I recently read A Path Appears: Transforming Lives, Creating Opportunity
by Nicholas Kristof and Sheryl WuDunn
It gives a nice overview of initiatives, both large and small, to alleviate poverty in both the USA and globally. The book has many strengths.
It is practical. Rather than being overwhelmed with statistics and the massive size of the problem it gives many concrete examples of individuals and organisations that are making a difference. It ends with some very specific suggestions of what the reader can do now.
It is encouraging and inspiring. Analysis of different issues is interweaved with stories of a diverse range of individuals, from children to wealthy businessmen, who are taking action.
It is challenging because it puts a human face on poverty, with stories of individuals.
It is balanced and realistic. It does not gloss over how difficult some of the problems are and how many well-intended iniatives fail, and sometimes even make the problem worse. Consequently, it discusses the value of randomised trials, such as described in Poor Economics.
Solutions are multi-faceted because poverty is so complex. There is a role for small and large organisations, local and global action, political activism, education, creating social enterprises, ...