According to Ghana’s Minister of Food and Agriculture, Mr Fifi Fiavi Kwetey, there are three key bottlenecks that are threatening the growth of the vegetable subsector, which actually is an important agribusiness sector for the region: the lack of adaptive production technologies to optimize yields and quality production; the increased incidences of food safety violations and the limited collaboration in the chain between input suppliers, producers and buyers. In this context, the Refresher Course is proposed to strengthen the local and regional abilities to create new agribusiness, applying sustainable and innovative business practices.


The course will take place in Kumasi, Ghana from 25 September - 4 October 2017. Participants from outside Ghana are expected to arrive in Kumasi on 24 September and depart either late on 4 October or early on 5 October 2017.

Refresher Courses



Course date
02 - 12 October 2017

2 weeks

Diederik de Boer
Lead trainer
Diederik P. de Boer, PhD
Assistant Professor in Sustainable Business Development

What to expect

Besides gaining a knowledge on sustainable business practices, cluster development and value chains, participants will be exposed to different local practices of production using the greenhouse technology. This will present an attractive option for all participants to explore the production and supply for the growing market for such products in the urban centers.

Ultimately, this refresher course shall contribute to the development of entrepreneurial skills of the participants, supporting their entrepreneurial development, becoming more innovative in meeting international standards of entrepreneurship development and agro-technology incubation.

Your profile

The program is designed for:

  • NFP alumni in Western, Central or East Africa:
    Benin, Burkina Faso, Ghana, Mali, Nigeria, Senegal, Burundi, DR Congo, Rwanda, Ethiopia, Eritrea, Kenya, Somalia, Sudan, South Sudan, Tanzania, Uganda, Zambia, Zimbabwe.
  • Entrepreneurship leaders and officers involved in the agribusiness and related sectors
  • Consultants working in the field of entrepreneurship development and implementation
  • Lecturers  and all other practitioners employed in the area to which the course will make a relevant contribution

Learning objectives

Participants and their respective institutions will benefit from the achievement of the following key objectives:

  • To enhance knowledge on innovation & entrepreneurship in agro-technology
  • To accurately assess the needs of individual beneficiary institutions.
  • To analyse the organization within its context
  • To understand the dynamics of local economic development
  • To produce an entrepreneurship development plan appropriate for these institutions.
  • To manage a process to implement these plans.
  • To network effectively within a self-help group (ie, the alumni), to gain and offer mutually beneficial input for the benefit of individual institutions.To attain results measureable against development goals derived by each institution

Teaching methodoloy

The course will use interactive and experience-based training methods that take the knowledge of participants as the point of departure. Theoretical inputs will be combined with practical sessions, discussions with external resource persons, case studies and field trips. This shall include interactive classroom based sessions, guest lecturers, field visits, networking opportunities, discussions and individual and group work. Participants will be encouraged to share their experiences during classes with others and with the trainers, in this way creating more synergy than in traditional training programs.

Diederik P. de Boer, PhD

Assistant Professor in Sustainable Business Development

Diederik de Boer works as an Assistant Professor in Sustainable Agri-Business Development at Maastricht School of Management. He holds a PhD from the Erasmus University (the Netherlands), an MPA from Leiden/Rotterdam University (the Netherlands), an MBA from Bradford/Tilburg University (U.K./The Netherlands) and a Minor in Small and Micro Credit Schemes from Harvard University Boston (USA). He worked for seven years for the United Nations and the Dutch Ministry for Development Cooperation in Cambodia, Mongolia, Korea and Palestine. At MSM he is managing projects related to sustainable business development in a variety of countries including Kenya, Ethiopia, Georgia and Jordan. At MSM he is teaching corporate social responsibility. His research focuses on impact investment and triple helix constructs.

Scholarships (covering tuition, accommodation costs, travel & visa costs) will be awarded to a maximum of 20 participants.

Application Procedure

The deadline for application is expired.

More information
For more information about this refresher course, please mail to

Selection criteria

Female alumni are specifically encouraged to apply since the aim is to have at least 50% female participants.

To be selected, applicants should:

  • Be NFP alumnus who completed their program in the Netherlands at least 2 years ago;
  • Able to demonstrate the relevance of the topic for their own career path or for their organization;
  • Be a national of one of the following NFP-countries in West, Central or East Africa: Benin, Burkina Faso, Ghana, Mali, Nigeria, Senegal, Burundi, DR Congo, Rwanda, Ethiopia, Eritrea, Kenya, Somalia, Sudan, South Sudan, Tanzania, Uganda, Zambia, Zimbabwe.
  • Have demonstrated high performance during the first training; i.e. they are resourceful, able to grasp ideas and implement them;
  • Be in the position to introduce new skills and knowledge in their organization;
  • Be available and physically and mentally able to take part in the entire course;
  • Be a mid-career professional with at least three years work experience.

Reasons to follow the Refresher course: Incubation and entrepreneurship development in agro-technology in Western Africa

  • Understand the global challenges related to the sustainable business development, creation of the value chain, cluster development and role of the innovation on a global level
  • Explore many facets related to transformation into a more entrepreneurial organization capable in fulfilling its role in a rapidly changing society
  • Find out how to set-up and improve entrepreneurship development programs, including entrepreneurship centers and incubators
  • Benefit from the interactive learning environment and exchange views and experiences with peers and experts from around the Netherlands and West Africa

Learn how to develop your entrepreneurial skills to strengthen your agribusiness

Open enrollment programs

MSM offers a wide portfolio of short open enrollment programs. Our skills-oriented programs will help you to enhance your management and professional knowledge and skills, broaden your mind and develop your personal skills. Additionally we offer policy-oriented programs providing you with the tools and instruments that can help you in developing effective policies for your organization.