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The Alliance for Artisan Enterprise, founded in November 2012 and hosted by the Aspen Institute, is a collaborative effort of over 70 artisan businesses, artisan support organizations, corporations, government agencies, and other partners who are working together to promote the full potential of the global artisan sector.  

The Alliance for Artisan Enterprise was created to elevate the importance of the artisan sector, support and grow artisan businesses, and share best practices in a collaborative learning community. 


Alliance for Artisan Enterprise

alliance for artisan enterprise

Unlocking solutions to strengthen artisan businesses

Photo by Gahaya Links

The artisan sector is the second-largest employer in the developing world after agriculture, worth over $32 billion every year. Hundreds of thousands of people across the globe, particularly women, participate in the artisan sector. Artisan activity creates jobs, increases local incomes, and preserves ancient cultural traditions that in many places are at risk of being lost.

Still, artisan businesses are seldom recognized as drivers of economic growth. Artisan entrepreneurs lack access to the tools and resources needed to succeed in the global marketplace. The Alliance for Artisan Enterprise, an initiative of Aspen Global Health and Development at the Aspen Institute, works to unlock economic value in the artisan sector. Join the Alliance as we design and implement support systems for artisan businesses, including: 

  1. Networking platform for organizations around the world that participate across the artisan sector, including artisan businesses, social enterprises, NGO's, government agencies, and others
  2. Innovative Financing programs for artisan entrepreneurs to access much-needed capital
  3. Artisan Business Coaching programs to support the sustainable development of locally-owned artisan businesses
  4. Key events to showcase artisan entrepreneurs, share best practices, and uncover solutions to common barriers in the artisan value chain

We envision a world in which artisans are fully integrated into global commerce and where increasing revenues flow to artisan producers and communities in need of economic opportunity. Get involved! Download our fact sheet, join our member network, support our efforts as a member of the artisan partners circle, and contact us for additional information.