Measuring Our Impact

By measuring our impact, we unlock critical data that drives real decision making about where and how we deploy limited resources.

Impact measurement and management is at the heart of Root Capital’s work to transform rural communities. We have a responsibility to ensure our work improves peoples’ livelihoods and doesn’t cause unintended harm. Impact measurement findings help us analyze our results and fine-tune our programs to better serve farming families. To contribute evidence to the broader sector, we regularly share what we’ve learned. Read our latest findings.

How We Measure Impact

Our impact measurement and management efforts focus on two areas:

We employ best-in-class standards from the impact investing sector and also situate our metrics within the broader
global development agenda. We employ rigorous evaluation methodologies; most recently, conducting our first set of quasi-experimental evaluations to measure our impact on farmer incomes. Learn more about this study.

We balance our commitment to rigor with usability—measuring impact in ways that are relevant to our work, budget-conscious, and suitable for remote, rural contexts. This ensures that the results are useful both to us and to our clients. In all cases, we make sure that the community directly benefits from our studies, through an approach we call "client-centric evaluation." As we measure impact, we also generate information that is useful to farmers and enterprises and deliver that data back to them.

Reports and Impact Studies

Climate Resilience Roadmap 2022 Annual Report

Climate change is an existential crisis for smallholder farmers across the world. But with the right support, these rural communities can be powerful champions of climate action. In 2020, Root Capital launched our Climate Resilience Roadmap, a six-year strategy to support urgent climate action in rural communities by building the resilience of agricultural enterprises serving smallholder farmers. Halfway through our strategy, we have made significant progress against our goals and generated valuable insights about how best to support small and growing agricultural enterprises to ramp up climate action. Descargar reporte (Español)

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Inclusion Pays: The Returns On Investing In Women In Agriculture

The business case for women’s leadership is clear. But little data exists on small and growing enterprises, especially in emerging economies. Even less data is available on the agricultural industry—a sector that 2.5 billion people globally depend on for their livelihoods, and one in which women receive only 7% of total investment.  Through an analysis of 10 years of Root Capital’s global data, Inclusion Pays: The Returns on Investing in Women in Agriculture sheds new light on the benefits—to women, businesses, and investors—of investing in women in agriculture. Descargar reporte (Español)

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Women in Agriculture Initiative: 2021 Annual Report

Over the past 10 years, Root Capital's Women in Agriculture Initiative has helped expand gender equity in hundreds of rural communities around the world. In 2021, we reached new heights alongside women farmers, agricultural employees, and entrepreneurs.

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How Impact-Linked Financing Incentivizes High-Impact Investment in Agricultural SMEs

Over two years, the Social Impact Incentives (SIINC) project used impact-linked financing to extend $12M in credit to previously underbanked agricultural enterprises across Latin America. Learn more about the project's success and the implications this has for future impact-linked financing projects.

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Sorghum farmer tending to an open-air field filled with waist-high sorghum. The farmers' face is covered by a hat. Evaluating How Root Capital’s Client Businesses Impact Smallholder Livelihoods: Sorghum in Ghana

This report analyzes the impact of Root Capital lending and advisory services on a sorghum aggregator in Ghana and the impact of that enterprise on its suppliers and local community. Read on for exciting findings about Root Capital's engagement with the business.

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A woman stands in a group holding a sack of sorghum. She's wearing bright colors and is smiling. The background has many sacks of sorghum. Evaluation of Root Capital’s Financial Literacy Training Program for Sorghum Farmers in Ghana

In 2018, Root Capital launched a pilot program of a Farmer Financial Literacy training with sorghum farmers in Ghana and conducted a randomized control trial to evaluate its impacts. We present this report on the programs' findings and lessons learned for future interventions.

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