Top development partners, according to developing countries

By Liana Barcia 20 November 2015

World Bank President Jim Yong Kim shakes the hand of a young girl in Bamako, Mali. The multilateral development bank ranks as one of the top development partners, according to a report recently launched by AidData. Photo by: Dominic Chavez / World Bank / CC BY-NC-ND

Foreign aid sources continue to diversify and these days public sector leaders from low- and middle-income countries can choose to take advantage of a variety of sources of development advice and financial assistance. But not all development partners and providers are perceived equally.

A report recently launched by AidData sheds some light on an important but neglected perspective on development partners — that of their developing country counterparts. “Listening to Leaders: Which Development Partners Do They Prefer and Why?” shows how different bilateral aid agencies, multilateral development banks, civil society organizations and think tanks measure up in terms of influence and performance in the eyes of the developing country decision-makers receiving assistance.

The report, which analyzed the results of a survey of some 6,750 policymakers and development practitioners in 126 low- and middle-income countries, ranked over 100 Western and non-Western development partners according to the usefulness of their advice, their agenda-setting influence and their helpfulness during the implementation of reforms.

Multilaterals emerge on top

Perhaps the most striking report finding is that host governments view the advice of multilateral development partners as most useful, followed closely by the advice of bilaterals from the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development Development Assistance Committee — particularly Finland, Luxembourg, Austria, Ireland, Sweden, Switzerland and Denmark.

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About the author

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Liana Barcia

Liana is a Manila-based reporter at Devex focusing on education, development finance and public-private partnerships and contributing a wide range of content featured in the Development Insider, Money Matters and Doing Good newsletters. She draws from her experience in business reporting and advertising to generate coverage that is engaging, insightful and relevant to the Devex community.


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