The Small Enterprise Education and Promotion (SEEP) Network, the leading international network and promoter of best practices in enterprise development and financial services, is a global organization whose membership is committed to reducing poverty through the power of enterprise.
Our 67 members are active in over 140 countries and reach over 23 million microentrepreneurs and their families. Typically, our members' programs focus on women (who comprise 70 percent of the client base) and the smallest entrepreneurial businesses in urban areas. Increasingly, though, our members' programs are reaching out to clients in rural areas.
Since its inception in 1985, the SEEP Network has been a leader in the development of the international microfinance and enterprise development fields through its contributions to the documentation of best practice, through its capacity to convene key stakeholders, and through its well-regarded methodology for lateral learning which offers a platform for inclusive and productive dialogue. As a learning organization, SEEP employs the building blocks of systematic problem solving, experimentation, learning from past experience, learning from others, and transferring knowledge to accomplish our work and fulfill our mission.
The primary way SEEP undertakes practitioner-driven research, learning, and product development is through working groups composed of its members. In 2005, over 100 volunteers from our member organizations contributed to 20 working groups, shaping action research and best practice in a range of areas, including standardized financial statements, market research tools, poverty assessment tools, and HIV/AIDS and microenterprise development.
From the working groups come SEEP's practitioner-oriented products, tools, and training materials. SEEP publications are recognized as material prepared by practitioners, field tested for accuracy, and accepted as the industry standard. SEEP's manual and training course on standardized financial statements for microfinance institutions (Measuring Performance of Microfinance Institutions: A Framework for Reporting, Analysis, and Monitoring) is one of the best examples of the quality, usefulness, longevity, and influence of our practitioner-oriented products. SEEP's lateral learning approach and working group structure are keys to translating knowledge into practice and yielding such products.
SEEP advances its membership globally and develops its operations and learning methods to support a fully international community of practice. SEEP also has the vision to support a learning process that pushes the agenda in both microfinance and enterprise development, and builds productive relationships with partners in the NGO, philanthropic, and socially responsible corporate community. – less–ZoomInfo