Press release 138/2017
18 August 2017
The BEAM programme supporting enterprises’ innovation activities in the emerging markets has given impetus to projects that otherwise would not have been launched at all. The developmental impacts of the activities would, however, further improve, if there was more cooperation with local operators and if enterprises, NGOs and research institutes had more joint projects.
The results of a mid-term review of the developmental evaluation of the programme were published this week.
“The BEAM programme has already borne fruit for example in Kenya. The online career and recruitment platform Fuzu has grown rapidly and the number of users has exceeded 700,000. This helps to unblock a considerable bottleneck caused by the malfunctioning public employment services in the country. Over the next ten years, more than 120 million new jobseekers will enter the labour market in Africa,” says Minister of Foreign Trade and Development Kai Mykkänen.
The first evaluation field trip to Namibia and South Africa showed that the ongoing projects are relevant to local needs and that concrete goals are about to be achieved. The projects aim to introduce new products as well as service and process innovations into new environments.
According to the recent mid-term review, the programme is considered to provide an important opportunity for enterprises to operate in an environment where they otherwise would not venture into.
The review serves as a basis for further development of the BEAM programme. The results suggest a need for an increased analysis of the developmental impacts of the projects and for closer cooperation with local operators. It is also recommended that activities be centralised in order to achieve larger-scale impacts at the programme level instead of carrying out relatively small individual projects.
Business with Impact, BEAM, is a five-year programme run by Tekes and the Ministry for Foreign Affairs. It was launched in the beginning of 2015 with a budget of EUR 50 million. The programme aims to assist Finnish enterprises and other actors in addressing global development challenges by means of innovations.
The programme supports Finnish companies, NGOs, research organisations, universities and universities of applied sciences in developing and piloting innovations. The goal is to improve well-being in developing countries while giving rise to international business opportunities for Finnish companies.
The evaluation of the BEAM programme, the mid-term results of which have now been published, differs from a traditional project evaluation. The mid-term review report is a compilation of the results that the constant evaluation process conducted alongside the programme has produced so far. This kind of developmental evaluation carried out throughout the programme period provides constant feedback on which approaches function well. Thus, it supports the profitability and effectiveness of the innovations as well as risk management.
BEAM programme: Oskar Kass, Senior Officer, Unit for Development Financing Institutions, tel. +358 295 351 943
Evaluation: Riitta Oksanen, Senior Officer, Development Evaluation, tel. +358 295 351 432