Strengthening locale economic development in Bolivia

Title ECO.COM – Rafforzamento dell’economia comunitaria, solidale, inclusiva e sostenibile nei Comuni di Tiquipaya e Sacaba

Location Comuni di Tiquipaya e Sacaba, Bolivia

Duration 2018 -2020

Partnership FELCOS Umbria, ANCI Umbria, Legacoop Umbria, United Nations Development Program (UNDP), ARCO, Gobierno Autónomo Municipal de Tiquipaya, Gobierno Autónomo Municipal de Sacaba.

Funding Italian Agency for Development Cooperation – AICS


The municipalities of Sacaba and Tiquipaya are located in the Cochabamba Valley at 2600 m above sea level and on the surrounding mountain range. They count respectively 170,000 and 50,000 inhabitants. Of the 12 districts of the Municipality of Sacaba, 6 are urban and 6 rural. Tiquipaya has 6 districts, 3 of which are urban and 3 rural, the latter are the biggest and are located on the cordillera. In both Sacaba and Tiquipaya, over 70% of the population currently lives in urban districts. The main problem of both large municipalities is insufficient drinking and irrigation water. Firms are mostly small: in all Bolivia the micro and small enterprises represent 93% of the existing enterprises.

Obiettivo generale

Thus, the project aims at promoting local economic development in Bolivia in the municipalities of Sacaba and Tiquipaya by strengthening the production and marketing capacities of 10 local associations active in the agriculture, livestock and handicraft sectors.

Che cosa facciamo?

 ARCO Researchers carried out a mid-term evaluation of the project. During the first field mission, Researchers collected data by submitting multiple interviews with local actors and conducted focus groups with representatives of the producer associations of the two municipalities.

The activities envisaged by the project include the selection and financing of projects presented by associations of local producers, the strengthening of the municipalities’ capacities to promote the community economy, technical-professional training and the exchange of good practices between Italy and Bolivia.

The project also includes initiatives aimed at promoting the social and work inclusion of people at risk of marginalization. These include the provision of job grants for the inclusion of women, young people and people with disabilities in the associations of selected producers and training activities on reception and inclusion aimed at the associations themselves.

During the second field mission, the researchers carried out an intermediate evaluation. The aim was to record the opinion of the representatives of the associations involved on the project selection process and on the expectations they have for improving their production and marketing capabilities of the products. The collection of data for the evaluation also focused on understanding in which dimension and in what way the project will affect the local community.

The interventions foreseen by the project are receiving a lot of interest from the associations involved both for the prospects of growth and increase in production levels but also for the possibility of including new members within the associations themselves. The project is therefore also having an effect of multiplying the beneficiaries and preventing migration from rural to urban areas, with some cases of return migrations.

The final evaluation will take place at the end of the project in 2020.

Read more on our Local Development Unit