Inderscience Publishers

Design and development of products and services at the Base of the Pyramid: a review of issues and solutions

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The base of the world income pyramid, generally called the 'Base of the Pyramid' (BoP), consists of four billion people with average per day income of less than four dollars. Over the past several years, the design and development of products and services at the BoP (BoP people as producers and consumers as well) has been investigated by several authors from different disciplines. A literature review showed that the issues (i.e. constraints) in designing and developing products and services at the BoP and ingredients of solutions addressing these issues have not been synthesised. Furthermore, quantitative findings on these issues and solution–ingredients are lacking. This paper addresses these gaps by pulling together the issues and solution–ingredients in the BoP from the reviewed literature and comparing these with a large study found in this literature. In addition, through the analysis of the data available in this large study, we extracted some quantitative findings on these issues and solution–ingredients, and identified relationships between them. We have discussed the practical implications of these findings. This study adds to the growing body of literature on the sustainable development at the BoP.

Keywords: BoP, Base of the Pyramid, poverty, sustainable development, product design, product development, service design, service development, products, services, issues, solutions, world income pyramid, sustainability, literature review

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