Resource Library

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What Works to Enhance Women’s Agency

This J-PAL literature review draws from 160 randomized and natural experiments in low and middle-income countries to distill key lessons on what we know about supporting women’s agency based on quantitative evidence.

Working with Savings Groups During COVID-19

COVID-19 poses health and economic risks for savings groups as markets falter; and mobility and community gathering are restrained. This post highlights guidance from CARE to help implementers consider how best to support savings groups and their members during this crisis.

Women in Trade: A South African Online Marketplace

Women entrepreneurs in Africa have historically had more limited business networks than men. With advances in technology reaching around the world, there is a growing opportunity to use technology to break this divide.

Pranav Prashad - Agricultural Microinsurance

There is a clear need for better risk management for small scale farmers, yet the demand for microinsurance from clients is not necessarily there. Pranav Prashad discusses the challenges of delivering agricultural microinsurance.

Guide for Integrating Human Rights into Business Management

The Guide is a technical manual and a hands-on tool for companies to integrate human rights practices within their operations. In addition to standard international human rights protocols (Universal Declaration of Human Rights; International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights; International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights), the guide also addresses conflict-affected areas and the importance of corporate responsibilities with regard to international humanitarian laws.

Video: The Business Case for Microinsurance

This video was captured during the microinsurance training event organised by the Gordon Institute of Business Science and supported by the Microinsurance Innovation Facility, in October 2010. Janice Angove and Nashelo Tande, from the actuarial consultancy Quindiem, present the business case for microinsurance. Drawing on Quindiem’s research into insurance and the low-income market, Angove and Tande discuss how microinsurance can contribute to a company’s sustainability, the keys to success within this market and how insurers must balance innovation with good business practice.

Food Aid and Food Security in the Short and Long Run: Country Experience from Asia and Sub-Saharan Africa

This document, produced under a primer series on social safety nets, assesses the role of food aid in improving food availability and food access. It is based on a synthesis of experiences in four countries:  India, Bangladesh, Ethiopia and Zambia. It concludes that food aid does not have to create negative impacts, particularly if it is tied to the development of infrastructure that supports production and market linkages, avoids creating negative price effects for food producers, and reaches the food insecure.

Market-based approaches to nutrition improvement and food security and linkages to agriculture: TechnoServe’s Evolving Strategy

This presentation by TechnoServe presents the organization's strategy for improving nutrition through its work with the private sector. Five strategies are outlined: nutritional reviews, food fortification, commercialization of nutritious food, crop diversification, and encouraging embedded nutritional services by value chain actors. The presentation briefly examples two examples of how this strategy could be applied.

Smallholder Commercialization: Processes, Determinants and Impact

This paper by the International Livestock Research Institute reviews the available literature on smallholder commercialization. Of particular interest, the paper discusses the arguments for smallholders to scale-up and commercialize existing food crops versus beginning to produce completely new crops specifically for sale. The production of high-value crops typically generates greater returns for producers, but also typically implies greater risks and barriers to entry. In general, commercialization is found to be positive for families, though the impacts vary.

Growth is Good, but is Not Enough to Improve Nutrition

This brief of a longer paper presents several important findings of relevance to value chain programs.  First, work in the agricultural sector will have a greater impact on nutrition at higher levels of poverty but becomes less important as it declines, when the development of other sectors will be more important to nutritional gains.  Second, economic growth alone is insufficient to address all aspects of child malnutrition and micronutrient deficiencies.  Examples of Malawi and Yemen illustrate how the development of agricultural value chains that would be appropriate in th

Enhancing Nutritional Value and Marketability of Beans through Research and Strengthening Key Value-Chain Stakeholders in Uganda

This short note presents the approach being used by the Dry Grain Pulse Collaborative Research Support Program in Uganda to improve nutritional outcomes through the development of the bean value chain.  The initiative explicitly applies a sustainable livelihoods framework and related tools, including through its emphasis on using participatory methodologies.  In the context of minimal commercialization and low productivity of the bean crop, despite its high micronutrient content, the project works to address multiple overlapping value chain constraints.  The note describes so