Cooperatives and Fair Trade organisations investigate the role of private stector in development

Monday, 24 September 2012 - 2pm

High-level policy documents and fora are increasingly involving the private sector in development activities. But which private sector? From where? What kind of approaches? And how is the private sector being involved in the achievement of development goals?

In an effort to clarify common understanding and to answer some of these pressing questions, Cooperatives Europe and Fair Trade Advocacy Office co-hosted a Brainstorming Workshop on 20 September to launch dialogue on the issue. Bruce Byiers and Anna Rosengren of the ECDPM -European Center for Development Policy Management - presented a paper, “Reflections on the Private Sector (for) Development Agenda,” which proposes three categorisations of the private sector in development.

Participants included some Civil Society Organisations and their platforms with offices in Brussels, who broke into World Cafe style discussion groups to flush out the clarifications necessary, as well as shared features of the categories proposed by ECDPM. The Brainstorming Workshop proved fruitful in identifying the need for continued dialogue on the complexities of the private sector – a diverse sector in itself featuring myriad partnership modalities for shared development goals. Cooperatives Europe and FTAO hope to continue enhancing such dialogue, including building capacities to grasp the possible modalities and advocate on behalf of the features shared by all the relevant stakeholders.

Follow-up initiatives are being drafted and will include actors from civil society, research institutions, and the private sector.

For more information, please contact: Hanan El-Youssef