Participatory market Chain Approach

Center (ownership): 
Primary contact: 
Tool typology: 
Innovation in business models
Value chain analysis for the design of development interventions with rural communities
Long name: 

Participatory market Chain Approach


This tool was developed by CIP and partners to stimulate commercial, technological and institutional innovations and generate business opportunities that benefit small-scale farmers. This methodology structures a participatory process that involves different chain actors (public and private), including smallholders and business sector, focus on market demand, guided by facilitators and organized around three phases (diagnosis, analysis of opportunities and development of innovations). The tool have been tested in LAC (Peru, Bolivia, Ecuador and Colombia),presented and implemented in Africa (Kenya, Uganda, Tanzania) and Indonesia and the Philippines.  User guide and training manual developed. We are currently working on integrating a gender approach to the methodology with support from CRP2 and promoting interaction between LAC and SSA in coordination with CRP-RTB

Regarding to gender in value chains analysis, PMCA team has developed a Prototype guide for integrating gender into the Participatory Market Chain Approach that seeks to build understanding on gender issues into value chain interventions and to create the capacities of PMCA's facilitators in applying gender analysis and developing gender-sensitive strategies to promote equitable opportunities for men and women to access to and benefit from the PMCA intervention. See at:

On sustainability, PMCA team created a user guide ( ) called impact filter that provides a  rapid qualitative evaluation of the expected impact that different market opportunities are likely to have on poverty, and on social and environmental objectives. It enables R&D organizations to plan and guide interventions more effectively.


Type of tool: 

General methodology or instruments used: data collection on specific value based on previous market analysis, questionnaires, participatory analysis of market opportunities with public and private actors, promotion of market opportunities identified in public events .

Main variables (add a few variables which are important for data analaysis): 
harvested area
and yields
number of producers
farmgate price and sales
farmer's income
Variables needed: 
In order to monitor the effect of the methodology and potential impact of native potato based products in urban markets, we used the following variables: At a  macro level in the case of Peru:                                                                                                           • Production, harvested area, and yields for improved and native varieties  • Number of producers of improved and native potato varieties  • Volume of farm-gate sales of native and improved varieties  • Farm-gate prices for improved and native varieties, At a micro-level, the variables were: yield and quality levels of native and improved potato varieties, farmer's incomes, number of native potato varieties grown, area dedicated to grow native potato varieties.
Implementation procedure: 
Based on a three-phase process, PMCA aims to foster the market access of small-scale farmers by generating fruitful collaboration among the different market chain actors. This should help to reverse the declining spiral of competitivity and provide a basis for sustainable rural development (see Figure). Since PMCA basically describes a generic three-phase structure for market chain interventions, the content of each phase is context-specific. The activities taken on by each group may vary, including group discussions, field visits, market surveys, outsourced research, etc. While work is coordinated in the thematic group meetings, different persons may be in charge of conducting the different activities: participatory market chain actors, researchers, hired consultants or the facilitator him- or herself.

1) Devaux, A., Horton D., Velasco C., Thiele G., López G., Bernet T., Reinoso I., Ordinola M..2009. Collective Action for Market Chain Innovation in the Andes. Food Policy, 34:31-38. 2) Devaux, A., J. Andrade-Piedra, D. Horton, M. Ordinola, G. Thiele, A. Thomann, and C. Velasco. 2010a. Brokering Innovation for Sustainable Development: The Papa Andina Case. ILAC Working Paper 12, Rome: Institutional Learning and Change Initiative.

Spatial coverage: 
geographic coverage: 
First released on: 
Sunday, January 1, 2006
Last version on: 
Tuesday, January 1, 2008
Target audience: 
Development practitioner