Year
2015

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"Impact investing has the potential to enable every foundation, regardless of size, to pursue its philanthropic mission more effectively. It can help individual donors, families, foundations with few or no staff, and all sorts of giving entities put more and different types of capital to work for social good. Even better, it can deliver philanthropic impact alongside financial returns—which can enable reinvestment of those funds in pursuit of even more social good.

We offer this guide with that opportunity in mind—and specifically to support small-staffed foundations seeking to use impact investing to further their missions. It provides a starting point, a review of key questions to consider and ways to answer them, and a variety of tools and connections to additional resources you may need."

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"We organise a field experiment with smallholder farmers in Rwanda to measure the impact of financial literacy training on financial knowledge and behaviour. The training increased financial literacy of participants, changed their savings and borrowing behaviour and had a positive effect on the new business start-up. However, it failed to have a significant (short-term) impact on income. Using a two-stage regression framework, we identify enhanced financial literacy as one of the important factors explaining behavioural changes. We also test whether financial knowledge spillovers from trained farmers to their peers in local village banks but find no evidence for that."

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"In this brief, we use data from the Entrepreneurship Acceleration Research Initiative in order to respond to the following question by Steve Cumming of the MasterCard Foundation about Youth Entrepreneurship: At The MasterCard Foundation, we have a portfolio of youth entrepreneurship projects that we support in Sub Saharan Africa. We're always looking for data to better understand the space and to inform our programming. I'm wondering if you could share any data by ages 18-24 and 25-30, and by African country or region if possible. Do you see anything interesting under these parameters?"

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"Entrepreneurship education has the potential to enable youth to gain skills and create their own jobs. In Tunisia, a curricular reform created an entrepreneurship track providing business training and coaching to help university students prepare a business plan. We rely on randomized assignment of the entrepreneurship track to identify impacts on students' labor market outcomes one year after graduation. The entrepreneurship track led to a small increase in self-employment, but overall employment rates remained unchanged. Although business skills improved, effects on personality and entrepreneurial traits were mixed. The program nevertheless increased graduates' aspirations toward the future."

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"In this report we share our views on the best way SF can help to achieve the SDGs by accelerating the growth of such markets. Where can we best deploy capital to maximise long-term value for the people we serve? What is the most cost-efficient way to achieve these charitable goals? How can we partner with like-minded organisations to unlock private capital to fund greater impact?"

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"This report explores the common gaps that prevent youth from meeting job requirements, where education-focused entrepreneurs are making (or can make) the biggest difference, and what unique obstacles these entrepreneurs face. The report concludes with recommendations for how government and public officials, corporations, capacity-development providers and NGOs, and entrepreneurs themselves can best work together to improve education and skill development for youth."

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"The purpose of the information presented in this report is to inventory different organizations in Guatemala that could help build local capacity and catalyze and accelerate SME development and growth. The information includes specific activities, programs and services offered by the different organizations and where possible shows their interconnectivity."

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"The purpose of the information presented in this report is to inventory different organizations in Nicaragua that could help build local capacity and catalyze and accelerate SME development and growth.

The report includes a contextual overview of Nicaragua, which helps to shed light on some of the challenges and opportunities for SME development and poverty alleviation. This information also puts into perspective some of the key sectors that have been the focus of capacity development organizations. The report also includes an overview of key donor activities, as they can often stimulate SME-related activities and also provide a sense of where large interventions in the SME landscape are occurring."

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"The objective of this paper is to understand the mechanisms by which development projects facilitate market linkage of smallholder farmers based on panel data from Nicaragua. We find that activities related to entrepreneurial practices have positive and statistically significant effect on commercialization. We also find that increased commercialization is positively correlated with total bean sales income, suggesting a positive indirect effect of the activities. Other activities demonstrate no positive and robust effect on commercialization while direct positive effects on sales income can be observed. This implies that market linkage of smallholder farmers require different sets of intervention tools than traditional farm technical assistance."

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"Most employment in low and middle income countries is in micro-, small and medium-sized enterprises, governments, non-governmental organizations and donors spend on targeted programs and broader policies to enhance employment creation in these firms. But despite these efforts, not much is known about which of these interventions are really effective. This systematic review synthesizes the existing evidence on the employment impact of these programs. The results show that the effects have so far been very modest."

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