Trainers Manual & Toolkit: Evaluating Inclusive Business Models in Agribusiness and linking Smallholders to Markets

Inclusive business means creating profitable business models and strategies that help drive economic opportunities for those who would otherwise be left behind – small-scale farmers, local agribusinesses and the rural unemployed. IB trainer manual, developed by Wageningen University & Research, Centre for Development Innovation and CTA, gives a framework to provide a structured approach to evaluating inclusive business models. It is particularly developed for working with small and medium size enterprises (SMEs).

If followed completely, this manual provides a training that can be carried out in 3 days:


The manual makes use of the LINK Toolkit (short version), developed by CIAT and CGIAR, which is a participatory guide to business models that link smallholders to markets. (The extensive version of the LINK Toolkit can be found here and a gender responsive version of the toolkit can be found here, which pays particular attention to women’s economic empowerment using the same four main tools as in the other toolkit.

The LINK toolkit can help businesses to facilitate a systematic learning process between actors from a selected value chain, and discover new opportunities for innovation, with four main tools:

  1. The value chain map: Used to understand the macro context of markets and
    the businesses which link rural producers with buyers.
  2. The business model canvas: Used to understand in more detail each business
    which links rural producers with buyers.
  3. The New Business Model principles: Used to determine whether each business
    which links rural producers with buyers is truly inclusive.
  4. The prototype cycle: Used to continuously improve the inclusivity of every
    business which links rural producers with buyers.

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