Throughout my tenure at Microsoft, our approach to our social and philanthropic work has reflected our approach to business being grounded in strong partnerships. If you want to have to work with communities and have sustainable positive economic impact you must develop strong local partnerships. Partners can vary in size and scale, but they are essential to ensure you have impact on the ground.
I also have the privilege of serving as the board chairman of the Business Civic Leadership Center at the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, where we strive to work with our corporate membership to build the capacity of their community programs. On an international scale, we do this through a program we call Global Corporate Citizenship.
As is the case with many business-centric associations, members and their partners rely on events, gatherings, and conference calls to benchmark, learn, and improve their current programs. Unfortunately, up until this point these efforts have often been ad hoc.
This is about to change. Through the efforts of the Global Corporate Citizenship Program, BCLC will be launching a new tool to dramatically change the way we learn from each other and work together across sectors. At the 2011 Adding Value in Emerging Markets and Local Communities Conference, BCLC will be launching the Business for Good Map. This online, interactive map will catalog our members' work in communities based on geography and sector. Whether you're looking for education initiatives in Brazil, HIV programs in South Africa, or water programs in South East Asia, you'll be able to view all of these programs on one application.
The map provides a great way to share the impact of these programs. At Microsoft we have developed our Local Impact Map where you can travel the world through your browser and see over a thousand Citizenship programs we have underway.
Microsoft Local Impact Map
While our individual mapping efforts are extremely important and valuable, sector analysis among companies like Microsoft, Dow Chemical, Hershey, Fed Ex and Abbott will increase our ability -- as global development practitioners and business entities -- to make smarter decisions based on communities needs and economic goals.
In addition, this tool will greatly benefit nonprofits on the ground that are looking for funding or in-kind contributions from companies. They will have a better understanding of the types of programs companies are currently implementing and where they can leverage corporate human capital and philanthropic funds to build their capacity.
We hope you can joins us for this exciting conference in a field that is growing in scale and is building value in companies, communities, and economies.
Follow Akhtar Badshah on Twitter: www.twitter.com/msftcitizenship