Extending the Base-of-the-Pyramid Concept
The base-of-the-pyramid (BoP) concept plays a prominent role among the market-based perspectives for poverty alleviation. Previous literature reviews discuss the evolution of the BoP concept as a research domain; however, several major research streams that approach the phenomenon from distinct angles have been overlooked. To address these shortcomings, we continue these reviews and formulate recommendations for theoretical and empirical advancement by considering emerging research domains. We use the problematization method to identify in-house and field assumptions shared across research domains and test them through critical empirical and theoretical interrogation. Therefore, we extend the original BoP concept by considering emerging research domains that have been neglected in earlier studies, including corporate social responsibility, inclusive business, microfinance, nonprofit expansion, social entrepreneurship, and subsistence marketplaces. We also revise the BoP business model idea and develop a framework that highlights key dimensions for management research in BoP markets. These dimensions include business ecosystems, financial viability, innovativeness, resource scarcity, role of the poor, and scalability. For each dimension, we develop future research questions.