Thomson: Central-Local Government Harmony Critical in Capacity Building

    Even with available funding, efforts to build the capacity of government institutions will fail unless the disconnect between central and local government agencies is addressed, a former Australian aid official said.

    Assessing the impact of Australian aid on Papua New Guinea, Mark Thomson cited his experience with the Australian Agency for International Development, where Canberra did not lend support to a provincial-level initiative.

    “AusAID didn’t understand that you could throw heaps of money at strengthening central agencies but, until you bridge the gap between central program support and actual delivery of services on the ground, the aid program would struggle to achieve any legitimacy,” Thomson wrote on a recent blog.

    About the author

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      Tarra Quismundo

      Tarra Quismundo joined Devex Manila as a staff writer in October 2009 after more than six years of working as a reporter for the Philippine Daily Inquirer, a nationwide daily, for which she covered major breaking news in politics, military, police and international affairs. Tarra's Devex News coverage focuses on key Asian donors and top aid officials around the globe.