Publications on Development Effectiveness

Aid effectiveness: bringing country ownership (and politics) back in ODI Working Papers 336, August 2011
This paper by David Booth considers that assumption untenable and agrees with those arguing that ownership should be treated as a desirable outcome, not an achieved state of affairs. It then asks the corresponding question: whether external actors have any useful role in assisting the emergence of developmental country leaderships.

Capacity Development: Where do EU Members Stand on the Road to Busan?
Gwennaelle Corre, author of the EC study on ‘Supporting the Implementation of the Technical Cooperation for an Enhanced Capacity Development’, found, however that there is a noticeable difference between the Capacity Development practices and experiences of EU Member States. While all European donors do not regard Capacity Development with the same degree of priority, they have become increasingly aware of the importance of supporting it as a way to achieve lasting development results, according to a recent European Commission study.

CSOs on the Road to Busan: CSO Key Messages and Proposals
This paper by BetterAid lays out the main demands from civil society organizations (CSOs) in the run up to the HLF-4. Civil society organizations can sign on to the paper online.

Demanding democratic ownership. D+C article by Antonio Tujan Jr.
Civil society organisations are engaged in the aid effectiveness debate. They have been pushing for deeper, more meaningful reform. In 2008, the Accra HLF recognised CSOs as development actors in their own right. Some of their concerns were adopted by the HLF, including broader country ownership or more effective and inclusive partnerships. Many demands, however, were not met. The most important of these were aid reforms that would enable people to use their human rights (”right-based results”) and introduce democratic ownership free from foreign interference.

Democratic Ownership after Busan: Setting up Integrative Partnerships for Development
In its preparations for the HLF-4, Alliance2015 has surveyed the progress towards democratic ownership based on five case studies – Cambodia, Ghana, Mozambique, Nicaragua and Tanzania – and on a cross-country report focussing on civil society participation in the development process. Donors are not doing enough to provide developing countries the political space they need in order to find their own path to development through real democratic processes. Numerous governments in developing countries have never really endorsed the principle of democratic ownership. They have not taken serious steps towards shaping an enabling environment because they do not sufficiently recognise civil society and parliaments as being independent actors in the development process. When civil society organisations and parliaments are invited to participate, they often do not possess the necessary knowledge about political processes. Therefore, they are frequently unable to make a meaningful contribution to the development process.

Independent Evaluation of the Implementation of the Paris Declaration
The Independent Evaluation of the Implementation of the Paris Declaration is an independent global appraisal of efforts to improve the effectiveness of international aid since 2005. The latest evidence is vital for decisions taken at Busan. It will help in learning lessons and ensuring that all involved in aid meet their commitments.

It’s Complicated: the Challenge of Implementing the Paris Declaration on Aid Effectiveness By Laurence Chandy, The Brookings Institution.
Of the 13 targets agreed to at the Paris High Level Forum, only one was met. That’s a grim outcome even by the standards of global development, where commitments are regularly professed but rarely fulfilled. It also makes for a gloomy backdrop to this November’s High Level Forum on Aid Effectiveness in Busan, Korea. Over the next few weeks, be prepared for a good amount of haranguing and finger-pointing as development activists line up to accuse donor agencies of not trying hard enough and aid skeptics write off the High Level Forum process as an ineffectual talking shop.

Move on. D+C Comment by Sachin Chaturvedi
The time has come to move on beyond ”donors” and ”recipients” in the international development discourse, argues an expert from India. In his view, the focus must be on what is happening in the countries that receive aid flows, and what can improve the lot of their peoples.

Results based aid: limitations of new approaches
GDI Briefing Paper 17/2011 by Stephan Klingebiel
Some of the current instruments already offer useful ways of incentivising performance. For instance, designing budget support with variable tranches. With respect to other RBA approaches (such as Cash on Delivery), practical experience is still lacking. It is possible that the disadvantages might outweigh the advantages. The hoped for benefit of RBA approaches, that of being able to produce clearly verifiable results may only ”seem to be” achievable. RBA approaches assume a clear performance orientation in the partner countries, which applies to the reform dynamic countries, but those without good governance may be less easily encouraged by such a system of incentives, and thus other approaches might be more suitable there.