Author Archives: Development Initiatives

2nd High-Level Meeting of the Global Partnership for Effective Development Cooperation

Event Monitoring effective development co-operation: what have we achieved; how can we do better?  Date Tuesday 29 November About This Global Partnership monitoring workshop will provide a dedicated time and space for participants to prepare for the political discussions taking place in HLM2 plenary sessions. It will encourage in-depth discussions on progress made and challenges encountered in promoting more effective development cooperation. Discussions will highlight success stories, encourage knowledge sharing and peer learning around innovative solutions, and identify key actions and practical next steps after HLM2 to promote more effective development cooperation. DI involvement Harpinder Collacott will moderate the transparency session at this workshop Event Transparency in development cooperation: Much done, much left to do Date Wednesday 30 November About This event will look at progress in the publication of open data on development cooperation and how this contributes to more effective and sustainable development.

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Blended finance: Understanding its potential for Agenda 2030

Blended finance, or the use of public funds to de-risk or ‘leverage’ private investments in development, has been presented by donors and development finance institutions as having the potential to provide at least part of the solution to the gap in funding for the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). However, the discussion about blending has been based on very little evidence to date. Before scaling up investments in this area we need a much better understanding of the current role and the future potential of blended finance and the comparative advantages for ending poverty in relation to other possible uses of official development assistance (ODA), such as traditional grants and loans. In this report we analyse the available data on blended finance, beginning to build the evidence base that is needed to inform decisions on its future use. We look at what the data can tell us about the potential of blended finance for financing the SDGs and the associated risks, opportunities and possible benefits for developing countries.

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Aid donors must improve transparency before scaling up public-private finance, new report finds

The report on the use of public funds to de-risk or ‘leverage’ private investments in development also finds that, while blended finance may have a valuable role to play in helping fund the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), alone it is unlikely to mobilise the volumes that are required to make a significant impact on the large funding gap. The SDG funding shortfall is estimated to be as high as US$3.1 trillion annually, while at current annual growth rates private capital mobilised by blended finance would total US$252 billion by 2030. From the limited data that is available, the report also finds that blended finance tends not to target the countries or sectors where poverty is greatest, and so its use in delivering the SDGs – in which ending poverty by 2030 and leaving no one behind is central – must be carefully considered. Harpinder Collacott, Executive Director at Development Initiatives, said “All new financing that can be leveraged for the SDGs is vital to their success. Unfortunately, the information available about investments in blended finance is just too limited for good decision-making.

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Climate finance and poverty: Exploring the linkages between climate change and poverty evident…

Climate change is among the greatest global development challenges of the 21st century. From the global to the local scale, climate change affects and threatens economic and human development. It risks undermining efforts towards sustainable development, including progress on ending poverty, everywhere and in all its forms. The links between climate change and poverty are recognised in global processes, including the Sustainable Development Goals and the Paris Agreement on climate change. But how far are these links recognised in the distribution of international public climate finance?

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Innovation … and effectiveness? Challenges, risks and opportunities for blended finance

Date 30 November 2016 Time 13.30–14.30 pm (EAT) Location Kenyatta International Convention Centre (KICC), Nairobi, Kenya Co-hosts Development Initiatives, Oxfam International, UK Aid Network Speakers Roberto Ridolfi, Director for Sustainable Growth and Development, DG Devco, European Commission Dr Fanwell K. Bokosi, Executive Director, Afrodad Gladys Ghartey, Head, United Nations Systems Unit, Ministry of Finance, Ghana Representative of USAID Suresh Samuel, Managing Director for Africa, OPIC Moderator Harpinder Collacott, Executive Director, Development Initiatives About this event Financing the ambitious 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development will be a huge undertaking, with a funding gap estimated at US$1.9–3.1 trillion each year between now and 2030. Blended finance – using development cooperation to de-risk, crowd-in or ‘leverage’ private investments in development – has been presented by some as having the potential to help fill this funding gap. Yet challenges exist in delivering blended finance in line with development effectiveness principles, and evidence allowing stakeholders to understand the opportunities and risks involved is limited. This panel discussion between providers of blended finance and key stakeholders and experts from civil society and partner countries aims to explore blended finance partnerships, deepen understanding of opportunities and challenges for development effectiveness and, where possible, identify solutions

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Increasing funds to tackle climate change miss out world’s most vulnerable, new report finds

The report, which looks at climate finance in the context of building resilience and reducing poverty, finds that while international public resources to tackle climate change are increasing, vulnerability and the links between poverty and climate are not reflected in the allocation of those resources. Funding remains concentrated in a handful of countries and is not distributed in line with where the people most vulnerable to climate change live. Key findings Just under half of the global population living in extreme poverty live in countries vulnerable to climate change. Despite this, allocations of adaptation finance do not prioritise the countries most vulnerable to its impacts: in 2014 total adaptation approvals were greatest to the 49 countries with mid-range vulnerability scores.

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New joint initiative launched to build the next key piece of open data infrastructure

The identify-org initiative was launched on Friday 7 October at the International Open Data Conference in Madrid. It brings together key organisations driving standards for open data across a range of sectors, including contracting, extractives, international aid, agriculture and philanthropy. A challenge shared by all these initiatives is how to accurately and consistently identify an organisation. Whether it’s a charity in the UK, a company in Malaysia, or a government department in Canada, the ability to describe these different entities in a consistent way is key to opening and linking up data about their activities, ensuring it is accessible and useful.

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Counting people to make people count

This article was originally published on the World Data Forum website As we prepare for the United Nations World Data Forum in January, it will have been over three years since the UN Secretary-General’s High-Level Panel on the Post-2015 Development Agenda called for a “data revolution for sustainable development, with a new international initiative to improve the quality of statistics and information available to citizens”. At Development Initiatives, where we have been promoting the value of data since 1993, it was music to our ears. The importance of data is now firmly grounded in the ambitions of the 2030 Agenda, and leaving no-one behind is at its heart. Crucially, these new goals and commitments require a different mindset and different tools to measure and monitor progress. While existing statistics help us track national averages, they do not focus enough on who is included in progress and who is left behind.

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Aligning blended finance to Busan principles

This paper examines existing development effectiveness principles using the principles established in the 2011 Busan Partnership Agreement (country ownership; transparency and accountability; a focus on results; and inclusive partnerships). We’ve analysed these principles against what is known about policies, strategies and principles for blended finance. Key learnings All development effectiveness principles are conceptually reflected to some degree in blended finance approaches. However, three key barriers to delivering on the principles may exist: Lack of agreement between all stakeholders (or appropriate dialogue platforms for reaching agreement) on the role of blended finance in delivering sustainable development objectives and therefore on what ‘effectiveness’ means. Recognition that the principles are important, but lack of consensus between stakeholders on how they should be operationalised in blended finance

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The Busan principles and blended finance: time to bridge the divide

“Our partnership is founded on a common set of principles that underpin all forms of development co-operation. At the same time, we recognise that the ways in which these principles are applied differ … among the different types of public and private stakeholders involved.” [para 8] In fact, a number of non-governmental actors have signed up to support the Busan agreement, reflecting the shift from the ‘aid effectiveness’ agenda to the ‘development effectiveness’ agenda. This list of ‘adherents’ even includes a number of institutions (such as the European Investment Bank) that are currently partners for donors, delivering blended finance. Blended finance, meaning using public inputs (often money, sometimes technical support) to attract or mobilise private investments through various different setups, has been on the rise; proposed by key donors as a way of turning ‘billions to trillions’. Of course, in practice, the Busan principles (and corresponding indicator framework) have mainly been used to assess traditional development cooperation partnerships, involving official development assistance (ODA)

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Using community-generated data to deliver and track the Sustainable Development Goals at the…

In partnership with the Open Institute, Development Initiatives has undertaken a pilot study into community-generated data in Lanet Umoja, Kenya. The study’s aims were simple: explore whether communities can assess and identify their own local development priorities using the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), and help them to generate timely and accurate data that feeds into local and national development intervention plans. This would help ensure the SDGs are met for their community, and that the data is available and accessible in an open format through Lanet Open County portal. The study is due for completion in October 2016 but already it makes a strong case for the benefits of community-generated data. Two rounds of data collection covering 9,136 households have shown that this local approach is more cost-effective in collecting census data.

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Towards a more sustainable response to the refugee crisis: The pressing need for better data

This article was originally published on the Devex website. Last week we published a factsheet on forced displacement, poverty and financing. This provides a snapshot of available data and evidence on people affected by forced displacement, the allocation of available resources, and funding mechanisms – highlighting areas where data must be strengthened for an effective and durable response. Better understanding of long-term livelihood needs The factsheet shows how important it is to move beyond short-term emergency assessment and financing cycles and target longer-term livelihood assistance for refugees through development frameworks. Most refugee situations are protracted, and it’s estimated that refugees are displaced for 17 years on average, so there is a pressing need to foster more durable solutions.

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P20 Initiative: Data to leave no one behind

A year ago, world leaders agreed the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development (Agenda 2030), which includes the much more ambitious goal of ending extreme poverty by 2030 and achieving the principle of leaving no one behind. Achieving these goals will be much harder than meeting the MDGs. It will require a different mindset, and a new way of measuring and monitoring progress. We must harness the energy of the Data Revolution and ensure that progress is measured by counting individual people to ensure that no one – no matter where they live, how old they are, irrespective of their gender, sexual orientation or disabilities – is left behind. This is what the P20 Initiative is about

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Forced displacement, poverty and financing: Seven facts you need to know

Key facts Rising levels of forced displacement drive increased emergency financing requirements Most displaced people globally are in the Middle East and Africa There are more displaced people in middle income than in low or high income countries Many countries hosting the most refugees have low domestic revenues National poverty surveys in countries hosting the most refugees are largely out of date Refugees are not systematically included in national poverty surveys and development frameworks Short term emergency responses alone are not sufficient: a wider repertoire of international financing instruments is needed to support refugees, their host communities and national authorities Displacement and humanitarian financing requirements 1. Rising levels of forced displacement drive increased emergency financing requirements Number of regional refugee response plans (RRPs) against numbers of people forcibly displaced, 2012–2016 [1] Global forced displacement continues to rise, reaching a record 65.3 million people in 2015 – an increase of 5.8 million people from 2014. The 2015 figure includes 21.3 million refugees, 40.8 million internally displaced persons (IDPs), and 3.2 million asylum seekers.[2] At the same time, both the number of UN-coordinated appeals and the funding requirements set out within them have risen significantly since 2013, driven largely by major conflicts and complex emergencies that have displaced many millions of people – Syria, South Sudan, Yemen and Iraq among them. In 2013 there were 23 appeals requesting a total of US$13.2 billion, compared to 37 appeals requesting a total of US$20.2 billion so far in 2016. See also Global Humanitarian Assistance Report 2016, Chapter 3

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