Blog

New paper on African investments: The limits of job creation and social metrics

Metrics are useful, and the widespread use of standardised metrics and ratings[1] have been helpful over the years. Still, many of the claims of the social impact from investments tend to focus on good news stories or a narrow set of metrics, such as jobs created. With the increased interest in mobilising private capital to address poverty and sustainable …

Reflections on evaluating integrated rural development

The latest IDS Bulletin ‘The Millennium Villages: Lessons on Evaluating Integrated Rural Development‘ brings together a series of reflections on integrated development and how best to know whether it works and why. It certainly doesn’t provide all the answers; rather it’s meant to stimulate debate. Some things you might agree with, others …

Unforeseen benefits of the Millennium Villages Project in Northern Ghana

Over the course of our five-year impact evaluation of the Millennium Villages Project (MVP) in Northern Ghana, I was part of the immersion research, referred to as reality check approach (RCA). The RCA was undertaken by a large research team across six Millennium Villages (MV) where each researcher lived with a family and had extensive conversations, observations and …

Beyond venture capital: Being purposeful about investing in Ghana

New paper on African investments offers insights into improving social benefits: it can be achieved but requires intentionality by business leaders and fund managers. This isn’t without a cost – something that only serves to highlight structural weaknesses in many fund operating models. The overheads available to support social performance are often tight. So, do …

Updates from the International Conference on Family Planning – a focus on young people

Gabrielle Appleford, independent consultant and member of our A360 evaluation team, is at the International Conference on Family Planning (ICFP) in Kigali this week. Over the next few days, she’ll be blogging on what she’s seeing and learning at the conference – read on below…

Day 1

I’m attending the ICFP in Kigali, Rwanda, where youth and adolescents …

Changing gender norms at scale: Results and evidence of what works from Voices for Change in Nigeria

Recently, there’s been an increasing interest in the role of social norms in shaping people’s aspirations and promoting – or limiting – equitable development.  We’re all aware of how we are influenced by our peers, that sometimes we do things so we are accepted by a group that’s important to us.  But just how we can build on this human need to belong to …

Is my social protection programme ‘shock-responsive’ or ‘adaptive’?

What is adaptive social protection? How does it differ from shock responsive social protection? Why does it matter? These were some of the questions we’ve been asked over the past three years while working with governments in the Sahel to help set up their adaptive social protection programmes.

The concepts of Shock responsive social protection (SRSP) and Adaptive …

Five key principles for Adaptive Social Protection programming

‘Adaptive Social Protection’ (ASP) came from a realisation that social protection, disaster risk reduction and climate change adaptation were three communities of practice linked by the same fundamental objective of reducing vulnerability and building resilience. Within each of these communities is a wealth of experience, tools and methods, that, if explored …

Savings in Sub-Saharan Africa: Access, Policies and Priorities

Saving hasn’t kept up with access in the growth of financial inclusion. A new report sets out to understand trends in savings and how policies can help.

This week is Financial Inclusion Week and today is World Savings Day. In recognition of these concurrent days of reflection and support, we would like to use this digital space to discuss our work at …