Development aid should refocus on strengthening national institutions and improving governance in ways that promote citizen security, provide justice and create jobs, particularly in fragile states, the World Bank’s latest World Development Report (WDR) suggests.
Some 1.5 billion people live in countries affected by repeated cycles of political and criminal violence, and no low-income fragile or conflict-affected country has yet to achieve a single Millennium Development Goal.
While water and sanitation do not play a major role in the report, two of the input papers have links with the sector:
The WDR stresses that true institutional transformations require time.
It typically takes 15 to 30 years for weak or illegitimate national institutions to become resilient to violence and instability, according to new research commissioned for the report.
The report provides a set of tools that have helped countries make successful transitions and rebuild confidence between citizens and the state. These include transparency measures, budget allocations for disadvantaged groups and credible commitments to realistic timelines for longer-term reform.
A major omission in the report, according to Overseas Development Institute research fellow Jonathan Glennie, is the failure to mention the Paris agenda on aid effectiveness.
Fundamental to the legitimacy of institutions is where their money comes from. So the report is right to focus on the donor-recipient relationship, which muddies the supposed accountability links between citizen and government. It is good that this link (a particular beef of mine) is being recognised in such an important report.
But to engage in a long list of (very welcome) suggestions for how international agencies should reform without mentioning the major international initiative seeking to achieve such reform is strange. While calling for donors to work better together, the World Bank is in danger of looking like it prefers to go it alone, setting up a new group of “WDR principles”.
Related web site: World Bank – World Development Report 2011
Source: World Bank, 11 Apr 2011 ; Ivy Mungcal, Devlopment Newswire, Devex.com, 11 Apr 2011 ; Jonathan Glennie, Poverty Matters Blog, Guardian, 11 Apr 2011
Posted in Governance, Policies & legislation, Publications, Sustainable services, Transparency
Tagged citizen security, development aid, fragile states, irc's approach, job creation, local support, World Bank, World Development Report
With barely six months left before countries have to clinch a climate change deal in Copenhagen in December , a call for more money – over and above development aid – to help poor countries adapt to climate change has been backed by a major report. The report – Closing the Gaps: Disaster Risk Reduction and Adaptation to Climate Change in Developing Countries – is the work of the international Commission on Climate Change and Development (CCCD), set up in 2008 by the Swedish government and chaired by Gunilla Carlsson, Sweden’s Minister for international development cooperation.
The first in its two-step approach urged rich countries to speedily mobilise US$1 billion to $2 billion to help nations most vulnerable to the impact of global warming: low-income small island states and, particularly, African countries. [...] The second step is an effective mechanism for funding adaptation that would be created through climate negotiations.
The Official Development Assistance (ODA) provided by rich countries and other public funds “are unlikely to provide the full resources required to finance adaptation efforts of all developing countries in the long term”, the CCCD commented. The global economic recession is also likely to shrink available funding.
[...] Under the “polluter pays” principle, industrialised countries are obliged to help developing ones adapt to climate change, but developing countries and environmental lobby groups have been wary of much needed ODA being repackaged to pay for adaptation.
[...] “Adaptation is much more than climate-proofing development efforts and ODA,” said the report. “It requires sustainable development: meeting the needs of the present in ways that do not compromise the ability of future generations to meet their need.”
The report noted that ODA totalled $104 billion in 2007, and the Paris-based Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) estimated that more than 60 percent of ODA could be considered as relating to adaptation. “Obviously, increasing ODA would both provide funds for climate-proofing development assistance and increase funding for adaptation. The appropriate role of ODA in supporting climate adaptation needs to be articulated.” However, Oxfam’s Hill said adaptation cost estimates should take account of the most recent scientific assessments, which showed that previous estimates were dramatically low. “The UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) has estimated that between $50 billion and $170 billion per year (in current values) will be needed by the year 2030.”
The authors noted that “This is only a twentieth of current spending on development of new infrastructure globally, and a tenth of the expected cost of emissions reductions.”
Source: IRIN, 19 May 2009
OECD Secretary-General Angel Gurría and Prince Willem-Alexander of the Netherlands. Photo: OECD
“Every dollar invested in water supply and sanitation generates 4 to12 dollars in health benefits. We must put water back on the policy map and mobilise political action for more investments. This should go hand-in-hand with reform of water policies, especially at the local level.” Prince Willem-Alexander of the Netherlands, Chair of the UN’s Advisory Board on Water and Sanitation (UNSGAB) , speaking to a meeting on Financing and Pricing Water.
The Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) convened this meeting in the framework of its Global Forum on Sustainable Development on 1-2 December 2008, in Paris, France, to look at the roles of government, the private sector and civil society in managing this key resource for human and economic development. Participants in the meeting discussed the policy conclusions and recommendations emerging from a two-year OECD Horizontal Water Programme with a view to preparing it to be launched at the 5th World Water Forum, which will be held in Istanbul, 16-22 March 2009.
Two DAC-STAT products were presented at the meeting:
Measuring Aid to Water Supply and Sanitation: This note contains statistics on Official Development Assistance (ODA) for water supply and sanitation. It presents the key findings of the publication CRS Aid Activities in Support of Water Supply and Sanitation, 2001-2006 which was produced by the DAC Secretariat in collaboration with the World Water Council.
Donor Profiles on Aid to Water Supply and Sanitation: This report contains individual donor profiles covering both statistical and policy aspects of DAC members’ aid to the water supply and sanitation sector. It is an extract from the above-mentioned publication. For more information about DAC statistical work on aid for water supply and sanitation see www.oecd.org/dac/stats/water.
According to the press release for the event: “Though the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) call for the proportion of people without access to safe water and basic sanitation to be halved by 2015, many countries, especially in sub-Saharan Africa, are not on track to meet these goals. OECD analysis shows that aid to the water sector has risen since 2001, after a decline in the late 1990s, and now accounts for about 9% of donor aid. But much of this aid flows to countries that are already developing well, while the share of aid to the water sector in sub-Saharan Africa has declined from 22 to 17% during 2001-2006.”
Source: OECD, 03 Dec 2008 : DACnews, Dec 2008
“UN Secretary-General Ban Ki- moon expressed deep concern on Tuesday [07 Oct 2008] at the continuing financial crisis, urging donor countries to honour their commitments – especially towards “the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs), climate change and global food crisis”.
Meanwhile, FT [Financial Times] writes that “Aid agencies fear huge government bail-outs to ease the global financial crisis will hit their funding at a time when humanitarian needs are mounting due to disasters, climate change and conflict.
The first major donor country to reduce its development aid pledges was Spain, [followed by] Ireland. Other donors are expected to follow, including the giants USA, UK and Germany.
Read more: WASH news Finance, 13 Oct 2008 [updated 16 Oct]