"Globally, women's involvement in clean cooking value chains has been minimal. This is partly because of the multiple challenges faced by women that impede their capacity to effectively engage in the energy sector. To better discern gender-specific differences in involvement in the energy sector, the authors conducted a randomized trial in Kenya to compare sales performance of newly trained male and female improved cookstove entrepreneurs and to test the effects of an agency-based empowerment training on business activity. A total of 257 entrepreneurs completed either a 4-day entrepreneurial training (control) or a 4-day empowerment training (intervention) and were followed for nearly 8 months documenting business activity and sales. The empowerment training led to more than doubling of sales for both genders. In addition, participants in the intervention group were significantly more likely to demonstrate business commitment over time and nearly three times more likely to be higher sellers (relative risk = 2.7, 95% CI [1.4, 5.4]), controlling for gender and rural/urban locale. Women outsold men by a margin of nearly 3 to 1 and were more likely to continue to pursue leads despite limited sales. Nonactive participants (those selling 1 improved cookstove or less) were a larger percentage of the control group (72%) than the intervention group (50%), and more men were nonactive participants (65% of men) compared with women (56% of women).These data show that women can serve as active improved cookstove entrepreneurs in both urban and rural settings and that targeted agency-based empowerment training can significantly increase women's capacity to engage effectively within the improved cookstove value chain."
"The purpose of this paper is to estimate the impact of one productive development program (PROPYME) in a developing nation like Costa Rica. This program seeks to increase the capacity of small and medium-sized firms (SMEs) to innovate. Impacts have been estimated assuming that beneficiary firms are trying to maximize their profits and that PROPYME aims to increase these firms productivity. The impacts were measured in terms of three result variables real average wages employment demand and the probability of exporting. A combination of fixed effects and propensity score matching techniques was used in estimations to correct for any selection bias. The authors worked with panel data companies treated and untreated for the period 2001-2011. PROPYME's beneficiaries performed better than other firms in terms of labor demand and their probability of exporting. In addition, the dose and the duration of the effects of the treatment (timing effects) are important."
"This report provides accelerators, researchers, and funders with a qualitative understanding of "what works" and "what is promising" in accelerating impact enterprises. It highlights the key challenges that must be addressed by all stakeholders in order for the field to continue to grow."
"The manual is targeted specifically at venture philanthropy organisations and social investors ("VPO/SI"), and more generally at impact investors, foundation and any other funders interested in generating a positive impact on society. The first objective of the manual is to create a roadmap or guidebook to help VPO/SIs navigate through the current maze of existing methodologies, databases, tools and metrics on social impact measurement. The second objective is to trigger a movement towards best practice when it comes to measuring and managing impact...The manual should be useful both for beginners in impact measurement, who are considering how to get started, and for more advanced investors who are struggling with how to better integrate an impact focus into everyday investment management decisions."
"Accelerators constitute a new incubation model, which has developed into an umbrella term for any programme providing structured mentoring, networking opportunities and access to funding. The challenge is to understand the service profiles geared towards reinforcing business startups. How do accelerators assist their startup clientele and strategically position themselves?
This report is intended for programme managers, policymakers and investors with an interest in grasping the opportunities established by the newer incubation models. Its main objective is to extend our understanding of the emerging number of accelerator initiatives across Europe without conducting a comparative analysis of the regional ecosystems. This inductive study investigates a number of accelerators across Europe and explores their internal systems."