emkambo

Nine nuances that define indigenous commerce

Although many people associate commerce with modernization, it is as old as the hills. To the extent, commerce refers to the exchange of goods and services, it has existed in many indigenous communities for generations. Indigenous commerce is home-grown commerce tied to the origin of specific communities. While academics may want to limit the notion[…]

emkambo

Addictive tendencies associated with food and knowledge in developing countries

When consumers can no longer do without cassava, nsima/sadza, matoke, tomato, beans, peas, among other foods, it could be an indication that the consumers have become addicted. Such addictive tendencies may have little to do with the food being a staple or a necessity. The way profit-oriented seed companies and manufacturers promote their seeds or[…]

emkambo

From number of beneficiaries to knowledge mobilization and use

In what probably signifies a new approach to achieving socio-economic development, a few policy makers and development agencies in developing countries are beginning to move from measuring success through the number of beneficiaries. Instead, they are reluctantly shifting to their focus to how the so-called beneficiaries mobilize and use knowledge associated with projects introduced in[…]

emkambo

When will developing countries stop importing knowledge?

It is lamentable that, in spite of setting up hundreds of universities and research institutes, developing countries continue to import knowledge.  For instance, African countries are not just importing equipment and finished products from the West and East but also importing knowledge in the form of prescriptions on how to use those imports. Each imported[…]

More reasons for decolonizing banking systems in developing countries

While some developing economies are evolving rapidly, local banks are clutching onto colonial identities. For instance, in most African countries banking as a practice has kept colonial labels such as Commercial Bank, Merchant Bank and Building Society, among other categories whose meaning and differences are not clear to ordinary people. This identity crisis, with colonial[…]

emkambo

Using informal markets to shape a developing country’s knowledge agenda

The world over, many resources are spent on conferences, agricultural shows and summits like the recent Forum on China-Africa Cooperation (FOCAC) held in the first week of September 2018 in China. However, what happens before and after these events is more important. On the other hand, while funders and development agencies continue to determine socio-economic[…]

emkambo

Nine types of agricultural-related entrepreneurs in developing countries

eMKambo has invested time and effort in understanding and classifying different archetypes of entrepreneurs in developing countries. While this effort has focused mainly on agriculture-related entrepreneurship, it has also embraced diverse socio-economic sectors. Unless, development actors, policy makers and financial institutions characterize economic actors in line with their different roles, it will remain difficult to[…]

emkambo

The character-building role of African ‘informal’ economies

People who co-exist with Kombi drivers in Zimbabwe, Matatu drivers in Nairobi’s traffic jammed roads, boda-boda motorcyclists in Kampala and similar situations in African cities have always wondered if those drivers are from the same mother. This is due to their character which is exactly the same. ‘Informal’ traders and MSMEs also share the same[…]

emkambo

Nudging universities in developing countries to harness community based inquiry

Contrary to prevailing formal approaches, knowledge sharing in most rural African communities is embedded in the way people work. For instance, knowledge sharing happens as farmers select seed or choose livestock breeds.  It also happens as they milk cows, plant crops, weed, harvest, store and market.  They do not stop and say, “Now let us[…]

emkambo

Asking and answering fundamental questions through informal markets

Street markets or roadside food markets have remained a permanent feature in most developing countries. The fact that these markets continue to flourish alongside emerging shopping malls shows they occupy a unique position in commercial activities.  Informal markets were previously designed for disadvantaged, low income households with ad hoc incomes who were considered not able[…]