Overview of our International Work

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As part of our vision that peace goes hand-in-hand with social and economic development, at NISPED we work with peoples and organizations, from around the globe, on issues connected to sustainable development, leadership, economic and social empowerment, democracy and enhancement of civil society.


Much of NISPED’s international work focuses on courses in the areas of economic empowerment. For example, we run courses on the effect of globalization on local economic undertakings; cooperative – people-centered- endeavors and rural development; and alleviating rural poverty – to name just a few. Participants in our economic and cooperative courses come from local and regional governments, cooperatives, banks, agriculture and industry, education, and civil society groups and organizations.

We host South African public sector leaders for intensive programs that focus on development. These study missions are undertaken in collaboration with the South Africa Israel Forum (SAIF) – a South African non-profit. The 2009 program introduced participants to the realms of community development, agriculture, eco-tourism, municipal government, early childhood care, economic and social development in rural areas, small and medium business enterprise and more and included tours of Tel Aviv and Jerusalem as well as the historical and religious sites in the Galilee.

We host study missions and training courses for the senior leadership of various cooperative movements such as the All China Federation of Supply and Marketing Cooperatives (ACFSMC), the Swedish Cooperative Centre East Africa (SCC), the National Cooperative Union of India (NCUI), and the Cooperative Movement of Sri Lanka.

To learn about our courses being offered during 2010 –  follow this link.

Projects and Consultancy

Since 2006, we have been involved in projects and have been providing consultancy concerning the development of small business enterprises, rural development and cooperative, people-centered endeavors. Our work is always linked to local, regional and/or other international groups and organizations, and offers best practices from the Israeli context that also have the potential for contributing to development in the regions in which we work.

For example, after southern Sri Lanka was devastated by the Tsunami in 2004, we collaborated with the consumer and micro-finance cooperatives as well as the local Government to reorganize and reconstruct the cooperative enterprises on a stronger basis.

In the spring of 2008, together with the United Kibbutz Movement, Central Union of Cooperative Societies, and the Coop Israel,  NISPED signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with the All China Federation of Supply and Marketing Cooperatives in China. This MOU has now made it possible for us to explore cooperation and joint endeavors in business, social, educational projects, sustainable development, research and other activities between the cooperatives and the cooperative  movements of both countries. In 2009, Rafi Goldman – the NISPED Director of International Development – facilitated two  workshops in China in which several hundred Chinese cooperative leaders and managers learned about the latest developments in cooperative business management and the lessons of the Israeli rural development experience which may be relevant to the current Chinese development programs.

In Africa, NISPED has created collaborative projects with partners in Kenya and Uganda. NISPED has established ties with senior cooperative leaders of the Uganda Cooperative Alliance and with senior officials from the Cooperative Bank of Kenya and the Cooperative College of Kenya. We have also met with senior management teams in Kenya and in Uganda, connected to the Millenium Village Project (MVP) of the United Nations  – a project commissioned in 2002 to develop a concrete global action plan to reverse the grinding poverty, hunger and disease affecting billions of people. An MOU was signed between the Swedish Cooperative Center and NISPED for collaboration on the provision of capacity building and management training programes for cooperative movements in East Africa. Together we are designing programs for the alleviation of poverty in rural Africa as part of the global International Cooperative Association and the International Labor Organization’s program “Cooperating out of Poverty.”

On the following pages, you are invited to learn more about our international work in the realms of Small and Medium Businesses, Cooperatives, and Peace and Development.