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Promoting sustainability through a multi-partner-driven impact assessment

The aim of this mutli-stakeholder partnership is an impact assessment of the potential adverse effects of developing and introducing a new dairy product to the local market in Ethiopia.

Factual outline

Aim: An impact assessment of the potential adverse effects of
developing and introducing a new dairy product to the local market in Ethiopia. It was carried out in the early planning phase of a multi-stakeholder, value-chain project, “GAIN access to better dairy Ethiopia,” supported by Danida’s Market Development Partnership for the period 2017–2020.

Approach: Partners in the GAIN Nordic platform (Arla Food Ingredients Group P/S, Global Alliance for Improved Nutrition, DanChurchAid, and the Danish Confederation of Industries) conducted the assessment. GAIN Nordic is a multistake-holder platform developing solutions that contribute to food security and nutrition based on SDG 2. DanChurchAid’s role is to promote solutions that are sustainable, responsible, and pro-poor.

Location: Ethiopia

Time Frame: 2017 - 2020

Why this case

When businesses, civil society organisations (CSOs), and other stakeholders work together in multi-stakeholder partnerships, numerous opportunities, dilemmas, and risks arise. Global supply chains pose great risks to people and the environment, but can also be a significant leverage point for creating positive impacts in line with the SDGs. With this impact assessment, GAIN Nordic partners wanted to “walk the walk” and assess how to reduce harm and create social value in a combined approach. Partners used the assessment process to identify potential impacts in their own proposed activities, and agree on follow-up actions and mitigation measures through joint knowledge, leverage, and resources.

Initiative: Conducting an impact assessment

The GAIN Nordic partnership is a multistake-holder platform developing solutions that contribute to food security and nutrition based on SDG 2. The impact assessment of the potential adverse effects of developing and introducing a new dairy product to the local market in Ethiopia was carried out in the early planning phase of a multi-stakeholder, value-chain project, “GAIN access to better dairy Ethiopia,” supported by Danida’s Market Development Partnership for the period 2017–2020.

Reducing harm and creating value in the dairy industry

With this impact assessment, the GAIN Nordic partners wanted to “walk the walk” and access how to reduce harm and create social value in a combined approach. The assessment process was used to identify potential impacts in their own proposed activities, and agree on follow-up actions and mitigation measures through joint knowledge, leverage, and resources.

However, the GAIN Nordic partners recognise that more work is needed to further develop the methodology, and hope to exchange knowledge and collaborate with other stakeholders interested in coherently linking the UNGP and SDG frameworks.

Results and lessons

The process facilitated a change within the partnership, creating more awareness about risks and opportunities. A key lesson from the impact assessment was that it is important to distinguish between the roles and responsibilities of different partners, to ensure clarity and accountability internally among partners and externally in the process and project design.

By conducting an impact assessment together, we were able to integrate the mindset of responsible business conduct into the design and planning phase of proposed project activities. It served as a catalyst to understand and apply human rights due diligence thinking into the on-the-ground activities (…)”

- Gitte Dyrhagen Husager from DanChurchAid

 
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