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.

Stability, State-Building and Development Assistance: An Outside Perspective

This paper proposes making state-building the central goal of development engagement and aid distribution. It examines the recent record of development agencies to map the processes for aid implementation in practice. Firstly, it considers the…

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State-building in Fragile and Conflict-Affected Conditions

A state-building strategy can act as the basis for agreement between international and domestic actors on priorities, sequencing and actions to maximize progress. Such a strategy would require revision of international practices such as resource…

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Haiti: Consolidating Peace, Security and Development

An acknowledged need for a new approach among the Haiti aid complex informs this study of Haiti, and how it can create and consolidate credible institutions. This paper sets out targeted suggestions for achieving this,…

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