Inclusive Growth

Civic Innovation in Latin America

As diverse leaders meet in Medellín, Colombia to discuss leading Latin America’s economies to inclusive growth in the Fourth Industrial Revolution, examples on the ground highlight potential for innovation.

June 16, 2016

Today kicks off the World Economic Forum on Latin America in Medellín, Colombia, where a broad variety of actors, including public officials, academics and social innovators, are meeting to advance solutions for a region rapidly undergoing historic change—from the opening of Cuba to the United States to a peace accord in Colombia itself that could end the country’s decades-long guerrilla war.

More than just being reactive, the event is meant to help chart a course for inclusive economies ready to thrive in the Fourth Industrial Revolution. The World Economic Forum has put together a collection of instructions on how to follow discussions on social media and live broadcasts here, but there’s also a rich diversity of innovative thought and practice taking place on the ground across the continent:

How Can Innovation in Latin America Save Millions of Lives?

This piece, part of a series of posts being published in advance of the World Economic Forum, provides an excellent quick wrap-up of some of key data on Latin America’s progress in the last 200 years, as well as data on government and social spending in the last 25 years. It has gathered these data to argue the need to look beyond traditional public or private sector solutions in favor of social innovation, backed by impact investment, to meet the World Economic Forum’s Global Challenges.

Bitcoin, Blockchain, and Land Reform: Can an “Incorruptible” Technology Cure Corruption?

This piece provides analysis of and context for the recent agreement between Honduras and a US technology start-up on an initiative to reduce corruption in land titling in Honduras. The piece highlights how the possibility of using blockchain to create a “tamperproof” public record could help combat public officials’ editing of records to pocket land.

Solar Panels: the Light at the End of the Tunnel for Thousands of Latin Americans

Hopes for forging an inclusive path into the Fourth Industrial Revolution will remain little more than dreams if the1 in 5 Latin Americans living in rural areas continue to lack access to electricity. This piece highlights the potential of decentralized networks to provide electricity in remote locations, citing pilot programs in Peru and Argentina.