Category Archives: development

Results in HIV/AIDS interventions: Considerations on the need for a vertical approach in an horizontal world, and vice versa

Aids day During Aids-day, the blogs proved that the debate between the believers in a vertical approach and the believers in a geographical approach rages on. I did not write on it before, because it is an issue with ramifications … Continue reading

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Should Multilateral aid have results?

Multilateral resource allocation: best practice approaches (Article – ODI Project Briefings 51, November 2010) When DFID changes track on development, it is important to notice as DFID is one of the thought leaders among donor agencies. If ODI writes about … Continue reading

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Sunday Paper

Some articles to remember: What Makes Good Aid *Good Aid*? – I like very much his take on “local”. New study shows humans are on auto pilot nearly half the time You were saying? Tom Chatfield: 7 ways games reward … Continue reading

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It seemed like a good idea while we were at it: coordination instead of competition

A few months ago, Owen Barder wrote a ground-breaking article: Beyond Planning, Markets and Networks for Better Aid. As a development practitioner, being confronted with the latest ideas on best practices from ODI and the daily chores of coördination, there … Continue reading

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Development policy and evolution: does the donor public request impact or action?

Owen posted a very good presentation on evolution and development on his blog. Indeed, evolution, like the market, is an efficient way to find solutions to complex problems or to optimize resource allocation. The subsequent discussion on his blog raised … Continue reading

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Brooks’ law in aid plans : is more always merrier? gain goes down the drain.

Definition Brooks’ law on software development says : “adding manpower to a late software project makes it later”. Brooks adds to his law that “Nine women can not make a baby in one month”. Is there a similar law for … Continue reading

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Donor projects: is money a placebo, attention the drug?

In development, local self reliance is often seen as the main long term objective, while the delivered “hardware”, bridges, roads, schooling, are just seen as stepping stones to the road of self reliance. I would like to raise the following … Continue reading

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Aid evolution: a system beyond planning, markets and networks

Local units obeying local incentives and rules1 I remember the bleak look of the supermarkets in Nicaragua in 1992. Only a few products were available, nearly all from the same low quality brands. So where should we buy diapers, baby … Continue reading

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Civil society, or perhaps mercenaries. What are NGOs?

A Grimm fairy tale While reading the Haiti Earthquake Flash Appeal 2010, I was surprised, after all these years of talk about local ownership, to find only a few local civil society organisations mentioned in the whole document. What is … Continue reading

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From heart of darkness; develop or civilize? to city of light

The objectives of development aid are not well defined. This is one of the reasons why it is so easy to claim that aid does not work. More narrowly defined sub objectives, like diminishing child mortality, or getting more children … Continue reading

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Can Haiti count on us? Seriously?

To cut a long story short: yes, you should donate to Haiti. How and to whom is a secondary question. Haiti has touched a raw nerve with the professional aid cynics. A case in point is William Easterly, the champion for … Continue reading

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