Evidence and Learning on Economic Empowerment: A Review of WVA’s Global Portfolio

2022.11_Meta Review of WVA EE Global Portfolio

The Canopy Lab synthesized the evidence and extracted learnings from World Vision Australia’s global portfolio of economic empowerment programs across three core pillars: inclusive Market Systems Development (iMSD), Financial Inclusion (FI), and Women’s Economic Empowerment (WEE).

The meta-analysis concluded that projects adopting the iMSD approach showed the strongest signs of sustainability. This is because factors like farmers and private sector actors’ adoption of new practices are “baked into the DNA” of these types of interventions. Moreover, the review found that holistic WEE outcomes, especially women’s agency, were facilitated by gender transformative approaches which challenged unequal gender relations within households and communities by promoting more equitable alternatives through participatory sessions involving questioning of attitudes, critical reflection and dialogue over time. Finally, a key enabling factor for food security outcomes was nutrition behavior change activities.

JESSICA RUST-SMITH

Senior Consultant

I work across markets, business and supply chains, impact investing, agriculture, and women’s economic empowerment. I am an experienced monitoring, evaluation, research and learning consultant and project manager with expertise in the use of mixed methods, theory-based approaches and data collection and analysis. I have been working in M&E for market systems development for 10 years now, and going strong.