fan 2013 year of MOOC & microeducationsummit & 170th birthday of The Economist
No network of partners has ever empowered more people to end community poverty more successfully than BRAC - what are top 10 magic moments to action learn about BRAC
1 Out of an emergency, became the world's first bottom-up NGO led by an exponential chartered accountant
2 Has always seen end poverty as about empowering bottom -up education and breaking generations of village illiteracy-
adopted the action learning ideology of Paulo Freire
with the world's least resourced government unable to offer primary schooling in rural areas, BRAC convinced the world to fund village primary schools (Montessori Type); it designed these schools to be an order of magnitude more efficient than state schools in big cities; it franchised both curriculum and teacher behaviours in ways that celebrated joy of learning; the world's most efficient end illiteracy curriculum (both for parents and children) became its first sustainable business model
3 BRAC's biggest fastest scaling up of a knowhow networking franchise was connected around oral rehydration- the tens of thousand trainers of village mothers it connected acriss rural bangladesh stayed on as para-health workers- their sustainabie business models retailing the most basic pills and health advice - BRAC has always been searching for 10 times more frugal healthcare and community services see lancet special issue on brac ; see its frugal summit series
4 BRAC was the first to consciously go sector by rural market sector and redesign the whole value chain to sustain poorest, smallest (farming) businesses but in high quality ways - see its world class innovations in bottom-up crop science, poultry, beef and diary. In crop science knowhow it formed a triad with Nippon Institute in Japan and Borlaug alumn. Its only in the 2010s that the transparency of bottom up value chain modeling has come to either USAID or the World Bank. The problem being that in the 1980s Harvard professors published value chain theory around top-down externalisation models- their ideology was programeed into spreadsheeting numbers. In this they embedded the least community sustaining algorithms worldwide - compare this with value exchange models that the economist Kenneth Boulding had urged American secondary school teachers to make fundamental to systems literacy in the 1960s.
5 From the start BRAC published microentrepreneur research - lessons of what failed as well as what worked It debriefed all its funding partners continuously -microfanchise small (efficient and effective open model) then scale large. It developed a culture of offensive, open and entrepreneurial bottom-up aid celebrating very way that this is opposite from how failed systems emerge when:
aid is defensive not publishing mistakes at earliest possible time to learn, and administered around top--down adminsitration
6 The biographer of Steve Jobs claims his genius involved connecting multiple market sectors that had been separately strategised before the age of connectivity. Actually both BRAC and Grameen linkedin grassroots connectivity before technology was ready to multiply life critical knowhow. Both design bottom up financial service circles of village mothers round fusion of at least 4 sectors:
bottom-up value chain design
increasing health before taking out a loan to maximise personal and communal productivity
People who fail to map the synergies between the way BRAC and Grameen scaled do endless harm to the every curriculum : microbanking, microeducation, microhealth, microvalue chains.
For example Grameen''s 16 decision culture of every centre of 60 villagers famously committed every village mother to sending children to primary school. But the schools across rural bangladesh only existed because of what BRAC scaled. Ultimately by the mid 1990s the grassroots "social networking" structures of both Grameen and BRAC involved hundreds of thousands of village circles communally regenerating village sustainability around maximum of 60 mothers per circle
7 Both Grameen and BRAC had made the barefoot village banker the most trusted adviser -ensuring at least weekly visits to every village circle. What was being embedded was the most life critical social networking infrastructure. While it was Grameen that first mobilised the telecommunications connectivity of this - BRAC's personal advisers by early 1990 for every villager had added para-legal advisers - in other words BRAC was more deeply advanced into protecting the property rights of villagers (cf the argument of De Soto)
8 Sir Fazle Abed trained in Glasgow as an architect before he became a chartered accountant. he liked to map on paper before digitalising. So BRAC was definitely slower in testing mobile connectivity as integral to the global village networking age. However this had an advantage. When microeditsummit started in 1997 it failed to query the tipping point between:
manual and digital trust networks of banking
manual and digital connections of education infrastructures
bottom up value chain design.
While BRAC and Grameen had both scaled enough to attract investment in going digital many of the microcredit manual replicates in other countries were not in such a position to leverage/empower grassroots networking scale. This is the most fundamental problem impacting the The vast majority of microcredit models to lose their way during the race to 2015 millennium goals. While DR Yunus challenged the world of globalising business to partner inmobilising practical village lab tests, BRAC focused first on integrating hi-trust banking at every level a developing nation needs:
the rural microcredit banks (phase 1 manual)
the rural microcredit banks (in a digital age)
the connection between hi-trust urban banking for poorest and rural banking for poorest
the connection of cashless e-banking
the connection of an association of global banks with values around the world
9 Grameen had from the mid 1980s celebrated dialogue roundtables aboyt three tiemns a year where people who wanted to try and replicate grameen in their own countries could come and action learn. Partly because the BRAC model is so much more interdependent with developing a nation's education - it did not see how to become a multinational knowhow connector until lessons were learned around the world from the first exponentially increasing decade (19996-2005) connection of the internet linking in every human being (citizen or villager). BRAC's international development since mid 2000s has been with the most trusted partners -search both its global connectors and its local cultural connections with muslims for good.
10 As the 2010s scale open education, the opportunity is to celebrate all the most collaborative curricula of bottom up development noting the correlation between the social movements of end poverty and twining youth job creation out of every capital with a future. It is to be hoped that the most open education platforms such as khan academy find ways to source microfranchise module content both from BRAC and Grameen. If these 3 Bangladeshi-cultured networks can win-win-win they can help worldwide youth change every broken system that became to top-down during tv advertising's age.