This paper examines the impact of globalisation on poverty using a macro-meso-micro framework. This approach is first described and then applied in three case studies: horticulture in Kenya; textiles and garments in Vietnam; and textiles in South Africa. The way in which the global dynamic of the value chain affects workers and their households is examined. The approach presented gives no universal conclusions regarding the impact of globalisation on poverty and the research shows that the outcomes are highly context-dependent. It also shows that even in successful cases the overall impact on poverty has been relatively small.