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ILO Guide for Value Chain Analysis and Upgrading, 2009
Implementing agency(ies)ILO
Date completedOctober 2009
Contact person(s)Mr. Merten Sievers
Web siteThe ILO's website entry, with downloadable introduction
The guide aims to address all aspects that donors and other facilitators will need to take into account when working to improve value chains. First published in 2006, the updated version not only examines traditional value chain topics, but also systemic issues. These include the need for complementary institutional reforms, sustainability, the need to upscale project experiences and gender issues. 'Value Chain Development for Decent Work' draws upon the idea of grids of intersecting value chains, as opposed to the "linear" chain concepts commonly used.

Chapter 1 considers the appropriate criteria and methodology for sector selection, while Chapter 2 provides guidance on project setup and initial evaluation. Chapter 3 explores value chain mapping, indicating both how it can be useful and how it may be done. Chapter 4 explores key types of value chain research, including why and how to assess the nature of dialogue, working conditions, power relations and the position of women within a value chain, as well as the role of lead firms and business services. This section also offers guidance on good research practices.

Chapter 5, on value chain analysis, explores a number of key intervention strategies. First, questions of systemic change, notably the identification of constraints and their underlying systemic causes, and of the incentives affecting market players and agents of change, are considered. Second, interventions around embedded services are explored. Chapter 6 discusses monitoring and evaluation for value chain development. The chapter outlines an appropriate M&E framework, offers guidance on baseline and periodic surveys, and advises on the selection and tracking of indicators, from inputs to outputs, to outcomes, to impacts.

Please note that the many of the files in this guide are large. Those with slow internet connections may have difficulties downloading them. On the other hand, if you would like to download the entire guide in one 44Mb file, please visit the relevant page on the ILO's website.

Associated documents
»Chapter 1 (376 KB)
»Chapter 2 (2.22 MB)
»Chapter 3 (1.25 MB)
»Chapter 4 (3.41 MB)
»Chapter 5 (4.33 MB)
»Chapter 6 (5.71 MB)
»VC Annex Part 1 (4.71 MB)
»VC Annex Part 2 (5.92 MB)
Associated Activities and Documents
Market Assessment
»Value Chain Analysis, 2007 (Is related to)
Synthesis Documents
»Top ten entries, in terms of total page views since January 2010 (Is related to)
»Top ten entries, in terms of page views in September 2012 (Is related to)

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Last update: 1 March 2011