Tag Archives: fragile states

Assisting development = assisting what, precisely?

All around are the signs and sounds of a steady gearing up for the renewed development debate. Before it gets swamped by a demand for commitments based on GDP percentages, targets and indicators, it would be a good idea to reflect a little on what we really mean by development. Continue reading

Development aid – its opponents and proponents

A new debate is heating up in Britain about overseas development assistance – ODA. To foreign observers struck by how international generosity became a cross-party consensus here, it may come as something of a surprise that development aid is under pressure. But it is real and should be heeded for well-honed arguments are needed. Continue reading

Looking at some peacebuilding assumptions

My most recent post (29 Jan) reflected about peacebuilding inside the bounds of the European Union as well as outside. My thinking grew out of International Alert’s recently started work  in the UK. Going a bit further,  some more thoughts have appeared in the online magazine and discussion forum, openDemocracy. What follows is an abridged version. Continue reading

A scorecard for Busan: did the High Level Forum help conflict-affected countries?

At the end of November, 2,000 representatives of governments, international agencies and NGOs met in Busan as the 4th High Level Forum on Aid Effectiveness. But how effective was Busan for conflict-affected countries? Continue reading

The UN Peacebuilding Fund – four years on

The decision to set up the UN Peacebuilding Commission, Peacebuilding Support Office and Peacebuilding Fund was taken in September 2005 and bit by bit the new architecture was ready for business in 2006 and into 2007. I have just finished four years on the Fund’s independent Advisory Group, the last two as its chair, so here are my reflections. Continue reading

Aid effectiveness forum at Busan: what would success be for countries in conflict?

The Fourth High Level Forum on Aid Effectiveness convenes in Busan, South Korea, on 29 November. Two thousand representatives of governments, the UN, other multilateral organisations and NGOs will meet to discuss and come up with a statement on how development aid can be delivered more effectively. So what would a successful High Level Forum look like for countries affected by armed conflict, which face the toughest development challenges? Continue reading

England’s riots: If the UK were a fragile state…

Last week, rioting and looting gripped England. At a time when many people are feeling in one way or another bad about our country, it seemed salient (and perhaps inevitable) to ask, if the UK were a fragile state, how would we approach the events of last week, their aftermath and the future? Continue reading