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Influence-Relevance Matrix

PMSD Toolkit

In a nutshell: The Influence-Relevance Matrix helps you quickly identify who the key actors in a market system are. This influences decisions about who you want to be involved in Participatory Market Mapping and may influence subsequent engagement priorities. It can be used in combination with the Engaging Key Actors tool at the early stage of a project and at any point that you might need to reconsider who to engage with.

Status: Core Tool

Key principles: The emphasis on power and influence reflects Systems Thinking, as key actors will have disproportionate impacts on the market system functioning. As part of this you can consider the role and influence of different actors on the gender dynamics seen in the market – allowing you to prioritise those that offer opportunities to stimulate transformational change.

Preconditions and preparation: This tool is often used initially as part of  a Preliminary Market Mapping. A key requirement for this process is a list of market actors – you can brainstorm these.

Timeline and resources: This tool will take approximately 1-2 hours and will require a discussion with all members of the project team.


The key output is a 2×2 matrix (see below) with market actors each allocated to one of four quadrants based on their: (1) Relevance (how important they are to the achievement of your objectives); and (2) Power and Influence (their potential influence on change in the market system). ​

In the matrix below, each quadrant provides suggestions on how a project team should engage with each market actor.