Trade and Global Value Chains Initiative: Mid-Term Evaluation Report

Nelson V, Martin A, Ewert J, Hasan AA, Opondo M, Flint M, Hartog M, Priebe J. "Trade and Global Value Chains Initiative: Mid-Term Evaluation Report.". 2016.


The Trade and Global Value Chains Initiative seeks to test whether investments in social upgrading (better working conditions and access to better work) can lead to business and development gains, and also ensure that better skilled, younger workers enter the sector and work more productively. Previous research indicated that companies do not invest in social upgrading because they lack both sufficient incentive to act on their own and convincing evidence of the benefits. Investment with other stakeholders in social upgrading could deliver business benefits and help to ensure the longer-term profitability and sustainability of corporate supply chains. A catalytic fund is the delivery mechanism (a modified challenge fund with technical advice provided to grantees), making public funds available to successful coalition applicants and leveraging private sector investment. The aim is to facilitate corporate behavioural change, benefitting workers/smallholders (social upgrading) and suppliers and retailers (economic upgrading). The TGVCI focuses on Ready Made Garments, Bangladesh, and horticulture in South Africa and Kenya.
This report presents the Mid-Term Evaluation (MTE) of the TGVCI conducted by the Evaluation Management Unit (EMU). Twenty projects have been funded in two rounds. The Round 1 projects are nearing completion and Round 2 projects are still on-going. This slightly delayed implementation means that the evidence available and the analysis feasible at this stage are necessarily limited. The projects do nevertheless allow reasonable conclusions to be drawn on relevance, effectiveness and plausible impacts, provide initial findings on cost-effectiveness and indications on sustainability.

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