Bangladesh expedition successfully completed

Published on 12 December 2017

On behalf of development organisation VSO, six consultants have conducted research into the cooperation between local farmers in Bangladesh and how this can best be achieved. The research was carried out in the context of the Expedition, a Berenschot initiative in which experienced consultants get the opportunity to put themselves to the test during a challenging assignment in unknown territory.

Multiple long-term VSO projects are being carried out in Bangladesh that aim to improve the position of women and improve income from farming. One of these projects is the Growing Together project, which stimulates collaboration between and knowledge transfer to local farmers. Funding for this project will cease in mid-2018 and VSO faces the challenge of converting the current cooperative model into a social franchise model, which will allow the costs to be recovered within the chain.

The Expedition is in line with Berenschot’s aspirations regarding corporate social involvement. It also provides a unique opportunity for experienced consultants to further develop their skillset by carrying out an assignment within a deviating context and setting. Under the guidance of a team coach, the consultants were able to deliver the requested business model and provide it with observations and recommendations for the follow-up steps in the proposed transition from development aid programme to social franchise. The Expedition team was not only asked to develop a business model for the social franchise concept, but also to provide recommendations that contribute to making a success of the follow-up steps in the proposed transition from development aid programme to a sustainable social franchise. Furthermore, they have achieved their individual as well as their collective learning goals.