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idea 8: disability inclusive

posted by: ADG, 24 Mar 2011, 15:40 PM     category: 1. Structure of program

3 people suggested aid be directed to marginalized groups such as people with disabilities, of whom 400 million are living in Asia-Pacific. They suggested Australia continue its global leadership on disability inclusive development. Another suggested few major bilateral donors are active in this area, and the need to consider disability separately to health. 1 made recommendations from ADDC's submission to the review showing how disability inclusive development should be 'mainstreamed' across development, in particular across the MDGs...

[refer TOR 1B]

Do you strongly agree? If so, please vote here.

 
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Where should aid be directed?

posted by: ADG Team, 25 Jan 2011, 11:40 AM     category: 1. Structure of program
A significant portion of Australia's bilateral aid budget goes to Papua New Guinea and Indonesia (about 1/3 each). Australia has also committed to expanding engagement in Africa (ref AusAID budget FY10-11 bit.ly/fGUXmV). Where do you think aid should be focused? Barry suggests (comment on Doubling Aid) more attention for the Pacific. 'Just a suggestion' (comment on Doubling Aid) advocates the case for forgotten countries, or promising reformers. Stephen Grenville on Lowy's blog (http://bit.ly/i71M1O) suggests narrowing the geographic focus. The DevPolicy conference will look at Asian case studies (http://bit.ly/e4Zrog). But, what are your thoughts? We'd like to hear from you. Please post an idea or add a comment here.
 
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Should aid be given to further Australia's national interest?

posted by: Sam, 19 Mar 2011, 14:34 PM     category: 5. Reviews, evaluation & risk

At present, the official objective of Australia’s aid program is to ‘assist developing countries to reduce poverty and achieve sustainable development, in line with Australia’s national interests. Is this fair? Should our aid money be used to further our strategic commercial and geopolitical goals? Or should it be used purely to alleviate poverty in our neighbouring developing countries? Discuss.

 
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What does aid effectiveness mean?

posted by: ADG Team, 28 Jan 2011, 12:37 PM     category: 3. Efficiency & effectiveness

Paul Collier (author of The Bottom Billion) suggests that if we were to have two objectives for aid, that one would be aiming for aid effectiveness. So, how do we check aid is effective?  And, what does aid effectiveness mean?

Peter McCawley on LowyInterpreter asks this question (bit.ly/gFp13K) and Marjolaine Nicod of OECD presented on this at Lowy's MDGs conference in 2010 (bit.ly/fhFZzg). Is it about doing more to ensure Value For Money for the Australian aid program? (bit.ly/ggQg9U) Matt Morris suggests practical tools in ICT can help beneficiaries measure effectiveness from the ground-up (see post on 'monitoring aid projects'), and on DevPolicy (bit.ly/hbgTb6) he references UK DFID's new plan to focus on programs with a proven impact and use aid  to fund cash transfers/Cash on Delivery. Joel Negin has also contributed to the debate on aid effectiveness for Lowy recently (bit.ly/flSiJn).

So, what are your thoughts on this? Are you in the field or in-country? Do you have practical examples of aid effectiveness you'd like to share? If so, please post an idea, or add a comment.

 
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Introducing 'Structure of program'

posted by: ADG, 06 Jan 2011, 15:29 PM     category: 1. Structure of program
The Review Team's 1st task in their TORs is to figure out the best: geographic and sector focus of the program; focus on low and middle-income countries; and costs/benefits of different forms of aid. That's a big topic in itself! Let's unpack these soon... To help start them out, feel free to post up an idea on this.
 
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idea 26: donor coordination

posted by: ADG, 24 Mar 2011, 16:13 PM     category: 4. Organisational structure

4 people expressed the view that ‘donors trip over each other’, and suggested agencies need to ensure their structures seek to overcome a ‘great deal of overlap… spending money on the same projects… [lack of] sharing of information’. 1 person suggested focusing resources more intensively on some forgotten countries or promising reformers would improve donor coordination.

1 person noted examples of doubling aid to avoid, e.g. Iraq, Afghanistan and PNG, characterized by ‘lots of TA, a parallel civil service of local consultants, MCs and NGOs ignoring Government’. Another person suggested that 'while the paris declaration expresses an intent or hope that donors will collaborate with each other in signatory countries', they believe donors rarely collaborate...

[refer TOR 4C]

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What sectors will we focus on?

posted by: ADG Team, 04 Feb 2011, 17:08 PM     category: 1. Structure of program

Delivering education (now 1/5 of aid funding) and health services has been a key focus of Australia's aid program. These priorities were reinforced by Foreign Minister Rudd in his statement to the UN General Assembly at the MDGs Summit, September 2010 (http://bit.ly/e45z2Y).

Australia then committed to spending (between now and 2015): A$5 billion on education; A$1.6 billion to women's and children's health; A$1.8 billion to food security; and A$1.2 billion for action on climate change adaptation and mitigation. 

What do you think - are these the best sectoral areas of focus for the Australian aid program? It would be interesting to know what you think. Posting an idea or comment takes just a few minutes.

 
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idea 23: australians & our aid

posted by: ADG, 24 Mar 2011, 16:07 PM     category: 4. Organisational structure

1 consultant believed country partners valued Australians’ ‘informality, friendliness and competence’, though noted some Australians’ over-confidence in positions, and also an AusAID reputation for being ‘expensive,  inflexible and isolated institutionally… a paternalistic institution’...

[ref TOR 4A]

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What about our org structures?

posted by: ADG Team, 04 Feb 2011, 13:58 PM     category: 4. Organisational structure

Do you have any particular views on Australia's organisational structures for ODA, including that of AusAID?

Are they effective in delivering aid? Is there any room for improvement? Some other questions you might like to ponder:  Is AusAID effective in engaging with, say, the private sector, or NGOs? Again, are there ways that it could improve?

Please let us know what you think, and share constructive ideas you might have.

 
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idea 27: strengthen evaluations

posted by: ADG, 24 Mar 2011, 16:16 PM     category: 5. Reviews, evaluation & risk

1 person suggested AusAID has a reasonable evaluation policy, but that it lacks sound implementation. In particular, they suggest: more open and formal responses to evaluations; the better use of data (and its analysis); and more follow-up on monitoring and evaluation plans. They also suggest a greater position-accountability in AusAID for monitoring and reporting on programs. 1 person suggests capacity building for ODE so they can measure and evaluate for disability inclusive development...

[refer TOR 5A]

Do you strongly agree? If so, please vote here.

 
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