Why a new report on UK aid reform is contradictory, evidence free and full of holes

February 18, 2019
Since the UK’s commitment to the international aid budget was set in law at 0.7% of Gross National Income, debates have shifted from ‘how much?’  to ‘how should we spend it?’ A new report calls for a seemingly radical shake up of how UK aid should be spent. Oxfam’s Gideon Rabinowitz explains what’s at stake, and why simplistic solutions are

What does the rapidly changing face of UK and global aid look like, and what is at stake? 

November 29, 2017
Oxfam aid wonk Gideon Rabinowitz reads the tea leaves of the latest UK aid stats Anyone following aid discussions in recent years will have sensed the mood music changing. They have been increasingly dominated by an emphasis on economic development, the role of the private sector, securing results (including for taxpayers) and addressing donor strategic interests (e.g. in relation to

How to ensure increased aid to fragile/conflict states actually benefits poor people?

December 18, 2015
Following the UK government’s announcement of an increase in spending on aid for fragile states, Ed Cairns, outlines Oxfam’s experience in fragile states and the potential lessons for the future. The announcement that the UK will spend 50% of its aid budget in fragile states was made in the aftermath of the terrible atrocities in Paris, Beirut and Bamako. But it’s also the

How can UK aid pursue development and British National Interest at the same time?

October 9, 2015
The British aid programme is in an interesting place right now. The British chancellor (finance minister) George Osborne is overseeing a tense spending review in which aid is protected thanks to the government’s commitment to spending 0.7% of national income on aid, but most other departmental budgets are being slashed. On the Andrew Marr TV show last month Osborne said: ‘The question is

Why is Britain such an outlier on aid?

March 18, 2015
My friend Ha-Joon Chang is Korean, and argues that for a development economist, growing up in South Korea is like being a physicist at the birth of the universe. I was reminded of that when the UK parliament enshrined spending 0.7% of gross national income on aid in national law last week – for an aid wonk, being British means

What is the future of UK development policy?

May 26, 2010
Consensus on size But tensions on coherence And definition This run of posts on aid is starting to seem endless (you probably agree….). But this one, on the outlook for UK aid, is the last of the series, at least for now. From tomorrow, I’ll be getting back to the usual random scattergun stuff, but do let me know if