Saturday, August 12, 2023

A Core Poverty-Breaking Idea

A study of why entrepreneurship training was not working:
"People exposed to short- or long-term poverty develop a scarcity mindset because their cognitive bandwidth is overloaded with immediate concerns, leaving little space for the exploration or evaluation of a broader set of alternative actions. For example, the effort of getting enough money for food to eat today prevents creative planning for future food sourcing.

"Researchers found those who worked on changing their mindset from a scarcity mindset to a growth mindset saw increased self-confidence and were able to break their previous habits of when they saw risk as a danger rather than an opportunity to create something new."

The economist Thomas Powell derides the notion of systemic racism as something undefined and therefore untestable.  This study suggests that continually telling a group, "You cannot make it on your own," creates those same expectations.  I have mentioned America's black billionaires that are not entertainers.  Several grew up in segregated schools.  Somehow, they developed a growth mindset.  Perhaps they did not have the "Your a victim" rhetoric thrown at them repeatedly.  Many of America's ethnic white immigrant groups and Asian immigrants were subjects of discrimination and the disadvantages of language and religious minority status (Jews and earlier Catholics).  For Asians they had both federal and state laws against them.  They had not been slaves but still they were successful.

Been there; done that.

1 comment:

  1. Although "Asian" is a crappy category (Hmong, Vietnamese, Filipinos, Malaysian, Japanese, Chinese, Formosan, Korean...) one thing those forced into the category generally have in common: No English OR Spanish. If there is a state or federal instruction sheet to read or a form to fill out or sign in a government office building -- it's not especially informative to an Asian family "Fresh Off The Boat" (Is that an expression that applies well to those who take an aircraft to Mexico and walk across the Rio Grande?) And yet, these English-illiterate Asians, as a group do not fail as frequently as locally born English-speaking, publicly schooled, illiterates. Why?