Economic Growth

Driving trade, technology, agriculture, business, and financial services to create jobs, reduce poverty, and enhance food security.

Agriculture and Food Security

We help communities, nations, and regions address food insecurity by championing solutions that lead to resilient and sustainable livelihoods, including increasing agricultural productivity and production, expanding opportunities to increase and diversify incomes, and promoting socially and economically responsible safety nets.

We build a ladder between subsistence-level family farming and small-scale commercial agriculture. We also work to remove policy constraints that, while well-intentioned, tend to exacerbate rather than alleviate food shortages, especially during a crisis.

Our Experts


Alia Afshar-Gandhi is responsible for overseeing a portfolio of economic growth, workforce development, and competitiveness projects in the Middle East and Afghanistan.

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Edwin Berk has made a career of building the businesses of professional services companies where public and private sectors intersect.

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Melanie Bittle is a Principal Global Practice Manager for DAI’s Agriculture, Market Systems, and Resilience practice.

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Chuck Chopak is a Senior Principal Global Practice Specialist in Agriculture and Market Systems.

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Lief Doerring is a senior international development expert, leader, and portfolio manager with more than 20 years of experience working in Africa, Asia, the Middle East, and the Pacific.

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Ric Goodman’s focus is on solutions to extreme poverty and vulnerability, often in hard to reach areas. He broadened his work to include the provision of goods and services to populations in remote areas, often in fragile ecosystems and environments, where people’s livelihoods are inherently fragile.

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Don Humpal has worked for more than 30 years on agricultural production, postharvest handling and storage, marketing, and food safety programs, primarily in Africa as well as in Eastern Europe, the Caribbean, and Middle East.

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Bronwyn Irwin is an agricultural economist who specializes in strengthening agricultural market systems to increase competitiveness while preserving natural resources, increasing food security, and integrating gender.

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Brian Kiger brings 17 years of experience residing in diverse and economically under-developed communities—working with local and international private and public sector stakeholders in the agriculture, water security, sanitation, and hygiene sectors to improve available services and products.

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Tom Lenaghan is a specialist in agricultural value chain and market systems approaches to development.

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Michelle Morgan oversees DAI’s Afghanistan Management Unit, delivering programs in Afghanistan, managing risks in the new operating environment, and supporting Special Immigrant Visa processing and eventual relocation of DAI staff and their families.

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Kirsten Pfeiffer leads the design and implementation of complex agriculture market systems and investment facilitation projects.

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Shannon Sarbo is Deputy Chief of Party for the Policy Leadership, Interactions, Networks, and Knowledge (LINK) project, driving efforts to transform agricultural policy systems worldwide.

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Our Projects


South Sudan—Resilience through Agriculture in South Sudan (RASS) Activity

The Resilience through Agriculture in South Sudan (RASS) Activity improves food security and community household recovery and resilience in 13 target counties in South Sudan, reducing their long-term reliance on humanitarian assistance.

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Haiti—Feed the Future Resilience and Agriculture Sector Advancement (HRASA) Activity

The Haiti Resilience and Agriculture Sector Advancement Activity improves the efficiency and effectiveness of existing market system actors; stimulates and expands private sector engagement and investment in agricultural market systems; and strengthens the capacity of subsistence farming households to participate in opportunities.

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Senegal—Feed the Future Policy Systems Services (PSS) Activity

The Feed the Future Senegal Policy Systems Services (PSS) Activity works to advance Senegal’s self-reliance, decrease poverty, improve nutritional outcomes, build resilience, improve water security, and accelerate inclusive agricultural growth and transformation.

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Tajikistan—Feed the Future Agriculture and Land Governance (ALG)

Feed the Future Tajikistan Agriculture and Land Governance Activity assists the government to sustainably reduce hunger, undernutrition, and poverty among smallholder farmers by developing more productive and efficient agriculture systems, building the resilience of smallholders, and improving the enabling environment to facilitate sustainable and long-term, ag-led growth.

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Worldwide—USAID Policy LINK

Policy LINK strengthens the leadership capacity of public, private, and civil society actors and fosters collective action among them to transform policy systems.

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Uganda—Feed the Future Inclusive Agricultural Markets (IAM)

The Feed the Future Inclusive Agricultural Marketsactivity works to increase incomes and improve livelihoods in Uganda by promoting agriculture-led economic growth.

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Zimbabwe—Technical Assistance to the Zimbabwe Agricultural Growth Programme (TA ZAGP)

The Zimbabwe Agriculture Growth Programme addresses critical weaknesses in the country’s livestock value chains with innovative approaches to strengthening local institutions, building capacity, and promoting policy reforms that improve livelihoods for smallholder farmers.

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Mozambique—Feed the Future Agricultural Innovations (FTF Inova)

The Feed the Future Agricultural Innovations (FTF Inova) project partnered with farmers, businesses, and policymakers to explore ways to improve productivity and increase sales of key cash crops vital to Mozambique’s economy.

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Southern Africa—Trade and Investment Hub (USAID TradeHub)

The USAID Southern Africa Trade and Investment Hub engages with partners across Southern Africa to deepen regional economic integration, promote two-way trade with the United States under the African Growth and Opportunity Act, and attract investment that drives commercial expansion within the region and globally.

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Feed the Future Southern Africa Seed Trade Project (Seed Trade Project)

This project provided technical assistance to help harmonize seed regulations in the Southern African Development Community (SADC), which allowed seed trade across the region, thereby integrating smaller and isolated national markets into one larger SADC market for seeds.

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Guatemala—Nexos Locales

Nexos Locales works with municipalities in Guatemala’s Western Highlands to foster more responsive, inclusive, and effective socio-economic development while reducing local vulnerabilities such as food insecurity and natural disasters. To achieve this goal, the project works at the intersection—or nexos—of good governance.

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Worldwide—Technical Support to the EU LIFE Programme

As part of the Astrale group of nine European partners, we supported the LIFE III Environment Programme from 2001 to 2005 and we have been supporting the whole LIFE III and LIFE + Programmes since 2005, in our role as the External Assistance Team.

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