Harvey Koh is Managing Director at the global social change consulting firm FSG. Based in FSG’s Mumbai, India office, Harvey directs research and advocacy in the area of Inclusive Markets, advancing thinking about inclusive business and market-based solutions in development, with a global perspective. His primary focus is working with donors and companies to develop and scale inclusive business models that benefit the poor, across the housing, water and the healthcare sector.
In this interview, Harvey discusses FSG’s recent report Shaping Inclusive Markets: How Funders and Intermediaries can Help Markets Move Towards Greater Economic Inclusion. The report analyses historical cases where inclusive markets lead to expanded opportunities for a broadly shared prosperity and seeks to understand the ways in which they were achieved. Harvey stresses the importance of reimagining markets to produce inclusion. He underlines their importance in creating inclusive societies, as the poor are already participants in markets for basic services. He discusses some of the key findings from the report, particularly the importance of producer ownership in creating equitable livelihoods for poor and marginalised groups. He also addresses the importance of changing ownership structures in corporations, particularly the primacy of maximising shareholder return, in order to help businesses achieve long-term social goals. Finally, he briefly touches on the juncture between inclusive markets and sustainability issues.