3.6 Markets assessment

Markets are essential for providing people access to basic goods and services, but also for people’s livelihoods and for economic development. They provide essential items or services to meet basic needs, but they also protect livelihoods by providing job opportunities or linkage to buyers and producers and wage labour. Ignoring markets during or after an emergency will potentially weaken income generating opportunities, and can destroy or delay the ability of people to return to their livelihoods. For example, large scale in-kind distributions may disrupt local markets and reduce the opportunities for income regeneration.

Market assessments are generally conducted for the following reasons:

  1. To determine the level of accessibility to market places and availability of essential commodities at reasonable prices for the affected communities following a crisis;
  2. To identify suitable cash based interventions (CBIs) in place of or complementarily to in kind distributions – for example in case of NFI and winterization assistance, plenty of items compliant to international quality standards and specifications may be available in country or in local market places (e.g. blankets, cooking sets, sleeping mats, cooking stoves and heaters etc.);
  3. To investigate the potential for livelihoods regeneration and job creation, for example by assessing the availability of skilled and non-skilled labour for construction activities (masons, carpenters, foremen, local construction firms, local suppliers and traders etc.).

Adapted from:  Market Analysis for Urban Humanitarian Response – ALNAP Urban Webinar #12 http://www.alnap.org/webinar/20.aspx

Tools for market place assessments:

48 hour assessment tool – developed by Oxfam: http://www.ecbproject.org/ecb/efsl-48-hour-assessment-tool

IFRC Rapid Assessment for Markets (RAM): https://www.icrc.org/eng/assets/files/publications/icrc-002-4199.pdf

Tools for market analysis:

Emergency Market Mapping and Analysis (EMMA) toolkit: http://emma-toolkit.org/