adelphi successfully helps kickstart green recovery in India

The pandemic killed millions and wreaked havoc on economies globally, especially of developing and emerging countries. adelphi’s GREB programme helps green MSMEs to get a leg up, turning efforts to recover and rebuild into a transformation toward a greener, more sustainable and resilient economy.


Economies all over the world are reeling from the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic. For a better future, the recovery has to be green, integrating environmental and climate protection as well as healthy living conditions with economic goals. But while the wealthiest countries were able to cushion the worst and are now preparing recovery programmes worth billions, developing countries need more targeted solutions.

Micro, small and medium enterprises (MSMEs) in developing and emerging economies are key to an economic recovery from the ground up. In addition, they can be major actors in the transformation toward a greener economy and society. The SEED programme, hosted by adelphi, has focused on these enterprises for almost two decades. Now, adelphi and the Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) are using this expertise to kickstart a green recovery in developing and emerging countries. The Green Recovery Ecosystem Builder (GREB) workshops in India just concluded successfully.

A photo of Mr. Ashish Garde, Marathwada Accelerator for Growth and Incubation Council, and the quote: “It was indeed a pleasure to participate in the first ever GREB Program conducted for Organisations in India. […] I found the program very interesting & useful. The GREB Toolkit is amazing & offers completely new approach for the organisations in building & evolving new strategies for its Green Recovery Projects / Programs & aligning it for meeting the SDGs.”

Participants are eager to implement what they learned

India is home to one of the largest start-up ecosystems in the world, and thus an ideal testing ground for the GREB programme. GIZ chose 16 participants from eight business development service (BDS) providers , intermediaries, accelerators, business advisors, tech hubs and support agencies from northern and western India. adelphi’s experts led them through a series of virtual events, from a three-day inception workshop in May followed by peer-exchange seminars to transition workshops in June that helped them to turn the lessons they learned into actual concepts.

The workshops focused on practical concepts and templates that can be adapted for different projects and business cases, giving the BDS providers tools to support green MSMEs and make a lasting impact in their communities. Feedback from participants was overwhelmingly positive: They highlighted the interactive nature of the workshops and how useful the tools and lessons they learned would be for their work – and how much the programme inspired them: While all participating organisations brought their own expertise in promoting MSMEs in India, for some this was their first foray into the green economy. After the inception workshop, however, all were eager to expand their business into this area, making the Indian economic recovery a green one.

Photo of Dr. Aakrithi Sharma, Pusa Krishi, and quote: “…this kind of programme is very timely and much needed. [It] was really amazing, as it made me so aware about the work I am doing, adding a green component to it, provoking me to think in that direction [...] Overall the course was well structured, inspiring and made us learn the tools that we will surely apply.”

Toolification helps generate concrete impacts

The toolification approach, developed by SEED to empower MSMEs to develop their own solutions, ensured that the lessons learned can be applied to current and future projects. The participating BDS providers learned step-by-step how to plan, build, and communicate programmes with environmental and social impact. They now have the tools to create sustainable solutions and, in their turn, empower local MSMEs to make their communities greener, more inclusive, and more prosperous.

More information on SEED can be found here.

Contact person: Amar Munnolimath

Photo of Ashish Jain, JSS Business Incubator, and quote: “[The] GREB program captured my imagination and interest due to its researched toolkit for designing social impact projects. The workshop […] provided wonderfully easy dissections of an important but tedious task of structuring the proposal. It exhibits deep understanding and knowledge that went into making it simple.”