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Opportunities Industrialization Centers International

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In a nutshell

OICI implements a diverse set of programs aimed at improving health and reducing poverty in the developing-world. In trying to examine the organization as a whole, we are unable to gain confidence in a large enough portion of its activities, and therefore cannot confidently recommend the organization.

The Details

What do they do?

OICI implements a variety of public health and economic development programs in the developing world, including:

  1. Agricultural training, i.e., providing farmers with technology and training aimed at improving their output.
  2. Entrepreneurship training for self-employed business owners aiming to improve their ability to support themselves.
  3. Child health and nutrition programs, often based on providing food packages directly.
  4. Water and sanitation programs, including well construction and hygiene training.

OICI submitted a full report of its activities for 2006 (Attachment B-1). We have very little sense of the organization's high-level strategy in picking and prioritizing programs. The table below provides a complete accounting of what we know about these activities; the total cost of each project comes from OICI's 2006 IRS Form 990 (available via GuideStar). Numbers in the “Activities” column refer to the four activities listed above.

Location Activities 2006 cost Source
Ghana 1, 2, 3, 4 & focus on well-being of those suffering from HIV/AIDS $2,890,290 Attachment B-1 Pgs 9-25
Guinea 1, 3 & building roads and bridges $999,036 Attachment B-1 Pgs 27-37
Cote D'Ivoire 1, 2, 3 $903,781 Attachment B-1 Pgs 89-105
Nigeria Provides access to microcredit, trains youth and connects workers to potential employers $883,803 Attachment B-1 Pgs 61-71
Ghana, Guinea, Mali, and Nigeria 1 $583,622 Attachment B-1 Pgs 39-53
Togo 1, 2, 4 $374,270 Attachment B-1 Pgs 107-129
Cote D'Ivoire, Ghana, Guinea, Togo Training for OICI staff on the ground $277,224 Attachment B-1 Pgs 55-59
US Encourage American youth to pursue careers in international development $121,482 Attachment B-1 Pgs 83-87
Ethiopia Youth education $95,940 Attachment B-1 Pgs 73-81
Ethiopia Employment skills and reproductive health training $71,184 Attachment B-1 Pgs 131-153

Does it work?

Many of the programs above are focused on training, and thus on changing behavior, which we would believe is far from straightforward (especially when dealing with another culture). Given this concern, we would require significant empirical evidence to have high confidence in OICI - evidence that convincingly demonstrates not just what programs were carried out, but how behavior and outcomes (such as income, standard of living, etc.) changed.

OICI provided some data on changes in incomes and measures of nutrition, but this data was neither broad enough (i.e., covering many programs) nor compelling enough (i.e., ruling out alternate hypotheses for observed changes - see our overview of microfinance research for a discussion of many potential problems with simple outcomes data) to give us confidence regarding OICI's effect on its clients.


Ultimately, we cannot confidently recommend OICI because we have too little information about the organization as a whole: we have neither comprehensive evidence on outcomes, nor an overall view of the organization's strategy. While many of OICI's programs are intuitively attractive – providing comprehensive economic and health aid to a village – we have little sense of what to expect from this organization if and when it brings in more donations.


A. Application materials

D. Financials