By Carolina Acevedo & Jorge Sellare.
After being widely applied in Latin America for two years, the LINK methodology has gained from new experiences and leanings in international contexts, which allowed us to adjust some of its elements through the course of its implementation and now publish its version 2.0.
Convinced of the premise embedded in the methodological design of LINK – that learning is an interactive process that allows us to improve continuously –, Mark Lundy, Alexandra Amrein and Jhon Jairo Hurtado, members of our team, have accompanied the development of this methodology throughout the past few years. Several partner organizations have used LINK in the most diversified contexts to build inclusive business relations between producers and their commercial allies, which allowed us to validate and improve the methodology.
This new version was built upon two main sources: (i) a learning cycle of the LINK methodology in Central America, conducted within the framework of the Leaning Alliance (a platform that links development programs with research) and financed by the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC); and (ii) a study done in Colombia on the Productive Alliances Support Project, a policy implemented by the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development (MADR) and financed by the World Bank.
In the learning cycle in Central America, the LINK methodology was applied 11 times by organizations that executed projects in Nicaragua, Honduras and Peru (special guest in this cycle) and dealt with supply chains of vegetables, beans, livestock, honey, maracuya, cacao and asparagus. The organizations that participated were the Catholic Relief Services (CRS), Andean and Mesoamerican VECO (Vredeseilanden) and the Swiss Foundation for Technical Cooperation (Swisscontact). The preliminary results of these projects will be shared in November.
The Productive Alliances Support Project study analyzed the level of inclusion of 10 alliances implemented in various parts of Colombia. It identified the most significant changes in commercial relations that involve smallholder producers of coffee, cacao, honey, milk, panela, plantain and blackberry and drew some lessons learned.
Thus, the LINK methodology version 2.0 is backed up by:
- Projects in many Latin American countries (Colombia, Panama, Ecuador, Nicaragua, Honduras and Peru) and Africa.
- Successful results in more than 40 case studies of business models that benefit smallholders.
- The growing literature that shows inclusive business models as a tool to promote development and increase the effectiveness business processes aimed at fighting poverty.
As with the first version, we appreciate any feedback you can give us about this new version of the LINK methodology. With your support, we can keep learning from and with all of those who see LINK as a useful tool for their own approaches.
Here you will find the LINK Methodology 2.0 in english and spanish
To get more information please contact Mark Lundy (firstname.lastname@example.org)