the mif blog

Stories of inspiring entrepreneurs and organizations, discussion and commentary of new trends in private sector development, and the latest events and publications.

Can South-South Cooperation boost the coffee value chain and improve rural development in Haiti?

By Jempsy Fils-Aimé

South-South Cooperation is not a new concept in development speak. The term has been used since the 1990s by development thinkers, policymakers and academics to describe the exchange of resources, technology, and knowledge between developing countries. In Haiti, for the past twenty years, cooperation with other developing countries has played an important role in the development process, complementing traditional international aid. It began mainly with Cuba and Venezuela, and then extended to other countries like Brazil. Following the 2010 earthquake, new countries, such as Senegal, have joined in supporting Haiti. Another country, Colombia, is interested in revitalizing the Haitian coffee value chain through “soft” investments – study tours in both countries, training in Colombia for young Haitian professionals and research on introducing new coffee varieties in Haiti.

Desarrollo territorial y cadenas globales del valor: ¿una antítesis insoluble?

By Anabella Palacios

¿Bajo qué circunstancias, una cadena global del valor puede representar una oportunidad para estimular el desarrollo sostenible de un sistema productivo de un determinado territorio? 

Por Marco Dini*

No es imaginación. Existe, es real y es grande la diferencia entre las miradas, las preocupaciones y los intereses de quien observa, estudia y trabaja en el mundo de las comunidades locales y de los que se ocupan, estudian o apoyan el desarrollo de las cadenas globales del valor. No es banal reconocer que en la mayoría de los casos estas dos realidades configuran mundos efectivamente antitéticos: por un lado, empresas generalmente grandes, tecnológicamente desarrolladas, estructuradas según las más sofisticadas técnicas de la organización, económica y políticamente poderosa, equipadas de las competencias más sofisticadas en los distintos ámbitos técnicos y de gestión; por el otro, comunidades muy heterogéneas entre sí, conformadas por cantidades muy variables de actores (empresas e instituciones), con niveles muy disparejos de capacidades técnicas, productivas y organizacionales, distintas dotaciones de recursos (humanos y naturales) e infraestructuras con grados muy variados de desarrollo.

Climate Resilience and Value Chains

By Steve Wilson

An increasing number of the world’s largest companies are recognizing their vulnerability to climate change and are acting to improve the climate resilience of their firms and value chains.  In addition, companies are beginning to see business opportunities related to the need for greater climate resilience.  

A recent publication of the Partnership for Resilience and Environmental Preparedness (PREP), “Value Chain Climate Resilience: A Guide to Managing Climate Impacts in Companies and Communities,” outlines a “value chain approach” to building climate resilience in firms and local communities. The PREP group is comprised of large global companies with extended value chains or with a compelling business interest in value chains, such as the reinsurance industry. Many of the firms in their value chains are small companies. The report was prepared by Acclimatise, Oxfam America, and BSR, on behalf of PREP members.  

Banks seem eager to reach more SMEs – but how?

By Tetsuro Narita

At noon on a Sunday in Lima, more than 170 bankers from the Latin American and Caribbean region were in a conference room to attend a panel discussion on a new risk analysis tool for small and medium enterprises (SMEs), resisting the temptation to go out and enjoy fine Peruvian cuisine. It was encouraging.

The panel discussion, titled “Revolutionizing the financing of small and medium sized enterprises: The decision of banks to base their risk analysis on psychometric parameters,” was organized by the Multilateral Investment Fund (MIF) and the Financial Markets Division of the Structured and Corporate Finance Department of the IDB Group, as a part of theXLVI Annual Assembly of the Federation of Latin American Banks (FELABAN), held November 17-20, Lima.

Dignity in the dump

By Elizabeth Terry

We had a visit from a movie star at the IDB this week! Sebastiao “Tiao” dos Santos is one of the principal subjects of “Waste Land,” a 2010 documentary that won many prestigious film festival prizes and was even nominated for an Oscar. The film depicts the community of catadores, or “waste pickers,” who eke out a meager living collecting and selling recyclable materials in Jardim Gramacho, a massive landfill on the outskirts of Rio de Janeiro. Renowned artist Vik Muniz spent time at the dump creating striking multimedia portraits of some of the catadores, and the documentary shows the process of the artistic collaboration and how the artist and his subjects inspired each other.