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The political economy of aid agencies is driven by incomplete information and multiple competing objectives and confounded by principal-agent and collective-action problems. Policies to improve aid rely too much on a planning paradigm that tries to ignore, rather than change, the political economy of aid. The author argues that a considered combination of market mechanisms, networked collaboration, and collective regulation would be more likely to lead to significant improvements.
Systems thinking is very common among European NGOs, but it often covers over the complexity of context, power relations and local knowledge. The author gives an example of how taking a systems approach overlooked local initiatives, and thus made it difficult for local people to engage in genuine partnerships with European NGO staff.
This document describes a framework for planning, monitoring and evaluating capacity and the results of capacity development processes. It aims to guide organisations in developing countries that operate individually or as collaborative associations on how to use a framework based on 5 capabilities (‘5Cs').
This paper was written to stimulate discussion about the organizational dimension of food security, with particular emphasis on organizational capacity building. While the paper includes a conceptual framework, it is written from a practitioner's perspective and seeks to provide a ground-level view of the organizational landscape and the way forward.
This study is part of an effort to assess and support more effective capacity building initiatives in developing countries. The goal is not to deconstruct the failures of the past but to help construct the future--to find ways to contribute more effectively to capacity building for sustained development. While economic and social development require a wide range of capacities that reach far beyond the public sector--to characteristics of civic society and markets and to historical, cultural, and international conditions--the authors focus primarily on public sector capacity.
A host of concepts are included under the broad umbrella of capacity development, such as participation, organizational development, technical assistance, performance, institutional economics, empowerment and many others with no clear sense of their interrelationships. This brief tries to unbundle issues around capacity development and capacity. It looks at underlying themes that need to be kept in mind when dealing with capacity development issues.
Capacity development is increasingly seen as the sine qua non of successful development. Yet, despite the growing commitment to showing results, documented examples of its impact are hard find. The author went in search of available evidence and reviewed 29 case studies of capacity development from three development organisations. Her conclusion: development organisations and donors need to move away from their narrow focus on accountability to a broader focus on mutual learning. They should also stop looking for the perfect measurement policy and start measuring instead.
This paper describes the evaluation of a regional, multiple-site capacity-development project, undertaken to strengthen planning, monitoring, and evaluation in the field of agricultural research. The authors present challenges facing capacity development and its evaluation, the conceptual frameworks and methods adopted, and the procedures employed. They conclude with lessons for improving the design, management and evaluation of capacity-development efforts.