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Annual Conference Image

The SEEP Network 
Annual Conference

October 1-3, 2018

Featured Sessions


Plenary Sessions


Private Sector Partnerships: Creating Sustained Impact

Beyond Access: Catalyzing Women’s Economic Empowerment in Market Systems

 Sponsored Sessions


Agricultural Finance Roundtable

Hosted by Grameen Foundation

The Future of Sustainability in Agricultural Value Chain Development

 Hosted by CARE


Context Matters: How Can We Use Behavioral Principles to Design More Effective Financial Products?

Hosted by MetLife Foundation


Plenary: Private sector partnerships: Creating sustained impact

Wednesday, September 30
9:20 am - 10:45 am

Cross-sector partnerships among development organizations and corporations (local, national, regional and multi-national) are a growing trend. They represent an important opportunity to contribute to inclusive, pro-poor market system changes that can improve families' resiliency to shocks, improve livelihoods and create sustainable business models. While opportunities exist, barriers remain that often limit the potential for scale and impact: lack of common language, inadequate measures and incentives, limited financial investment models, and time frames required to achieve profitability.

This plenary will focus on exploring successful strategies with experts to overcome common barriers to achieving scale and impact through partnerships. Discussion will focus on exploring changes that need to occur in the operational models of both development organizations and private firms to achieve a common vision of success. 

Key questions: How can the results of partnerships be sustained through market mechanisms? What are the principle drivers motivating organizations to engage in these types of partnerships? How are these relationships evaluated? What are the challenges for corporations to embedding support for cross-sector partnerships within organizations? How has success been measured?

Bob Annibale    Vince Mountaga Diop     Susan Rae Ross     Sarah Thorn          Mark Viso

  Bob Annibale             diop                 Susan Ross        Sarah Thorn      Mark Viso

Plenary: Beyond Access: Catalyzing Women’s Economic Empowerment in Market Systems

Thursday, October 1
9:20 am - 10:45 am 

All economic development interventions should include women and promote their ability to better access economic opportunities. However, emerging evidence shows that enabling women’s access to services is only one part of the equation. For women to best take advantage of new economic prospects, they need to have the interest, voice and capacity for individualized choice and action. It is this combination of access and agency that makes up the complex process of empowerment, catalyzing a space for women to be economic change-makers in a sustainable and systemic manner.

This plenary will explore the concepts and practical evidence behind the growing recognition that advancing women’s economic empowerment is a key driver towards inclusive market systems. We will explore commonly held assumptions, demonstrate practical lessons learned and good practices moving forward, as well as examine new evidence from the field. We will hear perspectives from key experts at USAID, the World Bank, the International Center for Research on Women, and Oxfam Great Britain. 

Key questions: How is promoting women’s economic empowerment different from gender integration? What types of interventions have successfully enhanced both women’s agency and access to resources?  Do systemic and scalable solutions exist? What are the spill-over effects on a broader community or system when working to empower women? What are the strategies used and developed by local women themselves that promote their resilience and empowerment? What is the role of the private sector in promoting women’s economic empowerment?

      Wade Channell             Caren Grown                     Aslihan Kes                 Amit Vatsyayan

      Wade Channell      Caren Grown        Aslihan Kes         Amit Vatsyayan



Lunch Dialogue: The Future of Sustainability in Agricultural Value Chain Development

Hosted by CARE

Wednesday, September 30
1:00 pm - 2:30 pm

Many of us dream of a world free from poverty, but how can this be realistically achieved, especially for smallholder farmers who make up the majority of the world’s poor? This session will discuss practical applications of the learning from CARE and its partners as assembled in CARE’s recent book titled Making Markets More Inclusive: Lessons from CARE and the Future of Sustainability in Agriculture Value Chain Development. The session will delve into lessons from one of the most intensely developed agricultural value chain initiatives in the world: CARE’s work in the dairy value chain in northwest Bangladesh. The book and session both offer an in-depth, behind-the-scenes look at what CARE has learned in its journey to reduce poverty through market-based approaches—and the practical applications of this learning.

We invite you to join in this interactive session, in which participants will share their own experience and ask questions they are still struggling with in their work. Participants will walk away with a better understanding of how corporations, development agencies, and donors can contribute to making agriculture markets more inclusive of smallholder farmers, with particular emphasis on gender and women.

Laté Lawson-Lartego         Kevin McKague            Scott Merrill          Siddiquee Mohammed  

         late                          McKague                merrill                       siddiquee                 

Carrie Thompson    Christian Pennotti 

thompson       pennotti



LUNCH DIALOGUE: Context matters: how can we use behavioral principles to design more effective financial products?

Hosted by MetLife Foundation

Thursday, October 1
1:00 pm - 2:30 pm

What does effective financial product design look like? In this session, ideas42 – a social impact behavioral design firm, invites you to experience first-hand the quirks of human psychology, how they affect our decisions and actions, and what that means for the design of financial products for low-income customers in developing countries. Why does this matter? Effectively designed financial products have the power to unlock the potential of customers to achieve their life goals – grow their businesses, get out of poverty and educate their children.

Through lecture, interactive exercises and behavioral experiments, we will represent the financial needs of low-income customers through the lens of behavioral science. We will demonstrate how seemingly trivial contextual features shape the financial decisions and outcomes of these customers, and why designing financial services without a clear picture of the context that shapes our clients’ decisions could often not get us the desired outcomes. Participants will walk away with a set of key behavioral design principles, and a deeper understanding of the forces that shape the financial decisions of the populations they are trying to serve. Finally, we will invite a discussion on how participants can employ these principles to design creative solutions for improving financial products.

ideas42 is a private non-profit behavioral ideas lab and consulting firm that uses the latest insights from behavioral economics and psychology to do social good and have impact at scale. Our work draws upon decades of experimental scientific research in decision-making and behavior. ideas42 is distinctive in its approach to problem solving. We believe that constructing a more comprehensive view of human behavior is key to developing innovative solutions to help tackle difficult social challenges.

                                                Saugato Datta                        Marina Dimova

Saugato Datta                        Dimova


Agricultural Finance Roundtable

Hosted by Grameen Foundation

Tuesday, September 29
12:30 pm - 5:00 pm

Invitation only

Experts and practitioners working in agricultural finance, representing financial institutions, agribusinesses and funders are coming together for an afternoon session to identify common barriers to scaling agricultural finance. Session participants will examine recent case studies representing promising agricultural finance models, including those using digital channels. Opportunities for continued collaboration and knowledge sharing for practitioners will be explored.

This event is invitation only. For more information, please contact Stephanie Simpson, ssimpson@grameenfoundation.org.

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