Course map

The course consists of the following six modules:

1. Introduction

Trends in world food production and demand are described, and examples are given on existing diaspora investment in agribusiness. Since investment in land is highly sensible, investment in other parts of agribusiness is encouraged. Examples of affordable investments in all phases of the value chain are described.

2. Agricultural inputs

Many activities influence productivity of agriculture even before sowing and planting. Investment in land registration, soil analysis, irrigation, flood prevention, fertilizers, high-quality seeds and better tools are the precondition for better harvest.

3. Horticulture

Even on small plots, profitable horticulture is possible. The module discusses the One Square meter experiment, production in glass houses, Demeter closed horticulture circuits, nurseries, neighborhood outsourcing, mushroom cultivation, and the combination of horticulture with raising small animals (rabbits, chicken)

4. Post-harvest

The avoidance of post-harvest losses can lead to considerable increases in income. Proper storage facilities provide more choice of when to sell. Packaging helps to keep products fresh and attractive, and better transport gives access to larger markets

5. Processing

Processing contributes much added value (and helps to avoid post-harvest losses). Preservation can take many forms – drying, fermenting, cooking, baking, brewing, salting, canning – to make pickles, yoghurt, juices, cakes, soups, jams, drinks, ketchup, …

6. Marketing

Effective marketing is a precondition for higher sales.  Systems of market information, better communication, integration into value chains,  branding, provision of credit and insurance, adaptation to phyto-sanitary regulations, Fair trade, …

Course organization

Participants enter the course with an individual password, and work on the course at the time that fits best into their own weekly schedule. It thus offers a high degree of flexibility.  Participants can during each week choose the hours during which they read the course material, do the assignments, and participate in the online discussion. In that way, they can combine participation with (most of the) other obligations they have throughout the week. But they are expected to do the weekly assignments during each week, so that the different participants remain “on the same page” and reflect on the same issues.

Participants in the course will all be active professionals from different countries who gain a lot from each other’s experience. The programme is therefore a highly interactive one. Participants interact with the coaches, but also with outside experts, and with the other participants (who are experts in their own field and regarding the situation in their own country).

This programme favors collaborative learning. Participants are requested to actively contribute to discussions, asking critical questions to fellow participants and to the coaches, commenting on each other’s ideas, and cooperating with others in the completion of the assignments. The course thus makes each participant a consultant to all the others.
Participants are encouraged to work on policy issues and proposals that they can immediately use in their own daily work environment and to discuss those issues that they face in the implementation of their national policies. The assignments thus help to shed light on concrete diaspora issues from the perspectives of different countries and different institutions. They are not just exercises; they contribute to common knowledge creation which is immediately relevant for policy formulation.
Participants do get a certificate at the end, which will detail their own individual contributions and achievements. The real certification of success, however,  will be the formulation and implementation of a successful policy to which the course will have contributed. 

The course is offered and supervised entirely in English language.

The course material on the course website will continuously be updated and further evolve during the programme to answer the specific needs of the participants, follow their choices of issues, and deepen out those areas in which participants are most interested. 

For more information, please contact Gerd Junne (gjunne [at] For  registration, please go to the application page .