Articles by Lexi Doolittle
“Livelihood” is regularly cited as a focus of development work. But its definition is often vague, including projects that span multiple sectors and objectives, from skills training to financial security. According to Lexi Doolittle at S3IDF, while livelihood is a complex and flexible concept, it’s important to remember that it isn’t the same as employment. She discusses the multi-faceted nature of the livelihood approach, using the example of S3IDF’s work with small farmers in rural India.
Even within the systems-change sector, people joke that it is one of the least “sexy” facets of development work. Focused on addressing the faults in social, economic and political systems that lead to problems like poverty, the approach can be overwhelmingly complex, which has limited its widespread implementation. But as Lexi Doolittle at S3IDF explains, a market-based approach that nudges these systems towards greater inclusivity and productivity is a vital tool to catalyze social change – one that we cannot afford to overlook.