Follow us:

Microsoft Pri0

Welcome to Microsoft Pri0: That's Microspeak for top priority, and that's the news and observations you'll find here from Seattle Times technology reporter Matt Day.

January 24, 2008 at 9:51 AM

Capitalist Gates calls for ‘creative capitalism’ to aid poor at Davos

Addressing the World Economic Forum today, Microsoft chairman and world’s richest man Bill Gates said free-market forces have failed the world’s poor.

“We have to find a way to make the aspects of capitalism that serve wealthier people serve poorer people as well,” he told the annual meeting in Davos, Switzerland, according to coverage from Reuters. “I like to call this idea creative capitalism.”

The Wall Street Journal today ran a front-page story on Gates’ speech, having been given an advance copy and an interview last week. More after the jump.

Update, 1:20 p.m.: Microsoft has posted a transcript of Gates’ speech. Tell us what you think of his vision for “creative capitalism” in the comments section.

According to the Journal, Gates is proposing “businesses that focus on building products and services for the poor. ‘Such a system would have a twin mission: making profits and also improving lives for those who don’t fully benefit from market forces,’ he plans to say.”

That sounds similar to the social capitalism espoused by microcredit pioneer and Nobel laureate Muhammad Yunus, who spoke recently with Seattle Times reporter Kristi Heim.

Some of Gates’ other proposals, outlined in the Journal story: Businesses should assign their most talented employees to issues of the world’s poor. Governments should create incentives to encourage businesses to address those issues.

Gates is nearing the end of his transition toward full-time work on philanthropy. His last day at Microsoft as a full-time employee is expected in July. He will retain the title of Microsoft chairman as he focuses his attention on the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.

Comments | More in Personalities, Philanthropy

COMMENTS

No personal attacks or insults, no hate speech, no profanity. Please keep the conversation civil and help us moderate this thread by reporting any abuse. See our Commenting FAQ.



The opinions expressed in reader comments are those of the author only, and do not reflect the opinions of The Seattle Times.


The Seattle Times

The door is closed, but it's not locked.

Take a minute to subscribe and continue to enjoy The Seattle Times for as little as 99 cents a week.

Subscription options ►

Already a subscriber?

We've got good news for you. Unlimited seattletimes.com content access is included with most subscriptions.

Subscriber login ►
The Seattle Times

To keep reading, you need a subscription upgrade.

We hope you have enjoyed your complimentary access. For unlimited seattletimes.com access, please upgrade your digital subscription.

Call customer service at 1.800.542.0820 for assistance with your upgrade or questions about your subscriber status.

The Seattle Times

To keep reading, you need a subscription.

We hope you have enjoyed your complimentary access. Subscribe now for unlimited access!

Subscription options ►

Already a subscriber?

We've got good news for you. Unlimited seattletimes.com content access is included with most subscriptions.

Activate Subscriber Account ►