Helping small farmers get a better deal in Colombia

admin - May 14, 2010

I’m on a panel at the Harvard Kennedy School tomorrow, pulling together some of the lessons from on the ground success in development programming. I’ve already posted on some of the stories, but here’s an interesting one from Colombia, where small scale farmers find it hard to sell into urban areas at a decent price. Partly it’s because they cannot achieve sufficient quality and scale to sell directly into supply chains of large buyers (e.g. wh…

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Small farms can be beautiful – how farmers’ markets changed attitudes and policies in Colombia

admin - October 20, 2011

As a curtain raiser for this week’s GROW Week at Oxfam (see bottom of this post), this piece appeared on the Guardian Poverty Matters site last Friday, as my contribution to Sunday’s Blog Action Day, which this year coincided with World Food Day. I’ll also be doing on online Q&A (on Facebook) on the issues behind the campaign from 1-2pm tomorrow (Friday 21st October). Small farmers get a bad press: developing country gover…

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Why aren’t we using government purchasing to promote the right to food (among other things)? Great farewell paper from Olivier de Schutter

Duncan Green - May 29, 2014

…to achieve at city level than national. Take the work we’ve been doing on linking farmers and urban markets in Bogota for example. So (a) what other examples of 5P can people point to and (b) assuming he has actually left the UN, has anyone got a job that keeps Olivier pumping out ideas of this quality? He has been elected to a position on the UN Committee on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights from January 2015 – hope that gives him the platfo…

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What have we learned from 5 years of research on African power and politics?

admin - November 12, 2012

The Africa Power and Politics Programme (APPP) is winding down as its five year funding from DFID comes to an end, and I’ve been wading through the 120 page synthesis report as well as the strictly-for-wimps Policy Brief. Both are entitled ‘Development as a collective action problem: Addressing the real challenges of African governance’. Like previous APPP work, the papers are intriguing and frustrating in equal measure. David Booth from the OD…

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How can theories of change help in working with the private sector?

admin - July 13, 2011

As regular readers will know, I’ve been doing some thinking on ‘theories of change’ recently. A few people have asked me if the change in question is mainly political/social change, or whether it applies to economic developments too. I think there’s a high degree of commonality, so at last week’s discussion on working with the private sector, I took the set of ‘change archetypes’ and strategies below and tried to apply it to Oxfam’s work on liv…

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Can Cities build local 'developmental states'? Some surprising good news from Colombia

admin - August 26, 2011

…e where it is much easier for relatively small organizations to engage at the city level (see this example from Bogota). And turning around a city like Medellin is a huge achievement – in a previous job in the early 90s I published ‘Born to Die in Medellin’, a bloodcurdling set of interviews with teenage assassins in the City (a translation of Alonso Salazar’s great book, ‘No Nacimos pa’ Semilla’). Wonder…

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