The Trickle Out Africa Project
Trickle Out is a research project funded by the UK Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC) examining social enterprises and environmental enterprises in East and Southern Africa. The project considers the role and potential contribution of such enterprises to sustainable development and poverty alleviation. The project is based in Queen's University Management School, Queen’s University Belfast.To find out more about the project please visit our website www.trickleout.net
Trickling Out? A study of eco/social enterprises in Southern and Eastern Africa and their role in sustainable development at the base of the pyramid
Funded by the ESRC First Grant Scheme
Start date: 1st February 2011
Length: 26 months
The primary objectives of this study are to: (a) identify examples of social and environmental enterprises in the Southern Africa Development and Eastern Africa Community; and (b) to explore and evaluate the role that these enterprises may play as a mechanism to 'trickle out' social, environmental and economic benefits to community groups economically considered to be at the 'base/bottom of the pyramid' (BoP).
Utilising secondary data analysis of published documents and discussions with key actors, a 'Directory of Eco-Social Enterprises, Agencies & Associations' is developed. Using a mixed methodology combining archival data analysis, surveys and interviews with the enterprises and agencies identified in this Directory the study considers wider issues of eco-social enterprise development, role of global supply chains and donor agencies and the potential 'trickle out' effects of such enterprises within their community.
This is followed by an in-depth qualitative analysis of 9-12 case examples from Kenya, South Africa, and Zambia that considers the interaction of these enterprises with their supply chains locally and globally, and evaluates the specific role that such enterprises play in poverty alleviation and sustainable development.
i. To identify, synthesise, and model the antecedent literature that considers the role that social and environmental enterprise may play in poverty alleviation and sustainable development.
ii. To compile a directory of social or environmental enterprises that produce, retail, manufacture or offer services within the Southern Africa Development Community (SADC) and Eastern Africa Community (EAC) regions, as well as the donor agencies, voluntary associations and assurance schemes that support these.
iii. To evaluate these enterprises through survey and case study research to:
We are also working with a number of partner organisations, institutions and networks across Eastern and Southern Africa
Where we are working
We have created a directory of social and environmental enterprises in 19 countries across East and Southern Africa. These countries are: Angola, Botswana, Burundi, The Democratic Republic of the Congo, Kenya, Lesotho, Madagascar, Malawi, Mauritius, Mozambique, Namibia, Rwanda, Seychelles, South Africa, Swaziland, Tanzania, Uganda, Zambia, Zimbabwe
As part of the Trickle Out Africa Project we are undertaking in-depth case study research with a number of social and/or environmental enterprises in South Africa, Zambia, Kenya and additionally Mozambique. These case study enterprises are featured on the website
Selected Conference Contributions
Trickle Out Africa Project case study series (ISSN 2052-0026)