Aid alone will not end Poverty – As we keep undermining its effectiveness

07/12/2012 at 6:57 pm 3 comments

At Dóchas, we have for many years now argued that aid alone will not make poverty history.

(see also this blog post)

Overseas aid is important. But aid cannot lift countries out of poverty if they are not being given a fair chance to participate in global trade.
Aid cannot compete with subsidies, trade rules and migration policies that present real obstacles for poor countries wishing to work their way out of poverty.

Aid can help relieve suffering and enhance opportunities for prosperity. Aid can save lives and provide essential services to vulnerable people. Aid can provide funds and advice for immunisation campaigns, education drives and training of health workers. Aid can help reform governments and encourage citizen participation in public policy. But aid will not work if it continues to be undermined by unfair economic policies (a fact systematically overlooked by many aid critics)

The EU acknowledged this, and in the Lisbon Treaty EU member states gave themselves a legal obligation to minimise instances of “policy incoherence” impacting negatively on global development. (See this overview of European policy commitments in this area)

There are a number of interesting reports on how well, or how badly, European countries are managing to live up to their commitments:

And in this blog post, Owen Barder and colleagues at the Centre for Global Development say that “if European countries are serious about development – and not just giving aid – then we must also consider how European policies on trade, investment, migration, environment, technology and security all affect the developing world.”

They go on to say that:

“Europe’s approach to development could be characterised as energetically tackling the symptoms of poor economic opportunities for developing countries by providing substantial and effective aid, while doing relatively little to tackle the underlying structural causes of poverty.”

Check out the CGD’s new Europe Beyond Aid initiative, launched in December 2012, which is based on that organisation’s Commitment to Development Index.

As Owen Barder says in his blog post:

“The big picture is fairly straightforward. Europe has generous and effective aid programmes, and makes a distinct contribution to global environmental challenges. But Europe’s policies on trade (especially agriculture), security and sharing technology have much less positive impact on development.”

High time to change that.

(And we will try to do just that, as we kick off the Irish EU Presidency with an event on Policy Coherence, on 25 January)

Dóchas on Policy Coherence for Development:
Policy Coherence (blog post)
Policy Coherence – Trade (blog post)
Being a Champion for Development – Dóchas presentation to Inter-Departmental Committee on Development (2008)
Policy Coherence for Development – Ireland (2010)
Dóchas resources on Policy Coherence
– “Why foreign aid fails – and how to really help Africa (2014)
Advertisements

Entry filed under: Government, Overseas aid. Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , .

Aid Effectiveness? – Donors not making enough progress, says NGO report Time to hear from the urban poor

3 Comments Add your own

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

Trackback this post  |  Subscribe to the comments via RSS Feed


Enter your email address to subscribe to this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.

Join 215 other followers

Archives

Dóchas on Twitter

The World's Best News - images

One of the most important graphs. Ever.

http://ourworldindata.org/data/health/maternal-mortality/ Today is World Food Day.

A day to celebrate that the days of truly enormous famines are over: http://blog.concern.net/global-hunger-index-2015-mapping-the-worlds-hunger Meet "Chocolate Mamas", producers of chocolate in #Tanzania, creating Tanzanian jobs. 
While #cocoa is grown in West Africa and Asia,
most #chocolate (the finished product) is made in Europe or the USA.

Meet Jaki Kweka, who is trying to change that. By creating protected areas and national parks and by limiting the spread of soy bean cultivation, Brazil has managed to drastically reduce the amount of rain forest being cleared.

http://www.goodnewsnetwork.org/deforestation-in-the-amazon-has-plummeted-almost-90pt/ Costa Rica, #Afghanistan, China, #India and Albania are all embracing renewable energy sources.

http://www.theguardian.com/global-development-professionals-network/2015/sep/15/five-developing-countries-ditching-fossil-fuels-china-india-costa-rica-afghanistan-albania?CMP=share_btn_tw Social change needs empowered citizens, and empowered citizens need occasional encouragement.

Great to hear that we're not the only ones who believe in the power of positive news! 50,000 rice farmers in #IvoryCoast are now working with better seeds, improving food security in the West African country.

As a result, harvests have increased.

Source: World Bank, photo: Jbdodane / CC BY Sub-Saharan Africa’s first light rail system starts operations. 
As Ethiopians celebrate their New Year, they also prepare to mark the beginning of operations of a tram system in the #Ethiopian capital #AddisAbaba. 
Read more: http://mgafrica.com/article/2015-09-20-sub-saharan-africas-first-light-rail-system-starts-operationsyou-guessed-it-in-ethiopia Going Mobile in #Malawi”. A mobile phone information service established last year to provide timely information to rural poor farmers in a southern African country, has been used nearly half a million times since its launch.

Established in Malawi by Gorta-Self Help Africa last year, the ‘321’ voice-activated service provides subscribers to the country’s largest mobile phone network with farm information and advice that they can access at the push of a button. And it’s all free. Read more at http://dochas.ie/sites/default/files/The-Worlds-Best-News-2015_0.pdf 10,000 copies of "The World's Best News" were distributed all over #ireland today!

See how The Irish Times described our newspaper, and click the link to read all the articles online!

http://www.irishtimes.com/life-and-style/people/inside-out/have-you-read-the-world-s-best-news-1.2355806

Visitors Map

Map

Dóchas Photos

President of Ireland, Michael D. Higgins and members of the YMCA youth group.

President of Ireland, Michael D. Higgins at the 2016 Irish Summit on the Sustainable Development Goals at Croke Park hosted by Dóchas

More Photos

%d bloggers like this: