Lasse Folke, and DIIS researchers Lone Riisgaard and Stefano Ponte, publish working paper
"Do value chain interventions work? A new working paper explains what works and what does not, where and how"
Value chain development has become a key approach in both research and policy fields, with an increasing number of bilateral and multilateral aid organizations adopting it to guide their development interventions.
At the heart of value chain concept lays the idea of actors connected along a chain producing and bringing goods and services to end consumers through a complex and sequenced set of activities. Poor agricultural producers often struggle to gain market access because they lack knowledge of market requirements or the skills to meet them. Furthermore, poor information flow and other obstacles in value chains prevent them from entering into new markets, or reduce the benefits they obtained from entry.
Donor initiatives that foster value chain development, often with a focus on reducing poverty among smallholder farmers, are designed to overcome some of these obstacles. Often such initiatives try to mobilize the knowledge and resources of lead firms in value chains (such as retailers) to help poor producers as well as input and service providers to enter markets and add value.
In a new working paper commissioned by UNIDO, DIIS researchers Lasse Folke, Lone Riisgaard and Stefano Ponte synthesize approaches and experiences in value chain development projects in the agro-food sector in Asia. They review different forms of value chain development projects and carry out a comparative analysis of six fieldwork-based studies of value chain development projects in Sri Lanka, Vietnam and Indonesia. Finally, they highlight a number of emerging issues and recommendations relevant for development practitioners engaged in value chain interventions.
Lasse Folke, Lone Riisgaard, Stefano Ponte, Frank Hartwick and Patrick Kormawa (2010) Agro-Food Value Chain Interventions in Asia: A review and analysis of case studies. UNIDO Working Paper, December. Vienna: UNIDO, 56 pp.