HNR 151-152 (10) - Design Thinking for Social Product Innovation, Lane/Lafferty: Bottom of the Pyramid

The "Bottom of the Pyramid"

"The bottom of the pyramid, bottom of the wealth pyramid or the bottom of the income pyramid is the largest, but poorest socio-economic group. In global terms, this is the 2.7 billion people who live on less than $2.50 a day."

Visualization of the wealth pyramid

Approximate visualisation of the wealth pyramid when 1% population controls 50% of the wealth.

By RezviMasood - Own work, CC BY-SA 4.0,


The quoted definition above heads the Wikipedia article on "bottom of the pyramid"  and the graphic comes from the same article. Wikipedia is never the best or final word on a topic, and is rarely appropriate for actually quoting in your college work. However, it can be a great place to begin to acquire a little background, larger context, keywords and new vocabulary. This article on "BoP" includes some helpful context regarding the shape of the wealth pyramid overall, the fuzziness of really defining the bottom of the pyramid -- the very most impoverished peoples, and relationship of this economic reality to business and business opportunities. The article includes a very substantial number of footnoted sources and suggestions for additional reading. Among those cited sources and references, more substantial and credible sources may be found for your own research and writing.

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  • Last Updated: Jan 17, 2021 4:09 PM
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