DCED Global Seminar: Systemic approaches for sustainable growth, employment and resilience

Nairobi, 1 – 3 October 2024

Organised in collaboration with Gatsby Africa and the International Labour Organization


The DCED, together with the BEAM Exchange – its knowledge platform on market systems development (MSD), has been running regular highly-regarded global seminars about private-sector development (PSD) since 2000 – including in Nairobi (2018), Lusaka (2016) and Bangkok (2014, 2012 and earlier). We return now after a six year break with a new format and fresh ambition to Nairobi, 1-3 October 2024.

The 2024 Global Seminar will focus on using systemic approaches for growth, employment and resilience. Sessions will prioritise practical lessons emerging from PSD field experience, evidence of what is working well, along with analysis of the pitfalls.

We aim to create a space conducive to constructive conversations between international donors and experienced PSD practitioners. In order to create the right balance of voices, and enable the most productive dialogue, we will have to restrict the number of places for PSD practitioners. There is no fee for participating in the DCED Global Seminar 2024. Participants will be responsible for their own travel, accommodation and subsistence. Please apply early to be considered.

The Seminar’s sessions will be organised broadly around the six strands below; please see our provisional agenda for more information on individual sessions within each strand. In addition, the content of many sessions will feature two important cross-cutting themes: the challenges of measuring results (MEL) and promoting gender equality, diversity and inclusion.


  • Language matters: the meaning of systemic approaches
  • What counts?: assessing system change
  • Back to basics: principles of good PSD practice
  • Beyond incremental change: risk & systemic ambition in PSD programmes
  • Systemic approaches for trade-related outcomes
  • Transformative impact: how can programmes select sectors with high potential?
  • Charting the landscape: systemic approaches to employment
  • Job creation: how does it happen and why isn’t there more of it?
  • Setting targets and ambitions for realistic employment programme design
  • Green jobs and the ‘just transition’: experimenting with a systems lens (see below)
  • Bridging the gap: synergy in financial markets
  • Investing in frontier markets
  • Gender smart investment
  • Climate finance
  • Navigating green private sector development
  • Climate finance
  • Greening the MSD approach in agriculture
  • Green jobs and the ‘just transition’: experimenting with a systems lens
  • PSD in fragile & conflict-affected markets
  • Investing in frontier markets
  • Reaching across the aisle: the importance of donor-implementer relationships
  • Interpreting the rules: managing compliance in systemic programmes
  • Donor policies that affect systemic practice
  • Investing in emerging leaders on MSD/PSD programmes