Doctoral Dissertations

Date of Award


Degree Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy


Business Administration

Major Professor

Wendy L. Tate

Committee Members

Lance W. Saunders, Andrea Sordi, Paolo Letizia


While the world has witnessed fast economic growth since the Industrial Revolution, this progress is not evenly distributed across the world. Economic growth must become more inclusive and equitable, and wealth and prosperity should be more widely shared among the world’s diverse populations. There is a large population around the world that has been excluded from the benefits of economic growth and market development. There is a debate on how to address the pressing social needs of the disadvantaged. Some scholars have called upon the major corporations to sell products and services to this large disadvantaged population, saying that even if each person spends a dollar, companies can make a fortune in these untapped markets. Conversely, some scholars argue that raising the income is the only way to help these disadvantaged people to improve living conditions and urged companies to source from the poor to alleviate poverty. Both arguments have merits. This dissertation explores the impact of selling socially useful goods and services to the disadvantaged as consumers (Essay 1) versus sourcing from the disadvantaged populations as suppliers (Essays 2 and 3) to address their needs and create social impact.

Available for download on Tuesday, August 15, 2028

Files over 3MB may be slow to open. For best results, right-click and select "save as..."