08/14/2008 05:13 pm ET | Updated May 25, 2011

Face-off: Is Gates Right On Creative Capitalism?

At the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, on Thursday, Microsoft co-founder Bill Gates told the corporate and governmental bigwigs in attendance that businesses should adopt a form of "creative capitalism" in which they seek to alleviate the problems in developing nations.

The notion is essentially this: coming up with drugs or water purification techniques for those nations may not be as profitable as catering to well-heeled retirees in Florida, but rewards will come nonetheless, in the form of recognition and, ultimately, a profit.

"Sometimes market forces fail to make an impact in developing countries not because there's no demand, or even because money is lacking, but because we don't spend enough time studying the needs and requirements of that market," Gates said.

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