Supporting business that creates wealth and growth should be our main priority

I see that in the USA there is a similar debate as here in South Africa about whether government should support small firms or growing firms. Andrew Hargadon wrote a brilliant post on the debate that was brought to my attention by Tim Kastelle. Hargadon argues that hindsight is often mistaken for foresight. He explains… Continue reading Supporting business that creates wealth and growth should be our main priority

There is more value to the value chain than adding value to products

I am supporting value chain practitioners in various programmes where I am coaching, teaching, supporting, pushing and pulling experts. This is one of the perks of my job as I get to look over the shoulders of practitioners working all around the world on commodity, agricultural, manufacturing and service value chains. While marking some assignments… Continue reading There is more value to the value chain than adding value to products

The MaFI-festo: changing the rules of the international development “game” to unleash the power of markets to end poverty

I am supporting great initiative of the Market Facilitation Initiative. Lucho submitted the online debate we’ve been having since 2008 into the annual Harvard Business Review/McKinsey M-Prize for Management Innovation (called MIX). I am a member of the MaFI discussions. Lucho provides the following short summary “Bilateral and multilateral donors and NGOs re-write the rules… Continue reading The MaFI-festo: changing the rules of the international development “game” to unleash the power of markets to end poverty

Why is private sector development such a low priority in Sub-Saharan Africa?

I will start my post by linking to another blog from Kenya. The blogger makes reference to a report by Robert Wade, professor of political economy and development at the London School of Economics, which discusses the role of industrial policy in Asia and how donors completely neglected it in Africa. In essence, Prof Wade… Continue reading Why is private sector development such a low priority in Sub-Saharan Africa?

The benefits of being aware of how a system works

For those that have participated in any of the training events that I have contributed to in the last years would hopefully recall my favorite energizer called the Systems Game. In this game we simulate a complex system, with all the participants moving around trying to position themselves between two targets in the group, without… Continue reading The benefits of being aware of how a system works

UNCTAD releases Economic Development in Africa report 2010

UNCTAD release. Two weeks ago the UN Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD) released the “Economic Development in Africa Report 2010-South-South Cooperation: Africa and the New Forms of Development Partnership” report. The report examines the recent trends in the economic relationships in Africa with other developing countries, as well as new forms of partnership that… Continue reading UNCTAD releases Economic Development in Africa report 2010

The effect of the financial crisis on Africa

The 2010 African Economic Outlook was launched on the 24th of May 2010.  The report states that 80% of economies in Africa still showed economic growth in 2009, compared to 10% of the OECD countries. To see the statistics, head over to their website. You can even manipulate (or interact) with the data for your… Continue reading The effect of the financial crisis on Africa

Why the theories underlying economic development matters

I have been accused on several occasions of being too theoretical in my training approaches. These comments typically come from highly experienced development consultants and not from the target groups of my training, namely government officials, development facilitators and experts based within developmental organizations. I am not denying that I like to raise some more… Continue reading Why the theories underlying economic development matters

From good governance to good development governance

In its latest Least Development Country Report , UNCTAD is reflecting on the impact of the financial crisis on the 49 LDCs and is stipulating a move from “good governance” to “good development governance”. The report describes the weaknesses of the current “good governance” trend that has trapped many development agencies and governments, and provides… Continue reading From good governance to good development governance

Innovative firms

Have you ever wondered why not all firms are innovative? If you are a development practitioner like I am, then you must have come across hundreds if not thousands of small and large firms that are not very innovative. This results in these firms also not being very competitive. There could be many reasons why… Continue reading Innovative firms