2009 Series: Assessing impacts of business on development: what do alternative frameworks offer?

Video from the 2009 Event Series

Assessing impacts of business on development: what do alternative frameworks offer?

On 12 May 2009, Business Action for Africa convened an event with the Overseas Development Institute and the UK Department for International entitled. “Assessing impacts of business on development: what do alternative frameworks offer?” The event was moderated by Simon Maxwell, Senior Research, Overseas Development Institute. The event was hosted by Anglo American.

Below is the video of the event. Scroll down to the bottom of this article for links to speaker presentations and other resources.

Caroline Ashley, ODI, speaking on “‘The how and why of impact assessment’: Overview of 4 contrasting approaches”

Miguel Veiga-Pestana, Vice-President Global External Affairs, Unilever, speaking on “Mapping the value chain in Indonesia and mapping economic contribution in South Africa”

Joaquim Croca, Head of Corporate Responsibility Performance & Reporting, Vodafone Group, speaking on “Local level assessment of mobile phone use and reporting against GRI scorecard”

Marie Rosencrantz, Socially Responsible Investment Adviser, CDC, speaking on “Assessing the impact of business investments from the donor perspective”

Discussants: Mike Barry, Head of Sustainable Business, Marks & Spencer;Graham Clewer, Director, Community Trade, The Body Shop; Jessica Davis, WBCSD

Related Resources:

Framework for Measuring the Development Impact of Business

Presentation by Caroline Ashley, ODI

Background Note on Approaches to assessing business impacts on deve… This paper has been prepared for the fifth meeting in the series on ‘Harnessing the Power of Business for Development Impact.’ The fifth meeting explores how we can better understand the impact of business on development, and particularly what companies themselves do in this area. So far, in discussions of business models and corporate innovation, a recurrent theme has been that we need to know which approaches really do contribute effectively to development, or create ‘social value’. But approaches to understanding this are diverse. The purpose of this paper, and of the meeting, is to explore contrasting approaches and to develop key questions for further discussion. A revised version, drawing on the meeting and on comments received, will be published as an ODI Working Paper. Please send comments to

Corporate Examples

Anglo American


  • Presentation by Joaquim Croca, Vodafone
  • Vodafone’s assessment of the impact of mobile phones in India collating data from many users on how they use their new technology is covered in their public policy series report: ‘India: The Impact of Mobile Phones’, available here.


  • Presentation by Miguel Veiga-Pestana, Unilever
  • The assessment of the impact of Unilever Indonesia, done jointly with Oxfam is summarised in: ‘Exploring the Links Between International Business and Poverty Reduction: A Case Study of Unilever in Indonesia’, available here. The assessment of Unilever’s economic footprint in South Africa: ‘Measuring Unilever’s Economic Footprint: The Case of South Africa’, availablehere.


  • SABMiller: Their recent Enterprise Development Report: ‘Making a difference through beer’, available here, summarises and contrasts results of supply chain initiatives in a number of countries. SABMiller’s contribution to South Africa’s economy is summarised in a report available on their website.
  • Diageo: The assessment of Diageo’s Water of Life projects in over 30 countries, looking both at the number of beneficiaries reached, and longer lasting impact issues relating to sustainability and community ownership is summarised in theirreport: ‘Evaluation of the 2007 Water of Life Projects in Africa’, available here.

Donor Insights and Experiences

Review of key issues and approaches

  • An overview of different approaches to assessing business impact on development: ‘Approaches to assessing business impacts on development’, a framework paper produced for the fifth meeting in the series, available here.
  • A summary of key issues for assessing private sector development: ‘The 2008 Reader on Private Sector Development: Measuring and Reporting Results’ published by the Donor Committee on Enterprise Development, available here.

New Tools

  • World Business Council for Sustainable Development (WBCSD): Measuring Impact Framework Methodology
  • ARUP and Engineers Against Poverty: ASPIRE framework, A sustainability Poverty and Infrastructure Routine for Evaluation
  • Social Enterprise London: Social IMPact measurement for Local Economies (SIMPLE)
  • New Economics Foundation: Social Return on Investment (SROI) approach to measurement and value that can be used across public, private and third sectors.
  • ODI proposal for a “Good for Development” company badge

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