart, well-intentioned people will eventually be able to change the economic trajectory of poor countries. From education to healthcare, infrastructure to eradicating corruption, too many solutions rely on trial and error. Essentially, the plan is often to identify areas that need help, flood them with resources, and hope to see change over time.
But hope is not an effective strategy.
Clayton M. Christensen and his co-authors reveal a paradox at the heart of our approach to solving poverty. While noble, our current solutions are not producing consistent results, and in some cases, have exacerbated the problem. At least twenty countries that have received billions of dollars’ worth of aid are poorer now.
Applying the rigorous and theory-driven analysis he is known for, Christensen suggests a better way. The right kind of innovation not only builds companies—but also builds countries. The Prosperity Paradox identifies the limits of common economic development models, which tend to be top-down efforts, and offers a new framework for economic growth based on entrepreneurship and market-creating innovation. Christensen, Ojomo, and Dillon use successful examples from America’s own economic development, including Ford, Eastman Kodak, and Singer Sewing Machines, and shows how similar models have worked in other regions such as Japan, South Korea, Nigeria, Rwanda, India, Argentina, and Mexico.
The ideas in this book will help companies desperate for real, long-term growth see actual, sustainable progress where they’ve failed before. But The Prosperity Paradox is more than a business book; it is a call to action for anyone who wants a fresh take for making the world a better and more prosperous place.
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