There is now an emerging consensus that, as with relief and humanitarian operations, economic development interventions in conflict-affected and conflict-prone countries need to be sensitive to context and take non-economic variables into account, including social and conflict impacts. Value chain interventions are no exception.
This paper seeks to provide initial thoughts on integrating conflict-sensitive approaches into value chain analyses and interventions in conflict-affected situations. The document explores how practitioners might apply CSA during various stages of a value chain analysis and to different value chain elements. In doing so it seeks to be illustrative rather than exhaustive, providing evidence and thinking to identify options that can be further developed in future to integrate value chain analysis and CSA comprehensively.
Given that both value chain analysis and CSA follow systematic steps to cover prescribed components, including similar elements such as actors, their relationships, structures and dynamics, there are clear entry points that make it possible to integrate them. What is more, combining the two provides a more nuanced and richer analysis than either could provide on its own. While the approach here focuses on the ways CSA can enhance a value chain analysis, the opposite is also true. Where conflict analysis highlights the production and trading of a particular good as a conflict driver for example, analysis of that particular value chain throws light on the different aspects that facilitate and support production, trading and sale into end markets in a way that standard conflict analysis does not.
Since this report is not based on a particular project and context, it remains abstract to a certain degree. Where possible, however, the study refers to practical examples to illustrate points or questions. Applying CSA to a real-life value chain project is likely to reveal more nuanced and concrete findings and recommendations, and further illustrate the benefits of integrating a conflict-sensitive approach into value chain analyses carried out in conflict-affected environments.