Solving global health problems requires entrepreneurship – Anjali Sastry and Julie Devonshire

MIT Sloan Sr. Lecturer Anjali Sastry

From Times Higher Education

Solving complex global health challenges calls for innovation in the many domains that shape current thinking about the field: medicine, economic development, public health, product engineering, anthropology, design thinking, and the emerging science of healthcare delivery. But what’s often missing in the mix is entrepreneurship.

A new breed of entrepreneurs is making headway in global health. Some are challenging the status quo by launching new ventures while others work with public, private and non-profit organisations. By developing novel applications of technology and analytics, improving processes and starting businesses, these innovators are developing brand new solutions to global health challenges. Creating clinically effective offerings that people choose over existing alternatives requires a deep understanding of relationships, dynamics and context. Doing this with an eye to improving the quality, sustainability and reach of healthcare in emerging markets calls for innovators who are ready to tackle the complexities of global health.

It’s important to provide education and training for this new breed of entrepreneurs because the wrong kind of failure comes at too high a cost. Too much pivoting, and public trust is eroded. A misstep may even harm patients. Innovators need to be creative and agile, but they also need to invest in the groundwork, a combination of imperatives that can be difficult to follow when building a business.

 Taking time to think through challenges and conduct low-risk experiments is hard to do in the real world, but places such as our institutions – the Legatum Center for Development and Entrepreneurship at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology’s Sloan School of Management and The Entrepreneurship Institute at King’s College London – are designed for this. 

Our goal is to help create the next generation of highly employable, entrepreneurial problem-solvers who will be independent, critical thinkers ready to embrace complex challenges, no matter what sector they work in.

Read the full post at Times Higher Education.

Anjali Sastry is a senior lecturer at the MIT Sloan School of Management and faculty advisor to the MIT Legatum Center for Entrepreneurship and Development. 

Julie Devonshire is director of entrepreneurship at King’s College London.

Both will be speakers at an event on 22 May titled  “Building Sustainable Healthcare Systems through Innovation and Entrepreneurship”, hosted by MIT Sloan and King’s College London.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *