Resource Type
Research

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"This report reviews the state of measurement as of 2014 in two types of organizations that directly support small and growing businesses (SGBs) - impact investors and capacity development providers. Using a mixed-methods approach, ANDE collected data and interviewed over 30 organizations across these two categories, and analyzed key trends in measurement practice."

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"The Landscape for Impact Investing in West Africa is a state of the market analysis of the impact investing industry in the region. The report includes regional findings from 15 countries, as well as dedicated chapters covering the most active markets: Nigeria, Ghana, and Senegal. Across the region, investors highlight opportunities for impact and financial return, particularly in the key sectors of energy, financial technologies, and agriculture.

The landscape study is based on thorough analysis of relevant literature, large volumes of transaction data, and extensive interviews with key industry stakeholders. Detailed country chapters include information on the supply of capital by investor type, investment opportunities by sector, and regulatory considerations and hurdles for impact investors and investees."

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"This report proposes a new segmentation framework to help financial service providers, enterprises, donors, limited partners (LPs), and field-building organizations understand and navigate the complex landscape of SGB investment in frontier and emerging markets. The segmentation framework we propose uniquely integrates a number of approaches often used independently, but rarely in concert with each other. Our methodology combined perspectives from leading SGB investors on how they segment the market; analysis of enterprise-level quantitative data from multiple SGB investors; and behavioral analysis of entrepreneurs using human-centered design techniques. We focus on enterprises with five to 250 employees and financing needs ranging from $20,000 to $2 million. We include both impact-oriented and traditional, “bread-and-butter” enterprises within the scope of this study. We do not include enterprises that are informal or are unlikely to embark on a path of formalization, due to their limited growth prospects and the major difficulties financial service providers face in serving them."

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"The Middlebury Institute's Center for Social Impact Learning in partnership with SVT Group report offers a shortcut to practical information about how impact investors are tracking and reporting their social and environmental impact today. The report also includes advice from impact investors to those new to the field, and summarizes the history of impact investing, key terms and concepts in impact measurement, and trends, and provides a practical guide to the most relevant publications."

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"This report is primarily written for business and its role in supporting education and the SDGs. It is also meant to support the education community and other organisations with a stake in advancing education and training for sustainable development. The report shares a selection of good practice examples and insights that are intended to help raise awareness, spark new ideas and inspire more opportunities for collaboration."

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"This study seeks to develop a comprehensive understanding of gender gaps in Myanmar as well as the innovative business models that are being used to address these gaps. The challenges that businesses face in creating market-based solutions that aim to improve the lives of women and girls are also explored. This research examines innovative enterprises in Myanmar, with particular attention to startups that focus on women and girls. With a clear understanding of their approaches and challenges, it is possible to determine ways to support them. This study also reaches further into rural Myanmar and investigates female owner-operated businesses."

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"We investigate the relationship between employees' and managers' training and firm performance using a policy intervention that randomly assigned training support to small- and medium-sized enterprises in the UK accommodation and food service sector. Because the number of firms self-selected into training exceeded available places, training was randomly assigned to some firms, resulting in a randomized natural experimental design that allowed us to identify the average effect of training on treated firms. Our empirical results suggest that employees' training had a stronger positive impact on firms' labour productivity and profitability than that of managers'."

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"This paper uses a randomized controlled experiment in Costa Rica to determine whether IB use by Banco Nacional de Desarrollo's micro and small enterprise (MSE) clients has an impact on their performance, measured in terms of productivity, increase in sales, and cost reduction. Results from the intervention group surveys indicate that Internet use is limited in MSEs' daily operations because of limited access to computers and the relatively low penetration of Internet services in employees' activities. In addition, firms have limited knowledge about the uses of the Internet as a business development tool. These results contrast with the reported benefits obtained by a small group of firms. Those benefits include reduced costs, higher sales, and better contact with customers."

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"The Government of Nicaragua and the US foreign assistance agency, the Millennium Challenge Corporation, launched a rural business services program designed to boost the income of the small farm sector. Relying on a randomized rollout strategy, this paper reports the results of a multi-year impact evaluation that spanned the 5-year life of the program. We argue that impacts of a program of this sort are unlikely to be fully revealed by standard binary treatment estimators and show that temporal pattern of impact indeed evolves in important ways over time. Income in the activities targeted by the program steadily rose, plateauing at a 30% increase over baseline after two years in the program. The program also appears to have provoked signicant increases in both mobile and perhaps xed farm capital. However, on average there have been no signicant impacts on household living standards to date. Finally, conditional quantile regressions give evidence of quite substantial heterogeneity in program impact."

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"A randomized control trial with 945 entrepreneurs in Jamaica shows positive short-term impacts of soft-skills training on business outcomes. The effects are
concentrated among men, and disappear twelve months after the training. We argue that the main channel is increased adoption of recommended business practices, exclusively observed in the short run. We see persistent effects on an incentivized behavioral measure of perseverance after setbacks, a focus of this training. We compare a course focused only on soft-skills to one that combines soft-skills training with traditional business training. The effects of the combined training are never statistically significant."

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