Building capacity on Policy Analysis Tools in Colombia #NPSinitiative

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    CGIAR Initiative on National Policies and Strategies
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As part of CGIAR Research Initiative on National Policies and Strategies (NPS), the Alliance of Bioversity and CIAT, in collaboration with the International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI), is deploying strategies to promote and strengthen the integration of policy and investment tools within the Colombian context. As part of this effort, the “Policy Analysis Tools using General Equilibrium Models for Colombia” course was held, a three-day in-person course conducted in collaboration with the Agri-Food Systems Research Center at the University of Los Andes.

The primary purpose of this initiative is to empower decision-makers to utilize this standardized tool and have the capacity to design and evaluate policies addressing various economic impacts, both those generated by internal variables and external factors.

The Social Accounting Matrix (SAM) is a data framework that intricately reflects the economic structure of a country, as well as the economic and social structure of a society in a particular year. It provides the necessary statistical basis for constructing a useful model to analyze the effects of specific economic policies on relevant macroeconomic variables. Additionally, the use of multiplier models has proven to be a robust instrument for analyzing the effects of different economic policies and the relationships between sectors and institutions in the economy, enabling comparisons of economic structures between different countries.

 Furthermore, IFPRI has developed a social accounting matrix for Colombia, which served as the main input for designing this course with the aim of building capacities among a network of stakeholders to utilize these tools. This course is complemented by a series of both virtual and in-person meetings. In the initial training stage, 26 representatives from public entities, private companies, academic institutions, and research centers participated.

Researchers from the CGIAR, Valeria Piñeiro, Johana Castillo, Luis Escalante, and Elsa Olivetti, delve deeper into the implementation of these tools with this new network of stakeholders through three planned virtual meetings for coordination, addressing questions, and monitoring the learning process that will lead them to March 2024, when the second in-person part of the course will take place, addressing general equilibrium topics using the IFPRI’s RIAPA model. In the following videos, the researchers expand on this information and comment on their experience:


The course focused on providing a detailed explanation of each component of the social accounting matrix, with full access to all the data. It also offered an introduction to the use of the GAMS program through practical exercises in which participants ran simple models. Moreover, the course covered essential concepts, such as economic linkages and the multiplier effect, and introduced the comprehensive analysis of Colombia’s economy.

These activities can contribute to decision-making and the formulation of effective policies within the economic context of Colombia. They equip participants with the necessary tools to understand and assess the impact of policies on the country’s economy.

Below, some of the participants, representatives of relevant institutions in the sector at a national level such as Agrosavia, DANE, Finagro, and the academy, share their perspectives on the course.






Johana Castillo, research associate, Alliance Bioversity-CIAT, Colombia.
Carlos González, senior research associate, Alliance Bioversity-CIAT, Colombia.

This work is part of the CGIAR Research Initiative on National Policies and Strategies (NPS). CGIAR launched NPS with national and international partners to build policy coherence, respond to policy demands and crises, and integrate policy tools at national and subnational levels in countries in Africa, Asia, and Latin America. CGIAR centers participating in NPS are The Alliance of Bioversity International and the International Center for Tropical Agriculture (Alliance Bioversity-CIAT), International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI), International Livestock Research Institute (ILRI), International Water Management Institute (IWMI), International Potato Center (CIP), International Institute of Tropical Agriculture (IITA), and WorldFish. We would like to thank all funders who supported this research through their contributions to the CGIAR Trust Fund 

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