Frontier Development Aspires To…

design, develop, market, and distribute

products, services, and ideas

in order to

increase the productive power of very poor people.


Please continue scrolling down to the bottom of this page to understand our perspective on poverty, and then take a further look around our site. Thanks for visiting!

1: Poverty Is Normal (Our Starting Point)

 

Poverty is the starting point of human life. We are but dust and ashes, and are born naked, poor, and empty. Anything more we become starts from additions to us, from the outside–from parents, family, community, culture, etc. Language, physical growth, ideas, skills, possessions, etc. all start as gifts to us and we give nothing in return. Only once we have been built up to some level of maturity from forces outside of ourselves can we become creators–involved in our own continued growth, the growth of others, and of goods both physical and spiritual. This same observation applies to groups and entire economies as well. In this light, poverty is not an aberration on which we need to declare “war”, but the expected and normal starting point of human endeavor. Poverty is where, in a fundamental sense, we all start and are grounded–both the currently rich and the currently poor–and to where we could all quickly fall.

 

2: Wealth Can Be Created (Our Goal)

Wealth, on the other hand, is not the starting point. Wealth is not a given. Wealth is a human creation, the product of human energy and spirit transforming the raw stuff of the world into anything that secures and improves human life–from a potato to a palace. Any wealth that is has been created by someone, and there is no limit to the wealth that can yet be created, just as every painting and song has been made by someone, and there is no limit to the paintings and songs into which paint and notes can yet be made. An important dimension of wealth creation is that the investment of human energy and spirit into raw stuff can build on itself, like a man stepping up onto a stairstep he just built in order to build the next one up.

3: Humans Are Creators (Our Path)

Humans are not mere grabbers who must greedily fight over the same pile of wealth in a small, closed world, like 5 children quarreling over the only 3 toys in a room. In such a vision of the world there will always be “winners” and “losers”, even though some among the “winners” (either those with good hearts or with guilty consciences) see it as their duty to give a portion of their winnings back to the “losers” to help even the score. But this vision is mistaken. Humans can create; we can make new things come to be. Each person has his unique role in human creativity. Each person can cultivate and increase his own creative power to produce wealth for mankind. But beyond individual creativity is human collaboration–laboring together–which greatly increases our collective power for creating wealth. In collaborating, we connect our creative powers together in complementary ways with others, and our collective creative power does not merely add together, but multiplies. The brick maker and the brick layer aren’t of much value apart, but together they can change lives.

Our Philosophy In A Nutshell:

  1. Poverty is the normal, expected, universal starting point for mankind.
  2. Wealth can be created by human energy taking the raw stuff of the world and transforming it into anything that helps to secure and improve life.
  3. Humans can create wealth using individual skills and strengths, but creative power much more significantly increases through complementary collaboration with others.

Take a look at Our Distinctive Focus next to see more exactly what we are aiming for, because that’s where things get more interesting.