Wednesday, June 21, 2006

Bill Gates's World of Possibility

"Where there is no vision, the people perish" -- Proverbs 29:18, KJV

If you take just one thing away from this article don't let it be a focus on Bill Gates' wealth but rather focus on his vision.   You don't have to be a billionaire to make a difference in the world but you do have to have a vision that things can and should be better.   Catch the vision.   plk
Philanthropist's Vision, Energy and Capital Could Force Global Change

Washington Post Staff Writer
Wednesday, June 21, 2006; Page D01

Melinda Moree met plenty of naysayers who dismissed the prospects of a malaria vaccine.

No one had developed a human vaccine against a parasite like malaria before, and the monetary incentives simply did not exist for pharmaceutical companies to develop drugs targeted at poor children.

Development would require cooperation among scientists, drug companies, health groups and international governments -- an alliance so large it didn't seem possible, she recalled someone telling Gates.

"Of course it is," Gates countered, according to Moree, now director of the PATH Malaria Vaccine Initiative in Seattle, which along with other groups has received nearly $500 million from the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation to develop, test, manufacture and eventually distribute a malarial vaccine.

People in the nonprofit world say Gates, 50, could fundamentally alter the methodology of philanthropy with his announcement last week that he will quit his day-to-day role at Microsoft Corp. in two years to spend more time on his foundation.

The foundation has not been able to carry many of its projects through to completion because of the enormous logistical, political and commercial barriers inherent in distributing malarial vaccine to Africa, for example, and developing a vaccine against HIV and AIDS.

Decisions about operational controls and investment are not new to Gates, Oster said, adding, "There are also more complicated governmental issues, and certainly Microsoft has dealt with those."

The most frustrating problem with vaccine delivery is the lack of political will and social infrastructure in some countries whose people need the medicines, said Adel Mahmoud, incoming chief executive of the Global HIV Vaccine Enterprise, another group sponsored by the Gates Foundation.

By helping to fund drug development and trials for diseases such as malaria, tuberculosis and acute diarrheal disease, which usually affect poorer populations, the Gates Foundation has essentially created a new market for drug companies.

"Mr. Gates is someone who has built his entire career and business and worldview on the application of technology -- and having the right technology and application of that technology in user-friendly ways," he said.

Summarized by Copernic Summarizer


No comments:

Post a Comment

Note: Only a member of this blog may post a comment.