A City’s Desert: No Apples in the Big Apple? (A) Harvard Case Solution & Analysis

The New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene's Physical Activity and Nutrition Program needed to come up with an innovative alternative to the various health issues, including obesity, diabetes, and heart disease that harassed residents of poorer places in the city, while increasing economic chance for neighborhood residents. The end result was the launch of Green Handcarts, a brand new mobile food vending initiative to support the introduction of healthier food choices to residents of "food deserts" in New York City boroughs.

The challenge was browsing the diverse landscape of players and engaging all of the important stakeholders to come up with a solution which was both feasible and sustainable. This case exemplifies the partnership and strategic alliances may be used to get important societal impact. The attractiveness of this example is that it simultaneously addresses two large societal problems: 1) access to healthy food options in urban food deserts and 2) creating self-employment opportunities for members of disadvantaged communities. This case also exemplifies the way the public sector can act as social innovators.

PUBLICATION DATE: February 01, 2011 PRODUCT #: KEL521-HCB-ENG

This is just an excerpt. This case is about LEADERSHIP & MANAGING PEOPLE

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