Feed the Future
This project is part of the U.S. Government's global hunger and food security initiative.

Leveraging Economic Opportunities (LEO)

Photo: Cambodia market.

Leveraging Economic Opportunities (LEO) was a USAID-funded contract (2013-2016) to support programming that fosters inclusive growth through markets. LEO's learning agenda focused on inclusion and a systems approach to markets, advancing research and practice in inclusive market development.

This report presents key activities, lessons learned, and accomplishments of the Leveraging Economic Opportunities (LEO) project. Over the course of three years (October 1, 2013 – November 13, 2016), LEO served as USAID’s primary vehicle for learning in the area of market systems approaches and a...
French language version: This assessment of investment opportunities in the maize and livestock (poultry, cattle, and small ruminants) value chains across four countries of West Africa was carried out from April to June of 2016 as an activity under the Leveraging Economic Opportunities (LEO) activity.
Portuguese language version: The Southern Africa Assessment of Trade Opportunities and SPS Challenges within the maize, soya and groundnut value chains in Southern Africa took place from June to August 2016 as a task order under the USAID/Leveraging Economic Opportunities (LEO) project.
The recommendations included here are designed to be integrated as a component of a broader value chain analysis and adapted to specific contexts and research needs.
This paper describes a set of guidelines for improving monitoring, evaluation and learning (MEL) within the context of market systems development (MSD).
These case studies dig deeper into Feed the Future results reporting and identify, describe, and analyze strong case studies of FTF value chain programming significantly contributing to systemic change.
Working with EcoVentures International, LEO tested new methods for introducing development project staff to market systems development concepts and practices.
View post-event resources from the "What's All the Fuss About? How USAID is Embracing Systems Thinking With Supporting Frameworks and Tools" event.
This report examines why some households are able to escape poverty and remain out of it—that is, they experience sustained escapes from poverty—while others escape poverty only to return to living in it again, and yet others remain trapped in chronic poverty.
Poverty is a dynamic phenomenon; while some people remain in poverty for long periods of time, over the same period others escape poverty, others fall into poverty and yet others escape poverty and fall back into it. In other words, poverty reduction is not a one-way street.
This briefing paper provides an overview of the complementarities of the local systems framework and the inclusive market systems framework.
This report presents a framework that outlines a pathway for systemic change and presents a complementary set of indicator areas, or "domains," that signal systemic changes.
This assessment of investment opportunities in the maize and livestock (poultry, cattle, and small ruminants) value chains across four countries of West Africa was carried out from April to June of 2016 as an activity under the Leveraging Economic Opportunities (LEO) project.
The Southern Africa Assessment of Trade Opportunities and SPS Challenges within the maize, soya and groundnut value chains in Southern Africa took place from June to August 2016 as a task order under the USAID/Leveraging Economic Opportunities (LEO) project.
This report examines a LEO activity-led assessment and investment plan for an abattoir system in Guinea, which found the abattoir to be economically attractive for outside investment and a PPP tender.
This report aims to inform Feed the Future efforts moving forward to more strategically and deliberately engage youth in market systems by providing insights from current FTF country programs.
The Synthesis: This report summarizes the results of a multi-year effort to understand the potential of a set of tools – Standard Measurement Tools, Outcome Harvesting, SenseMaker, and Social Network Analysis– to measure systemic change.
This event featured learning from USAID's Leveraging Economic Opportunities (LEO) activity's extensive market systems research and practice agenda with USAID. The resources posted on this page refer to the opening plenary portion of the event.
The expectation that policy reforms that address policy constraints positively influence private sector investment is a fundamental link or assumption in many market systems development and policy reform efforts. Critically, private sector investment is typically the key mechanism by which policy reform can achieve the development objectives (e.g., poverty reduction) of bilateral donors.
This research explores successful approaches in scaling smallholders’ access to input and output markets as well as ex-post assessments of two agricultural projects that used a market systems development approach in Cambodia and Zambia.