T-shirt manufacturers chase poverty
Grampa’s thesis keeps being proven over and over. In this NPR story about making T-shirts, “Our Industry Follows Poverty“, we learn about a company that makes clothing for the Jockey brand. At $13/day in Columbian wages, women sew frantically because their bonuses are tied to their productivity.
The macroeconomic dynamics that are created when GDP and wages grow, as they have in Colombia, means that brands like Jockey move their contracts to the least expensive places. Essentially, they are chasing the cheapest source of labor in the global market.
The working conditions of the factory workers in Colombia are compared to those of women in Bangladesh. You should listen to the story for yourself to hear more about what that’s like.
In this case, factories closing in Colombia mean that the factory featured in the story chose to open retail stores at the same time that it laid off factory workers. What will be the impact? If there is no domestic market to buy their products, the economy may collapse. If there are other sources of income, there will be a middle class large enough to sustain more retail stores.
You can learn more about the dynamics that keep poor countries that way in Alfred P. Thorne’s Poor By Design.
Published on Poor By Design Blog (http://poorbydesign.com/blog/t-shirt-manufacturers-chase-poverty/)
Poor By Design ebook is now on Kindle
We are really happy to share with you that the digital edition of Poor By Design is now Amazon.com.
Check it out here.
Published on Poor By Design Blog (http://poorbydesign.com/blog/poor-by-design-ebook-is-now-on-kindle/)
The sailing ship Terra Nova is framed by an ice grotto in Antarctica, 1911.Photograph by Herbert G. Ponting, National Geographic
It rarely has anything to do with books, but this is one of my favorite Tumblrs—old photos from National Geographic.
TED Talk: Jacqueline Novogratz on escaping poverty
Jacqueline Novogratz talks about the Acumen Fund for very low income people, loans and patient captial.
Published on Poor By Design Blog (http://poorbydesign.com/blog/ted-talk-jacqueline-novogratz-on-escaping-poverty/)
Naming the book
The a group of project backers signed up for rewards that included selecting the book title and subtitle. They had a chance to share their feedback soon after the project was funded.
The title, Poor By Design, and the subtitle, Why the Poorest Countries Remain Poor After 60 Years of Foreign Aid, seemed to resonate the most.
When it was time to put them together, though, the word poor would have been used three times on the cover. It was too much. We selected to shorten the subtitle to “Why Poverty Persists Despite 60 Years of Foreign Aid” because it made the most sense grammatically, and stayed true to the meaning behind the subtitle that the project backers selected.
Selecting the title also eliminated a lot of anxiety about whether or not we were communicating the message behind the book correctly. The design process is long–and giving the book a title and subtitle is just one of many steps.
Did we do the job right? Let us know.
Published on Poor By Design Blog (http://poorbydesign.com/blog/naming-the-book/)