Rogers: Bilateral Donors, Excessive Oversight and Aid Effectiveness

Andrew Natsios, former administrator of the U.S. Agency for International Development, has argued that excessive oversight could negatively impact the effectiveness of the agency’s aid program. Cate Rogers of the Australian National University’s Crawford School notes that Natsios’ observations and recommendations are applicable to all bilateral donor agencies.

“Irrespective of your views on the potential of aid, it would be wrong to discount the paper,” shares Rogers, who is on leave from AusAID, referring to Natsios’ essay titled “The Clash of the Counter-bureaucracy and Development,” which was published by the Center for Global Development. “Natsios’ extensive experience as the Administrator of USAID, with World Vision and in various positions dealing with aid at a political level give him a practical perspective that is refreshing in the aid effectiveness literature.” 

She adds: “In the aftermath of the global financial crisis, with aid donors budgets coming under increased pressure, there is pressure for increased scrutiny of the effectiveness of aid, and for clearer demonstration of value for money. This scrutiny will come from the counter-bureaucracy.”

About the author

  • Ivy Mungcal

    As former senior staff writer, Ivy Mungcal contributed to several Devex publications. Her focus is on breaking news, and in particular on global aid reform and trends in the United States, Europe, the Caribbean, and the Americas. Before joining Devex in 2009, Ivy produced specialized content for U.S. and U.K.-based business websites.