Development Partnerships


The success of building self-reliant states is directly tied to the effective management of complex development partnerships. ISE’s work on development and foreign aid focuses on how those partnerships can be maximized, taking into account lessons from past cases. ISE’s work draws on the experiences of practitioners in the field as well as policy experts to redefine development partnerships that build capacity, leverage existing assets, foster context-specific policies, and support country-led strategies. Additionally, our Development Practice Note series presents new and innovative practitioner-focused ideas across a variety of fields in development.

Re-examining the Terms of Aid


Over the past twenty years, the international community has agreed again and again that traditional aid effectiveness practices – which often drain local capacity, fragment projects, and spurn national strategies – are not working, but have made little progress at improvements. ISE’s Re-examining the Terms of Aid (RTOA) project is reviewing components to develop an operating model to more effectively implement these commitments. ISE is taking stock of its own experience and research, conducting interviews in Rwanda, Colombia, Afghanistan, and Somalia, along with engaging host governments, donor agencies, civil society, and the security sector to examine best practices, analyze incentive structures, and bridge the gap between country-level implementation and international frameworks. Read the full report here.

Adapting CDD/CLD Programming to COVID-19

Image courtesy of the Movement for Community Led Development. ISE is working with the Movement for Community Led Development, and community-led organizations globally, to discuss, collate and share ways in which community-led development (CLD) and community-driven…

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COVID-19 Makes the Case for Getting Development in Fragile States Right

Photo: World Bank Group This article originally appeared in Abt Associate’s Governance and Development Soapbox Blog By Nelly Mecklenburg and Jessica Mackenzie What does the COVID-19 response and commitments for more effective development in fragile states have…

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Mapping and Targeting Vulnerable Groups for Development and Relief Interventions

Relief and development organizations use various methodologies to map populations, households and individuals that are vulnerable to different shocks – economic and resource shocks, natural disasters and climate change, conflict and violence, health crises and…

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Follow-the-Money Corruption Cycle: Revealing National Accountability Failures

The consequence of systemic failure in national accountability systems is catastrophic corruption. Such corruption exists in the world, including in conflict-affected and fragile countries, resource rich countries, and aid-dependent countries. This Development Practice Note (DPN)…

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Re-examining the Terms of Aid

The goal of development in fragile states is well established: to help forge pathways out of fragility towards self-reliance and to deliver inclusive and sustainable social, economic, and security outcomes for citizens. The way to…

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