Building farmers’ capacities for networking (Part II): Strengthening agricultural supply chains in Bolivia using network analysis.

Authors

  • Louise Clark

Keywords:

knowledge managment, development, social network analysis, network mapping, Bolivia

Abstract

This case study presents results from field research conducted in Bolivia to demonstrate the potential of Social Network Analysis (SNA) to characterise the network structures of supply chains by identifying key stakeholders and the information flows between them. Network maps from the chilli, coffee and peach supply chains are discussed to demonstrate the versatility of the tool in creating a visual representation of relationships and information flows in supply chains. The case study focuses on the visual impact of network maps as perceived by local stakeholders. It discusses how network mapping can help actors understand their local networks and develop their own skills to both analyse and strengthen these networks in order to support improved planning and implementation of local development initiatives. The methodological process and problems encountered while developing the capacity to apply SNA to rural communities are discussed. This work is part of ongoing action-research to highlight the lessons learned and share the steps taken to adapt and apply this methodology to make social network analysis more widely accessible to rural development practitioners.

Published

2006-09-20