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Foreign

Assistance
Briefing Book
Critical problems, recommendations, and actions for
the Obama Administration and the 111th Congress

November 2008

InterAction
1400 16th Street, NW
Suite 210
Washington, DC 20036
202-667-8227
reform@interaction.org

www.interaction.org
Foreign Assistance
Briefing Book

Contents
Section 1: Introduction by Sam Worthington, CEO, InterAction
• InterAction Member List
• InterAction Funding Recommendations for FY2010 Poverty-focused
Development and Humanitarian Accounts

Section 2: CLIMATE CHANGE
• Climate Change and Sustainable Development–Policy Brief
Table of Contributors
Table of InterAction Climate Change Working Group

Section 3: GLOBAL FOOD CRISIS
• Global Food Crisis–Policy Brief
Table of Contributors
Table of InterAction Food Crisis Working Group

Section 4: AGRICULTURE
• Agricultural Development for Reducing Hunger and Rural Poverty–Policy Brief
• Ending Hunger: The Role of Agriculture–Policy Paper
Table of Contributors
Table of InterAction Agriculture Policy Working Group

Section 5: HEALTH
• Sustainable Global Health and Development–Policy Brief
Table of Contributors
Table of InterAction Health in Relief and Development Working Group

Section 6: GENDER
• Gender in Development and Humanitarian Relief–Policy Brief
• Value Added: Women and U.S. Foreign Assistance for the
21st Century–Policy Paper
Table of Contributors
Table of InterAction Gender and Aid Reform Task Force

Section 7: U.S. Government Development Assistance
Funding Trends
• U.S. Government Development Assistance Funding Trends–Policy Brief
Table of InterAction Public Policy Working Group
Foreign Assistance
Briefing Book
Contents Continued

Section 8: Supplemental Funding for Humanitarian Accounts
• Over-Reliance on Supplemental Funding for Humanitarian Accounts–Policy Brief
• Why Dependence on Supplemental Funding Hurts Humanitarian
Programs–Policy Paper
Table of InterAction Public Policy Working Group

Section 9: Transformational Diplomacy
• Transformational Diplomacy: The “F Process”–Policy Brief
• Foreign Assistance Reform: Views From the Ground–Policy Paper
Table of InterAction Foreign Assistance Reform Advisory Group
Table of InterAction Public Polic y Working Group

Section 10: Millennium Challenge Corporation
• Millennium Challenge Corporation–Policy Brief
• Millennium Challenge Corporation–Policy Paper
Table of Contributors
Table of InterAction Millennium Challenge Corporation Working Group

Section 11: Millennium Development Goals
• Millennium Development Goals: A Framework for U.S. Development
Assistance–Policy Brief
• The United States and the Millennium Development Goals–Policy Paper
Table of Contributors to Millennium Development Goals Policy Brief

Section 12: National Development Strategy
• A Call for a Comprehensive National Development Strategy–Policy Brief
• Proposed Major Components and Organization of a Cabinet-level Department
for Global and Human Development–Policy Paper
• Why the U.S. Needs a Cabinet-level Department for Global and Human
Development–Policy Paper
Table of InterAction Public Policy Working Group

Section 13: U.S. Government Regulatory Constraints
on NGO Space
• Regulatory Constraints on NGO Space–Policy Brief
Table of InterAction USAID Management Reform Working Group
Table of InterAction Humanitarian Policy and Practice Counterterrorism
Working Group
Foreign Assistance
Briefing Book
Contents Continued

Section 14: NGO and Military Relations
• The U.S. Military’s Expanding Role in Foreign Assistance–Policy Brief
• Guidelines for Relations Between U.S. Armed Forces and Non-Governmental
Humanitarian Organizations in Hostile or Potentially Hostile
Environments–Policy Paper
• Peacekeeping–Policy Brief
Table of Contributors
Table of InterAction Humanitarian Policy and Practice Working Group

Section 15: Humanitarian Priorities
• Humanitarian Funding Priorities–Policy Brief
• Afghanistan–Policy Brief
• Burma–Policy Brief
• Chad–Policy Brief
• Democratic Republic of Congo–Policy Brief
• Ethiopia–Policy Brief
• Iraq–Policy Brief
• Somalia–Policy Brief
• Sri Lanka–Policy Brief
• Sudan–Policy Brief
• Uganda–Policy Brief
• West Bank/Gaza–Policy Brief
• Disaster Risk Reduction–Policy Brief
Table of Contributors
Table of InterAction Humanitarian Policy and Practice Team
Introduction
To: The Obama Administration Transition Team, Members of Congress
From: Samuel A. Worthington, President & CEO, InterAction
Date: November 2008
Re: InterAction’s 2008 Transition Foreign Assistance Briefing Book

O
n behalf of InterAction’s 172 member organizations, I am pleased to present you with
our Foreign Assistance Briefing Book. Our goal for this book is to present our commu-
nity’s best thinking and wealth of experience on the issues we expect you will face
during the first six months of President Obama’s Administration and the 111th Congress. This
briefing book identifies key areas and sectors in need of immediate attention and lays out sug-
gested actions. The book captures the lessons learned from our members’ decades of on-the-
ground experience, which guides InterAction’s work. The briefing book is presented in three
distinct sections: issues such as climate change, funding trends, and humanitarian priorities.
Each issue is outlined in a succinct one-pager and several sections have additional longer, in-
depth background papers.

InterAction is the largest coalition of U.S.-based international nongovernmental organiza-
tions (NGOs) focused on the world’s poor and most vulnerable people. Our members’ activities
are directly supported by over $6 billion of private funding from the American people, leverag-
ing the over $2.8 billion our members receive from the federal government.

Foreign assistance advances U.S. national interests. U.S. foreign assistance represents our
humanitarian values, and shows the best face of America to the world. Public attitudes show
strong support for poverty reduction, sustainable development, and humanitarian work.
More than 90% of respondents to a September 2006 Public Agenda poll indicated that, “help-
ing other countries when they are struck by natural disasters like the tsunami in Indonesia”
and, “assisting countries with developing clean water supplies,” should be top priorities of
U.S. foreign policy. Conversely, only 34% of survey respondents agreed with the statement,
“We should only send aid to parts of the world where the U.S. has security interests.”

At the heart of America’s foreign assistance portfolio is poverty-focused development as-
sistance, which is our country’s most important tool for reaching the world’s poor. The primary
goal of such assistance is to support the efforts of people, communities and countries to per-
manently lift themselves out of poverty, and to save lives in humanitarian emergencies. This
effort extends beyond the much-needed task of addressing the basic needs of the poor, such
as creating access to food, water and sanitation, and health care. It involves protecting the
most vulnerable from shocks, cycles, and trends that threaten their survival, equipping them
with the capacity and tools to advocate on their own behalf, enabling them to be stakeholders
in the systems and structures that govern their access to resources, and improving their ability
to support themselves and their families. For instance, the number of people living in abso-
InterAction
1400 16th Street, NW
lute poverty has fallen by 500 million over the last twenty-five years. The number of deaths of
Suite 210 children under the age of five fell from 20 million in 1960 to 9.7 million in 2006. From 1960 to
Washington, DC 20036 2006, the disparity between primary and secondary education for boys and girls declined by
202-667-8227 60 percent.
reform@interaction.org
While the U.S. NGO community involved in foreign relief and development has proven suc-
www.interaction.org cesses, its ability to partner effectively with the U.S. Government has declined in recent years.
Today, too few international development dollars are spread over too many federal agencies. U.S. foreign assistance is frag-
mented across 26 departments and agencies in our government, and aid programs are often poorly coordinated and/or
working at cross-purposes. This fragmentation has been exacerbated by recent initiatives like PEPFAR and the Millennium
Challenge Corporation (MCC) that were designed to work around, rather than with, existing development capabilities of the
U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID), the lead U.S. development agency.

For this reason, InterAction believes, as do a growing number of foreign policy and international development experts,
that the U.S. needs a single national strategy for global development, bringing all U.S. development assistance programs,
including MCC and PEPFAR, under a single unified framework, overseen by a Cabinet-level department focused on humani-
tarian relief and international development. We envision an entirely new department, with new capabilities to meet 21st
century challenges, that brings the government’s best development interventions together beneath one roof.

Our top three priorities for modernizing and elevating foreign assistance within our government are:

• Develop and promulgate a new national development a strategy that articulates the U.S. Government’s overarching
development goal, describes how the United States will partner with beneficiaries and other donors, and prioritizes
poverty reduction as a key goal.

• Elevate development to its rightful place alongside defense and diplomacy – as articulated in the 2002 and 2006
National Security Strategies – by creating a new Cabinet-level Department for Global and Human Development.

• Rewrite and reauthorize the Foreign Assistance Act (FAA) to eliminate the legislative and bureaucratic barriers to
effective development. Take the opportunity presented by the reauthorization to reprioritize monitoring and evalua-
tion, local consultation, and flexibility in programming.

Taking these steps will help us create aid programs that are attuned to the needs of beneficiaries and dynamic enough
to respond to them. This can achieved by crafting a “grand bargain” between Congress and the administration that reflects
a shared vision of the role and management of U.S. foreign assistance, provides the Executive branch with the authorities
it needs to respond to a rapidly changing world, and ensures rightful and comprehensive legislative oversight. All of these
steps should take place in consultation with civil society, beneficiaries and other stakeholders.

This briefing book contains a wealth of information and policy recommendations on a range of pressing foreign assistance
challenges. Included is InterAction’s FY2010 development and humanitarian budget request levels for your information. If
you would like further information about these or any other topics related to U.S. foreign assistance, please contact my staff
at 202-667-8227.

This Foreign Assistance Briefing Book represents a robust collaboration involving over one hundred InterAction member
organizations working through and with InterAction staff, and in partnership with one another. Member organizations and
relevant working groups are credited in connection with particular policy papers. Nearly every interaction staff member
contributed in some way, by coordinating the work of members, writing and editing, developing ideas and concepts, and
reaching out to knowledgeable authorities. Leadership for this project came from three staff members: Chad Brobst, Senior
Publication Manager and Graphic Designer, developed design and coordinated production; Sarah Farnsworth, Senior Pro-
gram Manager for Government Relations, managed the project and coordinated the work of many members and staff; and
Lindsay Coates, Vice President for Policy and Communications, provided overall leadership. Many thanks to the InterAction
member organizations, their leadership and staffs, and the InterAction staff for their contributions, professionalism and dedi-
cation. We hope that our efforts will be useful to our readers.
SETTING A BOLD AGENDA
FOR RELIEF AND DEVELOPMENT
InterAction is the largest coalition of U.S.-based international non-
governmental organizations (NGOs) focused on the world’s poor and
most vulnerable people. Collectively, InterAction’s more than 165
members work in every developing country. Formed in 1984 with MOVING FORWARD IN 2008
22 members and now based in Washington, DC with a staff of 40,
InterAction’s member agencies are large and small, faith-based and InterAction’s work is guided by the following priorities:
secular and are headquartered across 25 states.
Goal 1
In poor communities throughout the developing world, InterAction Promote a bold agenda to focus U.S. development and
members meet people halfway in expanding opportunities and sup- humanitarian assistance on improving the conditions of
porting gender equality in education, health care, agriculture, small the world’s poor and most vulnerable.
business, and other areas. To forestall or recover from the violence that
Engage with the U.S. government to advance
impacts millions of innocent civilians, InterAction exercises leadership
poverty alleviation and humanitarian relief as major
in conflict prevention, the peaceful resolution of disputes, and peace-
independent U.S. foreign assistance priorities.
building initiatives in post-conflict situations. InterAction members
Advocate for the creation of a cabinet-level
respond to natural disasters all around the world.
U.S. department that addresses development,
The U.S. public shows its support for advancing human dignity and humanitarian assistance, and other related issues.
peace in the world through contributions to InterAction members total-
ing around $6 billion annually. InterAction leverages the impact of this Goal 2
private support by advocating for the expansion of U.S. government in- Demonstrate and enhance NGO accountability and
impact in development and humanitarian action. Focus
vestments and by insisting that policies and programs are responsive to
on aggregating the contributions of the NGO community
the realities of the world’s poorest and most vulnerable populations.
towards achieving the Millennium Development Goals,
InterAction’s comparative advantage rests on the uniquely field and on broadening compliance with the Sphere Project’s
practitioner-based expertise of its members. InterAction works with Minimum Standards in Disaster Response, and on
its members to compile data on the impact of NGO programs, as aligning with other key global frameworks that advance
a basis for promoting best practices and for evidence-based public development efforts and enable humanitarian action.
policy formulation.
Goal 3
InterAction brings the values and experience of the NGO community Be the voice and prime representative of U.S.
into the broader development and humanitarian assistance community international NGOs in building alliances and common
through strategic alliances with key partners around particular issues agendas with NGO networks around the world and with
and objectives. These partnerships further leverage InterAction’s politi- other strategic partners.
cal, intellectual, and financial capital. InterAction believes its future is
one of strategic alliances.

Neither InterAction nor its members bear lightly the responsibility of For more information, visit:
the trust the American people place in us. As such, members adhere
to InterAction’s standards that help assure accountability in the critical www.interaction.org
areas of financial management, fundraising, governance, and program
performance.

1400 16th Street, NW, Suite 210 Washington, DC 20036 USA Tel 1.202.667.8227 Fax 1.202.667.8236 ia@interaction.org
InterAction Member Organizations

Academy for Educational Development Friends of Liberia National Wildlife Federation
Action Against Hunger USA Friends of the World Food Program ONE Campaign
ActionAid International USA Gifts In Kind International Operation USA
Adventist Development and Relief Giving Children Hope Opportunity International
Agency International (ADRA) Global Health Council Oxfam America
African Medical & Research Foundation Global Links Pact
African Methodist Episcopal Service and Global Resource Services Pan American Development Foundation
Development Agency (AME-SADA) GOAL USA PATH
Africare Goodwill Industries International Pathfinder International
Aga Khan Foundation USA Habitat for Humanity International PCI-Media Impact
Aid to Artisans Handicap International USA Perkins School for the Blind
Air Serv International Hands on Worldwide Physicians for Human Rights
Alliance to End Hunger Heart to Heart International Physicians for Peace
American Friends Service Committee Heartland Alliance Plan USA
American Jewish Joint Distribution Hebrew Immigrant Aid Society Population Action International
Committee Heifer International Population Communication
American Jewish World Service Helen Keller International Presbyterian Disaster Assistance and
American Near East Refugee Aid Hesperian Foundation Hunger Program
American Red Cross International Services Holt International Children’s Services Project HOPE
American Refugee Committee Humane Society International (HIS) ProLiteracy Worldwide
AmeriCares The Hunger Project Quixote Center/Quest for Peace
America’s Development Foundation (ADF) Information Management and Mine Action Refugees International
Amigos de las Américas Programs (IMMAP) Relief International
Ananda Marga Universal Relief Team INMED Partnerships for Children RESULTS
Baptist World Alliance InsideNGO Salvation Army World Service Office
B’nai B’rith International Institute for Sustainable Communities Save the Children
BRAC USA Institute of Cultural Affairs Seva Foundation
Bread for the World International Aid, Inc. SHARE Foundation
Bread for the World Institute International Catholic Migration Society for International Development (SID)
Brother’s Brother Foundation Commission (ICMC) Solar Cookers International
Campaign for Innocent Victims in Conflict International Center for Research Stop Hunger Now
(CIVIC) on Women (ICRW) Support Group to Democracy
CARE International Crisis Group (ICG) Trickle Up Program
Catholic Medical Mission Board International Housing Coalition (IHC) Unitarian Universalist Service Committee
Catholic Relief Services International Institute of Rural United Methodist Committee on Relief
Center for Health and Gender Equity Reconstruction United Way International
(CHANGE) International Medical Corps USA for UNHCR
Center for International Health and International Orthodox Christian U.S. Committee for Refugees and
Cooperation (CIHC) Charities (IOCC) Immigrants
Centre for Development and Population International Reading Association U.S. Committee for UNDP
Activities (CEDPA) International Relief & Development U.S. Fund for UNICEF
CHF International International Relief Teams VAB (Volunteers Association of Bangladesh)
Christian Blind Mission (CBM) International Rescue Committee (IRC) Winrock International
Christian Children’s Fund (CCF) International Social Service — United States Women for Women International
Christian Reformed World Relief of America Branch, Inc Women’s Environment and Development
Committee (CRWRC) International Youth Foundation Organization
Church World Service Interplast Women Thrive Worldwide
Citizens Development Corps Islamic Relief USA World Cocoa Foundation
Citizens Network for Foreign Affairs Joint Aid Management (JAM) World Concern
Communications Consortium Media Center Jesuit Refugee Services USA World Conference of Religions for Peace
Concern America Korean American Sharing Movement World Education
CONCERN Worldwide U.S., Inc. Latter-day Saint Charities World Emergency Relief
Congressional Hunger Center Life for Relief and Development World Hope International
Counterpart International Lutheran World Relief World Learning
Direct Relief International Management Sciences for Health (MSH) World Neighbors
Doctors of the World MAP International World Rehabilitation Fund
Educational Concerns for Hunger Medical Care Development World Relief
Organization (ECHO) Medical Teams International World Resources Institute (WRI)
Episcopal Relief & Development Mental Disability Rights International World Society for the Protection of Animals
Ethiopian Community Development Council Mercy Corps World Wildlife Fund
Floresta Mercy USA for Aid and Development World Vision
The Florida Association of Volunteer Action Minnesota International Health (as of 10/01/08)
in the Caribbean and the Americas Volunteers
(FAVACA) Mobility International USA
Food For The Hungry National Association of Social Workers
Freedom From Hunger National Peace Corps Association
InterAction Funding
Recommendations for
FY2010 Poverty-focused
Development and
Humanitarian Accounts

I
nterAction, a coalition of 172 U.S.-based international development and humanitarian
private voluntary organizations, respectfully submits the following funding
recommendations for FY2010. We strongly urge the Administration to request these
amounts, and urge the Administration, Budget Committees and the Appropriations
Committees to request and provide allocations sufficient to allow the recommended total
increase of $9.9 billion dollars (over FY2008 enacted levels) for these poverty-focused
development and humanitarian accounts.

Success in the global fight against poverty requires quality investments across a number
of sectors: HIV/AIDS, education, nutrition, clean water, skilled health workers, good
governance, functioning health systems, economic empowerment, and gender equality,
to name just a few. Sustainable progress in any one of these sectors is intertwined with
progress in the others, and if investments are not balanced across sectors, our ability to
effect sustainable change, including in the prevention and treatment of HIV/AIDS, will
be diminished. InterAction celebrates the exponential increases in support for HIV/
AIDS and malaria programs over the last several years, but urges the Administration
to request and Congress to provide adequate funding across all these sectors and
accounts.

We fully understand the tough budget climate. While our recommendations may seem
aggressive to some, their total remains an exceedingly small portion of the overall federal
budget, and the returns on the investments we recommend – in increased global stability,
prosperity and good will, reduction of suffering and enactment of American values – will
be many-fold. In the coming years, those returns will be needed more than ever. The time
to make the investments is now.
InterAction
1400 16th Street, NW
The table on the next page provides our numerical recommendations by account,
Suite 210 with comparison to FY2008 enacted levels (given the incomplete status of FY2009
Washington, DC 20036 appropriations). The pages that follow provide justifications for our recommendations,
202-667-8227 explaining the numbers and where useful breaking them down by “sub-account.”
reform@interaction.org
Questions and requests for further detail are welcome: please contact Ken Forsberg at
www.interaction.org InterAction at 202-552-6564, or kforsberg@interaction.org.
InterAction Fiscal Year 2010 Funding Recommendations
($ in thousands)
FY08 Enacted
InterAction FY2010 Δ from FY08
Account (including all
Recommendation Total Enacted
emergency)
Global Health and Child Survival Programs (non-HIV) 3,347,500 +1,865,513 1,481,987
Development Assistance 3,756,300 +2,132,678 1,623,622
International Disaster Assistance 1,128,200 +478,461 649,739
Office of Transition Initiatives 65,000 +20,365 44,636
Migration and Refugee Assistance 2,051,000 +712,822 1,338,178
Emergency Refugee and Migration Assistance 200,000 +124,364 75,636
International Organizations and Programs:     316,897
UNICEF 135,000 +6,000 129,000
UNFPA 65,000 +58,000 7,000
UNIFEM 7,000 +3,400 3,600
UNIFEM Trust Fund 5,000 +3,200  1,800
UNDP 110,000 +11,840 98,160
Center for Human Settlements 2,500 +1,500 1000

TOTAL CORE ACCOUNTS 10,872,000 +5,418,142 5,454,358
       
Millennium Challenge Corporation 2,200,000 +713,612 1,486,388
Global Health and Child Survival Programs (HIV) 8,500,000 +3,490,905 5,009,095
Contributions to International Peacekeeping Activities 2,327,845 +263,628 2,064,217

TOTAL OTHER KEY ACCOUNTS 13,027,845 +4,468,145 8,559,700
       
GRAND TOTAL 23,900,345 +9,886,287 14,014,058
FY10 Funding Level
Account Justification
Recommendations

This amount for the Global Health Account (not counting HIV programs) would allow the following:
• a maternal and child health investment of $900 million which would expand effective programs to save
the lives of children under 5 and their mothers who die from preventable causes;
• a bilateral family planning and reproductive health investment of $935 million which would constitute
an appropriate U.S. share of the resources necessary to meet the need for contraception of the estimated 201
million women in the developing world whose contraceptive needs go unmet;
• a TB investment of $650 million which would provide the USAID portion of the U.S. share of what is needed
GHCS – non-HIV in 2010 based on the Global Plan and the MDR-TB and XDR-TB Global Response Plan;

$3.348 billion • a malaria investment of $800 million which is targeted to meet the President’s Malaria Initiative (PMI). PMI
(Global Health and Child pledged $1.2 billion to combat malaria at the end of five years;
Survival, non-HIV)
• $50 million for neglected tropical diseases which would keep the U.S. on track to meet what the President
has pledged toward fighting those diseases; and
• $12.5 million for child marriage prevention (with the same amount in Development Assistance) which
would help reduce a practice associated with greater poverty, lower levels of girls’ education, higher rates of
maternal and infant mortality, and greater incidence of domestic violence.
New investment in global health is also vital for expanding health workforce capacity and working against
gender-based violence. Overall, the recommended amount for this account would constitute a significant and
much needed increased U.S. investment in a healthier world.
FY10 Funding Level
Account Justification
Recommendations

This amount for Development Assistance would allow the following:
• $1 billion for basic education – the foundation for human and economic development – which would
amount to 1/3 of the U.S. share of what is needed annually to ensure that all children have access to quality
basic education by the internationally agreed upon target of 2015;
• $750 million for agricultural development which is consistent with the authorization in the Lugar-Casey
Global Food Security Act of 2008 (which will be reintroduced in the next Congress) and reverses a steady
decline in funding for these programs. Some estimate the U.S. share of the global needs for programs to
increase agricultural productivity at $1.2 billion;
• $500 million for water and sanitation which is the realistic amount required in FY 2010 to continue to
implement the Senator Paul Simon Water for the Poor Act (P.L. No. 109-121), and to work partially toward the
goal stated by Congress therein to “reduce by one-half from the baseline year 1990 the proportion of people
who are unable to reach or afford safe drinking water and the proportion of people without access to basic
sanitation by 2015.” This amount would cover the cost of bringing adequate water and basic sanitation to
5 million new people each year (or 5% of the total number of people annually needing access to reach the
relevant Millennium Development Goal) in countries that have increased internal funding for the sector and
that have sound water and sanitation policies;
DA
• $304 million for microfinance which would make a significant contribution toward poverty reduction by
$3.756 billion enabling microfinance institutions to leverage billions of dollars in private investment capital to promote
(Development
Assistance) dramatic growth in outreach to the poor and very poor, an estimated 500 million of whom could benefit
from enterprise credit, as well as the hundreds of millions more who do not have access to insurance or a safe
place to save their money;
• $283 million for trade capacity-building programs which would help the agrarian-based economies of
developing countries pull more people out of poverty and help ensure that more people have what they
need to feed their families and communities;
• $275 million for biodiversity, a modest increase from $195 million in FY 2008, which would enable more
work to be done on conservation for the benefit of people and nature. Scientists estimate 1/10th of the
world’s biological diversity is in danger of extinction, including at least 25% of mammals, and by the end of
the 21st century as much as 2/3 of the world’s species could be in danger of extinction. 3/4ths of the world’s
species reside in developing nations that depend on sustainable natural resources for their livelihoods;
• $212 million for climate change mitigation and adaptation;
• $195 million for clean energy programs, both of which recognize our need to act on our steadily increasing
understanding that protecting our environment and promoting human wellbeing and development go hand
in hand, and that one cannot proceed without the other;
(continued on next page)
FY10 Funding Level
Account Justification
Recommendations

• $185 million for a new line item to address gender-based violence which would scale up current U.S.
Government and other model programming to address violence against women internationally, addressing
the fact that one in three women will be a victim of abuse in her lifetime;
• $20 million for women’s economic opportunity (with $20 million in ESF) which is needed to enhance
economic opportunities for poor women in developing countries as a key component of reducing global
poverty rates; and
$3.756 billion
(DA continued) • $12.5 million for child marriage prevention (with the same amount in Global Health). The widespread
practice of child marriage in many developing countries is associated with greater poverty, lower levels of
girls’ education, higher rates of maternal and infant mortality, and greater incidence of domestic violence.
Therefore, it must be fully addressed within U.S. development programs for girls’ education, income
generation and gender-based violence, in order to for these programs to be most efficient and cost-effective.

The International Disaster Assistance account reached a level of $649.7 million in FY08 through regular, bridge and
emergency appropriations. Additional funding is required to respond to the increasing pressures of the global food
crisis and the worsening situations in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Somalia, Chad and Sudan. At least $185
million is needed to meet the needs of internally-displaced and other vulnerable Iraqis without drawing resources
away from emergencies elsewhere. Contingency funds are also needed to ensure that the Office of Foreign Disaster
IDA
Assistance (OFDA) is not forced to scale down ongoing programs when unexpected emergencies arise. Additional
$1.128 billion funding was also built into this calculation for response in the critical areas of emergency education and violence
(International Disaster
against women and girls.
Assistance)
USAID has been forced to rely on mid-year supplemental appropriations in order to address a long list of disasters
and famines, a funding practice with serious human costs. Adequate funding in the regular budget is critical in
meeting the needs in ongoing and escalating emergencies, while maintaining a small contingency fund to respond to
unexpected emergencies.

This amount for the Office of Transition Initiatives would allow OTI to continue its work as a key civilian instrument
OTI on the ground providing fast, flexible, short-term assistance targeted at key political transition and stabilization needs
worldwide. OTI normally looks for matching funds from USAID regional bureaus and local USAID Missions to support
$65 million portions of their work. One of the regions where their activities are most needed – Africa – is also the region where
(Office of Transition
Initiatives) USAID regional bureaus and local USAID Missions have the least funding available to support match arrangements. A
small increase would allow for more effective programs in Africa.
FY10 Funding Level
Account Justification
Recommendations

This amount for the Migration and Refugee Assistance account would allow the U.S. to continue its strong leadership on
humanitarian assistance and help improve the international response to the basic needs of displaced persons—the majority
of them women and children. The number of refugees and internally displaced persons is rising, and many lack access
to essential, life-saving services—health care, safe shelter, clean water and education. Efforts to prevent and respond to
violence against displaced women and girls are inadequate and underfunded. Conditions have significantly deteriorated
MRA for displaced persons in several African countries and in Afghanistan, Pakistan and Sri Lanka. Several million Iraqis are still
displaced. The Colombia displacement crisis remains one of the largest in the world.
$2.051 billion
(Migration and Refugee
Assistance) The recommended funding level includes $1.425 billion for overseas assistance. This reflects funding available in FY
08 for overseas assistance adjusted for inflation and $125 million to address new and unmet humanitarian needs. The
recommended funding level also includes $556 million for the United States to resettle 125,000 refugees and an additional
5,000 Iraqis and their accompanying family members under the Special Immigrant Visa program. It is vitally important that
the U.S. continue to revitalize its refugee admissions program to help protect highly vulnerable refugees and to provide a
long-term solution to some refugees trapped for years in protracted humanitarian crises.

The Emergency Refugee and Migration Assistance account provides an important safety valve during times of
ERMA
emergency. The ERMA ceiling of $100 million has not been raised since the mid-1990s and given the increased costs of
$200 million providing emergency assistance, we recommend an increase in the ceiling to $200 million. Additionally, the current
(Emergency Refugee and
presidential certification process is cumbersome. To ensure an agile response to immediate emergency needs, the Secretary
Migration Assistance) of State should be authorized to certify ERMA drawdowns.

UNICEF (United Nations Children’s Fund): $135 million, which would help support this agency’s expanding efforts to
ensure the survival and well being of children throughout the world.

UNFPA (United Nations Population Fund): $65 million to restore U.S. leadership in the key multilateral organization in the
family planning and reproductive health field by providing a contribution at a level comparable to those of UNFPA’s other
leading bilateral donors.

UNIFEM (United Nations Development Fund for Women): $7 million, to provide financial and technical assistance for
innovative programs and strategies promoting women’s political participation and economic security in over 100 countries,
IO&P We recommend an
particularly where they face the highest levels of insecurity.
amount for the IO&P
(International account that would UNIFEM Trust Fund: $5 million, to help fund the only multi-lateral grant-making mechanism that focuses support for local,
Organizations and allow the following national and regional efforts to combat violence against women internationally.
Programs) levels of funding:
UNDP (United Nations Development Program): $110 million to support the UN’s primary development agency as it works
to encourage democratic governance, plays a lead role in coordinating the international long term responses to disasters
and conflict around the world, and focuses on energy, environment, and health issues as they relate to human development.
UNDP strives to ensure that all of its programs support gender equality and respect for human rights.

UN HABITAT (Center for Human Settlements): $2.5 million. Habitat, as the sole U.N. organization concerned with human
settlements, plays an important role in focusing worldwide attention on housing and slum conditions in the developing
world.
FY10 Funding Level
Account Justification
Recommendations

The Millennium Challenge Corporation is an innovative development program working directly with countries
MCC who have quantitatively demonstrated a commitment to ruling justly, providing economic freedom and investing in
their people. The MCC has made determined progress over the last year in shifting its focus to implementation and
$2.2 billion subsequently progress is being seen on many of the Compacts. An FY10 appropriation of $2.2 billion would allow
(Millennium Challenge
Corporation) the MCC to sign 3-4 Compacts currently in the pipeline, as well as cover possible threshold agreements with countries
seeking MCC eligibility and minimal administrative costs.

The PEPFAR reauthorization bill authorizes $37 billion over five years, which works out to $7.4 billion a year if evenly
GHCS — HIV
distributed, assuming no further increases for the Global Fund aside from the $2 billion authorized. If we assume
$8.5 billion the increase is more gradual, and starts with a 15% increase over the previous year, and assume that some of the
(Global Health and Child
$37 billion will go towards the Global Fund, the authorized level for 2010 for AIDS is about $6.5 billion for bilateral
Survival – HIV/AIDS)
programming, plus $2 billion for the Global Fund, for a total of $8.5 billion.

$2.3 billion for the Contributions to International Peacekeeping Activities account represents the U.S. share of
projected peacekeeping costs for FY10. The U.S. share, agreed to by international treaty, is currently 25.9% of the total
UN peacekeeping budget. As a permanent member of the UN Security Council, the U.S. has given its support to each
and every one of the UN peacekeeping missions deployed. As such, a failure on the part of the U.S. to pay its bills
represents both a failure to follow through on its international commitments, and a betrayal of those countries that
have made troops and equipment available to support peacekeeping efforts.

$250 million of this amount can be attributed to the U.S. leading a push for a new peacekeeping deployment in
CIPA Somalia. This comes in spite of a warning from NGOs and peacekeeping experts that a peacekeeping mission can only
be successful when there is a peace to keep, and that conditions are not currently conducive in Somalia.
(Contributions $2.3 billion
to International Some of the most expensive UN peacekeeping missions are those that have been given numerous complex tasks
Peacekeeping Activities) beyond their core civilian protection mandates, or that face significant logistical hurdles. The MONUC (Democratic
Republic of the Congo) force, for example, is also responsible for providing massive logistical and combat support to
the Congolese Army (the FARDC). UNAMID (in Darfur) has faced a number of both political and logistical roadblocks
to deployment, but is expected to reach full deployment of 26,000 troops in FY10.

By FY10 it is also expected that a number of missions will have begun to draw down, reducing the overall cost of UN
peacekeeping. Among these is UNMIL (in Liberia), which will have reduced its size by 10% in 2009, and is expected to
continue to downsize at roughly that rate in 2010. Also, UNMIK (in Kosovo) is already in a rapid state of drawdown and
is expected to maintain just 30% of its civilian resources and a maximum of 500 UN police into 2010.
Climate Change
Climate Change
POLICY November 2008

BRIEF

Climate Change and
Sustainable Development
Recommendations
Problem
The Administration and Congress must tackle climate change at the international
Climate change level through U.S. legislation and solid re-engagement in global climate negotia-
poses a serious and tions. This must include support for the most vulnerable developing countries to
immediate threat to
prepare for and build resilience to climate challenges. These steps can help achieve
poverty reduction,
sustainable a global climate agreement, bolster political stability, and generate sustainable
economic economic development.
development,
stability and
security around the
Actions
world. Developing • Provide significant funding and support for the most vulnerable developing
countries face countries to prepare for and build resilience to climate change impacts (at least
climate change
several billion dollars annually are necessary according to recent estimates). This
impacts that
make the lives of assistance should come from substantial resources generated in comprehensive
poor people more climate legislation and through short-term assistance of at least $250 million for
precarious including the Least Developed Countries Fund which supports adaptation projects;
reduced water • Help developing countries limit emissions by supporting reduced deforestation
access and crop and access to clean energy technology;
yields, severe
• Ensure solutions are pursued equitably, with appropriate safeguards for the rights
weather-related
disasters, and livelihoods of poor communities;
exacerbated • Responsibly re-engage in UN climate negotiations for a post-2012 global deal
disease and new, that: provides appropriate support to developing countries for adaptation to cli-
destabilizing risks mate change; helps developing countries reduce emissions; and commits the U.S.
such as sea-level rise. to substantial emissions reductions; and
• Ensure U.S. development assistance aligns with climate change adaptation and
preparedness strategies and efforts to help developing countries shift to low-
carbon pathways.

Results
1400 16th Street, NW Developing countries will have greater resources to handle pressing climate change
Suite 210 impacts. The U.S. will have emissions targets and developing countries will have as-
Washington, DC 20036
sistance to reduce their emissions. Equitable principles and safeguards will protect
202-667-8227
reform@interaction.org the rights and livelihods of local communities.

www.interaction.org
Background
Climate change poses one of the most serious distribution, storage and conversion, or limited access to
challenges to poverty reduction and economic develop- agricultural extension services, the capacity to overcome
ment around the world in the 21st century. Though least adverse climate conditions is particularly low and food se-
responsible for climate change, developing countries are curity is increasingly threatened.
facing climate change impacts including reduced water Urban, coastal communities (particularly slum dwellers),
availability, decreasing natural resources and crop yields, face heightened risks as sea levels rise, exacerbating cur-
severe weather-related disasters, exacerbated disease, and rent flooding disasters, forcing population displacements
rising sea levels that are creating new, destabilizing risks. that will yield increasing urban poverty and the risk of ur-
Climate change poses a serious and immediate threat to ban unrest.
poverty reduction, sustainable economic development, Climate impacts vary widely. Taking this into account
stability and security around the world. As the United Na- through community-based adaptation is therefore impor-
tions Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) tant. At the same time, attention should be paid to wider eco-
recently stated, developing countries have the least capac- nomic, social, political and institutional support frameworks.
ity to cope with these consequences.
Addressing these consequences for developing countries
depends on tackling a twin challenge, both in U.S. legisla-
tion and through international negotiations. Providing
funding, capacity building, and appropriate technologies
for climate adaptation and preparedness is not only needed
to address serious climate impacts, but can also be vital to
economic development. The financial benefits from taking
preventive action have been demonstrated widely. Accord-
ing to an analysis by the World Bank and the U.S. Geological
Survey, an investment of $40 billion to reduce disaster risk
is capable of saving $280 billion.
Our already strained capacity to respond to natural disas-
ters and health crises around the world is being stretched
even further by the increasing harm caused by climate
change impacts. Moreover, security experts have warned
that the impacts of climate change will heighten security
threats by increasing impoverishment and leading to migra-
tion and refugee crises and conflicts over scarce natural re-
sources such as water. Meanwhile, working with developing
countries to be aware of, adapt to and prepare for climate
impacts should be an essential part of a broader strategy of
renewed global engagement.
The Stern Review on the Economics of Climate Change,
released October 30, 2006, noted that even with dramatic
emission reductions today, climate change will still have
major impacts, particularly on developing countries, for
many years and that supporting developing countries in
their efforts to adapt to climate change is the only avenue
to actually address the harm being experienced now.
In many developing countries, rural communities are par-
ticularly vulnerable to climate impacts because of their de-
pendence on agriculture for their livelihoods. Much of this
agriculture is rain-fed, relatively labor-intense, and makes
little use of yield-improving inputs and labor-saving in-
novations, especially in sub-Saharan Africa. Where there is
limited infrastructure – in the form of physical facilities for
POLICY November 2008

BRIEF

Contributors to Climate Change Policy Brief

Organization URL
CARE www.care.org
Evangelical Environmental Network www.creationcare.org
Mercy Corps www.mercycorps.org
National Wildlife Federation www.nwf.org
Oxfam America www.oxfamamerica.org
International Food Policy Research Institute www.ifpri.org
World Wildlife Fund www.worldwildlife.org

InterAction Climate Change Working Group

Organization URL
Academy for Educational Development www.aed.org
Action Against Hunger www.actionagainsthunger.org
ActionAid www.actionaid.org
American Friends Service Committee www.afsc.org
American Red Cross www.redcross.org
Bread for the World www.bread.org
CARE www.care.org
Catholic Relief Services www.crs.org
Christian Children’s Fund www.christianchildrensfund.org
Church World Service www.churchworldservice.org
Center for International Environmental Law www.ciel.org
Congressional Hunger Center www.hungercenter.org
Conservation International www.conservation.org
Evangelical Environmental Network www.creationcare.org
Floresta www.floresta.org
Friends Committee on National Legislation www.fcnl.org
Friends of the Earth www.foe.org
Global Health Council www.globalhealthcenter.org
Heifer International www.heifer.org
Institute for Policy Studies www.ips-dc.org
Institute for Sustainable Communities www.iscvt.org
1400 16th Street, NW
International Food Policy Research Institute www.ifpri.org
Suite 210
Washington, DC 20036
International Medical Corps www.imcworldwide.org
202-667-8227
International Orthodox Christian Charities www.iocc.org
reform@interaction.org International Relief & Development www.ird.org
International Rescue Committee www.theirc.org
Islamic Relief USA www.irw.org
www.interaction.org Jubilee USA www.jubileeusa.org
InterAction Climate Change Working Group Members (cont)

Organization URL

Leon H. Sullivan Foundation www.thesullivanfoundation.org
Lutheran World Relief www.lwr.org
Mennonite Central Committee www.mcc.org
Mercy Corps www.mercycorps.org
Missionary Oblates – Justice, Peace and Integrity www.omiusajpic.org
of Creation
National Council of Churches www.ncccusa.org
National Peace Corps Association www.rpcv.org
National Religious Partnership for the Environment www.nrpe.org
National Wildlife Federation www.nwf.org
Natural Resources Defense Council www.nrdc.org
ONE www.one.org
Opportunity International www.opportunity.org
Oxfam America www.oxfamamerica.org
Pact www.pactworld.org
Population Action International www.populationaction.org
RESULTS www.results.org
Save the Children www.savethechildren.org
Sierra Club www.sierraclub.org
Solar Cookers International www.solarcookers.org
Solar Household Energy, Inc. www.she-inc.org
The Nature Conservancy www.nature.org
Tostan www.tostan.org
U.S. Committee for UNDP www.undp-usa.org
Union of Concerned Scientists www.ucsusa.org
Unitarian Universalist Service Committee www.uusc.org
United Methodist Committee on Relief www.umcor.org
US Climate Action Network www.climatenetwork.org
Women’s Environment and Development Organization www.wedo.org
Wildlife Conservation Society www.wcs.org
World Concern www.worldconcern.org
World Resources Institute www.wri.org
World Vision www.worldvision.org
World Wildlife Fund www.wwf.org
Global
Food Crisis

Global Food Crisis
POLICY November 2008

BRIEF

Global Food Crisis
Recommendations
Problem
While fully addressing the problem will take time and extensive collaboration, the
Increases in food U.S. should actively support the first Millennium Development Goal, a global initia-
prices are pushing tive that aims to halve the number of individuals suffering from chronic hunger and
over 100 million
malnutrition. The U.S. must use its leadership to strengthen partnerships among
more people into
food insecurity. all stakeholders and urge other governments to adopt policies that create national
Lack of reliable social safety nets to help the poor better cope with shocks.
access to food
causes involuntary
migration, the
Actions
breakup of families, • Double the U.S. annual commitment to food relief programs to at least $3.2 billion.
and greater Funding for these programs (food aid, school feeding and child/maternal health,
vulnerability overall.
nutrition) must be more flexible to meet the needs of the poor, and should include
Widespread hunger
and malnourishment funding for food vouchers, cash for work, and local cash purchase of food aid;
threatens global • When possible, buy locally. Increase resources for flexible cash assistance,
development and which can be used to purchase food supplies locally and regionally. The FY09
political stability, Supplemental Appropriations Bill provided an additional $795 million to address
and harms the the food crisis, with over 50% directed to cash programs including local and
poorest and most
regional purchase;
vulnerable of the
world’s people, • The U.S. Government should invest $750 million in FY10 to meet urgent needs in
especially women agricultural development, focusing on assistance to small-scale farmers (especially
and children. women) through programs that provide seeds, training, equipment, and farm
credit; and
• Review the negative impacts of U.S. agricultural subsidies and quotas on food
security and prices in low income countries; and urge developing countries to
end food export barriers.

Results
The international community will be better prepared to deal with future shocks and
1400 16th Street, NW price increases. Fully-funded childhood nutrition programs will prevent over 3.5
Suite 210 million childhood deaths annually, substantially reducing the number of children
Washington, DC 20036
with permanent cognitive damage and lifelong illnesses. Women and children freed
202-667-8227
reform@interaction.org from food insecurity will be less likely to drop out of school or turn to unsafe income
generating activities such as prostitution or child labor.

www.interaction.org
Background
Food prices have been rising since the early 2000s,
and most sharply since 2006. According to the International
Monetary Fund, a ton of wheat that cost $105 in January
2000 cost $481 in March 2008. In one year (March 2007 to
March 2008), the price of corn increased by 31%, rice by 74%,
soya by 87%, and wheat by 130%.
Some of the forces driving the current food price crisis in-
clude: the all time high cost of oil; natural disasters/drought;
a global increase in demand for meat, milk, and grain to feed
livestock; an increase in the use of grains to produce biofuels;
and ongoing agricultural subsidies in developed countries.
The crisis is also a consequence of the neglect of agricul-
ture. For the last 20 years, donors and many recipient gov-
ernments have made low and declining investments in ag-
riculture. In 1980, 30% of annual World Bank lending went
to agricultural projects; in 2007 it was only 12%. In develop-
ing countries, agriculture spending as a share of total public
spending fell by 50% between 1980 and 2004. U.S. foreign
assistance for agriculture has dropped from a high of 20% in
1980 to 6.0% in 1995 to 2.5% in 2006.
Rising food prices erode the purchasing power of poor
people, many of whom already spend most of their income
on food, and causes a significant increase in food insecurity
across the globe. Even before the recent sharp increase in
food prices, over 850 million people faced hunger and food
insecurity and 177 million children are chronically mal-
nourished. Another two billion people suffer from nutrient
deficiencies. Lack of access to food at affordable prices has
prompted violent protests worldwide in over two dozen
countries and has led to the overthrow of several govern-
ments. Further destabilization can be expected unless food
needs are met.
The U.S., along with almost every other nation in the
world, signed a commitment to meet the Millennium Devel-
opment Goals (MDGs), including MDG 1 which commits sig-
natories to cutting world hunger in half by 2015 (from 1990
levels). Unless immediate and substantial steps are taken by
the U.S. government, along with other donors and partner
organizations, the goal will not be attained, and millions of
people will continue to suffer the consequences of hunger
and malnutrition.
The current crisis in global food prices presents an oppor-
tunity for the U.S. to demonstrate leadership and to craft an
integrated, coordinated approach to tackling the symptoms
– and underlying causes – of chronic hunger. Emergency
food assistance addresses the immediate need of popula-
tions in dire situations but it alone cannot pull us out of the
crisis of chronic hunger.
POLICY November 2008

BRIEF

Contributors to Food Crisis Policy Brief
Organization URL
CARE www.care.org
Save the Children www.savechildren.org
U.S. Fund for Unicef www.unicefusa.org
World Concern www.worldconcern.org
Oxfam America www.oxfamamerica.org
Catholic Relief Services www.crs.org
Episcopal Relief and Development www.er-d.org
World Vision www.worldvision.org
International Medical Corps www.imcworldwide.org
Jesuit Refugee Services USA www.jrsusa.org

InterAction Food Crisis Working Group

Organization URL
Action Against Hunger www.actionagainsthunger.org
Action Aid www.actionaid.org
Adventist Development and Relief Agency www.adra.org
International
Africare www.africare.org
Aga Khan Foundation U.S.A. www.akdn.org
Alliance to End Hunger www.alliancetoendhunger.org
American Red Cross www.redcross.org
Bread for the World www.bread.org
CARE www.care.org
Catholic Relief Services www.crs.org
Christian Children’s Fund www.christianchildrensfund.org
Church World Service www.churchworldservice.org
Congressional Hunger Center www.hungercenter.org
Episcopal Relief and Development www.er-d.prg
Food for the Hungry www.fh.org
International Medical Corps www.imcworldwide.org
1400 16th Street, NW
International Relief & Development www.ird.org
Suite 210
Washington, DC 20036
International Rescue Committee www.theirc.org
202-667-8227
Islamic Relief USA www.irw.org
reform@interaction.org Jesuit Refugee Services USA www.jrsusa.org
Joint Aid Management www.jamusa.org
Lutheran World Relief www.lwr.org
www.interaction.org Mercy Corps www.mercycorps.org
InterAction Food Crisis Working Group (cont)

Organization URL

Oxfam America www.oxfamamerica.org
Pact www.pactworld.org
PATH www.path.org
Save the Children www.savethechildren.org
The Hunger Project www.thp.org
U.S. Fund for UNICEF www.unicefusa.org
Women Thrive www.womenthrive.org
World Concern www.worldconcern.org
World Vision www.worldvision.org
Agriculture

Agriculture
POLICY November 2008

BRIEF

Agricultural Development for
Reducing Hunger and Rural Poverty
Recommendations
Problem
Re-orient U.S. agricultural development goals within a broader strategy for inter-
Although nearly national development that is aligned with the Millennium Development Goals.
1 billion people Recognizing the key role that small-scale farming has on reducing poverty, the U.S.
in developing
should support long-term agriculture programs that focus on: increasing the produc-
countries face
chronic hunger and tivity of small-scale farmers; generating rural livelihood opportunities; environmen-
poverty, investment tal sustainability; and reaching those most vulnerable to hunger and malnutrition,
in agricultural especially women, children, landless and other marginalized populations. Particular
development by emphasis should be placed on the participation and skills of women, who are the
the U.S. and other majority of the farmers in the developing world.
donor countries is
minimal and at an
all-time low. Modest Actions
U.S. Government
support is often • Establish a high-level, inter-agency team, led by USAID, to coordinate with non-
uncoordinated, governmental organizations (NGOs) and the private sector in formulating cohesive
short-term, and integrated U.S. policies to promote international agricultural development. This
limited in scope whole-of-government approach should include both short and long-term strategic
and inconsistent plans and associated budgets for agricultural development; and
with host country
• The Administration and Congress should work together to increase funding for agri-
development plans
and the needs of cultural development to levels appropriate with its critical role in poverty reduction
small farmers. and rural development. Allocate $750 million in the FY 2010 USAID Development
Assistance Account, and increase investments over subsequent budget cycles to as-
sure stable program support for USAID and other U.S. Government (USG) agencies
that provide technical assistance to developing countries.

Results
Increased funding for sustainable international agricultural development will reduce
poverty, improve food security and accelerate rural development. A cohesive, long-term
U.S. strategy that leverages capabilities across the U.S. Government and includes con-
1400 16th Street, NW tributions from NGOs and the private sector, aligns with each country’s development
Suite 210 plans and coordinates with other major international donors will result in more efficient
Washington, DC 20036
use of development resources and more effective agricultural development.
202-667-8227
reform@interaction.org

www.interaction.org
Background
High food prices, malnutrition rates and poverty Environmental protection is another domain where poli-
levels now threaten to reverse decades of development cies promoting food production and the sustainability of
achievements in health, education and poverty reduction. resources have not been reconciled. As climate change
The destabilizing political impacts of escalating food prices reduces yields and water availability in many developing
have also been felt in many developing countries. Yet, inap- countries, this area will assume increasingly urgent im-
propriate policy responses in the areas of trade, subsidies, portance for U.S. Government policy makers and program
and bio-fuels continue to put upward pressure on prices. managers in agricultural development.
After years of declining investment in agriculture and poor
policy choices by governments, market systems in many
poor countries lack the ability to respond to the higher pric-
es with increased production.
The 2008 World Bank Development Report concludes
that the road to reduced poverty, improved nutrition and
economic growth in most developing countries must run
through agriculture and the rural economy. A broad con-
sensus now exists within the development community that
broad-based growth in agricultural productivity – particu-
larly in the small farm sector and associated rural enterpris-
es – is the most effective means of rapidly reducing poverty
and hunger. U.S. Government policies toward international
development still do not fully reflect this relationship. Over
the past two decades, the U.S. has decreased its support for
agricultural development to only 2% of U.S. foreign assis-
tance. Soaring costs for humanitarian relief and assistance
demonstrate that this up front lack of support and invest-
ment often imposes higher long term costs.
U.S. Government support for agricultural development
has been marked by fragmented responsibilities and incon-
sistent or conflicting policies. Domestic agricultural subsi-
dies place farmers in poor countries at a tremendous com-
petitive disadvantage, while trade tariffs impose collective
costs on poor countries that exceed the amount of our de-
velopment assistance. Three principal departments (State,
Agriculture and Treasury) play prominent roles, while other
departments, agencies, and other entities have subsidiary
tasks. Taken together, this pattern makes coordination with-
in the U.S. government difficult, and with other donors and
host country governments, extremely challenging.
A second, but significant effect is a lack of coordination
between non-governmental organizations and the U.S.
Government. While private sector investment, remittances,
foundation support, and private individual donations have
all been rising, these vital resource flows have not been
coordinated with – and so do not leverage – government
development assistance. Current USG approaches to for-
mulating development policy do not systematically incor-
porate the valuable but largely untapped resource of the
NGO community’s 40-plus years of experience in promot-
ing international agricultural development and boosting
the production of small-scale farmers.
POLICY November 2008

PAPER

Ending Hunger:
The Role of Agriculture

S
Previously published by ince 2005, prices for rice, wheat, corn, and other food grains have soared by 83 percent.
Bread for the World, Many factors are responsible for rising food prices. Higher incomes in China and India,
June 2008. as well as in other developing countries, have led to more diversified diets, including
greater consumption of meat and dairy products, contributing to greater demand for feed
grains. Meanwhile, the diversion of crops and agricultural land for the production of biofuels,
particularly corn-based ethanol, has meant decreasing supplies for human and livestock con-
sumption. When extended drought in key producer countries is added to the equation, the
result is a major jump in prices as demand begins to outstrip supply. Finally, sky-high oil prices
are contributing to what World Food Program’s Executive Director Josette Sheeran has called
“a perfect storm hitting the world’s hungry.”1
Higher food prices may be good news for some farmers, but they add a crushing load to the
most vulnerable and poorly nourished people, including young children and nursing mothers
in developing countries. Poor people typically spend up to 80 percent of their disposable in-
come on food. Food riots in countries as far-flung as Haiti, the Philippines, Indonesia, Ethiopia,
Burkina Faso, Egypt, and Cameroon suggest troubling times ahead as fears of hunger take
root.2 The international community must take measures to provide food and cash assistance
to meet immediate needs and to improve agricultural policies. Increasing demand for staples
has not been matched by investments in agricultural productivity, especially in developing
countries where rising food prices are felt most acutely. The longer-term impact of this global
hunger crisis could stall or reverse decades of progress against hunger and extreme poverty
and prevent the world from reaching the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) by 2015.
Bolstering the agricultural sector in poor countries is a smart investment that will yield sub-
stantial dividends, especially when it comes to hunger. Of more than 854 million people world-
wide who are chronically hungry, 75 percent live in rural areas and depend on agriculture for
their earnings, either directly, as farmers or hired workers, or indirectly in sectors that derive
from farming.3 Realizing agriculture’s potential and creating economic opportunities in rural
communities is imperative to achieving MDG #1, cutting hunger and poverty in half, by 2015.

Agriculture, Hunger, and Poverty
“No country has been able to achieve a rapid transition out of poverty without raising pro-
ductivity in its agricultural sector,” explains Peter Timmer of the Center for Global Develop-
ment, and one might say the same of achieving sustainable reductions in hunger.4 Decreasing
poverty in rural areas has been the main cause of the decline in extreme poverty (the propor-
1400 16th Street, NW
tion of people who live on less than $1 a day) in developing countries—from 28 percent in
Suite 210
Washington, DC 20036
1993 to 22 percent in 2002.5 The poorest countries have largely rural economies: agriculture
202-667-8227
accounts for roughly 30 percent of gross domestic product (GDP) and employs 65 percent of
reform@interaction.org the workforce.6 Frequently, the industries and sectors linked to farm production account for
another 30 percent or more of GDP.7
In general, countries with rapidly increasing food production are more effective in reducing
www.interaction.org poverty.8 The World Bank’s 2007 World Development Report notes, “Cross-country estimates
of food available, it stimulates economic growth by creating
Box I: Job Growth: On and Off the Farm jobs, both on- and off-farm, which raise people’s incomes
and enable them to purchase food.
Job creation is a major concern both in terms of economic
growth and social stability. Jobs available to people with few skills But the task of continuing to raise food production in
contribute directly to reducing poverty. Compared to other sec- developing countries will be complicated in the coming
tors of the economy, agriculture has the potential to absorb large years by the harmful effects of global warming. These in-
numbers of workers. This is especially important because there clude warmer and drier conditions, shorter growing sea-
will continue to be many new jobseekers –in 2005, 30 percent of sons, and changes in cropping patterns. Poor countries will
the population in the developing world (41 percent in Africa) was
younger than 15.12 pay the heaviest cost in the next few decades even though
In Asia, most rural households earn half or more of their in- they had the least to do with causing climate change. But
comes from non-farm sources, but it is often the agricultural sec- the worst predicted outcomes are by no means inevitable.
tor that provides the “ladder,” as Peter Timmer describes, “from un- There is time to avert disaster scenarios by limiting green-
deremployment at farm tasks to regular wage employment in the house gas emissions (particularly by developed countries,
local economy.”13 The opening up of employment opportunities
to women, in particular, leads to a range of benefits. The benefits who are the biggest contributors), and by investing in re-
are especially important in nutrition, since research shows that search and technology to help developing countries adapt
more income in the hands of women leads directly to additional to changing weather patterns and conditions.
spending on food.
Throughout the 1990s, women constituted roughly 80 percent Lessons from a Green Revolution
of the agricultural labor force in the least developed countries.
This is projected to decline but remain above 70 percent into the In the early and mid-1960s, many experts were predicting
next decade.14 The result of agricultural growth is increasing num- that millions of people around the world would die of star-
bers of women in the economy, whether their jobs are on or off vation. Like many African countries today, India and China,
the farm. Indonesia and Thailand were mired in poverty. Countries in
South and East Asia relied heavily on food imports. Overall
economic growth barely kept pace with population growth,
show that GDP growth originating in agriculture is at least and agricultural productivity was stagnant.
twice as effective in reducing poverty as GDP growth origi- Then, beginning in the 1960s and continuing through the
nating outside of agriculture.”9 One of the main reasons for 1970s, new technologies developed by international agri-
this is that agriculture in developing countries tends to be cultural research centers, in partnership with the Rockefeller
labor intensive. Agriculture and agricultural support indus- Foundation and supported by the U.S. Agency for Interna-
tries have the potential to absorb relatively large amounts of tional Development (USAID) and other donors, were intro-
labor compared to other sectors of the economy. duced in Asia. These technologies involved using improved
For example, Chile’s expansion of its agricultural GDP can varieties of wheat, rice, and hybrid maize in combination
be largely credited to a labor-intensive agricultural export with more fertilizer. Countries in the region began to experi-
boom over the past two decades. Each 1 percent of expan- ence what has come to be known as the “Green Revolution.”
sion in agricultural and agro-processing output is estimated The Green Revolution fueled a dramatic increase in food
to have reduced national poverty by between 0.6 and 1.2 production in India. Between 1970 and 1999, India doubled
percent.10 Poor people in rural areas benefited from the ex- its cereal production, fueled by a threefold increase in wheat
pansion indirectly, through their employment by larger-scale production. India is now a net rice exporter, and the wheat
farmers and processing firms. Many of these jobs were taken that it imports is an insignificant share of all the food avail-
by women. Similarly, a recent study in Rwanda found that able. Moreover, technological innovations have come largely
agricultural growth contributed 50 percent more to poverty from Indian research farms, the result of decades of invest-
reduction than growth in other sectors, and that a 1 percent ment in science and technology that began in the 1960s.
annual growth rate in staple food production translates into So far, there has been no Green Revolution for sub-Saha-
a 3 percent reduction in poverty.11 ran Africa. In fact, one of the major barriers to Africa’s devel-
Steadily increasing agricultural productivity over the past opment has been the poor performance of its agricultural
30 years has succeeded in keeping food prices generally low sector — agricultural production has not kept up with popu-
and stable. In effect, low food prices mean higher incomes lation growth. The cause is neglect by both national govern-
for poor people, who spend the bulk of their disposable ments and donors. Since 1973, the region has been a net
income on food. This is true even for farmers in poor coun- food importer.
tries. Increasing agricultural productivity also stimulates job Figure 1 shows the relationship between agricultural pro-
growth in the manufacturing and service sectors. (See Box 1). ductivity (measured in terms of crop yields) and poverty lev-
Thus, improving agricultural productivity helps address both els for South Asia and sub-Saharan Africa between 1984 and
hunger and poverty: not only does it increase the amount 2002.15
The story behind this graph is one of glaring discrepan- largely because of growth in agriculture and the rural econ-
cies between South Asia’s and sub-Saharan Africa’s key ag- omy. For African countries to achieve similar results, national
ricultural indicators. Sub-Saharan Africa’s rate of irrigation is governments and the international community will need to
one-tenth that of South Asia, and its rate of fertilizer use one- act in concert, putting in place the policies, institutions, and
eighth that of South Asia. Africa’s cereal yields are less than resources that will encourage and support smallholder agri-
half those of South Asia.16 culture and rural development.
In spite of some formidable obstacles, however, it is possi-
ble to achieve sustained agricultural growth in Africa. Twelve Ploughing a Path for Sustainable
sub-Saharan African countries are already succeeding in Development
their efforts: they have had agricultural growth rates higher China, another Green Revolution success story, has had
than 3 percent (some higher than 5 percent) sustained over the most rapid reduction in poverty in modern history. In
the past 15 years.17 little more than two decades, the country’s poverty rate fell
Another encouraging sign is that a number of African more than sixfold: from 66 percent of the population in 1981
leaders have pledged to commit 10 percent of their national to 10 percent by 2004. Over this period, 500 million Chinese
budgets to agricultural investments.18 The accomplishments people were lifted out of extreme poverty.20 Economists of-
of the Green Revolution would not have been possible with- ten point to China as a textbook case of export-led growth
out substantial political and financial support from the coun- in the manufacturing sector. But in reality, rural economic
tries involved. The emerging Alliance for a Green Revolution growth and agricultural growth in particular had far more to
in Africa (AGRA), bringing the Gates and Rockefeller Founda- do with China’s dramatic reduction in poverty between 1981
tions together in partnership with national leaders and Af- and 2004.21
rican scientists, holds real promise for stimulating the kind In the past 15 years, Vietnam has had a tremendous growth
of research and policy reform that will lead to sustainable, spurt. Extreme poverty has declined from 58 percent of the
pro-poor economic growth. Organizations like the National population in 1993 to 16 percent in 2006.22 Vietnam’s prog-
Smallholder Farmers Association of Malawi (NASFAM),19 ress is due to a combination of economic reforms and tech-
which provides production and marketing support for more nological innovations in its agricultural sector, very much in
than 100,000 farmers, demonstrate what can be achieved the vein of the Green Revolution.
through a combination of local partnerships and financial The most significant policy changes were loosening state
and technical support. controls on agriculture while implementing land reforms
At the beginning of Asia’s Green Revolution, many experts that provided market incentives to farmers. These changes
were skeptical that India would ever emerge from chronic were followed by permitting more private sector activity in
food insecurity. Despite what they saw as nearly insur- agricultural processing and marketing. Farmers responded
mountable obstacles, India has been able to reduce poverty by increasing production, growing two or even three succes-
from 55 percent in 1970 to 35 percent in 2000. And it did so sive crops on the same piece of land each year. More use of
irrigation and the development of
Figure 1. new rice varieties requiring shorter
maturation periods helped them
accomplish this. From 1993 to
2006, per capita food production
grew at 3.8 percent per year, a rate
that was equaled or surpassed by
only five countries in the world.
There are many other examples
of how agricultural growth has fu-
eled poverty reduction. The gener-
al point is the same: Improving ag-
ricultural productivity among poor
farmers is the most effective way
to ensure that economic growth
will be broad-based. Equitable
economic growth not only increas-
es family incomes and disposable
incomes, but expands and sustains
investments in social services like
education and other social sectors. Ultimately, countries will
Agriculture and the Millennium Development Goals be able to “graduate” from foreign aid. An official in the U.K.
Goal 1: Eradicate extreme poverty and hunger: The majority of Department for International Development noted: “Coun-
poor people reside in rural areas and rely on agriculture. Improve- tries that are growing rapidly are on-track to achieve most of
ments in agriculture pave the way for economic growth in poorer their MDGs, and those that are not are failing.”24
nations. Meeting the first MDG will contribute to progress on all.
Chronic Underinvestment in Agriculture and
Goal 2: Achieve universal primary education: By raising
incomes, agricultural growth enables parents to send children Rural Development
to school rather than to work. Education prepares children, Over the last 20 years, instead of increasing resources
particularly girls, to take advantage of economic opportunities. It for agriculture and rural development, most donors have
empowers poor men and women in all aspects of life. been partners in a progressive decline in support.28 From
1985-2005, agriculture’s share of U.S. Official Development
Goal 3: Promote gender equality and empower women:
Women play a critical role in agriculture in much of the develop- Assistance (ODA) declined from more than 12 percent to
ing world, especially in sub-Saharan Africa. Formalizing their legal just 3.1 percent.29 In absolute terms, support for agriculture
and economic rights will help boost agricultural productivity. went from a high of about $8 billion in 1984 to $3.4 billion
in 2004.30
Goals 4 & 6: Reduce child mortality and improve maternal The international donor community has also undercut
health: More children die before the age of five in rural than
urban areas. About half of these deaths are due to malnutrition. prospects for African agricultural development through a
Increased and diversified agricultural production is one of the combination of misguided policy advice, trade restrictions,
most reliable, sustainable interventions to improve nutrition and and subsidies for its own agriculture. The “Washington con-
reduce child malnutrition and mortality.25 sensus”31 policies imposed on developing countries during
the 1970s and 1980s as a condition of financial support re-
Goal 5: Combat HIV/AIDS, malaria, and other diseases: When
people with HIV lack sufficient food and proper nutrition, they stricted poor governments’ expenditures and promoted one-
develop AIDS more rapidly.26 The agricultural sector in develop- sided trade liberalization. These were policies driven by rich
ing countries can help by generating income to purchase food countries through the World Bank, International Monetary
and increasing the availability of nutritious food. Fund and other international financial institutions. During
this period, low global prices for cereals made it easy to argue
Goal 7: Ensure environmental sustainability: Many agricultural
practices that increase productivity may also cause damage to that developing countries could neglect agriculture and buy
the environment. Overuse and misuse of agricultural chemi- needed food on international markets.
cals can pollute surface and ground water supplies and leave Trade restrictions and subsidies have had two troubling
dangerous residues in food. But agriculture’s large environmental effects. First, maintaining production levels well above
footprint can be reduced. Agriculture can also help protect the those that would prevail in the absence of restrictions and
environment through carbon sequestration.
subsidies — thus increasing global supplies of staple crops
Goal 8: Develop a global partnership for development: — drove world prices down and made it difficult for African
Domestic agricultural policies in rich countries hurt many poor farmers to compete even in their own markets. Second, rich
countries. Rich countries subsidize their farmers to overpro- countries restricted the markets available to African farmers
duce, which makes it difficult for the world’s poorest farmers to in order to protect their own farmers. This unfair market en-
compete and therefore to earn a living.27 Agricultural protection
in rich countries remains solidly in place despite agreements to vironment gave poor countries good reasons not to invest
bring agriculture within the purview of the World Trade Organiza- much in agriculture. In 2003, the International Food Policy
tion and negotiate fairer policies. Research Institute estimated that protectionism and sub-
sidies in industrialized nations cost developing countries
about $23 billion annually in lost income.32
health and education. Targeted programs to address the
more intractable cases of poverty depend on sustained U.S. Assistance for Agricultural Development
growth in the broader economy. President Jakaya Mrisho Among donor countries, the United States has been par-
Kikwete of Tanzania said recently, “No country can develop ticularly neglectful of agriculture in developing countries.
through investing in the social sector alone. Indeed, Tanza- U.S. foreign assistance has had a proliferation of special
nia’s impressive strides in the social sectors… were quickly initiatives and earmarks, from both the administration and
eroded when the domestic economy could not grow fast Congress, that have tended to squeeze out funding for agri-
enough to generate domestic capacity for expansion, main- culture.33 The FY2008 budget for agricultural investments in
tenance, and sustainability.”23 developing countries is illustrative. While there was a slight
As national incomes grow, more resources are available increase in overall funding for development assistance, fund-
to government, enabling it to finance spending on health, ing that is not earmarked and could be used for agriculture
Figure 2.
country’s own assessment of devel-
opment priorities. And in fact, more
than half of the funds committed to
date by the MCC are for agriculture
and related rural infrastructure.
The low, stable commodity prices
that prevailed up until last year al-
lowed the international community
to turn its attention to education,
maternal and child health, water
and sanitation, and global pandem-
ics like HIV/AIDS. These are crucial
areas of work for poverty reduc-
tion. But because there are limited
resources available for long-term
poverty-focused development assis-
tance, the effect has been to crowd
out funding for agriculture and rural
infrastructure. The growing global
hunger crisis — rapidly rising food
prices and the inability of poor peo-
ple around the world to cope with
has declined significantly. Lack of funding has forced steep them — is largely a consequence of this underinvestment.
cuts in U.S. support for international agricultural research
centers, where vital work is being done in how agriculture Helping to Create the Conditions to Reduce
can adapt to climate change and other topics crucial for food Hunger and Poverty
production. What role can developed countries play in addressing the
It’s important to note that when developing countries are global hunger crisis and reducing hunger and poverty in
given the opportunity to prioritize their needs, they have the long term? Food aid can and does go a long way toward
consistently asked for more agricultural support than do- meeting the immediate needs of hungry people. In 2006, in-
nors have been giving in recent years. The U.S. Millennium ternational donors provided food for more than 90 million
Challenge Corporation (MCC) funds development assistance people in more than 80 countries.35 But food aid is, at best,
“compacts” in poor countries that are well governed and in- a palliative, and the increase in food prices highlights the
vest in their people. These compacts are based largely on the shortcomings of relying solely on food aid to reduce glob-
al hunger. Long-term food security depends on increasing
the supply of food and raising the earning potential of poor
people. Broad-based growth in agriculture and the rural
economy is crucial. Increasing development assistance for
agricultural development is necessary to this end.
More development assistance by itself won’t suffice. For
donor resources to be effective, developing countries them-
selves have to provide supportive policies and the bulk of
the extra investments. But developed countries can support
agricultural development in a number of ways: working with
farmers, especially smallholder farmers, to provide the re-
sources they need to improve their yields; promoting good
governance; providing technical assistance and advice on
how to strengthen institutions and accountability; and sup-
porting research and development to improve agricultural
productivity in the longer term.
Developed countries should also reduce trade barriers and
subsidies for their own agriculture. Donor governments and
financial institutions need to step back and encourage de-
veloping country governments to determine their own poli- Republic, Ghana, Guinea, Guinea-Bissau, Mozambique, Niger, Nigeria,
cies, rather than requiring them to adhere to agendas deter- Tanzania, Uganda.
mined in Washington or other foreign capitals. They should 18 The commitment has been made under CAADP (the Comprehensive
not promote their own policies or technology interventions Africa Agriculture Development Program), an initiative of the New Part-
over others that may be better suited to local conditions. nership for African Development (NEPAD).
Governments and civil society in developing countries will 19 Data available from the NASFAM website: www.nasfam.org/
need to work out their own options based on what will work 20 Martin Ravallion (Jan. 2008), Lessons for Africa, World Bank Dev. Re-
for them. search Group.
The ultimate test of aid effectiveness is how much it con- 21 Ibid.
tributes to the goal of ending global hunger and poverty. 22 Nhan Dan (February 16, 2008), “Vietnam leads Way in Tackling Poverty,
In the case of the Green Revolution and agricultural devel- Says WB,”: www.nhandan.com.vn/english/life/160208/life_v.htm
opment more broadly, the test results are in: foreign aid in 23 President Jakaya Kikwete, remarks at CGD symposium “Power and Roads
combination with domestic political backing and supportive in Africa: A Tanzanian Perspective,” December 14, 2007.
policies saved the lives of millions of people and launched 24 U.K. Development Minister Sriti Vadera speech to mark the launch of the
many countries on the path to sustained poverty reduction World Bank’s “Doing Business Report,” October 12, 2008.
and economic growth. Certainly, we know enough about 25 Timmer.
the benefits of investing in agricultural productivity to make 26 Von Braun, Joachim, M.S. Swaminathan and Mark W. Rosegrant (2004),
a powerful case for increased donor support. Agriculture, Food Security, Nutrition and the Millennium Development
Goals, International Food Policy Research Institute.
27 Timmer.
Endnotes 28 Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations, Op. Cit.
29 OECD/DAC, Statistical Annex of the 2007 Development Co-operation
1 Sanders, Edmund and Tracy Wilkerson (April 1, 2008), “U.N. food Aid Cost- Report, December 2007
lier as Need Soars,” Los Angeles Times. 30 WDR, pp 41-42. While this decline was common to bilateral as well as
2 Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (April 11, 2008), multilateral aid, the decline in the latter was more pronounced.
“Poorest Countries Cereal Bill Continues to Soar, Government Tries to 31 A package of economic policies pushed by the donor community dur-
Limit Impact,” FAO Newsroom. ing the 1980s and 1990s as a condition for financial support involving,
3 Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (2002), Reduc- inter alia, fiscal discipline, trade liberalization, privatization, competitive
ing Poverty and Hunger: The Critical Role of Financing Food. exchange rates, tax reform and generally reduced government regula-
4 Timmer, Peter (2005), Agriculture and Pro-poor Growth: An Asian Per- tion and role in the economy.
spective; Center for Global Development. 32 International Food Policy Research Institute (August 2003), How Much
5 World Bank (2007), Agriculture for Development: World Development Re- Does It Hurt? The Impact of Agricultural Trade Policies on Developing
port for 2008. Countries.
6 Ibid. 33 Currently, only about 4 percent of the USAID budget is available for un-
7 Bathrick, David (October 1998), Fostering Global Well-Being: A New Para- encumbered use to promote the largely microeconomic reforms that
digm to Revitalize Agricultural and Rural Development; International can speed economic growth in poor countries. Another 20 percent or
Food Policy Research Institute. so is available for promoting economic growth in a particular sector or
8 Timmer, Op. Cit. for a particular country or region. For all donors, aid directed at agricul-
9 World Bank, Op. Cit. ture and economic growth (including economic support infrastructure)
10 Ibid. amounted to 19 percent of the total. (OECD DAC 2005 statistical annex)
11 NEPAD PowerPoint presentation, Accelerating CAADP Implementation 34 OECD Creditor Reporting System (2006), OECD International Develop-
in Rwanda; PowerPoint Presentation: www.nepad.gov.rw/docs/CAADP/ ment Statistics website.
Day%20Two.%2030th%20March%202007/5.%20Knowledge,%20Re- 35 United Nations World Food Program (2007), 2006 Food Aid Flows.
view%20and%20Dialogue%20Mechanisms.pdf
12 United Nations (2007), World Economic and Social Survey.
13 Timmer.
14 Alexandra Spieldoch (2007), A Row to Hoe: The Gender Impact of Trade
Liberalization on Our Food System, Agricultural Markets, and Women’s
Human Rights, International Gender and Trade Network.
15 World Bank.
16 World Bank Independent Evaluation Group (2007), World Bank Assis-
tance to Agriculture in Sub-Saharan Africa.
17 Ibid. Countries include Benin, Burkina Faso, Cameroon, Central African
POLICY November 2008

BRIEF

Contributors to Agriculture Policy Brief

Organization URL
Bread for the World www.bread.org
Winrock International www.winrock.org
International Center for Research on Women www.icrw.org
World Wildlife Fund www.wwf.org
Women Thrive Worldwide www.womenthrive.org
Heifer International www.heifer.org
Catholic Relief Services www.crs.org

InterAction Agriculture Policy Working Group

Organization URL
Academy for Educational Development www.aed.org
ACDI/VOCA www.acdivoca.org
Action Against Hunger www.actionagainsthunger.org/
Adventist Development and Relief Agency International www.adra.org
Africare www.africare.org
Aga Khan Foundation USA www.akdn.org
Alliance to End Hunger www.alliancetoendhunger.org
American Red Cross www.redcross.org
Bread for the World www.bread.org
Carbon Measurement & Management Working Group
CARE www.care.org
Catholic Relief Services www.crs.org
Christian Children’s Fund www.christianchildrensfund.org
Christian Reformed World Relief Committee www.crwrc.org
Citizens Network for Foreign Affairs www.cnfa.org
Congressional Hunger Center www.hungercenter.org
Church World Service www.churchworldservice.org
Conservation International www.conservation.org
Catholic Relief Services www.crs.org
Ecoagriculture Partners www.ecoagriculture.org
Episcopal Relief and Development www.er-d.org
Experience Corps www.experiencecorps.org
1400 16th Street, NW
Suite 210 Food for the Hungry www.fh.org
Washington, DC 20036 Foods Resource Bank www.foodsresourcebank.org
202-667-8227 Friends of the World Food Program www.friendsofwfp.org
reform@interaction.org Habitat for Humanity International www.habitat.org
Heifer International www.heifer.org
International Center for Research on Women www.icrw.org
www.interaction.org International Food Policy Research Institute www.ifpri.org
InterAction Agriculture Policy Working Group (cont)

Organization URL

International Center for Research on Women www.icrw.org
International Fund for Agricultural Development www.ifad.org
International Relief & Development www.ird.org
International Rescue Committee www.theirc.org
Joint Aid Management www.jamusa.org
Land O’Lakes International Development www.idd.landolakes.com
Latter-day Saint Charities www.providentliving.org
Lutheran World Relief www.lwr.org
Mercy Corps www.mercycorps.org
National Wildlife Federation www.nwf.org
National Farmers Union www.nfu.org
Nature Conservancy, The www.nature.org
Oxfam America www.oxfamamerica.org
Pact www.pactworld.org
Partnership to Cut Hunger and Poverty in Africa www.africanhunger.org
Plan USA www.planusa.org
Save the Children www.savethechildren.org
The Hunger Project www.thp.org
Trickle Up www.trickleup.org
Urban Agriculture Network Inc. www.cityfarmer.org
Winrock International www.winrock.org
Women Organizing for Change in Agriculture & NRM www.wocan.org
Women Thrive Worldwide www.womenthrive.org
World Cocoa Foundation www.worldcocoafoundation.org/
World Hope International www.worldhope.org
World Relief www.worldrelief.org
World Vision www.worldvision.org
World Wildlife Fund www.worldwildlife.org
Health

Health
POLICY November 2008

BRIEF

Sustainable Global Health
and Development
Recommendations
Problem
In collaboration with local and international partners, set country-specific health per-
United States formance targets to ensure that investments succeed in expanding access to quality,
development comprehensive health care that improves people’s overall health. Ensure that a U.S.
assistance for the
national development strategy comprehensively addresses basic health care needs,
health sector has
focused on certain with emphasis on strengthening local health care systems, increasing the number
diseases rather than of skilled healthcare workers, fostering community participation and reaching the
what should be its household level. To maximize effectiveness, the U.S. must harmonize its program
central aim: access interventions, guidelines and policies with those of host countries and other donors.
to sustainable
comprehensive
primary health Actions
care, with special
• Make improving health conditions and strengthening health systems in poor coun-
attention to the
health of families, tries a priority of a U.S. national development strategy;
mothers and • Significantly increase overall health sector funding, and plan scale-up to increase
children. To that access and coverage;
end, an effective • Build health workforce capacity and reduce inequalities of health care coverage and
U.S. government access, which primarily affect women, children and other marginalized groups, to
strategy for
help achieve U.S. global health goals;
international
development must • Assess the impact of global disease-specific initiatives on health system strengthen-
address goals of ing. Harmonize funding at the national level with bilateral and multilateral donors,
improving health in order to fully integrate health programs and leverage funding streams;
conditions and • Initiate a comprehensive review of US health development commitments to meet
strengthening the Millennium Development Goals and other key international frameworks; and
equitable health
• In at least 15 countries, selected based on overall health need and ability to suc-
systems in poor
countries. ceed, create a coordinated strategy in collaboration with governments and non-
governmental organizations to meet identified health care needs.

Results
1400 16th Street, NW Increased funding for primary prevention and health care services, improved coordina-
Suite 210 tion among donors and stakeholders, and new monetary commitments for strength-
Washington, DC 20036
ening health systems and workforce will increase access to quality health services,
202-667-8227
reform@interaction.org comprehensively address health needs; improve sustainability, and reduce avoidable
disease- particularly for the poorest and most vulnerable populations.

www.interaction.org
Background
The U.S. has been a relatively generous donor to ing demands. The integration of services between different
global efforts to address serious health challenges. This is providers will further maximize available resources. This will
particularly true within the past 6 years, during which U.S. allow health workers to spend more time and energy to-
funding for global health initiatives to combat HIV/AIDS, ma- wards providing direct health services, as well as coordinate
laria and tuberculosis has increased by billions of dollars. investments that strengthen health systems to retain staff
Despite this generosity, which has created notable health within local communities.
improvements for some, the general health of the global Because existing support is inadequate for universal access,
poor is severely lagging. Mortality rates, particularly amongst even for HIV/AIDS, we wish to see continued and enhanced
women and girls, still remain intolerably high, and millions support for the existing U.S. health development portfolio,
of people die needlessly every day from conditions that can as well as an expansion of support to achieve the universal
be easily addressed, such as diarrhea and child pneumonia. access to sustainable comprehensive primary health care.
Furthermore, the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) We affirm that all people have a right to access basic health
related to maternal and child health are unlikely to be met care and the opportunity to be protected against disabling
by 2015, particularly in sub-Saharan Africa and South Asia, and fatal diseases and health conditions for which a vaccine,
undermining progress towards global human health and prevention method or cure is already available. Special at-
prosperity. Unfortunately, budgets for child survival inter- tention to: expanding quality health care to vulnerable and
ventions and reproductive health services have declined by marginalized populations; channeling resources to prevent
18% and 39%, respectively, over the last decade when ad- malnutrition and provide children with the energy neces-
justed for inflation and population growth. sary to learn life skills; and increasing access to clean water
Strengthening healthcare – not just the fight against and adequate sanitation is also imperative to successfully
specific diseases. Focusing on the treatment of disease, as preventing hundreds of millions of premature deaths.
opposed to the expansion of primary health care with the
aim of reducing morbidity and mortality, is a multi-year
trend of U.S. foreign assistance and continues to dominate
health program funding. For example, in the FY 2008 bud-
get only 13% of U.S. funding for global health was allocated
for non-disease specific interventions. This trend has had a
profound effect on health system delivery, as the narrow
push to medically treat HIV/AIDS, tuberculosis and malaria
has exacerbated infrastructure weaknesses that preclude
universal access to health services. Furthermore, foreign aid
programs must be designed sustainably by reducing depen-
dency on external supplies and helping build local capacity
to run health initiatives themselves. Moving forward, U.S. de-
velopment strategy must shift to increase access to a range
of health services within communities, including support for
family planning and reproductive health, for both the pre-
vention and treatment of infections and other health issues.
Tackling Brain Drain. The World Health Organization es-
timates that 57 countries have severe health worker short-
ages, with the crisis most pronounced in sub-Saharan Africa.
While rich countries and well-off institutions attract health
care workers from developing countries, this contributes to
the shortage of a skilled health labor force. This is a growing
problem that results in a “brain drain” in host countries.
Donor Coordination. Along with a U.S. development ap-
proach that increases access to a broader range of health
care services, we support the establishment of a joint donor
reporting strategy in each country to reduce the burden on
scarce health service providers by standardizing their report-
POLICY November 2008

BRIEF

Contributors to Health Policy Brief

Organization URL

Physicians for Human Rights www.physiciansforhumanrights.org
World Vision www.worldvision.org
International Rescue Committee www.theirc.org
Population Action International www.populationaction.org
Academy for Educational Development www.aed.org
U.S. Fund for UNICEF www.unicefusa.org
International Medical Corps www.imcworldwide.org
International Center for Research on Women www.icrw.org

InterAction Health in Relief and Development Working Group

Organization URL

Academy for Educational Development www.aed.org
ACDI/VOCA www.acdivoca.org
Action Aid www.actionaid.org
Acts of Compassion www.questia.com
Adventist Development and Relief Agency International www.adra.org
African Medical & Research Foundation www.amref.org
Africare www.africare.org
Aga Khan Foundation U.S.A. www.akdn.org
Agape Foundation for Literacy and Rural Development www.agapefdn.org
Aidspan www.aidspan.org
Air Serv International www.airserv.org
American Jewish World Service www.ajws.org
American Red Cross www.redcross.org
American Refugee Committee www.archq.org
Basic Education Coalition www.basiced.org
Bread for the World www.bread.org
CARE www.care.org
Catholic Relief Services www.crs.org
Center for Health and Gender Equity, Inc www.genderhealth.org
CHF International www.chfinternational.org
1400 16th Street, NW
Christian Children’s Fund www.christianchildrensfund.org
Suite 210
Washington, DC 20036
Christian Reformed World Relief Committee www.crwrc.org
202-667-8227
Church World Service www.churchworldservice.org
reform@interaction.org CIVICUS www.civicus.org
Compassion International www.compassion.com
Concern Worldwide www.concernusa.org
www.interaction.org Congressional Hunger Center www.hungercenter.org
InterAction Health in Relief and Development Working Group (cont)

Organization URL

Congressional Research Service www.crs.gov
Counterpart International www.counterpart.org
Eastern and Southern Development Forum
Doctors without Borders www.doctorswithoutborders.org
Family Health International www.fhi.org
Food for the Hungry www.fh.org
Global Health Council www.globalhealth.org
Habitat for Humanity International www.habitat.org
Heartland Alliance www.heartlandalliance.org
Heart to Heart International www.hearttoheart.org
Heifer International www.heifer.org
Heifer Kenya www.heiferkenya.org
Interplast www.interplast.org
International Center for Research on Women www.icrw.org
International Crisis Group www.crisisweb.org
International Institute for Rural Reconstruction www.iirr.org
International Medical Corps www.imcworldwide.org
International Relief & Development www.ird.org
International Rescue Committee www.theirc.org
International Youth Foundation www.iyfnet.org
Jesuit Refugee Services USA www.jrsusa.org
John Snow International www.jsi.com
Latter-Day Saint Charities www.providentliving.org
Liberation Alliance for Change www.freewebs.com/liberationalliance
Lutheran World Relief www.lwr.org
Management Sciences for Health www.msh.org
MAP International www.map.org
Mercy Corps www.mercycorps.org
Mercy USA for Aid and Development www.mercyusa.org
National Peace Corps Association www.rpcv.org
Oxfam America www.oxfamamerica.org
Pact www.pactworld.org
Pan African Organization for Sustainable Development www.posdev.org
PATH www.path.org
Pathfinder International www.pathfind.org
Physicians for Human Rights www.phrusa.org
Plan USA www.planusa.org
Population Action International www.populationaction.org
Population Council www.popcouncil.org
Project Concern International www.projectconcern.org
ProLiteracy Worldwide www.proliteracy.org
RADEM
Refugees International www.refugeesinternational.org
Relief International www.ri.org
Salvation Army www.salvationarmyusa.org
Save the Children www.savethechildren.org
Stop Hunger Now www.stophungernow.org
Tampa Bay International Network
InterAction Health in Relief and Development Working Group (cont)

Organization URL

TechnoServe www.technoserve.org
U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops www.nccbuscc.org
U.S. Committee for Refugees and Immigrants (USCRI) www.refugees.org
U.S. Committee for UNDP www.undp-usa.org
U.S. Fund for UNICEF www.unicefusa.org
USA for UNHCR www.usaforunhcr.org
Volunteers Association for Bangladesh www.vabonline.org
Winrock International www.winrock.org
Women for Women International www.womenforwomen.org
Women Thrive Worldwide www.womenthrive.org
Women’s Commission www.womenscommission.org
World Concern www.worldconcern.org
World Council of Credit Unions www.woccu.org
World Education www.worlded.org
World Hope International www.worldhope.org
World Learning for International Development www.worldlearning.org
World Relief www.worldrelief.org
World Vision www.worldvision.org
YMCA of the USA www.ymca.net
YouthNet www.fhi.org
Gender
Gender
POLICY November 2008

BRIEF

Gender Equality and
Women’s Empowerment
Recommendations
Problem
The Administration should establish a high-level, central office on gender integra-
Despite tion and have strong gender focal points for each major development assistance
overwhelming agency or program, and within each sub-bureau and country mission. These experts
evidence linking
should ensure that gender analysis is systematically used in designing development
gender integration
to effective strategies, programs, and projects, and monitoring and impact evaluation to ensure
assistance, the both women and men benefit from and contribute to development efforts and that
U.S. Government gender equality is a strategic priority.
currently does
not consistently
integrate gender
Actions
into its foreign • Make a demonstrated track record of supporting and integrating gender equality a
assistance policies
required strategic objective in foreign assistance;
and programs.
Increasing income • Develop a U.S. national strategy for global development that commits the U.S. to
in the poorest advancing the Millennium Development Goal on gender equality and women’s
households, empowerment (MDG 3);
stimulating • Create an Office of Gender Integration under the highest-ranking officer for U.S.
economic growth development assistance, which would be responsible for ensuring gender is
and improving
thoroughly integrated throughout the entire foreign assistance structure and in all
social, health and
political conditions steps of assistance including budget, planning, implementation, and monitoring
in a developing and evaluation; and
country cannot be • Require each major development assistance agency or program to have a dedi-
achieved without cated stream of funding to support gender equality strategies, to monitor expendi-
the full engagement tures, and to finance projects that include funding for local women’s organizations
of women.
that focus on empowering women and girls.

Results
More than 40 years of evidence demonstrate that achieving gender equality, primar-
ily through investing in women, leads to greater reductions in poverty, faster eco-
1400 16th Street, NW nomic growth, and significant improvements in family health, nutrition, education,
Suite 210 and quality of life. Reforming U.S. foreign assistance provides a pivotal opportunity
Washington, DC 20036
to incorporate gender integration as a proven tool for effective development that
202-667-8227
reform@interaction.org truly addresses the needs, resources and priorities of both women and men living in
poverty around the world.

www.interaction.org
Background
The promotion of gender equality is a powerful opment Goals into U.S. development goals.
tool for effective development, contributing directly to pov- For gender equality to play a central role in effective de-
erty alleviation, economic growth, reduced domestic and velopment there must be a national strategy for global de-
sectarian violence, stronger community institutions, and velopment that systematically utilizes gender analysis at all
better governance. Gender equality means equal opportu- levels of strategic planning and implementation, and across
nities for all people, woman and men alike, to achieve their all sectors. Gender analysis reveals the different roles, rights,
personal potential and maximize their contributions to the responsibilities and constraints of women and men. In most
development of their families, economies, and societies. cases, such analyses highlight an increased need for invest-
Since 1973, when Congress mandated the need to address ment in women and girls, recognizing the historic and ongo-
gender equality in U.S. development assistance, the United ing discrimination that has prevented them from reaching
States has funded a wide range of programs working toward their full potential.
gender equality including basic education, anti-trafficking, Gender analysis at the strategic level reveals different
and microfinance programs. The U.S. government has also priorities. For example, a gendered analysis of the different
launched a number of initiatives in recent years that have the barriers women and men face to moving out of poverty
potential to strengthen gender equality through foreign as- would reveal gender-based violence and the lack of family
sistance mechanisms. However, these programs are limited planning and reproductive health services as critical barriers
by the lack of a clear strategy to consistently integrate gen- for women. Gender analysis in agricultural projects would
der into all of U.S. foreign assistance policies and programs. reveal that while women produce 80% of the food they own
Promoting gender equality is not only a feasible objective only 1% of the land and receive less than 7% of farm exten-
with long-term and self-sustaining benefits, but one that has sion services. As a result, effective programming needs to
strong public support. reach out directly to women farmers rather than solely the
Decades of research and experience demonstrate that male landowners. In terms of infrastructure, investments in
gender integration makes development efforts more effec- building and maintaining secondary and tertiary roads often
tive. For example, in sub-Saharan Africa, inequality between have greater benefit in helping women reach local markets
men and women in education and employment suppressed or social services than major highways, which often have a
annual per capita growth during 1960 – 1992 by 0.8 percent- greater benefit for men.
age points per year. A boost of 0.8 percentage points per Gender integration can only be fully implemented with
year would have doubled economic growth over the peri- strong political commitment, high-level leadership, and an
od.1 In another study, The World Bank evaluated its programs institutional mandate for gender equality, supported by
and found that those with gender-related actions achieved the enhanced capacity to conduct comprehensive gender
their overall goals more often than similar projects without analyses, sufficient financial resources, and greater account-
such actions. ability. We highly recommend that these efforts be led by an
Despite the overwhelming evidence, a recent USAID as- Office of Gender Integration that reports directly to the high-
sessment of the agency’s Country Strategic Plans found that est-ranking administrator for U.S. foreign assistance and that
more than half (57%) had only minimal gender integration. has a mandate backed with a dedicated stream of funding
Other U.S. development programs such as the President’s to support gender equality strategies. This high-level office
Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR) and Millenium Chal- would be responsible for coordinating the efforts of strong
lenge Corporation (MCC) take varying approaches to gender gender focal points within each bureau, mission, and tech-
integration. This one change – systematically understanding nical office. In addition to providing technical expertise in
and addressing gender differences – could make U.S. devel- the area of gender analysis and gender training, gender fo-
opment assistance vastly more effective. cal points would ensure gender is captured in the setting of
Furthermore, to effectively adopt a gender strategy within foreign assistance strategic objectives and priorities and that
U.S. development assistance, the U.S. should align its develop- there is accountability in reaching both women and men
ment objectives with those of the international community beneficiaries through appropriate performance indicators
by integrating the goals and targets of the ICPD Programme and the collection and analysis of sex-disaggregated data.
of Action, Beijing Platform for Action and Millennium Devel-

1 Blackden, Mark & Chihtra Bhanu “Gender, Growth, and Poverty Reduction:
Special Program of Assistance for Africa.” World Bank Technical Paper No.
428, 1998
POLICY November 2008

PAPER

Value Added:
Women and U.S. Foreign
Assistance for the 21st Century
By Kathleen Selvaggio, Rekha Mehra, Ritu Sharma Fox and Geeta Rao Gupta

M
Previously published by ore than 40 years have passed since the United States first created its foreign assis-
International Center for tance framework, and the world has changed dramatically. New global threats such as
Research on Women and HIV and AIDS, climate change and rising food and energy costs challenge our efforts
Women Thrive Worldwide,
July 2008.
to expand economic opportunities in developing countries and build a more equitable world.
The changed context has led to a call for a significant overhaul of foreign assistance.
The Modernizing Foreign Assistance Network (M-FAN)1 – a group of U.S. think-tanks, aca-
demics and international nongovernmental organizations – recently called on Congress and
the next U.S. president to reform U.S. foreign assistance for the 21st century.2 The M-FAN con-
sensus argues that rather than subordinate global development to larger national security
goals, the prototype for many years, U.S. foreign assistance must be realigned. M-FAN calls for
global development and poverty reduction to be elevated to a level equal to diplomacy and
defense, with the mandate and resources to be a principal instrument of U.S. engagement in
the world. The consensus asserts that fighting global poverty is itself a contribution to long-
term security because it addresses many of the root causes of political instability.
The International Center for Research on Women (ICRW) and Women Thrive Worldwide en-
dorse this call for a new and expanded U.S. strategy for global development and poverty re-
duction, and we assert that the reform agenda will be even more effective if it takes women
into account. What follows are recommendations that add value to the M-FAN proposal by
enhancing economic growth and reducing poverty through the promotion of women’s em-
powerment and gender equality.

Common Principles: Women and Foreign Assistance Reform
The Modernizing Foreign Assistance Network (M-FAN) policy consensus proposes five
core principles for a new Foreign Assistance Act. ICRW and Women Thrive support these
principles, which underscore the policy changes needed to achieve women’s empowerment
and gender equality:
• elevate global development as a national interest priority in actions as well as rhetoric;
• align foreign assistance policies, operations, budgets and statutory authorities;
• rebuild and rationalize organizational structures;
1400 16th Street, NW
• commit sufficient and flexible resources with accountability for results; and
Suite 210
Washington, DC 20036
• partner with others to produce results.
202-667-8227
reform@interaction.org As the United States elevates global development to a primary foreign policy aim, it must
elevate the goal of women’s empowerment and gender equality.4 The United States is much
more likely to achieve its broader aims of poverty reduction and economic development with
www.interaction.org investments in women. The U.S. government has made solid strides in raising the profile of
Investments in women also have broad multiplier effects
Value Added: Integrating Women into the like improving children’s health and education, which over
Recommendations of the Modernizing Foreign
Assistance Network the long run can significantly improve the futures of com-
munities and countries.7, 8 An extra year of girls’ education can
1. Develop a new U.S. strategy for global development that fully reduce infant mortality by 5-to-10 percent.9 The children of
recognizes women’s roles in reducing poverty and expanding educated mothers are 40 percent more likely to live beyond
economic growth, commits the United States to advancing the
Millennium Development Goal of women’s empowerment and the age of 5,10 and 50 percent more likely to be immunized.11
gender equality, and invests in multilateral efforts to achieve A mother’s social and economic status also is one of the best
this goal. indicators of whether her children will escape poverty and
2. Plan, design and enact a new Foreign Assistance Act that ensures be healthy. Bottomline: A focus on women is vital to reduce
that U.S. development assistance benefits women equally as poverty and break the cycle of inter-generational poverty.
men, with tools and indicators to improve execution and results.
3. Implement a more consistent and coordinated policy and Despite the evidence, women and girls still fail to be in-
approach to gender integration as part of broader efforts to corporated fully into and benefit from global development
achieve greater coherence and coordination in U.S. foreign as- efforts. In developing countries, women earn on average
sistance programs. 22 percent less than men.12 Women in Africa constitute the
4. Increase funding for programs that invest in women and ad- majority of farmers, yet they receive less than 10 percent of
dress gender inequalities, and track and report on these expen-
ditures to ensure that financial resources allocated to foreign small farm credit and own just 1 percent of the land.13 Wom-
assistance are effective in reducing poverty and promoting en face more obstacles than men in labor markets, receive
development. lower wages for the same work, dominate in the informal
economy and have less access to credit, land, education and
Note: These recommendations build directly onto the action other productive resources.
priorities of the M-FAN consensus.3
If these gender inequalities persist, women, their families,
their communities and their countries will pay the high cost
women in development, especially through the Millennium of slower economic growth, weaker governance and overall
Challenge Corporation (MCC). But greater attention is need- lower standards of living:14
ed to achieve the development objectives of Millennium • GNP (gross national product) per capita is lower in coun-
Development Goal 3: to empower women and promote tries where women are significantly less well educated
gender equality. than men.15
A new Foreign Assistance Act, which would provide a legal • In sub-Saharan Africa, inequality between men and wom-
framework for updated policies and reorganized structures, en in education and employment suppressed annual per
presents an exciting opportunity to reduce poverty by fully capita growth during 1960-1992 by 0.8 percentage points
integrating gender into foreign aid investments and enhanc- per year, according to the World Bank. A boost of 0.8 per-
ing opportunities for both women and men. cent per year would have doubled economic growth over
that period.16
Why Women and Gender Equality? Lessons Reforming U.S. foreign assistance provides a pivotal op-
from 40 Years of Development portunity to integrate the lessons of the past 40 years into
Any effort to expand global development and reduce pov- new priorities, strategies, structures and budgets. What fol-
erty must focus on women and gender equality. From a hu- lows are proven steps for how to enhance economic growth
man rights perspective, women are half of the population and improve development efficiency by promoting women’s
and addressing their distinct needs, given unequal power empowerment and gender equality. These steps build di-
relationships, is imperative. From an economic perspec- rectly into the action framework of the M-FAN consensus.17
tive, women are the bulk of the world’s poor and investing
in women pays. The international development community (1) Develop a new U.S. Strategy for Global Development
has more than 40 years of evidence to demonstrate the val- and Poverty Reduction that Fully Recognizes the Role of
ue added of investing in women. Women.
Investments in women lead to direct payoffs for reducing As M-FAN asserts, the United States must develop a clear
poverty and growing economies.5 Women in developing and focused strategy to achieve long-term development and
country economies are producers and income earners, farm- poverty reduction, separate from but parallel to short-term
ers and entrepreneurs, wage workers and self-employed. national security interests and political goals.18 For too long,
In India’s economic transformation of the past 15 years, the U.S. foreign assistance has been encumbered by multiple,
World Bank finds that states with the highest percentage of competing and sometimes conflicting goals and objectives.
women in the labor force grew the fastest and had the larg- ICRW and Women Thrive urge that a new U.S. strategy for
est reductions in poverty.6 global development should build on the eight Millennium
Development Goals (MDGs)19 endorsed by the international A new Foreign Assistance Act must improve upon the
community in 2000, and specifically MDG 3 which promotes Percy Amendment to strengthen and expand the focus on
women’s empowerment and gender equality. Thus far the women’s empowerment and gender equality.
United States has kept the MDGs at arm’s length. Now is the The 1973 Percy Amendment guides current U.S. policy
time for the United States to espouse the MDG framework toward women’s roles in international development. The
for its own bilateral assistance as well as to cooperate and Amendment stipulates that U.S. Agency for International
more fully engage with other donors and multilateral agen- Development (USAID) programs should be administered
cies (see Box I). “so as to give particular attention to programs, projects and
Moreover, for a new U.S. strategy to be effective, it must activities which tend to integrate women into the national
identify and overcome specific gender inequalities that are economies of foreign countries, thus improving their status
obstacles to development. For example, if a major U.S. goal and assisting the total development effort.” It helped foster
is to increase food security in Africa, aid programs need to the creation of the USAID Women in Development Office
recognize African women’s primary role in food production and subsequent initiatives to improve the status of wom-
and family nutrition, and identify ways to address the obsta- en in developing countries, though some were never fully
cles women face to increasing their agricultural productivity implemented.
(e.g., lack of a legal right to own and inherit land, and lack Despite its mandate, the Percy Amendment has had only
of access to productive resources such as credit, technology, marginal success. A 1993 report by the U.S. General Ac-
extension services, information and markets). Such efforts counting Office (GAO) concluded that USAID’s implementa-
to reduce gender inequality would complement other pro- tion of the Percy Amendment had been weak. USAID was
grams and benefit men as well as women. “slow in incorporating gender into its programs and activi-
ties,” according to the GAO, and had “not adequately moni-
Recommendation 1: tored the implementation of its policies and strategies or
Develop a new U.S. strategy for global development that routinely evaluated the impact of its programs and activi-
fully recognizes women’s roles in reducing poverty and ex- ties on women.”21
panding economic growth, commits the United States to Although USAID subsequently took steps to remedy these
advancing the Millennium Development Goal of women’s problems, its track record remains weak. The agency lacks
empowerment and gender equality, and invests in multi- both the high-level leadership and some of the institutional
lateral efforts to achieve this goal. mechanisms to systematically integrate gender analysis
into program design and implementation so that programs
(2) Plan, Design and Enact a New Foreign Assistance Act benefit women as well as men. For example, USAID lacks
that Strengthens the Commitment to Women as well as an institutional mandate and internal policy to ensure that
Men. women benefit from its programs; it lacks adequate finances
for such programs; and it fails to place gender experts in key
Box I: Multilateral Foreign Assistance Key to U.S. Reforms positions in the agency.

The United States is missing crucial opportunities to leverage Recommendation 2:
its own funding to improve and shape the direction and perfor-
mance of multilateral institutions by downplaying multilateral aid Plan, design and enact a new Foreign Assistance Act that
in favor of bilateral aid. ensures that U.S. development assistance benefits women
The U.N. system, the World Bank and the regional development equally as men, with tools and indicators to improve ex-
banks are important partners in international development coop- ecution and results.
eration and influential actors in development assistance world-
wide. To date, they lead international efforts to empower women
and reduce gender inequality. Many have adopted gender main-
streaming and equality policies with varying success and offer (3) Implement a More Consistent and Coordinated Policy
important lessons learned. The World Bank, for example, recently and Approach to Gender Integration.
adopted a Gender Action Plan to focus attention on women’s eco- ­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­The proliferation of foreign assistance agencies, programs
nomic activities, intensify attention to gender in its economic pro- and offices has led to disparate commitment levels and ap-
grams and operations, and demonstrate results.
UNIFEM is the only multilateral organization that focuses solely
proaches to address women’s empowerment and gender
on women’s rights and gender equality. To date, it has experi- inequality. In addition to USAID, for example, the President’s
enced mixed success for a variety of reasons that include diffused Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR) and the Millen-
responsibilities and a lack of resources. A recent proposal suggests nium Challenge Corporation (MCC) address strategies for
ways to strengthen UNIFEM and its role in leading efforts within empowering women and promoting gender equality to
the United Nations to integrate gender and achieve the goals of
gender equality and women’s empowerment.20 varying degrees.
A new Foreign Assistance Act will provide the United
Box II: Different U.S. Aid Agencies Take Different nisms for integrating priorities for women into its work plan, struc-
Approaches for Women ture or policies. The program has issued no institutional mandate on
gender integration and no formal operational guidance to field pro-
The three main U.S. development entities today – U.S. Agency for grams. It has dedicated few financial resources or full-time staff to
International Development, the President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS promoting the implementation of the five program strategies issued
Relief (PEPFAR) and the Millennium Challenge Corporation (MCC) by the gender technical working group, and holds no regular gender
– vary significantly in their approaches toward achieving gender training or other capacity building for staff and partners. Although
equality and empowering women. the working group reviews annual country operational strategies
USAID. In 1996, after more than 20 years of little progress toward and recommends ways to strengthen attention to gender issues,
fulfilling the Percy Amendment and under pressure by the interna- it conducts no systematic gender analysis of projects and provides
tional women’s conference in Beijing, USAID adopted a Gender Plan limited technical assistance to field programs. Recently, PEPFAR ini-
of Action for all its activities. In 2000, however, an in-depth analysis tiated an effort to define new indicators to measure results. Such
of the plan’s implementation showed that “over 90 percent of those indicators might move the program beyond disaggregated data col-
interviewed in USAID and the PVO/NGO community said that [the lection by sex and allow PEPFAR to better assess whether and how
plan] has not had any measurable impact on agency operations.”22 programs are working for women.
Since then, USAID has made some progress toward integrating MCC. Established in January 2004, the MCC already has demon-
tools and approaches that help prioritize women and their differ- strated considerable commitment to advancing women’s status in
ent needs through its development programs. In 2003, the agency developing countries and promoting gender equality by integrating
adopted guidance explicitly requiring attention to gender consid- these priorities into its policies and procedures. Noteworthy efforts
erations in country strategies. The guidance stipulated that coun- include:
try strategies had to include a gender analysis, hire staff with some • Consistent and strong political leadership from MCC’s chief execu-
gender expertise, and disaggregate data by sex for monitoring and tive officer that women are a priority in its development efforts.
evaluation. A recent USAID review found a marked increase in the • Appointment of a high-level gender expert to anchor program
degree and quality of attention to gender in country strategies after work.
2003. This progress fell across nearly all development sectors and • Adoption of a clear gender policy that calls for gender integration
geographical regions, although the average score remained be- in program design, implementation, monitoring and evaluation
tween “minimal” and “moderate.”23 Evidence is not yet available on that articulates the expectations of country governments and
how effective the strategies have been in generating better results MCC staff.
for women. • A requirement that all staff undergo periodic mandatory train-
PEPFAR. Although the 2003 PEPFAR authorization legislation ings on gender analysis and other gender methodologies and
placed considerable emphasis on gender inequality and its effect on approaches.
women’s HIV risk, the program was slow to integrate ways to address • A requirement that recipient governments consult with women,
women’s unique barriers and risks pertaining to HIV in its procedures including rural women, in country prior to drafting “compacts” or
and programs. In late 2005, the Office of Global AIDS Coordinator agreements with the MCC. The compacts must identify intended
established a gender technical working group which identified five beneficiaries disaggregated by sex, age and income.
priority program strategies: (1) increase gender equality on access • A requirement that all country compacts undergo gender analysis
to HIV/AIDS services; (2) address risky male norms and behavior; as part of larger social and environmental analysis prior to final
(3) reduce gender-based violence and sexual coercion; (4) increase MCC board approval.
women’s and girls’ access to income and productive resources; and
(5) increase women’s legal protection and rights. PEPFAR also began Though still in the early stages of rolling out its country programs,
to disaggregate by sex some of the data collected for annual report- the MCC is conducting an internal evaluation on its gender policy
ing to Congress. It was the first U.S. aid agency to do so. implementation to assess whether its goals for women are being
Beyond these steps, however, PEPFAR lacks most other mecha- met and how to improve their work in this area.

States with a unique opportunity to streamline these three for women at the highest levels of agencies or programs,
key U.S. bilateral aid entities, as well as other aid initiatives, including the appointment of a senior-level official re-
and improve the coherence and coordination of their pro- sponsible for the gender goals who reports directly to the
grams, including efforts to integrate gender and improve agency head and has the authority to influence decisions
outcomes for women. on foreign assistance policies, priorities and budget;
No U.S. assistance program has fully embraced gender in- • Institutional mandate that signals to managers that em-
tegration, though the MCC has made progress (see Box II). powering women and promoting gender equality must
Important lessons from such efforts can inform a new foreign be integrated across all strategies, programs and projects,
assistance framework. Significant changes in organizational including the use of gender analysis;
structure and processes are needed to ensure that the goals • Enhanced capacity for gender analysis and program-
of empowering women and promoting gender equality are ming by placing gender experts with appropriate techni-
a priority throughout all U.S. foreign assistance efforts. These cal experience and skills within all relevant regional and
structural changes include establishing: technical bureaus or functions, and by drawing upon local
• Leadership and political commitment to development technical gender experts in host countries (see Box III);
• Sufficient financial resources to support comprehensive
gender analysis and appropriate follow through in proj- Box IV: Global Foreign Aid: What’s Spent
ect design, implementation and evaluation. This involves on Gender Equality?
hiring technical gender experts in various development
fields, and financing the integration of women (or men, Total global spending on women’s empowerment and gender
equality through development assistance programs is difficult to
if appropriate) in projects as well as stand-alone activities measure, and ranges widely from 5 percent in Japan to 50 percent
that are vital to the success of development efforts and in Germany.
achieving gender equality. The Development Assistance Committee of the OECD reports
that during 2005-2006, some 16 bilateral donors spent a total of
Recommendation 3: approximately $8.5 billion each year on aid focused on gender
equality and women’s empowerment – almost 33 percent of the
Implement a more consistent and coordinated policy $26 billion in overall aid spent by those same donors. This figure
and approach to gender integration as part of broader ef- does not include the additional $27.8 billion in bilateral aid spent
forts to achieve greater coherence and coordination in U.S. by seven other countries, including the United States, that either
foreign assistance programs. do not report their gender-related spending to the OECD or for
which the spending is too low.
Most money allocated toward women’s or gender programs
support investments in education, health, water and sanitation,
(4) Increase Funding for Programs that Invest in Women and social services. Only a small share of the programs support in-
and Address Gender Inequalities. vestments in finance, business, agriculture or industry – areas vital
To expand economic growth and reduce poverty in de- to poverty reduction and economic growth.
veloping countries, increased funding and greater account-
Source: “Aid in Support of Gender Equality and Women’s Empowerment”
ability are needed. Making investments in women and es- OECD-DAC Secretariat, February 2008
tablishing gender equality as a cornerstone of U.S. foreign
assistance will go a long way toward achieving development
goals, and this requires ensuring adequate resources and ac- Effective ways to track this spending also should be de-
countability. vised to facilitate accountability. The U.S. should track its ex-
At present, it is difficult to know how much money is spent penditures on women and gender equality as other OECD
in U.S. foreign assistance programs to promote women’s em- countries do, and establish mechanisms to measure prog-
powerment and gender equality. Recent reporting on donor ress toward U.S. development goals. Such mechanisms in-
countries’ expenditures to advance gender equality by the clude monitoring and evaluation systems that disaggregate
Development Assistance Committee of the Organization data by sex as well as age and income, and developing and
for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD-DAC) adopting indicators to measure outcomes such as improve-
excludes any figures for the United States 24 (see Box IV). A ments in women’s or men’s health, education, income or le-
new foreign assistance framework must allow sufficient re- gal rights.
sources to ensure that gender integration occurs through- Finally, stronger internal accountability measures must be
out a project cycle. put in place so that managers within foreign assistance pro-
grams are assessed on their progress toward reaching these
Box III: Gender Analysis Can Strengthen goals. Congress too must play a more active role in oversight
Foreign Assistance of foreign assistance agencies by monitoring agencies’ prog-
ress toward women’s empowerment and gender equality
Gender analysis identifies the different roles, rights, responsi- goals and objectives.
bilities and constraints of women and men in different societies.
Addressing these differences is essential to the successful design
and implementation of development programs. Recommendation 4:
For example, to keep girls in school in many developing com- Increase funding for programs that invest in women and
munities, particular attention must be paid to their safety as they address gender inequalities, and track and report on these
move between their homes and schools, and while at school. This expenditures to ensure that financial resources allocated
simple, but important consideration came to light as part of an to foreign assistance are effective in reducing poverty and
analysis of the different factors affecting the school enrollment
rates of girls as compared to boys. promoting development.
Gender analysis does not just benefit women and girls. Address-
ing the distinct roles, beliefs and barriers that men face is equally
important to strengthening programs. A gender perspective en- Conclusion
sures that both women and men can participate in, support, and The global scene has changed tremendously since the
benefit from development efforts to relieve poverty and expand
economic growth. birth of U.S. development assistance with the Marshall Plan
and its subsequent alignment with U.S. security interests
pertaining to the Cold War. Yet U.S. foreign aid mechanisms security, meaning reduced vulnerability to violence and conflict. The
have not been systematically analyzed or overhauled to concept of empowerment is related to gender equality but distinct from
reflect the United States’ changing priorities. Further, while it. The core of empowerment lies in the ability of a woman to control her
U.S. development assistance has been adapted to the own destiny. This implies that to be empowered women must have not
changing global landscape over the past several decades, only equal capabilities and access to resources, but also the agency to
those changes have occurred in an ad hoc way. use those rights and resources to make strategic decisions. Such agency
The time is ripe to systematically revamp U.S. development requires women to live without fear of coercion or violence. (UNDP, Tak-
assistance mechanisms, drawing on key lessons learned with ing Action: Achieving Gender Equality and Empowering Women, 2005.)
years of aid experience and taking advantage of increased 5 Agriculture remains a key economic activity in many developing re-
public awareness of the importance of a U.S. role in address- gions. For example, in sub-Saharan Africa, women who obtained the
ing global poverty in the aftermath of 9/11. We are at the cusp same levels of education, experience and farm inputs as men increased
of potentially major changes in the U.S. administration. We their agricultural yields by 22 percent (International Food Policy Re-
also have the benefit of many years of development experi- search Institute, “Women: The Key to Food Security” June, 2000).
ence, which gives us greater understanding on how to over- 6 Besley, Timothy; Robin Burgess and BertaEsteve-Volart, “Operationalis-
come poverty, including the central importance of empow- ing Pro-Poor Growth: India Case Study,” Washington, D.C., 2005.
ering women and reducing inequality between women and 7 Between 1970 and 1995, for example, investments in women’s second-
men. We must ensure that gender equality goals and gender ary education led to a 43-percent reduction in malnutrition in the de-
integration in development programs are integral features of veloping world (Smith, Lisa C. and Lawrence Haddad. “Explaining Child
the new foreign assistance framework and strategy. Malnutrition in Developing Countries: A Cross-Country Analysis,” Wash-
ington, D.C.: IFPRI, 2000.)
8 When credit is provided directly to a woman, it can increase house-
Endnotes hold consumption and children’s schooling. Loan repayment rates are
higher for women than for men. (Schultz, T. Paul. “Returns to Women’s
1 Also referred to as the Wye River Consensus Group. Schooling,” in Elizabeth King and M. Anne Hill, eds, Women’s Education
2 See, “New Day, New Way: U.S. Foreign Assistance for the 21st Century: A in Developing Countries: Barriers, Benefits and Policy, Baltimore: Johns
Proposal from the Modernizing Foreign Assistance Network,” June 2008. Hopkins University Press, 2003.)
This consensus proposal draws upon analysis of the Center for Global 9 Schultz, T.Paul. “Returns to Women’s Schooling,” in Elizabeth King and
Development, “Seizing the Moment for Modernizing US Foreign Assis- M. Anne Hill, eds, Women’s Education in Developing Countries: Barriers,
tance: Testimony for the House Committee on Foreign Affairs,” April 23, Benefits and Policy. Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press, 2003.
2008. See also other foreign aid reform proposals including: Lael Brain- 10 Summers, Lawrence H. “Investing in All the People: Educating Women
ard, “U.S. Foreign Assistance: Advancing National Security, Interests, and in Developing Countries,” EDI Seminar Paper No. 45, Washington, D.C.;
Values,” Brookings Institution, April 23, 2008; “Smart Development: Why World Bank, 1994.
U.S. Foreign Aid Demands Major Reform,” Oxfam America, February 11 Gage, Anastasia, Elizabeth Sommerfelt, and Andrea Piani, “Household
2008; and “The Rationale for and Major Structural Components of a Pro- Structure and Childhood Immunization in Niger and Nigeria,” Demog-
posed Cabinet-level Department for Global and Human Development,” raphy 34 (2): 195-309, 1997.
InterAction, Washington, D.C. (forthcoming). 12 “Gender: Working Towards Greater Equality,” in Gender Equality as Smart
3 Priority actions as articulated in the M-FAN consensus document, “New Economics: A World Bank Group Action Plan. Washington, D.C.: World
Day, New Way: U.S. Foreign Assistance for the 21st Century” include: (1) Bank, 2007. www.worldbank.org/gender
develop a national strategy for global development; (2) reach a “grand 13 Ibid.
bargain” between the Executive branch and Congress on management 14 World Bank, Engendering Development: Through Gender Equality
authorities and plan, design and enact a new Foreign Assistance Act; (3) in Rights, Resources, and Voice – Summary (Washington, D.C.: World
streamline the organizational structure and improve organizational ca- Bank, 2001). www.worldbank.org/gender/prr/engendersummary.pdf.
pacity by creating a Cabinet-level Department for Global Development As cited by Susy Cheston and Lisa Kuhn, Empowering Women Through
by rebuilding human resource capacity and by strengthening monitor- Microfinance. UNIFEM: 2002.
ing and evaluation; and (4) increase funding for and accountability of 15 “Gender and Sustainable Development: Maximizing the Economic, So-
foreign assistance. cial and Environmental Role of women,” Paris: OECD, 2008.
4 Gender is a social construct that defines and differentiates the roles, 16 Udry, Christopher, John Hoddinott, Harold Alderman and Lawrence
rights, responsibilities and obligations of women and men. The U.N. Task Haddad. 1995. “Gender differentials in farm productivity: Implications
Force for MDG 3, of which ICRW was a member, adopted an operational for household efficiency and agricultural policy,” Food Policy, 20:407-
framework of gender equality with three interrelated dimensions: (1) ca- 423.
pabilities, referring to basic human abilities as measured by education, 17 Priority actions as articulated in the M-FAN consensus document, “New
health and nutrition; (2) access to resources and opportunities, referring Day, New Way: US Foreign Assistance for the 21st Century,” include: (1)
to equality in the opportunity to use or apply basic capabilities; and (3) develop a national strategy for global development; (2) reach a “grand
bargain” between the Executive branch and Congress on management
authorities and plan, design and enact a new Foreign Assistance Act; (3)
streamline the organizational structure and improve organizational ca-
pacity by creating a Cabinet-level Department for Global Development
by rebuilding human resource capacity and by strengthening monitor-
ing and evaluation; and (4) increase funding for and accountability of
foreign assistance.
18 Ibid.
19 The MDGs set targets for reducing global poverty, hunger, illiteracy, ill-
health and inequality.
20 A U.N. High-Level Panel recently called for U.N. organizations to pro-
mote gender equality as part of a larger package of reforms to the U.N.
system. The panel’s proposal, currently before the U.N. General Assem-
bly, recommends that UNIFEM and several other U.N. gender entities
consolidate and graduate to a new, stronger U.N. agency that promotes
women’s rights and gender equality. The new agency would have the
authority to support operational programs, and develop and promote
U.N. policies toward gender equality. The panel also calls for making the
head of the new agency a U.N. Under-Secretary General—a measure
that would give the agency more clout to strengthen gender integra-
tion across the U.N. system.
21 Rax, Roee “Gender Inequality Remains Key Issue in Development,” Mon-
day Developments, Washington, D.C.: Interaction, Dec. 15, 2003.
22 Sharma, Ritu. “Women and Development Aid,” Foreign Policy in Focus.
September 2001.
23 Power Point presentation by the Office of Women in Development,
USAID, May 2008. Washington, D.C.
24 “Aid in Support of Gender Equality and Women’s Empowerment,”
Paris: OECD-DAC Secretariat, February 2008 http://www.oecd.org/
dataoecd/8/13/40346286.pdf
POLICY November 2008

BRIEF

Contributors to Gender Policy Brief

Organization URL
American Red Cross www.redcross.org
CARE www.care.org
Catholic Relief Services www.crs.org
Centre for Development and Population Activities www.cedpa.org
Center for Health and Gender Equity www.genderhealth.org
Christian Children’s Fund www.christianchildrensfund.org
International Center for Research on Women www.icrw.org
International Medical Corps www.imcworldwide.org
Opportunity International www.opportunity.org
Population Action International www.populationaction.org
Save the Children www.savethechildren.org
Winrock International www.winrock.org
Women Thrive Worldwide www.womenthrive.org

InterAction Gender and Aid Reform Task Force

Organization URL
American Red Cross www.redcross.org
CARE www.care.org
Catholic Relief Services www.crs.org
Centre for Development and Population Activities www.cedpa.org
Center for Health and Gender Equity www.genderhealth.org
Christian Children’s Fund www.christianchildrensfund.org
International Center for Research on Women www.icrw.org
International Medical Corps www.imcworldwide.org
Opportunity International www.opportunity.org
Population Action International www.populationaction.org
Save the Children www.savethechildren.org
Winrock International www.winrock.org
Women Thrive Worldwide www.womenthrive.org

1400 16th Street, NW
Suite 210
Washington, DC 20036
202-667-8227
reform@interaction.org

www.interaction.org
U.S. Government
Development

U.S. Government
Funding Trends
Assistance Funding
Trends
POLICY November 2008

BRIEF

U.S. Government Development
Assistance Funding Trends
Recommendations
Problem
Dramatically ramp up the resources invested in poverty-focused humanitarian and
The U.S. under- development assistance along with the personnel and systems that administer and
invests in proven deliver such assistance.
programs for foreign
development and
humanitarian Actions
assistance. U.S.
assistance remains • Request a major increase in FY2010 funding for development and humanitar-
at historically low ian accounts, including the seven development and humanitarian Core Accounts
levels relative to (Global Health, Development Assistance, International Disaster Assistance, Office
GDP, far less than of Transition Initiatives, Migration and Refugee Assistance, Emergency Refugee
our peer countries and Migration Assistance, International Operations and Programs), the Millennium
provide (per capita)
Challenge Corporation, the President’s Emergency Response for AIDS Relief
and less than the
American public (PEPFAR), and peacekeeping accounts. From an FY2008 baseline, InterAction recom-
desires and believes mends an additional $9.9 billion;
is the case. Congress • Direct the new USAID Administrator, in consultation with the National Security
appropriates Advisor, to draft and present a national development strategy for the FY2010
less than 1% of budget request process that would streamline and present in a cohesive manner
the entire U.S.
U.S. Government funding requests for all foreign development and humanitarian
government
budget to foreign assistance currently provided by over 26 agencies and departments responsible for
development and the delivery of U.S. development and humanitarian assistance;
humanitarian • In the congressional budget resolution and appropriations subcommittee alloca-
assistance. This tions, provide overall and subcommittee discretionary spending allowances suffi-
lack of up-front cient to allow a total increase of $9.9 billion for the development and humanitarian
investment results
accounts; and
in greater future
spending on crisis • Modernize our foreign assistance architecture to ensure maximal efficiency and ef-
response and fectiveness of these increased resources.
military operations.
Results
1400 16th Street, NW A significant increase on the order proposed would start the investment needed
Suite 210 to seed future global economic prosperity and reduce the need for costly military
Washington, DC 20036
intervention and humanitarian action. It would begin to rebuild our store of goodwill
202-667-8227
reform@interaction.org around the world, serve our long-term national security interests, and put into action
our national values.

www.interaction.org
Background
Historical trend: As this Congressional Research Service tional security by helping to build stable, prosperous, and
graph shows, U.S. foreign assistance (in this case including peaceful societies.” Secretary of Defense Robert Gates, in
some military assistance) as a percentage of GDP has de- turn, has called for, “a dramatic increase in spending on the
clined significantly over the last several decades. Data on civilian instruments of national security – diplomacy, stra-
U.S. official development assistance (a subset of foreign aid) tegic communications, foreign assistance, civic action, and
as a percentage of national income show a significant de- economic reconstruction and development…” The chart
cline from 0.54 % in 1960 to 0.16% in 2007.1 below shows the relative size and lack of balance among
U.S. Government spending levels on these three categories
in FY2008.6

Public Attitudes: Some argue that the public does not
prioritize foreign assistance. This impression may stem from
a fact repeatedly demonstrated in polls: the public thinks
our official assistance is higher than it is, with median es-
timates at around 20% of the federal budget, and median
levels preferred at around 10% of the budget. The actual
level is less than 1% of the budget.

Rationale: Some argue that the U.S. takes a leadership role
and does more than its fair share to serve the international
community. That argument misses both the practical and
moral points. Increasing stability, prosperity and goodwill in
developing as well as post-crisis states and regions around
the world makes us safer. For example, if we had worked
with the Pakistani government a decade ago to help reduce
poverty, improve governance and build a more modern ed-
ucation system, madrassas (Islamic schools, some of which
Comparison to peers: In a ranking of Official Develop- are extremist) might not have gained such influence and
ment Assistance (ODA)2 as percentage of national income Pakistan might be more stable (and might be contributing
for 20073, the U.S. ranks 23rd, behind Greece, Italy, Japan, less to the costly war we are fighting across the border in Af-
Portugal, and Italy, to name just a few of the 22 nations ghanistan). Morally, most Americans would agree that our
higher on the list. Including private flows – resources do- economic, security and cultural contributions do not, and
nated from foundations, individuals, universities, and cor- should not, diminish our duty and desire to offer a hand up
porations – still leaves the U.S. ranked 17th (OECD4) or 11th to those most in need around the world.
(Hudson Institute5) depending on data source.

The “Three D’s”: The U.S. National Security Strategies of
2002 and 2006 divided our national security apparatus into
three components: defense, diplomacy and development.
The 2006 Strategy says: “Development reinforces diplo-
macy and defense, reducing long-term threats to our na-

1 Chart source: Congressional Research Service Report 98-916, p.16. Figures:
% of GNI, OECD DAC statistics (Organization for Economic Cooperation
and Development – Development Assistance Committee) http://stats.
oecd.org/wbos/Index.aspx?DatasetCode=TABLE1#
2 ODA is the OECD’s official definition of what “counts”as foreign assistance.
3 2007 data is preliminary as of this writing.
4 OECD DAC statistics http://stats.oecd.org/wbos/Index.
aspx?DatasetCode=TABLE1#
5 Hudson Institute, The Index of Global Philanthropy 2007, p. 16, Chart 5. 6 Chart source: FY2008 appropriations bills
POLICY November 2008

BRIEF

InterAction Public Policy Working Group
Organization URL
Academy for Educational Development www.aed.org
Action Against Hunger www.actionagainsthunger.org
Action Aid www.actionaid.org
Adventist Development and Relief Agency www.adra.org
International
Africare www.africare.org
Aga Khan Foundation U.S.A. www.akdn.org
Air Serv International www.airserv.org
American Friends Service Committee www.afsc.org
American Jewish World Service www.ajws.org
American Red Cross www.redcross.org
American Refugee Committee www.archq.org
AmeriCares www.americares.org
Bread for the World www.bread.org
CARE www.care.org
Catholic Medical Mission Board www.cmmb.org
Catholic Relief Services www.crs.org
Center for Health and Gender Equity, Inc www.genderhealth.org
Centre for Development & Population Activities www.cedpa.org
(CEDPA)
CHF International www.chfinternational.org
Child Health Foundation (CHF) www.childhealthfoundation.org
Christian Children’s Fund www.christianchildrensfund.org
Church World Service www.churchworldservice.org
Concern Worldwide www.concernusa.org
Congressional Hunger Center www.hungercenter.org
Counterpart International www.counterpart.org
Ethiopian Community Development Council, Inc www.ecdcinternational.org
Florida Association for Volunteer Action in the www.favaca.org/
Caribbean and the Americas (FAVACA)
Food for the Hungry www.fh.org
Friends of the World Food Program www.friendsofwfp.org
Global Health Council www.globalhealth.org
Habitat for Humanity International www.habitat.org
Heartland Alliance www.heartlandalliance.org
Hebrew Immigrant Aid Society www.hias.org
Heifer International www.heifer.org
1400 16th Street, NW
Suite 210
InsideNGO www.InsideNGO.org
Washington, DC 20036 Institute for Sustainable Communities www.iscvt.org
202-667-8227 Interplast www.interplast.org
reform@interaction.org Int’l Catholic Migration Commission www.icmc.net
Int’l Center for Research on Women www.icrw.org
Int’l Crisis Group www.crisisweb.org
www.interaction.org International Medical Corps www.imcworldwide.org
InterAction Public Policy Working Group (cont)

Organization URL

Int’l Orthodox Christian Charities www.iocc.org
Int’l Reading Association www.reading.org
International Relief & Development www.ird.org
International Rescue Committee www.theirc.org
Jesuit Refugee Services USA www.jrsusa.org
Joint Aid Management www.jamusa.org
Life for Relief and Development www.lifeusa.org
Lutheran World Relief www.lwr.org
Management Sciences for Health www.msh.org
MAP International www.map.org
Medical Teams International www.medicalteams.org
Mental Disability Rights International www.mdri.org
Mercy Corps www.mercycorps.org
Minnesota International Health Volunteers www.mihv.org
National Peace Corps Association www.rpcv.org
ONE Campaign www.one.org/
Opportunity International www.opportunity.org
Oxfam America www.oxfamamerica.org
Pact www.pactworld.org
Pan American Development Foundation www.padf.org
PATH www.path.org
Pathfinder International www.pathfind.org
Physicians for Human Rights www.phrusa.org
Plan USA www.planusa.org
Population Action International www.populationaction.org
Project HOPE www.projecthope.org
ProLiteracy Worldwide www.proliteracy.org
Refugees International www.refugeesinternational.org
Relief International www.ri.org
RESULTS, Inc. www.results.org
Save the Children www.savethechildren.org
The Hunger Project www.thp.org
U.S. Committee for Refugees and Immigrants (USCRI) www.refugees.org
U.S. Committee for UNDP www.undp-usa.org
U.S. Fund for UNICEF www.unicefusa.org
Winrock International www.winrock.org
Women for Women International www.womenforwomen.org
Women Thrive Worldwide www.womenthrive.org
World Vision www.worldvision.org
World Wildlife Fund www.worldwildlife.org
Supplemental
Funding for
Humanitarian
Accounts

Supplemental Funding
POLICY November 2008

BRIEF

Over-Reliance on Supplemental Funding
for Humanitarian Accounts
Recommendations
Problem
As a leader in humanitarian response, the United States must demonstrate its
The unpredictable, reliability and commitment to assisting those affected by conflict and natural
stop-and-start disasters by fully funding the humanitarian accounts in the regular appropriations
supplemental
process. The accounts in question are International Disaster Assistance (IDA),
funding for
humanitarian Migration and Refugee Assistance (MRA), Emergency Refugee and Migration
accounts leads Assistance (ERMA), Peacekeeping Operations (PKO) and Contributions for
to inefficiencies, International Peacekeeping Activities (CIPA) in the State, Foreign Operations
disruptions and appropriations bill, and the food aid accounts in the Agriculture appropriations bill.
shutdowns of A U.S. national development strategy adopted by Congress and the Administration
urgently needed
would provide an overarching vision and mission for U.S. humanitarian programs
life-saving
assistance. It has and bring coherence to the planning process for humanitarian budgets.
become standard
for administration Actions
budget requests
and regular • Administration: Request full funding for these accounts in the regular budget
appropriations request based on historical requested levels, historical supplemental funding levels,
bills to under-fund and projected needs from the relevant agencies;
humanitarian
• Congressional Budget Committees: Set the overall discretionary spending cap
accounts, using
supplemental and the recommended allocations for the International Affairs Budget (Function
funding to cover 150) high enough to accommodate full funding for these accounts;
the shortfall later • Appropriations Chairs: Set the State, Foreign Operations Subcommittee alloca-
in the budget tion high enough to accommodate full funding for these accounts;
year. The costs • State, Foreign Operations Subcommittees: Fully fund these accounts in the
are irreversible:
appropriations bills, based on projected needs (calculated as detailed in the first
lost lives, stunted
children and the point above); and
spread of disease. • Administration and Congress: Rely on supplemental funding only for truly unan-
ticipated emergencies.

Results
1400 16th Street, NW
Suite 210 Predictable, robust funding will allow the U.S. to be a reliable partner in international
Washington, DC 20036
humanitarian efforts and respond efficiently to new emergencies without divert-
202-667-8227
reform@interaction.org ing funds from ongoing humanitarian programs. It will enable more efficient use of
scarce humanitarian dollars, improve crisis readiness and save more lives.

www.interaction.org
Background
With budget ceilings increasingly tighter, the hu- • Lives lost. Disruption in the delivery of services has seri-
manitarian accounts1 in appropriation bills have become ous consequences: lost lives, malnourished children and
vulnerable to reductions during the regular appropriations the spread of disease. Funding may be restored but the
process. This practice is based on an expectation that the damage incurred is irreversible.
humanitarian accounts stand a better chance for mid-year,
emergency supplemental funding than accounts that fund Example: FY 2006 Migration and Refugee Assistance
long-term development. (MRA). In Fall 2005, cuts to the FY 2006 refugee aid account
The following graph of requests and appropriations for in the annual appropriations bill triggered cutbacks to
the International Disaster Assistance account clearly illus- refugee programs in Liberia, Guinea, and Kenya. In Kenya,
trates the trend: the taller black bars are the total amount budget cuts caused a 10% reduction in health care services
eventually provided in each fiscal year (regular plus sup- provided to the large Kakuma refugee camp that sheltered
plemental appropriations), while the shorter bars are the refugees from nine different nations, including Sudan, So-
request and regular appropriations, normally provided to- malia, and the Democratic Republic of Congo.
ward the start of the fiscal year. Example: FY 2006 Sudan. Greatly reduced humanitar-
ian funding for FY 2006 caused deep cuts in programming
in Darfur. The reductions meant that 100,000 people who
had been receiving food in FY05 were no longer being fed.
Funding cuts also affected other critical services. Water and
sanitation services were cut in Nyala, the capital of South
Darfur, affecting over 125,000 people.

What needs to be emphasized is that under-funding ap-
propriations for the humanitarian accounts in the regular
appropriations bills causes program cuts, delays and disrup-
tions that carry serious, irreversible human consequences, re-
gardless of any eventual “makeup” funding in supplementals.
Low funding in the regular bills results in:
• Uncertainty. Managers of assistance programs do not
know until the middle of the fiscal year (or later) if more
funding will be forthcoming – budget guidance is uncer-
tain, and management decisions are postponed. If there
is a supplemental, it can take weeks or months before any
money is allocated.
• Disruption in the field. Uncertainty and delay at the be-
ginning of the year can lead to drastic scale-backs and
shutdown of programs. Nongovernmental organizations
(NGOs) try to keep programs running with private fund-
ing, but triage often results and deep cuts may mean that
NGOs must close offices and lay off staff.

1 International Disaster Assistance (IDA), Migration and Refugee Assistance
(MRA), Emergency Refugee and Migration Assistance (ERMA), food aid
and peacekeeping accounts (PKO and CIPA).
POLICY November 2008

PAPER

Why Dependence on
Supplemental Funding
Hurts Humanitarian Programs

T
he annual appropriations cycle has become a two-step process. In addition to the regu-
lar annual appropriations bills, mid-year supplemental appropriations bills are now an
expected part of the budget process, in large part because much of the Defense Depart-
ment’s budget for the Iraq war has been covered through mid-year supplementals. There is
therefore now an expectation of a second chance each year to fund certain programs.
With budget ceilings increasingly tighter, humanitarian accounts (disaster, refugee, and food
aid) in annual appropriations bills have become vulnerable to reductions during the regular
appropriations process because of the expectation that these accounts stand a better chance
for mid-year supplemental funding than accounts that fund long-term development. There
is an assumption that a stronger case can be made that funding is urgently needed for com-
plex humanitarian operations. The tables and charts at the end of this document illustrate the
trend: the budget request and regular appropriations have routinely been less, sometimes
significantly less, than what is eventually found to be necessary and is appropriated.
Let there be no mistake, however, cutting appropriations for the humanitarian ac-
counts in the regular appropriations bills causes program cuts, delays and disruptions
that carry very serious, irreversible human consequences, regardless of any eventual
“make-up” funding provided in supplementals.
Uncertainty and delay: Managers of foreign aid accounts do not know until the middle of
the fiscal year if more funding will be forthcoming – budget guidance is uncertain, and normal
management decisions must be postponed. If there is a supplemental, it can take weeks and
months before it passes through Congress and is delivered to the president for signature. In-
ternal agency processes to allocate funds and make grants can take several more weeks.
This uncertainty and delay at the beginning of the fiscal year can lead to drastic scale-backs
and shutdowns of programs. Without U.S. Government grants, NGOs will rely on private fund-
ing to try to keep programs running – resorting to triage in order to continue life-saving op-
erations. But deep cuts may mean that NGOs have to close offices, let staff go, and shut down
services.
Disruption in the delivery of these life-saving services have, by definition, serious conse-
quences: lost lives, stunted children, and the spread of disease. Food pipelines and nutrition
programs, inoculations for children, safe deliveries for mothers, medical care for the sick, efforts
1400 16th Street, NW
to provide shelter and protect the vulnerable – all of these can come to a screeching halt when
Suite 210
Washington, DC 20036
humanitarian funding is cut and programs are shut-down. Funding may eventually be restored,
202-667-8227
but the damage incurred is irreversible. It is not possible to “backfill” urgently needed life-saving
reform@interaction.org assistance such as food, water, primary health or emergency obstetric care.
When humanitarian accounts are cut, unanticipated crises can deplete reserves. When
there is no funding left for contingencies, reaction times slow and lives may be lost when
www.interaction.org disaster strikes.
Vicious cycle: Existing, ongoing humanitarian programs though all three countries were experiencing emergencies.
may be “starved” as the Office of Foreign Disaster Assistance Although some of these programs later benefited from late-
(OFDA) is required to pull together resources to provide year funding infusions from the FY 2006 Supplemental bill,
emergency assistance late in the fiscal year—meaning that the delays hurt real people.
supplemental funding will be needed once more to make FY 2006, Sudan: Greatly reduced humanitarian funding
up for this dangerous borrowing game. Furthermore, what for FY 2006 caused deep cuts in programming in Darfur.
frequently gets “borrowed” or diverted is funding intended These reductions meant that 100,000 people who had been
to help prevent and mitigate future emergencies. The reduc- receiving food in FY05 were no longer being fed. Funding
tion in prevention and mitigation leads to many emergen- cuts also affected the provision of other critical services. Water
cies recurring again and again. and sanitation services were cut in Nyala, the capital of South
Costly inefficiencies: If cuts in regular appropriations bills Darfur, affecting over 125,000 people. Beyond the immediate
force office closings and release of staff, it is expensive to re- impacts on the most vulnerable populations in Sudan, the
start operations late in the fiscal year using supplemental scale-back of operations had other serious implications:
funding. Key staff members may be lost because they have • Heightened insecurity for NGO staff as services provided
sought work elsewhere; cancelled leases must be renego- to host communities were scaled back.
tiated. The uncertain budget climate also makes trying to • Increased movement of host communities into Internally
manage grants and programs, recruit new staff, and plan for Displaced People (IDP) camps in order to access increas-
the future very difficult. ingly unavailable basic services.
Diminished credibility: The stop-and-start nature of pro- • Difficulty in ability of delivery organizations to implement
grams resulting from uncertain funding may cause recipients quality programming due to uncertainty about future
and other global relief organizations to question the reliabil- funding.
ity of the U.S. government and U.S.-based NGOs as partners
in relieving human suffering. We therefore ask Congress:
• Do not cut humanitarian programs in regular appropria-
Real-life Examples tions bills thinking the cuts can be “made up” in a supple-
FY 2006 Migration and Refugee Assistance (MRA): In mental without problem or cost. Fully fund all the core
Fall 2005, cuts to the FY 2006 refugee aid account in the an- development and humanitarian accounts in regular ap-
nual appropriations bill triggered the following: propriations bills.
• In Liberia, programs to help refugees return to the country • Expect humanitarian crises to occur, and appropriate suf-
were cut back just when successful democratic elections ficient funds at the start of the fiscal year to be ready for
and a new president offered a possible return to peace the next crisis.
and normalcy.
• In Guinea, education programs for displaced children Q&A
were threatened. Funding for the regional certification Q: If cuts have to be made during the regular appropri-
exam was cut, leaving students who could not afford the ations process, why shouldn’t the accounts most likely to
certification fee with a lost school year. get supplemental funds get cut?
• In Kenya, budget cuts caused a 10% reduction in health A: Those accounts should not be cut because such cuts re-
care services provided to the large Kakuma refugee camp sult in lost lives, stunted children, and the spread of disease,
that shelters refugees from nine different nations (75 per- regardless of eventual supplemental appropriations. The dam-
cent are southern Sudanese, 20 percent from Somalia, age from cuts to these accounts in the regular appropriations
and the rest from Burundi, the Central African Republic, bills is not reversible mid-year! Both short-term humanitarian
Democratic Republic of Congo, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Rwanda assistance and long-term development reconstruction pro-
and Uganda). grams are vitally important to fight global poverty and cre-
ate a better, safer world for our future, yet together they use
FY 2006 International Disaster and Famine Assistance a mere 0.7% (7 tenths of 1%, or 0.007)1 of the appropria-
(IDFA): Cuts to the disaster aid account in FY 2006 meant tions budget. If cuts have to be made, they should be made
that a significant portion of the Office of Foreign Disaster elsewhere.
Assistance’s (OFDA’s) budget was diverted to respond to Q: Even if recent history shows that supplemental ap-
the October 2005 earthquake in Pakistan. Some humanitar- propriations have been needed every year, how can one
ian country programs were quickly downsized while OFDA
waited six months for supplemental funding to replenish
1 Total in the FY2006 Foreign Operations appropriations bill for Humanitar-
funds used for earthquake response. Programs in Burundi, ian and Development Assistance divided by total enacted FY2006 appro-
Côte d’Ivoire, and Eritrea could not get off the ground, even priations. $8,344,556! $1,210,920,325,000= 0.68%
be certain that disaster – tsunamis, hurricanes, earth- stan earthquake, the Asian Tsunami and the recent crisis in
quakes – will strike and that funding will be needed? Isn’t Lebanon force OFDA to draw significant funds and resources
it better to wait and seek funding after disaster strikes? away from continuing crisis situations. The IDFA account
A: While no one can foretell the future, the pattern of re- needs to be funded adequately in regular appropriations to
cent major disasters is established and unlikely to go away. limit the disruptions and uncertainties caused by reliance on
According to a recent report from the World Bank’s Indepen- supplemental appropriations.
dent Evaluation Group, “the reported number of disasters
has been increasing, growing from fewer than 100 in 1975 to TABLES AND CHARTS891011
more than 400 in 2005.”2 The following tables and charts illustrate the pattern of
After a crisis, the first few hours and days are when the two-part appropriations that has emerged for IDFA, MRA/
most lives can be saved – and they can only be saved if res- ERMA and food aid. Data for these tables and charts comes
cuers move quickly. For example, the rapid and robust re- primarily from USAID budget tables and from appropria-
sponse to the Asian Tsunami prevented many more people tions bills.
from dying from disease and hunger-related causes in the
aftermath of the disaster.
Appropriate resources must therefore be available to make
sure that disaster response teams move within this critical
window. It is also important that rapid response not happen
at the expense of existing programs—“borrowing” funding
may lead to the perverse outcome of lives lost in other areas
of the world due to a diversion of critical resources.
Q: Congress usually approves the president’s requests
for the IDFA account and also provides supplemen-
tal funding. Why does Congress need to approve more
funding for the IDFA account in the Foreign Operations
Appropriations bill? Isn’t approving the president’s re-
quested level and providing additional funding later in
the fiscal year enough?34567
A: No. Such a two-stage process is unwise, because the
uncertainty generated by the two-stage
appropriations process costs lives and
creates significant inefficiencies. OFDA’s
International Disaster Assistance (IDA/IDFA)
recent annual operating year budgets Year Request Regular Annual + Supps = Total Appropriated
Appropriation
have been around $500 million – a level
that is significantly above the president’s FY02 $200,000,000 $381,500,0003 $40,000,000 $421,500,000
yearly IDFA requests and congressional FY03 $235,500,000 4
$288,115,000 $143,800,000 5
$431,915,000
IDFA appropriations. As has been noted, FY04 $435,500,000 6
$253,993,000 $290,000,000 7
$543,993,000
a two-step appropriations process has
been highly disruptive to humanitarian FY05 $384,896,000 $367,040,000 $207,856,000 8
$574,896,000
programs in places like Sudan, Northern FY06 $355,500,000 9
$361,350,000 $217,630,000 10
$578,980,000
Uganda and Eastern Congo that are ad- FY07 $348,800,000 $361,350,000 $165,000,000 $526,350,000
dressing continuing emergencies. Unan-
FY08 $297,300,000 $319,739,000 $330,000,000 11
$649,739,000
ticipated emergencies such as the Paki-

2 Independent Evaluation Group. “Hazards ofNature, Risk to Development.” 8 $100,000,000 (Emergency Hurricane, 10/04, PL 108-324).
World Bank. October 18,2006. http://www.worldbank.org/ieg/naturaldi- + $17,856,000 (Sudan Emergency).
sasters/ + $90,000,000 (Tsunami & Wartime, 5/05, PL 109–13)
3 $235,500,000 9 Does not include Emergency Food Assistance request of $300,000,000
+ $146,000,000 Emergency Response Fund (ERF) – IDA. previously requested elsewhere (PL Title II).
4 Does not include extra $50,000,000 requested for humanitarian and re- 10 $56,330,000 (Avian Flu, 12/05, PL 109-148)
construction activities in Afghanistan after 9/11. + $161,300,000 (Wartime and Hurricane, 6/06, PL 109-234).
5 Emergency Wartime, 4/03, PL 108-11. 11 The FY08 omnibus appropriations bill (PL 110-161) included $110 mil-
6 $235,500,000 IDA + $200,000,000 famine fund. lion in emergency funding for the IDA account. This emergency funding
7 $220,000,000 (Iraq/Afghanistan, 11/03, PL 108-106) + $70,000,000 (De- was not included in the base funding level used in the FY09 Continuing
fense approps, 8/04, PL 108-287). Resolution.
Refugee Assistance (MRA & ERMA)
Year Request Regular Annual + Supps = Total Appropriated
Appropriation
FY02 $730,000,000 $820,556,00012 $820,556,000
FY03 $720,565,000 $807,716,000 $80,000,000 13
$887,716,000
FY04 $800,197,000 $785,472,000 $25,000,000 14
$810,472,000
FY05 $749,789,000 $793,600,000 $120,400,000 15
$914,000,000
FY06 $932,770,000 $812,790,000 $75,700,000 16
$888,490,000
FY07 $888,000,000 $887,900,000 $130,500,000 $963,400,000
FY08 $828,500,000 $867,814,000 $546,000,00017 $1,413,814,000

Food Aid (P.L. 480 Title II)
Year Request Regular Annual + Supps = Total Appropriated
Appropriation
FY02 $835,000,000 $945,000,000 $13,820,00018 $958,820,000
FY03 $1,185,000,000 $1,440,575,000 $369,000,000 19
$1,809,575,000
FY04 $1,185,000,000 $1,184,967,000 $0 $1,184,967,000
FY05 $1,185,000,000 $1,173,041,000 $240,000,000 20
$1,413,041,000
FY06 $885,000,000 $1,138,500,000 $350,000,000 21
$1,488,500,000
FY07 $1,218,500,000 $1,214,711,000 $450,000,000 $1,664,711,000
FY08 $1,219,400,000 $1,219,400,000 $850,000,000 $2,069,400,000

12 $705,556,000 MRA (1/02, PL 107-115) + $15,000,000 ERMA (1/02, PL 107- lion in emergency funding for the MRA account. This emergency funding
115) + $100,000,000 Emergency Response Fund-MRA. was not included in the base funding level used in the FY09 Continuing
13 ERMA (4/03, PL 108-11). Resolution.
14 Emergency Supplemental-Darfur humanitarian crisis (8/04, PL 108-287), 18 FY 2002 Supplemental-Title II (8/02, PL 107-206: Title I, sec. 104(b)).
MRA. 19 Wartime Supplemental Title II. Includes $69,000,000 under the Emerson
15 Emergency Supplemental (5/05, PL 109-13), MRA. Trust Fund (4/03, PL 108-11).
16 Emergency Supplemental, (6/06, PL 109-234), MRA. 20 2005 Wartime & Tsunami Supplemental (5/05, PL 109-13).
17 The FY08 omnibus appropriations bill (PL 110-161) included $200 mil- 21 FY 2006 Global War On Terror Supplemental Title I (6/15/06, PL 109-234).
POLICY November 2008

BRIEF

InterAction Public Policy Working Group
Organization URL
Academy for Educational Development www.aed.org
Action Against Hunger www.actionagainsthunger.org
Action Aid www.actionaid.org
Adventist Development and Relief Agency www.adra.org
International
Africare www.africare.org
Aga Khan Foundation U.S.A. www.akdn.org
Air Serv International www.airserv.org
American Friends Service Committee www.afsc.org
American Jewish World Service www.ajws.org
American Red Cross www.redcross.org
American Refugee Committee www.archq.org
AmeriCares www.americares.org
Bread for the World www.bread.org
CARE www.care.org
Catholic Medical Mission Board www.cmmb.org
Catholic Relief Services www.crs.org
Center for Health and Gender Equity, Inc www.genderhealth.org
Centre for Development & Population Activities www.cedpa.org
(CEDPA)
CHF International www.chfinternational.org
Child Health Foundation (CHF) www.childhealthfoundation.org
Christian Children’s Fund www.christianchildrensfund.org
Church World Service www.churchworldservice.org
Concern Worldwide www.concernusa.org
Congressional Hunger Center www.hungercenter.org
Counterpart International www.counterpart.org
Ethiopian Community Development Council, Inc www.ecdcinternational.org
Florida Association for Volunteer Action in the www.favaca.org/
Caribbean and the Americas (FAVACA)
Food for the Hungry www.fh.org
Friends of the World Food Program www.friendsofwfp.org
Global Health Council www.globalhealth.org
Habitat for Humanity International www.habitat.org
Heartland Alliance www.heartlandalliance.org
Hebrew Immigrant Aid Society www.hias.org
Heifer International www.heifer.org
1400 16th Street, NW
Suite 210
InsideNGO www.InsideNGO.org
Washington, DC 20036 Institute for Sustainable Communities www.iscvt.org
202-667-8227 Interplast www.interplast.org
reform@interaction.org Int’l Catholic Migration Commission www.icmc.net
Int’l Center for Research on Women www.icrw.org
Int’l Crisis Group www.crisisweb.org
www.interaction.org International Medical Corps www.imcworldwide.org
InterAction Public Policy Working Group (cont)

Organization URL

Int’l Orthodox Christian Charities www.iocc.org
Int’l Reading Association www.reading.org
International Relief & Development www.ird.org
International Rescue Committee www.theirc.org
Jesuit Refugee Services USA www.jrsusa.org
Joint Aid Management www.jamusa.org
Life for Relief and Development www.lifeusa.org
Lutheran World Relief www.lwr.org
Management Sciences for Health www.msh.org
MAP International www.map.org
Medical Teams International www.medicalteams.org
Mental Disability Rights International www.mdri.org
Mercy Corps www.mercycorps.org
Minnesota International Health Volunteers www.mihv.org
National Peace Corps Association www.rpcv.org
ONE Campaign www.one.org/
Opportunity International www.opportunity.org
Oxfam America www.oxfamamerica.org
Pact www.pactworld.org
Pan American Development Foundation www.padf.org
PATH www.path.org
Pathfinder International www.pathfind.org
Physicians for Human Rights www.phrusa.org
Plan USA www.planusa.org
Population Action International www.populationaction.org
Project HOPE www.projecthope.org
ProLiteracy Worldwide www.proliteracy.org
Refugees International www.refugeesinternational.org
Relief International www.ri.org
RESULTS, Inc. www.results.org
Save the Children www.savethechildren.org
The Hunger Project www.thp.org
U.S. Committee for Refugees and Immigrants (USCRI) www.refugees.org
U.S. Committee for UNDP www.undp-usa.org
U.S. Fund for UNICEF www.unicefusa.org
Winrock International www.winrock.org
Women for Women International www.womenforwomen.org
Women Thrive Worldwide www.womenthrive.org
World Vision www.worldvision.org
World Wildlife Fund www.worldwildlife.org
Diplomacy
Transformational

Transformational Diplomacy
POLICY November 2008

BRIEF

Transformational Diplomacy:
The “F Process”
Recommendations
Problem
Under the process of creating a national strategy for global development, under-
The 2006 take a broader, more fundamental set of reforms that replaces and builds on the
Transformational lessons of the “F process.” Create a new, independent and elevated U.S. foreign
Diplomacy reforms
assistance agency that brings coherence and coordination to the U.S. Government’s
(the “F process”)
undertaken by the development and humanitarian assistance efforts and elevates development to its
Department of rightful place alongside defense and diplomacy, as articulated in the 2002 and 2006
State’s Director of National Security Strategies. These positions are aligned with the recommendations
Foreign Assistance of the Modernizing Foreign Assistance Network, a bipartisan coalition of experts on
accelerated the U.S. foreign assistance.
alignment and
coordination of the
U.S. Government’s Actions
humanitarian
and development • Suspend any further implementation of the “F process” pending a substantive
assistance with the review to determine which aspects of its implementation and associated reforms
priorities of the should be retained or discarded;
Department of State, • Name a strong USAID Administrator who is given budget authority over an inde-
weakening USAID pendent development agency including authority over funding currently under
and subordinating it
the mandate of the Director of Foreign Assistance at the Department of State;
to the Department
of State. The “F • Disband the F Bureau in the Department of State and return its staff to USAID;
process” did not • Continue and expand consultation between Washington and the field, U.S.-based
focus on the foreign NGOs, and Congress to achieve a more accountable and effective foreign assis-
assistance handled tance framework and structure;
by over 20 other • Develop a systematic plan for consulting with local communities and civil soci-
departments and
ety that allows field missions (rather than Washington) to make decisions at the
agencies. This
epitomizes the program level; and
lack of strategic • Revitalize and reinvigorate USAID, significantly increasing the number of full-time
coherence to U.S. USAID foreign service officers and civil service employees and enhancing its staff
development policy. training capability.

1400 16th Street, NW
Results
Suite 210
Washington, DC 20036 These reforms will produce a more effective U.S. foreign assistance framework and
202-667-8227 delivery structure by elevating humanitarian and development assistance alongside
reform@interaction.org defense and diplomacy, and will empower and adequately resource the technical
expertise needed for effective implementation.
www.interaction.org
Background
For more than ten years, InterAction has main- relief and development at their center. They have further
tained that the programs, strategies and institutional struc- weakened an already demoralized and embattled USAID,
tures of U.S. foreign assistance lack a coherent framework, exacerbated a trend toward the militarization of U.S foreign
and are therefore under-resourced, increasingly fragment- assistance (see separate briefing paper in this binder), and
ed and uncoordinated. These factors have driven two inter- eroded the U.S. government’s capacity to deliver effective
related trends in recent years: the dangerous weakening of relief and development assistance at a time when these
the civilian capabilities of U.S. foreign policy, especially at tools are needed more than ever.
USAID and the Department of State; and the increasing role
of the Department of Defense in delivering humanitarian
and development assistance.
One of the chief justifications for the Bush Administration’s
Transformational Diplomacy reforms (the “F process”) was to
realign U.S. foreign assistance programs with U.S. foreign
policies in the post 9/11 world and index these investments
to measurable outcomes. To this end, the Administration has,
through executive action, established a new office at the U.S.
Department of State called the Office of U.S. Foreign Assis-
tance (or “F Bureau” in State department nomenclature). The
Director of Foreign Assistance (DFA) serves as the Senate-
confirmed USAID Administrator, and holds the rank equiva-
lent to Deputy Secretary of State though is not Congressional
confirmed as a Department of State senior official. The DFA
was originally charged with running both USAID and the “F
process.”The staff of the F Bureau is comprised of some 60-80
USAID-funded positions that were moved from the agency’s
Bureau of Policy and Program Coordination (PPC) into the
State Department also by executive order, thereby leaving
USAID without budget and planning capacity.
The creation the F Bureau’s framework and indicators re-
flects a lack of fundamental focus on sustainable poverty
reducing development work and substitutes inputs and
outputs for meaningful measures of outcomes. The “F pro-
cess” instituted a new foreign assistance framework that bor-
rowed from the President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief
(PEPFAR) and the Millennium Challenge Corporation (MCC)
criteria (two major Administration initiatives outside the “F
process”) to rationalize USAID’s programs to five country and
six objective categories. An elaborate set of indicators and a
new database to track them was developed to measure and
report on progress within each category. The thinking was
that this would achieve more accountable and more eas-
ily understood relief and development programs, thereby
furthering U.S. foreign policy goals and increasing political
support for aid in Congress. InterAction supports reforms
designed to achieve greater transparency, accountability
and efficiency if more effective humanitarian and develop-
ment assistance is the result. InterAction also supports the
premise that foreign assistance, including relief and devel-
opment programs, serves the U.S. national interest in a va-
riety of ways. However, the “F process” reforms do not place
POLICY November 2008

PAPER

Foreign Assistance
Reform: Views From
the Ground

T
Previously published by he current effort to reform US foreign assistance grew out of an understandable desire to
InterAction, June 2008. better align US assistance with US interests and to improve the coordination, efficiency
and transparency of that aid. The process has been the subject of a great deal of writing
and discussion in Washington, but views from the ground – from the in-country USAID officials
and in-country implementing partners – have received less systematic attention. This report,
based on some 270 in-country interviews with field-based individuals in nine countries, is an
effort to bring their important observations to Washington decision-makers considering what
should be the next steps.

Transformational diplomacy to date
The current round of foreign assistance reform (F process) began in January 2006 as part
of the Administration’s Transformational Diplomacy initiative. The relevant goals of this ini-
tiative are:
• To strengthen the strategic alignment of US foreign assistance resources with the new
Strategic Framework for United States Foreign Assistance1 (Strategic Framework);
• To improve coordination and efficiency in the use of foreign assistance resources across mul-
tiple agencies and accounts, by evaluating comparative strengths and tools available;
• To improve transparency in the allocation and use of foreign assistance resources; and
• To improve performance and accountability for results, by aligning foreign assistance more
clearly with human progress, and with a uniform scale for measuring progress [embodied in
the new Strategic Framework for and its progress indicators].

Source: Tobias, Randall L., “MESSAGE FROM THE ADMINISTRATOR TO
THE WORKING GROUPS”, April 12, 2007

The F process mandate covers US foreign assistance funds traditionally controlled by USAID
and some parts of the State Department, but not US foreign assistance programs controlled
through other departments and the President’sEmergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR) and
1400 16th Street, NW
Millennium Challenge Corporation (MCC) initiatives. The stated purpose of the F process has
Suite 210
Washington, DC 20036
been to better align US foreign assistance with the new Strategic Framework. The document,
202-667-8227
created by the newly created Office of Foreign Assistance at the State Department (known
reform@interaction.org informally as the “F Bureau”), identifies five programmatic priorities: peace and security;

1 Strategic Framework for United States Foreign Assistance, (Washington, DC: U.S. Department of State, July 10, 2007).
www.interaction.org Available at: http://www.state.gov/documents/organization/88433.pdf.
governing justly and democratically; investing in people; 2. Field-based planners and implementers fear that the F
economic growth; and humanitarian assistance. Core coun- process is, in combination with other trends in US for-
try teams, based in Washington and representing the 35 eign assistance, causing a worrisome shift away from
countries that were identified for fast-track implementation assistance principles and areas of programming long
of the reforms, then reallocated appropriated funds and de- accepted as central to the long-term success of devel-
veloped decision-making processes and policy guidance for opment assistance.
the in-country USAID missions. The F Bureau subsequently
launched the system in Fiscal Year 2007 through the use of 3. The F process, as currently conducted, is plagued by a
Operational Plans prepared by the missions according to a series of mismatches between theory and reality. These
complete set of instructions relating to priority objectives include:
(including program areas, elements and scores of indicators • implementation problems caused by mismatches
for each objective). Missions used this framework to set an- between the F process and programmatic realities on
nual targets for each objective. the ground;
• the fact that the F process, despite its stated goal of
This research study improving the coordination of US Foreign Assistance,
With funding from the Gates Foundation, InterAction – really cannot make any truly significant progress in
the largest association of U.S.-based NGOs involved in in- reducing the fragmentation of US foreign assistance
ternational relief and development – undertook an effort to as long as the F process has no jurisdiction over other
collect the reflections of field-based officials and individuals US programs such as PEPFAR, the MCC and programs
whose work directly involves or is influenced by the F pro- run by other Executive branch departments other
cess. For this research, InterAction chose a cross-section than USAID and State; and
of countries from among the 35 nations in the fast-track • the unmet need for a serious examination of longer-
category. Researchers conducted in-depth interviews in term trends in how the US. government administers
Ghana, Honduras, Kenya, Nepal and Vietnam in both June foreign assistance – trends that are having a grow-
and November 2007, while InterAction staff conducted in- ing impact on the ground, but which have received
terviews in El Salvador, Nicaragua, Tanzania and Zambia. The relatively little analytical scrutiny throughout the F
interviews were with members of USAID country missions, process.
and field staff of US-based NGOs that directly receive USAID
funding, local NGO partners and local NGOs that directly Recommendations
receive USAID funding. Questions focused on knowledge of InterAction fully agrees that there is a need for improved
the F process, the extent of consultation, immediate and an- coherence, accountability and transparency in US foreign as-
ticipated effects of the F process on programs and on part- sistance. However, the trends revealed by the interviews con-
nerships between US-based and local NGOs. ducted as part of this research suggest that the F process, as
The result is a snapshot in time of how the F process is executed to date, has demonstrated notable limitations in its
perceived by key actors in the best position to judge its ef- ability to achieve these goals. Therefore, InterAction strongly
fectiveness in improving aid delivery: the people working on recommends the following steps to improve the process
the ground in its implementation in the target countries. Ob- and the overall goal of strengthening the effectiveness of US
viously this research was done early in F process implementa- foreign assistance:
tion and so ongoing developments could affect the picture. • Suspend any further implementation of the F process and
initiate a more substantial review of the initiative’s imple-
Findings mentation to date and the issues beyond its jurisdiction
This early, field-based snapshot provides valuable in- that affect the overall effectiveness of the F process effort.
sights into the program to date and helps better arm de- This will ensure that aspects with significant negative im-
cision-makers with the range of information they need to pacts are removed and replaced with alternatives better
make early course corrections to improve the results and able to meet all stated goals.
avoid the need for more far-reaching changes later on. The • Conduct a thorough assessment of the steps necessary
interviews revealed three major areas that, from the field to ensure the statement in the National Security Strategy
perspective, must be addressed to ensure that the F process that “development is one of the three legs of US national
and US foreign assistance can meet stated goals: security” (along with diplomacy and defense) is reflected
in policy and programmatic reality. Alternatively, con-
1. The F process decision-making method has almost en- sider initiating a National Development Strategy so that
tirely failed to involve consultation with in-country actors development will be on par with other “legs” of US Na-
despite the valuable input those actors could provide. tional Security. In either case, this should begin with a
reconsideration of the relative weight given to these three process – even though in other areas (such as the MCC), the
areas of interest in making foreign assistance determina- importance of field based input and the voices of local actors
tions. Consideration of organizational changes necessary from the start have formed the core of the philosophy.
to achieve this goal should also begin. USAID missions consistently reported that they were not
• Develop a systematic plan for consultation with local consulted in advance. In the few cases where there was “con-
communities and civil society that allows decisions at the sultation,” it was actually in the form of briefings rather than
program level to be made in-country by field missions and sessions in which they could provide input. Of the 25 USAID
not in Washington. staff interviewed, 80 percent said they had not had oppor-
• Develop a continued and more expansive consultative tunities to have input into the F process, either before or
process between the F Bureau and US-based NGOs, in- after it was announced.2 Even those who indicated they had
cluding an open dialogue about the fundamental as- been “consulted,” said that the meetings were really brief-
sumptions made by the new foreign assistance frame- ings, without the opportunity to make recommendations.
work. Steps have been taken toward such an effort and In fact it appears that the decision-makers in Washington
we recommend that they continue. This could become were actively working to limit not only field mission input,
an effective forum for a discussion of the impact of the but even knowledge of the process while it was underway.
general trends in the way US assistance is administered, For example, in one country, USAID staff was told that “Wash-
particularly regarding the rise of independent program- ington would do the strategy and the missions would do the
ming (PEPFAR and MCC) and USAID’s shrinking levels of tactics.” In another country, a Foreign Service Officer from
staffing and program support. the USAID mission was in Washington during the meetings
• Vigilant oversight as to whether the F process will have of the Core Team3. Initially, he was told he could not attend
an adverse impact on effective programs in the field that the meeting for his country. When he complained, he was
reduce poverty and meet basic needs is critical. Oversight notified that he could attend but not speak or report what
is also needed for the provision of additional resources for he heard to the Mission team. Another Foreign Service Of-
such programs as necessary. Effective programs are com- ficer was on a core team but not allowed to talk with her
munity-based, work person-to-person and have true local mission team. An additional respondent said, “The F reform
ownership. Our research has shown that these are exactly has affected the mission’s ability to be predictable to the [na-
the programs most at risk of becoming marginalized by tional] government. Prior to Transformational Diplomacy, the
the F process as it has been implemented thus far. mission had just completed our country strategy and they re-
ally burned the [national] government when they had to start
FINDINGS adhering to the F process.”
The following findings represent the dominant areas of Further, another respondent stated, “There’s no dialogue
concern expressed by field-based actors during the 270 in- and we don’t have the opportunity to defend our programs as
terviews InterAction conducted by InterAction. InterAction we did in annual program reviews of the past. The F process
believes an important part of assessing the F process is com- lacks analysis and needs assessments.” Similar sentiments
paring its results to the goals set for it by the Administration, were expressed in other countries.
namely: strategic alignment with the Strategic Framework NGO partners also reported a lack of transparency and
improved coordination, efficiency and transparency in the inclusion. In the first round of interviews, most NGOs said
use of US foreign assistance funds; and improved perfor- USAID missions had not consulted them about the F pro-
mance and accountability through the clearer alignment cess (in the target countries: 83 percent of US-based NGOs,
of foreign assistance with “human progress” and a uniform 90 percent of local NGO partners and 82 percent of all NGOs
scale for measuring progress. To that end, the discussion of with direct funding; and in the four supplemental countries
each finding ends with a brief review of the goals affected 88 percent of the US-based NGOs).4 In one country, the rep-
by that finding.
2 Interviews were conducted with a range of USAID staff including mission
1. Decision-making throughout the F directors in some countries, senior and mid-level staff, US citizens and for-
process has almost entirely failed to involve eign service nationals (FSNs) of the particular countries.
3 The Office of Foreign Assistance (OFA) that was created to carry out the
consultation with in-country actors, despite TD reforms organized core teams to develop the strategy for each coun-
the valuable input those actors could provide. try. These teams were comprised of State Department staff and some-
Lack of advance consultation appears to have been a con- times USAID staff, all of whom were based in Washington, DC.
sistent hallmark/problem/characteristic with all key groups 4 The term “consultation” means an effort by a donor to engage PVOs or
of actors at the field level. NGOs in discussion about a proposed action or policy where recommen-
dations by PVOs/NGOs are invited, seriously considered, and perhaps ac-
The interviews suggest a strong effort by Washington to in- tually adopted in regard to the proposed action. “Participation” normally
tentionally limit input from the field during the development means a decision-making role in the particular activity.
resentative of a very large, influential US-based NGO said: on which our national security depends. Yet the interviews
“Even though we’re an important partner, we wonder why suggest that key actors on the ground perceive a worrisome
they didn’t tell us of the changes.” At the October 24th panel shift away from development principles and practices that
discussion during a meeting of the Advisory Committee on have been proven essential to effective programming.
Voluntary Foreign Aid in Washington, DC, three USAID mis- In five of the seven countries, USAID respondents ex-
sion directors – each from a different region – said that they pressed concern that the aid program would become more
had deliberately not shared information about the F pro- and more politicized and that the development emphasis
cess with partners in their countries. By way of explanation, would continue to diminish. Some commented on the
one said, “It was not ready for prime time.” This aligns with reduction of funding for development sectors in favor of
the way the situation was described by respondents in one peace, security and democratization and the advent of the
of the countries. As one respondent explained, “The process MCC. One respondent said, “We are in the dark regarding a
was top down, closed, and driven by the F Bureau. Missions strategy. We don’t have any strategic framework for the agen-
received directives, and they were not comfortable embracing cy.” In two countries, staffers said that much will depend on
them or explaining TD to stakeholders.” future leadership in Washington in both Congress and the
Other bilateral and multilateral donors also do not appear White House/Administration.
to have been consulted or even well briefed at the local level. Representatives of other bilateral, multilateral donors and
Respondents from this group said that neither USAID mis- national governments in two of the four countries where such
sions nor US embassies had briefed them on the F process. individuals were interviewed said they believed that the US
Several noticed drastic changes but did not know why they Government is primarily interested in its own strategic inter-
were occurring. One respondent from a multilateral organi- ests rather than the development interests of the countries.
zation said, “No one has a clue.” In only one country, which One respondent said, “US policy is more important…not the
has a MCC Compact, did a respondent indicate that there needs of the country.” In the other country, one respondent
was now more cooperation with multilateral agencies on noted, “The US behaves as a superpower and tends to seek its
the part of the US Government. own strategic interest in the country. It should try to coordinate
The lack of consultation calls into question the effective- with other donors. The USAID program is more politically-ori-
ness of this part of the F process effort in meeting several ented. They must admit they are not the most important donor
of its stated goals – improving transparency and improving in the country.” In the other two countries, respondents said
coordination. they feared reduced funding for development areas.
Not surprisingly, this lack of consultation has led to a wide Of particular concern seems to be the fate of several ar-
range of perceptions of shifts in programmatic focus and eas considered critical to long-term development success
motivation, as well as mismatches that have undermined and the ability of countries, communities and individuals
both support for the F process on the ground and raised to build their capabilities to eventually sustain themselves
significant concerns about its long-term effectiveness. without aid. All those interviewed in seven of the countries
In fact, the lack of consultation appears to have actually in the second round were asked what they thought the de-
worsened field level performance and attitudes on several velopment priorities needed to be in the countries in which
stated goals of the F process, undermining transparency in they were working. Education, human development and ca-
decision-making and coordination with actors at the point pacity strengthening, poverty reduction through economic
of impact. [If the F process is to do a better job of achieving development (such as microenterprise), and health (partic-
these goals, these shortcomings will need to be addressed ularly maternal and child health, health systems, reproduc-
through a significant reform of the consultation and deci- tive health and nutrition) came up consistently as critical
sion-making process.] priorities. Yet, of the 13 USAID mission respondents asked
if the TD reforms have been flexible enough to allow USAID
2. Field-based planners and implementers fear missions to focus on the development priorities noted, only
that the F process is causing a worrisome shift 23 percent of USAID staff said they were flexible enough.
away from assistance principles and areas of In one country, USAID staff said that the F process was in-
programming long accepted as central to the flexible because the agenda was determined by Washington
long-term success of development assistance. with an intention to make all missions uniform. Therefore,
The most recent US National Security Statement5 specifi- countries lost their specific priorities. In another country,
cally acknowledged development as one of the three legs respondents expressed similar concerns. As one explained,
“The process was top down, closed, and driven by the F Bureau.
Missions received directives, and they were not comfortable
5 National Security Statement of the United States of America, (Washing-
embracing them or explaining TD to stakeholders.” In another
ton, DC: The White House, March 16, 2006). Avilable at: http://www.white-
house.gov/nsc/nss/2006/nss2006.pdf. country, a respondent said that budget cuts have limited
USAID action because there’s not enough money put into These include: (a) implementation problems
the priorities such as democracy and economic growth. caused by mismatches between the F process
In yet another country, a respondent said that education, and programmatic realities on the ground;
viewed as a high priority by all respondents, is not a priority (b) the fact that the F process, despite its
of USAID. stated goal of improving the coordination of
Project ramifications of this perceived trend appeared in US Foreign Assistance, really cannot make
several of the countries. The eight countries with program- any truly significant progress in reducing
ming in family planning and reproductive health saw funding the fragmentation of US foreign assistance
for that work drop by an average of 24 percent. Respondents as long as the F process has no jurisdiction
in one country noted a 100 percent cut in USAID’s pre- over other US programs such as PEPFAR, the
existing small-farmer agricultural programs when the MCC MCC and programs run by other Executive
Compact was signed, along with less attention to education branch departments other than USAID and
and health. In another country, respondents reported fund- State; and (c) the unmet need for a serious
ing cuts in water and sanitation, environmental programs, examination of longer-term trends in how the
maternal and child health and reproductive health. In a third, US government views and administers foreign
a respondent explained that PEPFAR money dwarfs funding assistance – trends that are having a growing
for humanitarian, social development and even economic impact on the ground, but have received
development programs. For both El Salvador and Nicaragua, relatively little analytical scrutiny in the F
the US Government’s FY 2008 presidential budget request process.
includes significant reductions in funds for both maternal
and child health and reproductive programs compared a. Implementation Problems Caused by Mismatches
to FY 2006 levels. In the same FY 2008 request, in Zambia, between the F process and Programmatic
maternal and child health programs have been eliminated; Realities on the Ground
in Tanzania, reproductive health funding has been reduced; Projects are being shifted to one-year, performance-based
and in Ghana and Kenya, funding for water and sanitation funding cycles where an emphasis on numerical results is
has been eliminated. key – an approach originally introduced through the PEPFAR
One respondent said, “Our proposals for Development As- program. This is causing problems for NGO planning and
sistance (DA) funds are like throwing in the wind. There’s no creates considerable anxiety regarding funding for the long-
dialogue and we don’t have the opportunity to defend our pro- term. It also has implications for program success over the
grams as we did in annual program reviews of the past. The F long term. Uncertainties in funding make it difficult to retain
process lacks analysis and needs assessments.” In one country, the best possible program staff; this in turn undermines pro-
the Mission’s five-year strategic plan has been replaced by gram success. Even when multi-year awards are made, each
the Mission Strategic Plan that was a product of the F pro- year’s funding must be negotiated and is not guaranteed.
cess. The respondent said, “[A] lot of useful stuff [has been] Respondents called the yearly funding requirement time
discarded. [It has created] confusion for the government. US consuming and disruptive to project implementation.
interests now are playing a greater role than local interests in The F process has also increased the emphasis on data
determining the mission’s direction.” Similar sentiments were collection, monitoring and reporting through use of the
expressed in other countries. new indicators that are largely quantitative and are not
The perceived shift in focus calls into question the effec- impact related. USAID requests for quantitative data are in-
tiveness of the F process to date, specifically in meeting two creasingly frequent and, in most countries, training has not
of its stated goals – improving transparency and improving been provided as to how to utilize the new system. In most
coordination. It is also unclear how a shift away from prin- instances, respondents reported that the new indicators are
ciples and programmatic areas long proven to be central neither appropriate nor focused on impact. Therefore, NGOs
to effective development helps the F process achieve the are continuing to use their own indicators in addition to the
objective of improving performance and accountability by newly required ones from USAID. Furthermore, the fact that
aligning foreign assistance more clearly with human prog- these new indicators are being applied to existing projects
ress. Nor is it clear how such a shift helps ensure that the is causing confusion. As one respondent noted, “Application
National Security Strategy’s statement, which states that de- of a whole set of new indicators to a project not designed with
velopment is “one of the three legs of U.S. national security” those indicators in mind means analysis becomes one big hell,
(along with diplomacy and defense), is reflected in practice. as one has to compare apples with oranges.”
The new indicators, preparation of the yearly Operational
3. The F process is plagued by a series of Plan and the new reporting requirements have all caused
mismatches between theory and reality. difficulties. As one respondent explained, “The abruptness
of the reforms, the short time period for implementation, proliferated, rather than more strategically integrated, orches-
unclear and oftentimes conflicting guidance with respect to trated and managed through USAID…this is counter to the in-
mainstreaming the reforms into our day-to-day operations, tent of [the foreign assistance component of] Transformational
and numerous glitches with migrating the data to the Opera- Diplomacy … as conveyed.” In another country, a respondent
tional Plan [OP] template combined to render preparation of said, “It’s absolutely false to say that the US Government is bet-
the FY 2007 OP excruciatingly painful, time consuming and ter coordinated as a result of the F reform. The F process has
very costly.” In another country, a respondent described nothing to do with PEPFAR or MCC.” In yet another country, a
how program elements have to be selected based on the USAID staffer asks the PVO grantees and contractors to let
new indicators that often don’t fit realities on the ground: him know if they sign contracts with other departments of
“F had a concept and tried to fit reality into it, rather than the the US Government, e.g. the Department of Labor, because
other way around.” Another respondent said, “A cookie cut- otherwise he has no way of knowing this information.
ter approach to development indicators is crazy. Even trying Since a number of the countries covered in this assess-
to create regional indicators would be a near impossibility, ment are significantly involved in the PEPFAR and MCC pro-
let alone the global indicators that F has created.” Another cesses, respondents were asked about the effects of those
respondent complained of the frequency of reporting re- programs on areas and staff assigned to programs covered
quirements: “We’ve gone from quarterly reports to a system by the F process.
in which our partners are writing reports and doing data col-
lection all the time. Reporting requirements have increased • The President’s Emergency Program for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR)
50-fold.” In another country, a respondent said that FACTS The F process adopted many of the operational aspects
(the new data collection system) does not work: “ This new of PEPFAR to such a great extent that some refer to F pro-
system has not led to better data collection. It is cumbersome cess as the “PEPFARization of the foreign assistance sys-
and confusing, not user-friendly, and the Mission is often un- tem.” Four of the countries in this assessment project have
able to even access it due to the country’s limited internet ca- large PEPFAR programs. Respondents in these countries
pacity. The F Bureau in Washington didn’t take into account commented on ways in which PEPFAR is affecting other
the less developed technology the missions in developing in-country aid efforts covered by the F process. The fol-
countries have to work with.” lowing were of particular concern.
These implementation mismatches call into question the Respondents believe PEPFAR funds are overwhelming
effectiveness of the F process to date in meeting several and distorting the health sector, while other important
of its stated goals – namely improving coordination and health needs are neglected. The annual US budget to
efficiency. fight HIV/AIDS abroad has increased from $1.5 billion in FY
2003 to $6.0 billion in 2008. Six of the countries in which
b. Failure to Address the “Elephants in the Room” interviews were conducted have FY 2008 HIV/AIDS fund-
ing requests that represent increases of between 51.52
Independent Programming percent (Nicaragua) and 201.06 percent (Tanzania) over
(Including PEPFAR and the MCC) FY 2006 levels. These large increases are, in a number of
Although the F process was intended to improve coordi- instances, accompanied by the reduction or elimination
nation and efficiency of US foreign assistance, respondents of programming in other health areas such as maternal
reported that proliferation of programs and variations in and child health and reproductive health, and the related
their operation is greater than ever. areas of water and sanitation. The amounts available for
While the F process is intended to improve coordination PEPFAR also dwarf those available for other important ar-
of US foreign assistance, it is severely hampered in its ability eas of development assistance.
to do so because of the many US assistance programs that Because PEPFAR money can only be used in clearly
are not within its purview. This results in a “balkanization” of prescribed ways to fight HIV/AIDS, other important
foreign assistance rather than the coordination hoped for health needs are neglected. Even though health care sys-
through the F process. In fact, the F process controls only tems are the backbone of effective health care delivery,
a minority of the total US foreign assistance funding and, funding is severely lacking to strengthen these systems
in some countries, its programs are dwarfed by PEPFAR and through efforts such as hiring and training personnel,
potential MCC funding. Respondents in this assessment and providing health infrastructure, equipment and sup-
consistently noted the continued (and often increasing) plies. Respondents in two countries reported that restric-
fragmentation of US assistance in their countries – despite tions of PEPFAR money are so tight that money targeted
the efforts of the F process. One respondent said, “…the ‘re- for orphans and vulnerable children through PEPFAR
ality’ of various foreign assistance initiatives from a wide range cannot even be used to provide services to caretakers of
of different US government agencies has become even more such children. Other interview respondents noted that
t Changes in funding for health programs in FARM Countries, FY 06 vs. FY 08*

Family
Water
Tuber- Maternal & Planning/
Country HIV/AIDS
culosis
Malaria
Child Health Reproduc-
Supply & Total
Sanitation
tive Health

Ghana -28.80% 21.21% 69.15% -30.07% -5.47% -100% -20.12%
Honduras -3.03% -100% - 111.79% -63.24% - -13.59%
Kenya 173.37% 34.86% -18.65% 32.79% -9.53% -100% 151.15%
Nepal -45.40% - - 51.48% -2.38% - -3.37%
Vietnam 180.96% - - - - - 178.91%
El Salvador 450.96% - - -39.39% -39.39% - -26.33%
Nicaragua 51.52% - - -22.73% -42.84% - -22.49%
Tanzania 201.06% 259.71% 0.00% 35.87% -22.48% - 165.08%
Zambia 150.00% 51.67% -18.14% -100% -5.18% - 127.85%
TOTAL 165.32% 47.21% -5.31% -0.52% -24.35% -100% 126.43%
*Comparison is between FY 06 Actual figures and the FY 08 Request

the PEPFAR budget is so high in some countries that the program in that country. Most respondents who knew
money cannot be programmed effectively, given the about the MCC felt that its programs have had a nega-
very restrictive requirements. tive impact on their missions’ programs. In at least four
PEPFAR fails to capitalize on in-country expertise in of the countries, the USAID budget has been reduced. In
developing projects and partners, but then relies on one country, a respondent said, “[The Office of Manage-
(and often over-taxes) the same USAID in-country staff ment and Budget (OMB)] representatives said on more than
to monitor the programs. The Office of Global AIDS Coor- one occasion that OMB is urging to cut aid in MCC compact
dination in Washington designs the PEPFAR projects and countries.”
chooses the recipients of the funding without using the The focus of the MCC program in the various countries
field expertise of USAID missions and other in-country ac- is on infrastructure, commercial agriculture, energy, pro-
tors. One respondent said, “PEPFAR is more about delivering motion of trade and a favorable investment climate for
things and measuring, not cooperative implementation. The the private sector. Many of the respondents said they
terms are much prescribed.” At the same time, PEPFAR relies thought the MCC would affect USAID negatively by ei-
on USAID mission staff to monitor its programs – this at a ther competing with, or substituting for its programs.
time when USAID mission staffs are already overstretched They also feared that the MCC would have negative ef-
covering other programming. fects on rural development and poverty alleviation ef-
Where PEPFAR budgets have grown dramatically, forts in which USAID had been involved. One respondent
staff is overworked and unable to visit field projects due said, “It will generate more wealth for the wealthy.” In one
to the administrative workload in the mission. In one country, respondents feared negative environmental im-
country, a respondent said, “Our own capacity is diminish- pacts and displacement of inhabitants in a region where
ing and NGO partners on the ground are beginning to feel a road is to be built. They also said that MCC’s promotion
the effects of a weak agency. If this continues to happen, we of an extractive industry in the region would run counter
will all go down together.” to USAID’s effort to protect biodiversity and natural re-
sources. In another country, respondents felt that there
• The Millennium Challenge Corporation (MCC) was insufficient recognition of the role long-term USAID
The MCC was established in January 2004, two years programs and efforts had played in helping the country
before the F process was introduced. Seven countries in meet the preconditions necessary for MCC participation.
this assessment have signed either an MCC Compact or a The F process’s failure to reach programs representing
Threshold Agreement. such a large portion of US foreign assistance calls into
In each of those seven countries, respondents were question the initiative’s effectiveness to date in meeting
asked how they thought the MCC Compact or Thresh- several of its stated goals – namely improving coordina-
old Agreement was affecting the US foreign assistance tion and efficiency.
General Trends in the Way US Assistance is Administered NGOs. This is in spite of the fact that in certain sectors, previ-
Discussion of the problems with current efforts to improve ous government programs have failed miserably while NGO
the coordination and effectiveness of US foreign assistance programs have been evaluated by external sources as excel-
frequently focuses directly on internal shortcomings of the F lent. In these countries, national government officials are
process itself (e.g. the decision-making process and the types now participating in reviews of NGO proposals although in-
of indicators used) or big programs that remain outside of terview respondents maintain that the officials do not have
its purview. Both are important. However, another very im- the necessary qualifications to do so. In at least one country,
portant factor generally remains off the radar screen: an on- local NGOs that received direct USAID funds in the past must
going general shift that has been underway for some time now subcontract work through US-based NGOs or contrac-
concerning how the US Government administers US foreign tors. This includes two large local NGO initiatives that were
assistance. While the trend is clear, it has been more the result originally created and nurtured with USAID funds and that
of incremental changes rather than a clear, carefully consid- have been functioning effectively for over 15 years. In one
ered policy shift. For the F process to be truly successful, these country, 100 percent of US-based NGO respondents noted
changes must be reviewed and determinations made as to that USAID is calling for increased use of US professionals
whether the changes should be continued or revised. rather than local personnel.
These trends were clearly on the minds of a number of the There are signs that the F process is making it more diffi-
participants in this assessment who saw them as relevant to cult for some local NGOs to participate in projects in which
any understanding of the current state of US foreign assis- they receive only indirect USAID funding. In November,
tance in their countries and the F process. US-based NGOs were asked if the F process was making
USAID has long experienced shrinking levels of field staff- it easier or more difficult to work in partnership with local
ing to manage programs in traditional areas of development NGOs. Twenty-one percent of respondents spread across
assistance that fall outside of the big new projects such as five countries said it was more difficult. Reasons included
PEPFAR. During the interviews for this assessment, it also sudden funding cuts from USAID, changes in report formats
became clear that in some countries the USAID missions are and/or proposals that were hard for local NGO partners, a
losing additional staff because of the F process. Respondents number of abrupt shifts from USAID in areas of emphasis
in several countries reported that long-term AID employees that local NGOs could not implement and, in one country,
have retired or have left due to frustration with the F process. the fact that most local NGOs do not share the priority
Moreover, in two countries Foreign Service Nationals have objectives of the new USAID focus. Two local NGOs in dif-
lost their jobs in significant numbers or have been told that ferent countries noted that there had been reductions in
they will. Where personnel has remained stable, in countries sub-grants. In one of the countries, these were in health,
where the PEPFAR budgets have grown dramatically, staff is education and the environment. Another said that the
overworked and unable to visit field projects due to the ad- USAID emphasis on different sectors – democratization,
ministrative workload in the mission. In one country, a respon- conflict management and strengthening of political parties
dent said, “Our own capacity is diminishing and NGO partners – was making work for local NGOs more challenging. Lastly,
on the ground are beginning to feel the effects of a weak agency. local NGOs that had previously received direct USAID fund-
If this continues to happen, we will all go down together.” ing were extremely unhappy about now having to receive
These diminishing staffing levels have played into a longer- funds through US-based NGOs and felt this made work
term trend that is significantly limiting both USAID’s options more administratively and bureaucratically burdensome.
for ways to disburse foreign assistance funds and the num-
ber and types of implementers who can compete for direct RECOMMENDATIONS
funding. Specifically, there is a much greater emphasis on InterAction fully agrees that there is a need for improved
large contracts or grants run by consortia, with an emphasis coherence, accountability and transparency in US foreign
on technical aspects of projects, and much less attention to assistance. However, the findings revealed by the interviews
the long-term, capacity-strengthening efforts carried out conducted as part of this research suggest that the F process,
by NGOs. In several countries, a few very large US consult- as executed to date, has demonstrated notable limitations in
ing firms are winning more and more USAID contracts, and its ability to achieve these goals, has raised significant con-
only large US-based NGOs with substantial independent cerns about a fundamental shift away from critical program-
funding can compete. Comments from respondents in this matic areas and has not addressed a series of aspects of US
assessment reaffirmed what InterAction had heard before – foreign assistance that must be part of the process if the F
that this shift and the accordant financial and administrative process is to achieve its goals. Therefore, InterAction strongly
requirements reduce the ability of local NGOs to compete. recommends the following steps to improve the process
In at least two countries, USAID missions are also providing and the overall goal of strengthening the effectiveness of US
substantially more funding to national governments than to foreign assistance:
• Suspend any further implementation of the F process and Appendix One: Research Methodology
initiate a more substantial review of the initiative’s imple- Most of the data for this report was gathered through two
mentation to date and the issues beyond its jurisdiction sets of in-depth interviews with a variety of respondents in
that affect the overall effectiveness of the F process effort. five countries (Ghana, Honduras, Kenya, Nepal and Vietnam)
This will ensure that aspects with significant negative im- in June and November of 2007. InterAction staff conducted
pacts are removed and replaced with alternatives better supplementary interviews in four additional countries (El
able to meet all stated goals. Salvador, Nicaragua, Tanzania and Zambia) in August and
• Conduct a thorough assessment of the steps necessary November of 2007. In total, researchers conducted 270 in-
to ensure the statement in the National Security Strategy terviews in the nine countries.
that “development is one of the three legs of U.S. national
security” (along with diplomacy and defense) is reflected Timing
in policy and programmatic reality. Alternatively, consider This assessment was intentionally conducted early on in the
initiating a National Development Strategy so that devel- implementation of the foreign assistance reform effort (F pro-
opment will be on par with other legs of US National Secu- cess). The intention was to create a snapshot of the effort on
rity. In either case, this should begin with a reconsideration the ground while the process was still early enough in its ex-
of the relative weight given to these three areas of interest ecution to allow for any necessary adjustments to improve its
in making foreign assistance determinations. Consider- effectiveness. Obviously this limited the amount of time the F
ation of organizational changes necessary to achieve this process had to produce significant effects on the development
goal should also begin. work of PVOs and NGOs. As a way to maximize the value of
• Develop a systematic plan for consultation with local com- data collected, the research was divided into two parts, with a
munities and civil society that allows decisions at the pro- first set of interviews carried out in late June and a second set of
gram level to be made in country by field missions and not interviews with the same set of respondents carried out in No-
in Washington. vember. This schedule was based on the hypothesis that little
• Develop a continued and more expansive consultative would be known about the reforms – and few effects felt – by
process between the F Bureau and US-based NGOs, includ- June, whereas respondents would likely be more knowledge-
ing an open dialogue about the fundamental assumptions able about the reforms and would have experienced more
made by the new foreign assistance framework. Steps have effects by November after the end-of-the fiscal-year proposal
been taken toward such an effort and we recommend that writing season had been completed.6 In addition, InterAction
they continue. This could become an effective forum for a staff visited four other countries (El Salvador, Nicaragua, Tanza-
discussion of the impact of the general trends in the way nia and Zambia) to carry out supplementary research.
US assistance is administered, particularly regarding the
rise of independent programming (PEPFAR and MCC) as Choice of countries
well as USAID’s shrinking levels of staffing and program The study focuses on five countries representing a geo-
support. graphic and situational cross section of the 35 “fast track” na-
• Vigilant oversight as to whether the F process will have tions.7 Nepal was chosen as a rebuilding country, Kenya and
an adverse impact on effective programs in the field that Vietnam as developing countries, and Ghana and Honduras as
reduce poverty and meet basic needs and the provision transforming countries. InterAction engaged an experienced
of additional resources for such programs as necessary. development professional in each of these countries to carry
Effective programs are community-based, work person- out the research. Of the four countries in which additional in-
to-person and have true local ownership. Our research has terviews were conducted, Zambia is categorized as a develop-
shown that these are exactly the programs most at risk of ing country and the remaining as transforming nations.
becoming marginalized by the F process as it has been
implemented thus far. Categories of respondents
In the five primary countries, researchers interviewed five
categories of respondents:
• In-country staff of US-based NGOs that receive USAID funds;

6 July–early September is always a busy proposal-writing season for PVOs
and NGOs requesting USAID funding since the US Government’s fiscal
year ends in September and significant money is awarded just prior to
the end of the fiscal year.
7 “Fast-Track” countries are those selected to complete an integrated, inter-
agency Operational Plan in the US government’s 2007 fiscal year as part
of the foreign assistance reform process.
• Staff of local NGO8 partners of US-based NGOs on USAID- t Sectors in which PVOs and NGOs Work
funded projects; US-
Local NGO
Local NGOs
Sector Based with Direct
• Staff of local NGOs receiving direct funding from USAID; NGOs
Partners
Funds
• Staff of USAID missions in the particular country; Health 87% 70% 35%
• Staff of the US Embassy, other bilateral donors, multilat- Agriculture
Education
52%
42% 50%
eral donors, national government ministries or researchers Micro/Small Enterprises 40% 40%
knowledgeable about US foreign assistance. Women’s Empowerment
Civil Society Strengthening
33%
33%
43%
47%
Democracy/Governance 35%
Interviews in the supplemental countries were limited to
exchanges with USAID mission staff and with in-country similar. Information for NGOs in the five primary countries is
staff of US-based NGOs that receive USAID funds. provided below.

Focus of the research In-country experience
In the first round of interviews in the five primary coun- Of the 100 NGOs interviewed, the vast majority have worked
tries, researchers asked questions in four major areas: in their respective countries for at least five years, and a major-
• Background on the NGOs’ programs in the country; ity have had country programs for over 10 years. Of the US-
• Awareness of the foreign assistance reforms and extent of based organizations, 90 percent had worked in the five coun-
related consultation; tries for at least five to 10 years, while 77 percent had worked
• Immediate effects of the reforms on the NGOs’ programs in them for 11 years or more. Of local NGO partners, 87 percent
(both USAID-funded and those funded by other donors) had at least five to 10 years of experience in the countries and
and on their partnerships; and 53 percent had 11 years or more. And 71 percent of the local
• Anticipated effects of the reforms in the future. NGOs with direct funding from USAID had 11 years or more.

In the second round of interviews conducted in Novem- Length of time as USAID partner
ber, researchers asked follow-up questions regarding aware- Sixty percent of the US-based NGOs and 53 percent of the
ness of the reforms and consultation, additional effects and local NGOs with direct funding have received USAID money
anticipated effects. Researchers also asked respondents for for over five years. Thirty-seven percent of US-based NGOs
their views regarding the country’s priority development is- and 29 percent of the local NGOs with direct funding have
sues, emerging trends in US foreign assistance in the coun- received USAID money for over 10 years.
try, and possible steps to improve US foreign assistance in
that country. Areas of work
In the supplemental countries, the August interviews used NGO respondents work in a variety of development sec-
an adapted version of the questionnaires used in the five tors, with health being the most common programming is-
countries in June. Similarly, the November interviews used sue by far. Data on the top seven sectors are included below.
a slightly adapted version of the questionnaires for the five
countries’ second round of interviews. How they operate internally: strategic planning,
To develop a better picture of the NGO respondents them- and monitori ng and evaluation (M&E)
selves, they were also asked a series of questions to develop Significant majorities of the NGOs indicated that they have
an understanding of the nature of their in-country operations. both a country and sector strategy for their work. Eighty-two
The results are covered in detail in Annex 2 of this report. percent of the US-based NGOs and 70 percent of the local
NGOs (both categories) had country strategies. Similarly, 75
Appendix Two: percent of the US-based NGOs and 71 percent of the local
Background on NGO In-Country NGOs with direct USAID funding have sector strategies.
Operations Almost 100% reported having a M&E system in use (92%
The NGOs interviewed for this study were asked a series of of US-based NGOs, 100% of local NGO partners, and 94%
questions to develop an understanding of the nature of their of local NGOs with direct USAID funds). The percentage of
in-country operations. Topics included years of in-country organizations that have both country and sector strategies
experience, topical programming issues, strategic planning and functioning M&E systems indicates strong capacity and
and partnerships. Data collected from NGOs in the five pri- accountability on the part of these PVOs and NGOs.
mary countries and the supplemental countries was very
Partnerships
Almost three-quarters of US-based NGOs (72%) have part-
8 “Local NGO” means an NGO created and staffed by citizens of the particu-
lar country with its headquarters located in that country. nerships with local NGOs.
POLICY November 2008

BRIEF

InterAction Foreign Assistance Reform Advisory Group
Organization URL
Academy for Educational Development www.aed.org
Adventist Development and Relief Agency www.adra.org
International
CARE www.care.org
Catholic Relief Services www.crs.org
Church World Services www.churchworldservice.org
Heifer International www.heifer.org
Pact www.pactworld.org
Plan USA www.planusa.org
Save the Children www.savechildren.org
Winrock International www.winrock.org
World Education www.worlded.org
World Vision www.worldvision.org

InterAction Public Policy Working Group
Organization URL
Academy for Educational Development www.aed.org
Action Against Hunger www.actionagainsthunger.org
Action Aid www.actionaid.org
Adventist Development and Relief Agency www.adra.org
International
Africare www.africare.org
Aga Khan Foundation U.S.A. www.akdn.org
Air Serv International www.airserv.org
American Friends Service Committee www.afsc.org
American Jewish World Service www.ajws.org
American Red Cross www.redcross.org
American Refugee Committee www.archq.org
AmeriCares www.americares.org
Bread for the World www.bread.org
CARE www.care.org
Catholic Medical Mission Board www.cmmb.org
1400 16th Street, NW Catholic Relief Services www.crs.org
Suite 210 Center for Health and Gender Equity, Inc www.genderhealth.org
Washington, DC 20036 Centre for Development & Population Activities www.cedpa.org
202-667-8227 (CEDPA)
reform@interaction.org CHF International www.chfinternational.org
Child Health Foundation (CHF) www.childhealthfoundation.org
Christian Children’s Fund www.christianchildrensfund.org
www.interaction.org Church World Service www.churchworldservice.org
InterAction Public Policy Working Group (cont)
Organization URL

Concern Worldwide www.concernusa.org
Congressional Hunger Center www.hungercenter.org
Counterpart International www.counterpart.org
Ethiopian Community Development Council, Inc www.ecdcinternational.org
Florida Association for Volunteer Action in the www.favaca.org/
Caribbean and the Americas (FAVACA)
Food for the Hungry www.fh.org
Friends of the World Food Program www.friendsofwfp.org
Global Health Council www.globalhealth.org
Habitat for Humanity International www.habitat.org
Heartland Alliance www.heartlandalliance.org
Hebrew Immigrant Aid Society www.hias.org
Heifer International www.heifer.org
InsideNGO www.InsideNGO.org
Institute for Sustainable Communities www.iscvt.org
Interplast www.interplast.org
Int’l Catholic Migration Commission www.icmc.net
Int’l Center for Research on Women www.icrw.org
Int’l Crisis Group www.crisisweb.org
International Medical Corps www.imcworldwide.org
Int’l Orthodox Christian Charities www.iocc.org
Int’l Reading Association www.reading.org
International Relief & Development www.ird.org
International Rescue Committee www.theirc.org
Jesuit Refugee Services USA www.jrsusa.org
Joint Aid Management www.jamusa.org
Life for Relief and Development www.lifeusa.org
Lutheran World Relief www.lwr.org
Management Sciences for Health www.msh.org
MAP International www.map.org
Medical Teams International www.medicalteams.org
Mental Disability Rights International www.mdri.org
Mercy Corps www.mercycorps.org
Minnesota International Health Volunteers www.mihv.org
National Peace Corps Association www.rpcv.org
ONE Campaign www.one.org/
Opportunity International www.opportunity.org
Oxfam America www.oxfamamerica.org
Pact www.pactworld.org
Pan American Development Foundation www.padf.org
PATH www.path.org
Pathfinder International www.pathfind.org
Physicians for Human Rights www.phrusa.org
Plan USA www.planusa.org
Population Action International www.populationaction.org
Project HOPE www.projecthope.org
ProLiteracy Worldwide www.proliteracy.org
Refugees International www.refugeesinternational.org
InterAction Public Policy Working Group (cont)
Organization URL

Relief International www.ri.org
RESULTS, Inc. www.results.org
Save the Children www.savethechildren.org
The Hunger Project www.thp.org
U.S. Committee for Refugees and Immigrants (USCRI) www.refugees.org
U.S. Committee for UNDP www.undp-usa.org
U.S. Fund for UNICEF www.unicefusa.org
Winrock International www.winrock.org
Women for Women International www.womenforwomen.org
Women Thrive Worldwide www.womenthrive.org
World Vision www.worldvision.org
World Wildlife Fund www.worldwildlife.org
Challenge
Millennium

Corporation

Millennium Challenge
Corporation
POLICY November 2008

BRIEF

Millennium Challenge Corporation

Recommendations
Problem
Congress should approve the House Appropriations Committee FY09 funding level
The Millennium for the MCC of $1.54 billion. The new Administration should set the FY10 level at
Challenge $2 billion in its budget request. If Congress does not appropriate for FY09 a level of
Corporation’s (MCC)
funding similar to last year ($1.55 billion), the MCC will not be able to sign any new
multi-year funding
makes it vulnerable Compacts until FY 2010.
to Congressional
cuts. For FY09 the Actions
President requested
$2.225 billion, • After a development agency director is named, in consultation with that person, ap-
but the Senate point a dynamic individual to lead the MCC who meets the following criteria: strong
Appropriations background in poverty-focused development; experience managing field programs;
Committee allocated
track record on gender integration and participatory approaches; strong manage-
$254 million.
Without continuity ment and communications abilities; and experience working with Congress;
of funding the • Work with Congress to maintain support for the MCC through the budget and ap-
United States will propriations processes;
loose credibility with • Support the program and maintain its integrity in terms of key principles: country
potential Compact ownership, civil society participation, non-political decisions, poverty reduction
countries, which are
through economic growth, rewarding best performers, gender integration, multi-
improving policies
and establishing year funding, no tied or earmarked funds, transparency and accountability;
programs in • Ensure the MCC’s principles are maintained and that it has the structures and
anticipation of capacity to implement programs according to those principles in any major reform
signing a Compact. or restructuring of foreign aid; and
• Fully fund the MCC budget request level.

Results
The MCC model has been a catalyst of policy reforms around the world that improve
transparency, fight corruption and promote women’s rights. Maintaining one of the
more innovative U.S. foreign aid programs will encourage a continuation of policy
1400 16th Street, NW changes in governments interested in a relationship with MCC and the United States
Suite 210 government.
Washington, DC 20036
202-667-8227
reform@interaction.org

www.interaction.org
Background
Established by Congress in 2004, the Millennium
Challenge Corporation (MCC) has developed into a highly in-
novative foreign aid program with a focus on reducing pover-
ty through economic growth. The MCC has institutionalized a
number of operating principles the development commu-
nity has long advocated: country ownership, consultation
with all elements of civil society, sustainability, multi-year
funding, and transparent selection based on performance.
To be eligible to participate in the program, low and
moderate income countries are required to meet and pass
a majority of 17 independent and publically available per-
formance criteria in the MCC-defined areas of ruling justly,
investing in people, and economic freedom. This require-
ment has created an “MCC effect” through which countries
change polices in the three areas in order to be eligible to
apply to the MCC.
The MCC has signed 18 five-year Compacts for a total of
$6.3 billion. To ensure the funding is available for each Com-
pact the MCC sets aside the total Compact funding at the
time of signing.
However, Congress has not accepted the principle of le-
gally committing, and therefore setting aside, funding for
each signed compact.
POLICY November 2008

PAPER

The Millennium Challenge
Corporation

T
he Millennium Challenge Corporation (MCC), initiated by President George W. Bush in
2002, is an innovative way of delivering aid. However, it is endangered by Congressional
impatience with its model. The MCC’s long-term time horizon and multi-year funding
mechanism have made the MCC vulnerable to cuts. For example, the Senate Appropriations
Committee has proposed allocating only $254 million for FY 2009, a reduction of $1.3 billion
from FY08. Without more funding, the United States will not be able to engage with the po-
tential Compact countries. These countries are improving policies and establishing programs
in anticipation of signing a Compact.
On March 22, 2002, at the UN’s Financing for Development Conference in Monterrey, Mexi-
co, President Bush announced plans to create the Millennium Challenge Account (MCA). The
President initiated the new pro-
gram to “fight global poverty.” The Compact commitments by fiscal year
Millennium Challenge Corporation (figures in millions of U.S. dollars)
(MCC) was established by Congress Funds are committed at time of signing
in January 2004 to administer the Country FY05 FY06 FY07 FY08
MCA. The MCC is governed by a Madagascar $110
Board comprised of nine members:
Honduras $215
the Secretary of State (Chair), the
Cape Verde $110
MCC CEO, the USAID Administrator,
the Secretary of Treasury, the Unit- Nicaragua $175
ed States Trade Representative and Georgia $295
four civil society members appoint- Vanuatu $66
ed by the President, pursuant to a Benin $307
recommendation by the majority
Armenia $236
and minority leaders of the House
and Senate. The U.S. NGO commu- Ghana $547
nity was integrally involved in sup- Mali $461
porting the original authorization El Salvador $461
for the program. NGOs understood Mozambique $507
that funding for the MCC would not
Lesotho $362
be at the expense of other core de-
velopment accounts. Morocco $697
Development professionals have Mongolia $285
long advocated for bilateral foreign
1400 16th Street, NW Tanzania $698
assistance to governments that in-
Suite 210
Washington, DC 20036
cludes a number of elements that Namibia $305

202-667-8227
the MCC addressees: country own- Burkina Faso $481
reform@interaction.org ership, extensive consultation with Number of Compacts 5 6 4 3
all elements of civil society, sus- Total Value $905 $2,078 $1,851 $1,484
tainability, multi-year funding, and
Average Compact Size $181 $346 $463 $495
www.interaction.org transparent selection of recipients
based on performance. The MCC was the first U.S. initiative or above the median on the corruption index. Those close to
to propose substantial funding reflecting these ideals and achieving Compact eligibility may qualify for the Threshold
focused on broad, long-term development. program to focus on areas of weakness and improve eligibil-
The MCC has signed 18 five-year Compacts. Interested ity status.
countries are assessed against a set of concrete standards re- Funding: The Millennium Challenge Corporation’s fund-
lating to their performance on a number of points related to ing mechanism is rather unique for the United States. Once
good governance and commitment to improving the lives a Compact or Threshold Agreement is signed, the MCC guar-
of their people. Successful countries then sign a Compact (a antees the allotted funding for the five-year duration of the
multi- year agreement) with the MCC. To ensure the funding program. These funds are obligated and set aside; therefore
is available for each Compact, the MCC sets aside the total they are not available for other purposes. This allows for
Compact funding at the time of signing. programs to be implemented and completed as planned.
The MCC has also awarded 19 Threshold grants, which are Though typical of some other countries’ aid programs, it is
primarily managed by USAID. These grants are designed to unique for U.S. foreign aid which usually provides funding
improve a country’s indicator scores and thereby move them on a year-to-year basis.
closer to eligibility to apply for a compact. The Threshold Slow startup: Unfortunately the Millennium Challenge
countries include: Albania, Burkina Faso, Guyana, Indonesia, Corporation was slow getting started. This was due in part
Jordan, Kyrgyz Republic, Malawi, Moldova, Niger, Paraguay, to the MCA model, which required countries to consult with
Peru, Philippines, Rwanda, Sao Tome and Principe, Tanzania, their citizens to develop proposals and for the governments
Uganda and Ukraine. to develop implementation plans – a groundbreaking model
The Millennium Challenge Corporation functions within crafted to increase sustainability. Other reasons included: (1)
three principles: good governance, economic freedom and the lengthy period between the President’s announcement
investment in people with a stated goal “to reduce global in Monterrey (March 2002) and the passage of the necessary
poverty through the promotion of sustainable economic legislation by the Congress (January 2004); (2) lack of devel-
growth.” opment expertise among the MCC’s initial staff; (3) lack of
Indicators and Program Eligibility: Candidate countries specificity in directions to applicant countries; (4) reluctance
must be either low-income or lower middle-income. The of staff to conduct broad outreach to Congress or the de-
MCC uses 17 indicators from independent, publically avail- velopment community; and (5) limited country capacity to
able sources to determine eligibility. carry out this process.
The indicators are divided into three categories or “bas- Progress: The MCC routinely assesses its work and has sig-
kets”: Ruling Justly, Investing in People, and Economic Free- nificantly improved its operations and outlook over the past
dom. In order for a country to be eligible for assistance, called three years:
Compacts, it must reach or exceed the median level for half 1. Ambassador John Danilovich began the duties of CEO in
of the indicators in each category. Countries must also be at November 2005, bringing new staff, new energy, and or-

MCC Indicators
Indicator Category Source
Civil Liberties Ruling Justly Freedom House
Political Rights Ruling Justly Freedom House
Voice and Accountability Ruling Justly World Bank Institute
Government Effectiveness Ruling Justly World Bank Institute
Rule of Law Ruling Justly World Bank Institute
Control of Corruption Ruling Justly World Bank Institute
Immunization Rates Investing in People World Health Organization
Public Expenditure on Health Investing in People World Health Organization
Girls’ Primary Education Completion Rate Investing in People UNESCO
Public Expenditure on Primary Education Investing in People UNESCO and national sources
Business Start Up Economic Freedom IFC
Inflation Economic Freedom IMF WEO
Trade Policy Economic Freedom Heritage Foundation
Regulatory Quality Economic Freedom World Bank Institute
Fiscal Policy Economic Freedom National sources, cross-checked with IMF WEO
Natural Resource Management Investing in People CIESIN/Yale
Land Rights and Access Economic Freedom IFAD / IFC
Human Rights Index (U.S. State Department)
Corruption Perceptions Index Transparency International (TI) (TI site | link to data)
Global Integrity Index Global Integrity (Global Integrity)
ganizational effectiveness into the MCC. and enterprises have received technical assistance from 6
2. The MCC has improved the development expertise of its new agricultural business centers and another 225 farm-
staff. Experienced staff now work at every level of the or- ers have been trained to tap into microfinance credit. The
ganization. Consequently, guidance to eligible countries first MCC-funded “guichet foncier” (local land office) was
has improved significantly, especially in the area of con- officially inaugurated on May 20, 2006; 353 land certifi-
sultation on the MCC Compact and Threshold programs cates have been issued to date (30% to women).
giving greater clarity to the expectations of recipients and • “MCC Effect”: When El Salvador reduced the number of
setting them up for success. days it takes to get the approvals and permits needed to
3. The transparency of the MCC has significantly increased. start a business from 115 to 26 in order to improve their
All agreements, countries’ performance on selection indi- eligibility for an MCC Compact, business registrations
cators, and congressional notifications are posted to their jumped by 500 percent.
website. General outreach meetings are organized after • “MCC Effect”: MCC is working with the Government of
each Board meeting at which staff is available to answer Lesotho to ensure that gender equality in the area of eco-
questions. The MCC has made a habit of consistently con- nomic rights is legally guaranteed before signing a Com-
sulting with various coalitions for guidance and input on pact. In Lesotho, married women have been considered
planned decisions and draft policies legal minors. However, the Parliament of Lesotho recently
4. There is a renewed emphasis on implementation. enacted a law ending the minority status of married wom-
5. Better and clearer guidance is now provided to countries en, a key milestone in Lesotho’s Compact development
on roles and responsibilities. process.
6. The procurement and reporting requirements have been
streamlined.
7. The addition of a MCC Gender Policy in January 2007 and
the addition of a girls’ primary school completion rate in-
dicator are two ways that the special concerns of women
and girls living in poverty are being addressed.
8. The concrete commitment to the inclusion of environmen-
tal concerns resulted in the addition of a natural resource
management indicator and a land tenure indicator to the
selection criteria.

Accomplishments: The MCC has committed $6.5 bil-
lion in five-year Compacts with nearly $300-$400 million in
Threshold Program assistance committed to 19 countries.
Through the Compacts and Threshold Programs, the MCC
agreemtns are estimated to have an impact on over 22 mil-
lion individuals living in poverty around the world. The MCC’s
public and stringent eligibility requirements have launched
policy reforms around the world, such as those that improve
transparency, fight corruption and promote women’s rights.
Specific examples of success include:
• MCC Compact: Georgia repaired a gas pipeline, prevent-
ing serious environmental and safety hazards and the dis-
ruption of gas delivery. Georgia has also begun to reha-
bilitate municipal water supplies in two cities that serve
230,000 Georgians.
• MCC Compact: Cape Verde’s programs have enhanced
the transparency of its government operations and bud-
geting.
• MCC Compact: Nicaragua’s Compact helped women in-
crease their incomes by creating tree nurseries. The first 26
clean land titles have been awarded to beneficiaries, many
of which went to female landowners.
• MCC Compact: In Madagascar, almost 2,000 local farmers
POLICY November 2008

BRIEF

Contributors to Millennium Challenge
Corporation Paper

Organization URL

Bread for the World www.bread.org
Catholic Relief Services www.crs.org
Women Thrive Worldwide www.womenthrive.org
International Rescue Committee www. theirc.org

InterAction Millennium Challenge Corporation
Working Group

Organization URL
Academy for Educational Development www.aed.org
Adventist Development and Relief Agency www.adra.org
International
Africare www.africare.org
American Refugee Committee www.archq.org
Asia Foundation www.asiafoundation.org
Basic Education Coalition www.basiced.org
Bread for the World www.bread.org
Catholic Relief Services www.crs.org
Center for Global Development www.cgdev.org
Christian Children’s Fund www.christianchildrensfund.org
Congressional Hunger Center www.hungercenter.org
Evangelical Lutheran Church in America www.elca.org
Episcopal Church www.episcopalchurch.org
Habitat for Humanity International www.habitat.org
Institute for Sustainable Communities www.iscvt.org
International. Housing Coalition www.intlhc.org
International Relief & Development www.ird.org
Management Sciences for Health www.msh.org
National Wildlife Federation www.nwf.org
1400 16th Street, NW
ONE www.one.org
Suite 210
Washington, DC 20036 Open Society Institute www.soros.org
202-667-8227
Oxfam America www.oxfamamerica.org
reform@interaction.org Pact www.pactworld.org
Physicians for Human Rights www.phrusa.org
Population Action International www.populationaction.org
www.interaction.org Save the Children www.savethechildren.org
InterAction Millennium Challenge Corporation
Working Group (cont)

Organization URL

Share Foundation www.sharefoundation.org
Transparency International www.transparency.org
U.S. Committee for Refugees and Immigrants (USCRI) www.refugees.org
U.S. Committee for UNDP www.undp-usa.org
Winrock International www.winrock.org
Women Thrive Worldwide www.womenthrive.org
World Learning www.worldlearning.org
World Vision www.worldvision.org
World Wildlife Fund www.worldwildlife.org
Goals
Millennium
Development

Millennium Development Goals
POLICY November 2008

BRIEF

The Millennium Development Goals and
a U.S. National Development Strategy
Recommendations
Problem
The U.S. should adopt the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) and incorporate
The United States is its framework into a U.S. national development strategy.
not in harmony with
other bilateral and
multilateral donors Actions
and governments
• Make addressing the causes and consequences of poverty the primary objective
of developing
countries that of U.S. official development assistance – a step that would allow such assistance
have adopted to complement and support U.S. foreign policy and security goals;
the Millennium • Appoint a key development leader head of USAID;
Development Goals • Draft a National Development Strategy (see separate briefing paper) that uses
(a widely accepted the MDGs as the framework for the U.S. development efforts. Use the MDGs as
global initiative
a framework for U.S. official development assistance and measure performance
to significantly
reduce poverty) as agains the MDG benchmarks; and
their framework • Commit to an increase in official U.S. spending on relief and development aid
for foreign relief spending to the internationally agreed upon benchmark (accepted by all donors
and development except the U.S.) of 0.7 percent of GDP.
assistance and
country-level
competition. Results
Fully embracing the Millennium Development Goals offers an excellent opportunity
for the U.S. to reestablish its leadership in global development and maximize the
impact of its program dollars. In addition, by incorporating the MDGs into its overall
national development strategy, would provide the U.S. with a real framework to
combat global poverty.

1400 16th Street, NW
Suite 210
Washington, DC 20036
202-667-8227
reform@interaction.org

www.interaction.org
Background
The September 2000 Millennium Declaration ad- proach in areas such as malaria and HIV/AIDS and has cre-
opted by 189 nations including the United States repre- ated its own parallel system, the Millennium Challenge
sents a comprehensive, coordinated approach to halve Corporation, which most often does not address aid for
world poverty and hunger, eliminate gender inequalities, poor countries.
prevent and treat HIV/AIDS and other deadly diseases, pro-
tect the world’s environment, and increase access to edu-
cation, healthcare and to halve the proportion of people
who are unable to reach or to afford safe drinking water by
2015. There are eight goals Millennium Development Goals
(MDGs) each of which is related to a specific topic such as
poverty, education or health. Each goal has eighteen quan-
tifiable targets measured against forty eight indicators.
The Millennium Development Goals represents a com-
mon vision for the future. They serve as a powerful basis
for mobilizing resources for development and coordination
international development efforts, The quantitative nature
of the goals allows for a degree of accountability, making
it possible for countries to track progress and citizens to
hold governments and donors responsible for improving
people’s lives.
Increasing aid volume is one component of the Goal
8—which calls for creating a global partnership for devel-
opment—with the others being promoting fairer trade
practices and debt relief for the poorest countries. While aid
alone will not end extreme poverty, it is a vital component
of achieving success with the MDGs.
Although it has become fashionable in the current Ad-
ministration to wring one’s hands about progress on the
MDGs and warn of impending failure, it is important to rec-
ognize the real achievements. Several countries—notably
India and China—have seen large drops in the number of
people living in absolute poverty. While in 1990, 29 per-
cent of the world’s population lived on less than $1 a day,
by 2003 that share had fallen to just over 19 percent. In the
past eight years 40 million more children are in school; AIDS
deaths have been reduced by a million; and some 1.6 billion
people have gained access to safe drinking water. All of this
has been achieved through good political leadership and
adequate resources.
Success on a global scale will only occur if developing and
developed countries fulfill their commitments under the
global partnership for development. With active U.S. lead-
ership, it is possible to garner domestic public support for
tackling the challenges of ending poverty and encourage
the international community to keep its promises as well.
The United States still remains the largest aid donor in the
world in absolute terms, but ranks next to last among all
other donors in the percentage of its national wealth de-
voted to development assistance.
The U.S. has limited its interventions to a vertical ap-
POLICY November 2008

PAPER

The United States
and the MDGs

I
Previously published by n 2007, the mid-point to the MDG deadline, many donor nations have prepared national
InterAction, Bread for the progress reports. A conspicuous exception is the United States. To date, the U.S. government
World, Oxfam America, has not fully embraced the MDGs, which officials often portray as flawed and overly ambi-
and World Wildlife Fund,
November 2007. This is
tious. The U.S. does not use the MDGs as a framework for its official development assistance
an abridged version of (ODA), nor does it track spending according to the goals. The MDGs are, however, the first and
the full report. only framework that the entire world, encompassing donor and recipient countries, has ad-
opted to improve the human condition of the world’s poor.
The purpose of this report is to provide the missing stocktaking of the U.S. contributions
to the MDGs from a U.S. international non-profit (U.S. NGO) perspective. In undertaking this
study, a major challenge has been the limitation of data, since the federal budget does not
reflect the areas of the MDGs. Data was drawn from a range of sources, including the U.S. bud-
get, the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development/Development Assistance
Committee (OECD/DAC), the World Bank, and various UN agencies.
Overall, the report shows that U.S. development assistance does not have poverty reduc-
tion as its central purpose and continues to operate outside the global community’s poverty
reduction agenda. Only by aligning its contributions with the MDGs can the U.S. coordinate
effectively with other donor countries, best leverage the impact of its funds by building on the
efforts of nations with MDG plans, truly partner with the efforts of developing countries, and
play a leading role in the first truly global effort to improve the well-being of the world’s poor-
est and most vulnerable people.
Our assessment of the U.S. and the MDGs finds the following:
MDG 1 – Eradicate extreme poverty and hunger: The U.S. funds many programs world-
wide to promote economic growth and feed the hungry, but still lacks clear strategies for pro-
moting sustainable, poverty-reducing growth or addressing the root causes of hunger.
MDG 2 – Achieve universal primary education: The U.S. government has made an impor-
tant contribution to achieving Goal 2, more than doubling bilateral funding for basic educa-
tion from 2000 to 2005. In order to meet the global commitment to get all children in school,
the U.S. must make sure that resources are concentrated in countries with the greatest need.
MDG 3 – Promote gender equality and empower women: The U.S. is contributing to the
attainment of Goal 3 but does not track its contributions. Data from the OECD/DAC – as well
as actual U.S. programming – show that gender equality and women’s empowerment is not a
1400 16th Street, NW
U.S. policy and spending priority. Global poverty cannot be reduced without women and girls
Suite 210
Washington, DC 20036
at the center of any and all strategies.
202-667-8227
MDG 4 – Reduce child mortality: The U.S. needs to build on and expand its positive, long-
reform@interaction.org term track record in supporting and providing technical leadership in promoting child survival.
MDG 5 – Improve maternal health: The U.S. has made significant contributions to improv-
ing maternal health, but U.S. assistance for this sector has remained stagnant over the last de-
www.interaction.org cade – especially when compared to investments in other areas such as HIV/AIDS. Investment
in improving maternal health should be comprehensive and prehensive, coordinated approach to rid the world of pov-
not overlooked in the fight against any particular disease. erty. In adopting the declaration, 189 nations – including the
MDG 6 – Combat HIV/AIDS, malaria and other diseases: U.S. – pledged to work together to: halve world poverty and
The U.S. has been the global leader in the fight against HIV/ hunger; eliminate gender inequalities; prevent and treat HIV/
AIDS and continues to make significant investments. Chang- AIDS and other deadly diseases; protect the world’s environ-
es in U.S. policy are needed to make U.S.-funded programs ment; and provide education, healthcare, and clean water for
more effective. Especially important is building the capacity all. From the actions and targets set forth in the declaration,
of health systems and making women and girls a priority in the UN Secretariat developed eight goals, now known as the
program planning and implementation. Millennium Development Goals (MDGs), with eighteen quan-
MDG 7 – Ensure environmental sustainability: The U.S., tifiable targets measured against forty-eight indicators.
while making notable progress toward the achievement of The Millennium Development Goals represent a common
MDG 7 in some indicators, is falling short in its contributions vision for the future: “A world with less poverty, hunger and
overall. Specifically, the U.S. has made strong progress in disease, greater survival prospects for mothers and their
reducing consumption of chlorofluorocarbons, but carbon infants, better educated children, equal opportunities for
emissions and energy use remain high. In order to reduce women and a healthier environment.”1 As such, they serve
poverty, the U.S. must commit to global efforts to respond as a powerful basis for mobilizing resources for develop-
to climate change. The U.S. should also require that climate ment and coordinating international development efforts.
adaptation be integrated into its development programs in The quantitative nature of the goals also allows for a degree
order to reduce the risk that climate change will undermine of accountability, making it possible for countries to track
the effectiveness of its current investments in poverty alle- progress and citizens to hold governments responsible for
viation, health and the environment. improving people’s lives.
MDG 8 – ODA: In absolute terms, the U.S. has been the The MDGs are also the first international goals to recog-
leading donor of official development assistance for most nize that eradicating poverty worldwide will only be pos-
of the past sixty years. The global development community, sible through cooperation between rich and poor countries.
however, regards ODA as a percent of gross national income, This fact is explicitly acknowledged in Goal 8, which calls for
not volume, as the best measure of a donor’s relative contri- a “global partnership for development.” Though individual
bution. Here, the U.S. continues to fall short of expectations countries are responsible for achieving Goals 1-7, Goal 8 calls
for a country of such tremendous wealth and generosity. on developed countries to support the development efforts
MDG 8 – Trade: U.S. trade preferences are promising, but of poor countries committed to poverty reduction by: in-
the U.S. has yet to live up to its commitment to building a creasing and improving aid, providing more debt relief and
trading system that is open, rule-based, predictable and non- establishing a more fair trading system. In turn, developing
discriminatory, and that accounts for the special needs of least countries have pledged to practice good governance and
developed countries. By committing to a global trade round, strengthen the rule of law.
reforming the farm bill, and improving trade preferences, the July 2007 marked the midway point between the adoption
U.S. can take important strides in helping poor farmers. of the MDGs and the 2015 target date for achieving most of
MDG 8 – Debt relief: The U.S. is on track to meet its MDG the goals. UN reports show that the world overall is close to
commitment for debt relief and has been a leader in remov- meeting the goal of halving the proportion of people living
ing debt as an obstacle for development. Offering terms in extreme poverty, though this is in large part due to the
more generous than other Paris Club members, the U.S. has remarkable reduction in poverty rates in China and India.
cancelled 100 percent of bilateral debts with HIPC countries. Countries are also making progress in achieving universal
Additionally, the U.S. pledged 100 percent of its target contri- primary education.2
bution to IDA, effectively freeing up much needed resources According to World Bank data, East Asia is closest to achiev-
for development. The U.S. can also exercise its leadership to ing all the MDGs.3 For example, it has already surpassed two
extend debt relief to include more debt-burdened countries targets: halving the percentage of people living in extreme
and to ensure money saved in debt service actually goes poverty and reducing the proportion of children under five
into needed public investment. who are underweight. In contrast, sub-Saharan Africa is far
In conclusion, we call on the U.S. to focus its official devel-
opment assistance on poverty reduction and to align with 1 UN Statistics Division. “About the Millennium Development Goals
the global development community around the Millennium Indicators.” United Nations. http://mdgs.un.org/unsd/mdg/Host.
Development Goals. aspx?Content=Indicators/About.htm.
At the September 2000 United Nations Millennium Sum- 2 United Nations, The Millennium Development Goals Report 2007, (New
York: United Nations, 2007), 4.
mit, the largest-ever gathering of world leaders adopted 3 World Bank. Global Monitoring Report 2007: Confronting the Challenges of
the Millennium Declaration, an agreement to take a com- Gender Equality and Fragile States, (Washington, DC: World Bank, 2007).
behind on many of the goals. Despite some progress in re- assistance, this section discusses aid’s changing purposes,
ducing the percentage of people living in extreme poverty, recipients and funding. The remainder of the report focuses
the absolute number of poor remains roughly the same due on whether or to what extent:
to population growth.4 Likewise, though the region is mak- • U.S. ODA is contributing to the attainment of MDGs 1 to 6.
ing progress towards achieving universal primary education, • The U.S. is on-track to meet MDG commitments in four
in 2005, 30 percent of primary school-aged still children re- areas:
mained out of school.5 In sub-Saharan Africa, child and mater- 1. Environment: curbing the loss of environmental resources
nal mortality remain high, and it is one of the regions with the in both the U.S. and developing countries (Goal 7).
greatest proportion of children going hungry. In addition, the 2. Aid: providing ODA to low- and middle-income countries
number of deaths from AIDS in the region has increased.6 (Goal 8).
The success of individual countries demonstrates that under 3. Trade: opening the U.S. market to goods from those coun-
certain conditions achieving the MDGs is possible, but success tries (Goal 8).
on a global scale will only occur if developing and developed 4. Debt: lifting the crushing debt burden of developing coun-
countries fulfill their commitments under the global partner- tries (Goal 8).
ship for development. If the world is to meet the MDGs by In 1947, to provide aid to rebuild European countries left
2015, as countries pledged to do, developing countries must in ruins in the aftermath of World War II, Secretary of State
implement policies and interventions that benefit the poor- George Marshall announced the creation of the Marshall
est and most disadvantaged segments of their populations. Plan (1947-1951), the first U.S. bilateral assistance program.
For their part, developed countries must keep their promises Heartened by the Marshall Plan’s tremendous success, Presi-
– namely, more and better aid, less debt and more fair trade. dent Truman, in his 1949 inauguration speech, announced a
“bold new plan” to provide assistance to developing coun-
U.S. Official Development Assistance tries as a key component of U.S. foreign policy.10
The OECD’s Development Assistance Committee (DAC) U.S. foreign aid did not, however, have a department to
defines foreign assistance as:7 administer it until President Kennedy established the U.S.
“Financial flows, technical assistance and commodities Agency for International Development (USAID) in 1961. Al-
provided by donor governments: (1) to promote economic though USAID had primary responsibility for managing U.S.
development and welfare as their main objectives (thus ex- foreign assistance programs directly or jointly with the De-
cluding aid for military or other non-development purpos- partment of State, over the next forty-plus years, a growing
es); and (2) as grants or concessional loans.”8 number of domestic agencies and the Department of De-
The largest category of foreign assistance is ODA: aid pro- fense (DOD) began managing foreign aid programs.11
vided to low- and middle-income countries.9 From 2002 to 2005, President Bush created three new for-
After a very brief overview of the history of U.S. foreign eign assistance agencies and initiatives:
• The President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR):
4 Ibid, 41. a bilateral commitment to support HIV/AIDS prevention,
5 United Nations, The Millennium Development Goals Report 2007, (New care and treatment programs primarily in a limited num-
York: United Nations, 2007), 11. ber of “focus countries.” A presidential appointee who re-
6 Ibid, 18.
ports directly to the Secretary of State heads the Office of
7 Established in 1961, the Organization for Economic Cooperation and
Development (OECD) is a grouping of thirty countries “committed to de- the Global AIDS Coordinator (OGAC) and is responsible for
mocracy and the market economy. Its mission is to help its member coun- managing PEPFAR.
tries achieve sustainable economic growth and employment and to raise • The Millennium Challenge Corporation (MCC): a U.S. gov-
the standard of living in member countries while maintaining financial ernment corporation, created in 2004 to combat poverty
stability. The United States was a founding member. The Development
through “sustainable, transformative economic growth.”
Assistance Committee (DAC) is a twenty-two-member committee of the
OECD which deals with development co-operation matters. To enable • The President’s Malaria Initiative (PMI): a five-year pro-
comparisons of the ODA of member countries, the DAC has established gram to reduce deaths due to malaria by 50 percent in fif-
common definitions and methodologies for ODA reporting. The DAC is teen African countries. According to the administration,
regarded as the authoritative source of information on ODA. USAID “in conjunction with the Department of Health
8 Steve Radalet. “A Primer on Foreign Aid.” In Working Paper Number 92.
and Human Services’ Centers for Disease Control and Pre-
(Washington, DC: Center for Global Development, 2006), 4.
9 The DAC classifies aid into three categories: (1) official development assis- vention, the Department of State, the White House, and
tance, the largest; (2) official assistance, and (3) private voluntary assistance.
Official assistance (OA) is provided to higher income countries with per 10 Baltimore County Public Schools. A Brief History of U.S. Foreign Aid. 2007,
capita incomes of more than $9000. Private voluntary assistance includes http://www.bcps.org/offices/lis/models/foreignaid/history.html.
grants from NGOs, religious groups, charities, foundations, and private 11 Development Assistance Committee. DAC Peer Review of the United
companies. See Steve Radalet. “A Primer on Foreign Aid.” In Working Paper States, (Paris: Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development,
Number 92. (Washington, DC: Center for Global Development, 2006), 4. 2006), 45.
Figure 1. The Changing Management of U.S. ODA
Source: OECD (2006), DAC Peer Review of the United States

others” leads the initiative. changes in U.S. ODA since the 1960s.
As a consequence, by 2005, more than twenty-six govern- All of this has changed dramatically since September 11,
ment units were managing and implementing U.S. foreign 2001. In September 2002, the Bush administration published
assistance programs.12 the National Security Strategy of the United States. In it, the
At the heart of any discussion of U.S. foreign aid is a debate administration articulated a national security policy that,
about the motivations and objectives for giving aid. Why do for the first time, established global development as one of
we give aid? Why should we give aid? There have always been three pillars (the 3 Ds) of U.S. national security – the others
multiple, and competing, stated purposes for U.S. foreign being defense and diplomacy.13
assistance. Fundamentally pragmatic considerations have Some in the development community applauded the ad-
been the principal drivers of U.S. aid policy. ministration’s decision to raise development to a new place of
From the 1950s onward, administrations have described prominence in U.S. foreign policy. Others have voiced concerns,
ODA as a “foreign policy tool,” intended primarily to serve to paraphrase Orwell, that “all ‘Ds’ might be equal, but some
U.S. security, political and economic interests: ‘Ds’ would be more equal than others.” In effect, their concern
• From the 1950s to the collapse of the Soviet Union in 1991, was that U.S. development policy would be subordinated to
aid’s primary purpose was “containing communism.” defense and diplomacy. As evidence, they cited the fact that
• After signing of the Camp David Accords in 1979, “peace U.S. foreign aid programs had already been recast to focus on
and security” in the Middle East became a primary focus of their contribution to winning the war on terrorism. Indeed, the
aid. As a result, Israel and Egypt have been the largest aid 2002 foreign assistance budget justification explicitly named
recipients from 1979 to the present – with one exception: the war on terrorism as the top foreign aid priority.14
in FY 2004, aid to Iraq was seven times aid to Israel. On January 19, 2006, Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice
• For a brief moment from the mid- to late-1990s, foreign announced her intent to reform and restructure U.S. foreign
aid’s two stated objectives were “sustainable develop- assistance, aimed, she argued, at “transformational develop-
ment” and “opening markets.” ment.” The stated goals of the process were to ensure that
Development in its own right has been only one of several foreign assistance is used effectively to meet the Adminis-
foreign aid objectives. What has changed over the past sixty tration’s broad foreign policy objectives and to better align
years is the level of importance policy-makers have attached
to development, the approaches taken to promote devel- 13 White House. The National Security Strategy of the United States of
opment, funding and primary recipients. Figure 1 presents America, (Washington, DC: White House, 2002).
14 Curt Tarnoff and Larry Nowels. Foreign Aid: An Introductory Overview
of U.S. Programs and Policy, (Washington, DC: Congressional Research
12 Ibid. Service, 2004).
USAID and State Department aid activities.15 In addition, the framework linked the country categories
That day, Secretary Rice also announced creation of a new to five strategic objectives:
position, the Director of Foreign Assistance (DFA), who would 1. Peace and security.
serve concurrently at a level equivalent to Deputy Secretary 2. Governing justly and democratically.
in the State Department and as USAID Administrator. As the 3. Investing in people.
first DFA, Ambassador Randall Tobias led the reform process; 4. Economic growth.
the acting DFA, Henrietta H. Fore, will now lead its refine- 5. Humanitarian assistance.
ment and implementation.16
By early 2006, the DFA had developed a new comprehen- The foreign assistance framework shows the relationship
sive framework for U.S. foreign assistance. The framework between these objectives, the country categories, program
created five country categories. areas and funding accounts.
• Rebuilding: countries in, or emerging from, internal or ex- In comparing past aid allocations with the current admin-
ternal conflicts. istration’s request for FY 2008, we found:
• Transforming: low and lower-middle income countries • By 2005, U.S. foreign aid funding had reached a record
that meet certain performance. criteria based on good high. It is likely to grow more in the FY 2008 appropria-
governance and sound economic policies. tions.
• Developing: low and lower-middle income countries that U.S. total gross ODA (in constant 2004 dollars) more than
are not yet meeting performance criteria. doubled – from $13.114 billion in 2001 to $27.682 billion
• Sustaining Partnership: upper-middle income countries in 2005.17 The administration’s total request for FY 2008 is a
with which the United States maintains economic, trade, 12 percent increase over FY 2006.18
and security relationships beyond foreign aid. • Foreign aid has become more “militarized” as the pro-
• Restrictive: authoritarian regimes – most ineligible for U.S. portion of aid managed by USAID has declined sharply.
aid – with significant freedom and human rights issues. In 1998 USAID managed 64.3 percent of U.S. ODA. It has
since fallen to 50.2 percent in 2002 and 38.8 percent in
The DFA also added a sixth “global” category to encom- 2005. ODA managed by the Department of Defense, on
pass global or regional programs that transcend any one the other hand, rose from 3.5 percent in 1998 to 5.6 per-
country’s borders.
17 Development Assistance Committee. DAC Peer Review of the United
15 Condoleezza Rice. Remarks on Foreign Assistance, (Washington, DC: States, (Paris: Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development,
U.S. Department of State, 2007), http://www.state.gov/secretary/ 2006), 25.
rm/2006/59408.htm. 18 Congressional Research Service. State, Foreign Operations, and Related
16 At the time this report was completed, Mrs. Fore had not been confirmed Programs: FY2008 Appropriations (RL34023), by Connie Veillette and Su-
by the Senate. We assume that her confirmation is imminent. san B. Epstein, (Washington, DC: June 13, 2007), 12.

Table 1. Selected Sector Funding, FY 2006 and FY 2008
(in millions of current US$)
Sector FY06 FY08 Request % Change
Good Governance $354.22 $507.39 43.2%
Human Rights $90.32 $81.98 -9.2%
Maternal and Child Health $738.85 $608.53 -17.6%
Family Planning/ Reproductive Health $429.82 $332.29 -22.7%
Basic Education $520.80 $535.30 2.8%
Trade and Investment $408.74 $238.58 -41.6%
Agriculture $561.99 $498.72 -11.3%
Environment $292.11 $248.73 -14.9%
Counter-terrorism $157.05 $185.27 18.0%
Rule of Law $210.73 $317.28 50.6%
Source: U.S. Department of State Foreign Operations Congressional Budget Justification, FY 2008, and CRS calculations.
Governing Justly and
Objectives Peace and Security Investing in People
Democratically

Accounts within State/USAID FMF, TI, IMET, ESF, INCLE, NADR, PKO, DA, TI, SEED, FSA, DF, ESF, DA, CSH, ESF, IDFA, IO&P, FSA,
ACI, FSA, SEED INCLE, IO&P, ACI SEED, GHAI, ACI, Title II

Other USG Agency Contributions

Foreign Assistance Program Areas Counter Terrorism Rule of Law and Human Health
Combating WMD Rights Education
Stabilization Operations and Good Governance Social Services and
Defense Reform Political Competition and Protection for Vulnerable
Counternarcotics Consensus-Building Populations
Transnational Crime Civil Society
Conflict Mitigation and Response

Category Definition

Rebuilding States in or emerging from Prevent or mitigate state failure and/ Assist in creating and/or Start or restart the delivery of
Countries and rebuilding after internal or violent conflict. stabilizing a legitimate and critical social services, including
or external conflict. democratic government and health and educational
a supportive environment for facilities, and begin building or
civil society and media. rebuilding institutional capacity.

Developing States with low or lower- Address key remaining challenges to Support policies and Encourage social policies
Countries middle income, not yet security and law enforcement. programs that accelerate that deepen the ability of
meeting MCC performance and strengthen public institutions to establish
criteria, and the criterion institutions and the creation appropriate roles for the public
related to political rights. of a more vibrant local and private sector in service
government, civil society and delivery.
media.

Transforming States with low or lower- Nurture progress toward Provide limited resources Provide financial resources and
Countries middle income, meeting MCC partnerships on security and law and technical assistance limited technical assistance to
performance criteria, and the enforcement. to reinforce democratic sustain improved livelihoods.
criterion related to political institutions.
rights.

Sustaining States with upper-middle Support strategic partnerships Address issues of mutual Address issues of mutual
Partnership income or greater for which addressing security, CT, WMD, and interest. interest.
Countries U.S. support is provided to counter-narcotics.
sustain partnerships, progress,
and peace.

Restrictive States of concern where there Prevent the acquisition/proliferation Foster effective democracy Address humanitarian needs.
Countries are significant governance of WMD, support CT and counter- and responsible sovereignty.
issues. narcotics. Create local capacity for
fortification of civil society
and path to democratic
governance.

Global or Activities that advance the five objectives, transcend a single country’s borders, and are addressed outside a country strategy.
Regional
Economic Growth Humanitarian Assistance

DA, ESF, SEED, FSA, IO&P, ACI, Title II IDFA, MRA, ERMA, ACI, Title II

End Goal of U.S. Graduation
Macroeconomic Foundation for Growth Protection, Assistance and Solutions Foreign Assistance Trajectory
Trade and Investment Disaster Readiness
Financial Sector Migration Management
Infrastructure
Agriculture
Private Sector Competitiveness
Economic Opportunity
Environment

Assist in the construction or reconstruction Address immediate needs of refugee, Stable environment for good Advance to the Developing
of key internal infrastructure and market displaced, and other affected groups. governance, increased availability or Transforming Category.
mechanisms to stabilize the economy. of essential social services, and
initial progress to create policies
and institutions upon which future
progress will rest.

Encourage economic policies and Encourage reduced need for future Continued progress in expanding Advance to the Transforming
strengthen institutional capacity to HA by introducing prevention and and deepening democracy, Category.
promote broad-based growth. mitigation strategies, while continuing strengthening public and private
to address emergency needs. institutions, and supporting policies
that promote economic growth and
poverty reduction.

Provide financial resources and technical Address emergency needs on a short- Government, civil society and Advance to the Sustaining
assistance to promote broad-based term basis, as necessary. private sector institutions capable of Partnership Category or
growth. sustaining development progress. graduate from foreign
assistance.

Create and promote sustained Address emergency needs on a short- Continued partnership as Continue partnership or
partnerships on trade and investment. term basis, as necessary. strategically appropriate where U.S. graduate from foreign
support is necessary to maintain assistance.
progress and peace.

Promote a market-based economy. Address emergency needs on a short- Civil society empowered to demand Advance to other relevant
term basis, as necessary. more effective democracies and foreign assistance category.
states respectful of human dignity,
accountable to their citizens, and
responsible towards their neighbors.

Achievement of foreign assistance Determined based on
goal and objectives. criteria specific to the global
or regional objective.
cent in 2002 to 21.7 percent in 2005 (See Figure 1).
• Aid would become more concentrated by region.
Aid to Africa nearly doubled: from 13.1 percent FY 2001 to
22.3 percent in FY 2006. The president’s FY 2008 request
for more HIV/AIDS funding would give the Africa region
the largest overall increase in aid (53.8 percent). This in-
crease, however, masks decreases in basic education, ag-
ricultural sector productivity, water supply and sanitation,
and family planning and reproductive health funding for
Africa.19
In FY 2008, the Near East Region and South and Central
Asia would receive increases of 3.6 and 5.5 percent respec-
tively – due to increased funding for Iraq, Afghanistan,
and Pakistan. Aid to these regions had already more than
doubled from FY 2004 to FY 2006.20
The president’s request would cut funding for Latin Amer-
ica by 9.1 percent, largely due to cuts in basic education,
environment, and humanitarian assistance.
• Funding for security would go up, but development
down.
Table 1 compares funding levels for specific sectors be-
tween FY 2006 and FY 2008. Counter-terrorism and rule
of law would receive increases of 18.0 and 50.6 percent re-
spectively. Good governance would receive an increase in
funding; and yet human rights funding would decrease.
Also cut are maternal and child health, family planning
and reproductive health, trade and investment, agricul-
ture, and the environment.

19 Congressional Research Service. U.S. Foreign Aid to East and South Asia:
Selected Recipients (RL31362), by Thomas Lum (Washington, DC: Updat-
ed August 22, 2007), 5.
20 Congressional Research Service. State, Foreign Operations, and Related
Programs: FY2008 Appropriations (RL34023), by Connie Veillette and Su-
san B. Epstein, (Washington, DC: June 13, 2007), 15.
POLICY November 2008

BRIEF

Contributors to Millennium Development
Goals Policy Brief

Organization URL

Bread for the World www.bread.org
CARE www.care.org
International Youth Foundation www.iyfnet.org
Oxfam America www.oxfamamerica.org
Women Thrive Worldwide www.womenthrive.org
World Wildlife Fund www.worldwildlife.org/

1400 16th Street, NW
Suite 210
Washington, DC 20036
202-667-8227
reform@interaction.org

www.interaction.org
Strategy
National
Development

National Development Strategy
POLICY November 2008

BRIEF

A Call for a Comprehensive
National Development Strategy
Recommendations
Problem
Under the direction of a deputy national security advisor for stabilization and
The U.S. Govern- development, develop and approve a national development strategy with the goal
ment’s system for of unifying the administration and operation of all U.S. Government foreign assis-
allocating, managing,
tance. The Administration’s effort should be coordinated with the Senate and House
delivering and moni-
toring foreign assis- Authorizing Committees’ efforts to draft and pass a new Foreign Assistance Act.
tance is fragmented This recommendation is made in close coordination with the Modernizing Foreign
and lacks strategic Assistance Network and ConnectUS.
direction. There is no
centralized manage-
ment or oversight of
Actions
United States gov- • Nominate early a USAID Administrator to be sworn in as part of the national security
ernment programs.
team (Secretary of State, Secretary of Defense, and National Security Advisor) on
The proliferation of
Presidential Direc- January 20, 2009 to ensure a smooth transition and provide direction and vision
tives, Congressional for U.S. assistance programs throughout the world including Afghanistan, Iraq, and
earmarks, new as- other potentially crisis prone areas;
sistance structures • Create a deputy security advisor position at the National Security Council (NSC)
and funding streams, and staff it comparably to other directorates at the NSC. Charge the new deputy to
stymies the achieve-
coordinate the effort to lead and write a government-wide national development
ments of America’s
foreign assistance strategy;
goals of peace and • Write and promulgate a national development strategy which would be updated
stability. every two years which would, in clear concise terms, define the overarching goals in
major areas of the U.S. foreign assistance program;
• Rewrite and authorize a Foreign Assistance Act which would harmonize priorities
among U.S. Government agencies, multilateral institutions, and recipient govern-
ments to assure the best use of limited U.S. Government development resources; and
• Submit a budget in March 2009 which would decrease the military develop-
ment budget and re-allocate development funding to a central empowered US
Department for Global and Human Development.

1400 16th Street, NW
Suite 210
Results
Washington, DC 20036
The national development strategy will bring cohesion and coherence to the multi-
202-667-8227
reform@interaction.org faceted foreign assistance programs sponsored by the U.S. government. It will identify
overlapping agendas, programs working at cross purposes and gaps in U.S. government
development assistance programming.
www.interaction.org
Background
As identified in the 2002 National Security Strat- tors including: agriculture, civil society, economic growth,
egy and, reaffirmed in the 2006 version, the U.S. national se- education, environment, good governance, health, and rule
curity relies on three pillars: diplomacy, defense and devel- of law. Gender equality is essential for meaningful progress
opment. But U.S. foreign assistance (the development pillar) and would be a guiding principle for DGHD activities in all
is broken and needs to be fixed. This will require a serious sectors. InterAction proposes all functions relating to devel-
administration-lead and congressional bipartisan effort, opment and humanitarian assistance presently under the
addressing a number of major initiatives including agree- Department of State’s Bureau for Population, Refugees and
ment on our goals in foreign assistance and the principles Migration housed in the DGHD. Department of Agriculture
that should guide those efforts, rebuilding and rationaliz- programs relating to food aid would move to the DGHD, as
ing budgets and organizational structures, and new legisla- would smaller programs currently located in the Depart-
tion to reflect these priorities. All are major tasks and must ments of Commerce and Labor and elsewhere. Recently cre-
be undertaken together. Each is critical for the success of ated programs that give the Department of Defense (DoD)
the others. To that end, an effort undertaken at the direc- a large role in development promotion would move to
tion of the President by the newly created position, deputy the DGHD. However, under the overall coordination of the
national security advisor for stabilization and development, DGHD, DoD would continue to play a key role in many com-
would look at and bring together the fragmented foreign plex international humanitarian relief operations.
assistance programs under one all encompassing national The Department for Global and Human Development
development strategy. The development of the strategy would receive its budget from Congress and make deci-
would include the incorporation of the Millennium De- sions on the proper allocation of funds across countries and
velopment Goals (MDG) as a framework for the delivery, sectors. It would have a direct relationship with the Office
monitoring and evaluation of U.S. foreign assistance. It is of Management and Budget on budget issues; its budget
our belief that when this stock-taking is completed, it will would not be vetted by the Department of State. The De-
become clear that a major a re-organization and consolida- partment of State would play an important role in provid-
tion of foreign assistance programs should be undertaken. ing advice to the DGHD on important diplomatic consider-
In cooperation with Congress, the national development ations to take into account when considering allocations,
strategy process would support and align itself with the re- but ultimate decisions on budget levels would be based
authorization of the 1961 Foreign Assistance Act, a broken, fundamentally on development and humanitarian criteria.
unwieldy instrument of the Cold War era. Economic Support Fund (ESF) levels would be set by the De-
With the consolidation of various foreign assistance partment of State after examining DGHD allocation levels.
structures including the Millennium Challenge Corporation
(MCC), the President’s Malaria Initiative, and the President’s
Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR), InterAction be-
lieves, at the heart of the organizational restructuring, there
will be recognition of the need to create a new Cabinet-level
Department for Global and Human Development (DGHD).
Its mandate would be to promote people-centered, sustain-
able development and provide humanitarian assistance. It
would effectively coordinate the use of U.S. foreign assis-
tance funds and give development the seat at the table it
needs to be an strong and effective counterpart to the De-
partments of State and Defense. The Secretary of the DGHD
would be the lead voice within the U.S. Government, below
the President, on development assistance and humanitar-
ian issues and a member of the National Security Council.
After a government-wide assessment and evaluation of the
myriad of U.S. foreign assistance programs has been under-
taken, numerous development assistance and humanitarian
programs presently scattered across various departments
and agencies, would naturally be placed in the DGHD. The
DGHD would manage programs in key development sec-
POLICY November 2008

PAPER

Proposed Major Components
and Organization of a
Cabinet-level Department
for Global and Human
Development

I
Previously published by nterAction, the largest alliance of U.S.-based development and humanitarian relief non-gov-
InterAction, July 2008. ernmental organizations, has called for the creation of a Department for Global and Human
Development (DGHD). This paper provides detail on the proposed components of such a
department. It builds on InterAction’s paper that explores the reasons a new department is
needed.

Why a new department?
The Department for Global and Human Development’s fundamental mandate will be to
promote people-centered, sustainable development, broadly defined and inclusive of the Mil-
lennium Development Goals,1 and provide humanitarian assistance. The long-term goal of its
activities is a stable, sustainable world of free, democratic, economically prosperous states in
which the worst aspects of poverty have been eliminated.
We believe this name emphasizes the major attributes that the new department must
have:
• Global because the department will focus on global issues. The DGHD will lead U.S. Gov-
ernment international programs on HIV/AIDS, avian flu and other health threats, as well as
climate change and biodiversity conservation. It will play a role within the U.S. Government
on trade issues with the developing world. The department also will be global in its focus on
participation and collaboration with recipient country governments, other donors, multilat-
eral organizations, and, crucially, with civil society.
• Human because the department will focus on people-centered development. Its core
purpose will be to improve human well-being and alleviate the worst aspects of human
suffering.
• Development because the department will focus on sustainable development. It will de-
velop and manage coordinated approaches to alleviate poverty, promote sustainable, equi-
1400 16th Street, NW
table economic growth, and respond to global challenges.
Suite 210
Washington, DC 20036
202-667-8227
reform@interaction.org 1 The eight Millennium Development Goals are to: (1) eradicate extreme poverty and hunger; (2) achieve universal
primary education; (3) promote gender equality and empower women; (4) reduce child mortality; (5) improve ma-
ternal health; (6) combat HIV/AIDS, malaria, and other diseases; (7) ensure environmental sustainability; (8) develop
www.interaction.org a global partnership for development. The Bush Administration has endorsed these goals.
In 1961, when President John F. Kennedy called for greater to the fragmentation of foreign assistance programs
coherence and cohesion in U.S. civilian foreign assistance across the Executive Branch and weakened the authority
programs, he said this: of USAID.”2
If our foreign aid funds are to be prudently and effec- • Instead of a multilateral approach, the U.S. too often has
tively used, we need a whole new set of basic concepts taken a unilateral approach, not coordinating with other
and principles: interested governments, organizations, businesses, and
• Unified administration and operation – a single agency civil society structures.
in Washington and the field, equipped with a flexible • Instead of attracting personnel of “the highest quality from
set of tools, in place of several competing and confus- every part of the nation,” today’s USAID is a shell, unable to
ing aid units. implement President Kennedy’s vision. USAID, created by
• Country plans – a carefully thought through program President Kennedy, and still the primary actor responsible
tailored to meet the needs and the resource potential for U.S. foreign assistance programs, today is weak, poorly
of each individual country, instead of a series of indi- organized, and has been demoralized and eviscerated by
vidual, unrelated projects. Frequently, in the past, our severe staff shortages.
development goals and projects have not been under- • Instead of a clear separation between military and civilian
taken as integral steps in a long-range economic de- assistance programs, we see today greater and greater en-
velopment program. croachment of military personnel and programs into what
• Long-term planning and financing – the only way to should be civilian foreign assistance programs.
make meaningful and economical commitments. …
InterAction has drawn on the insights of President Kenne-
Special attention to those nations most willing and able dy (see Appendix I), on recent reports from various organiza-
to mobilize their own resources, make necessary social and tions and commissions (see Appendix II), and on broad expe-
economic reforms, engage in long-range planning, and rience from six decades of nongovernmental organizations’
make the other efforts necessary if these are to reach the (NGOs) work on development and humanitarian issues in
stage of self-sustaining growth. developing its recommendations on the structure of a Cab-
• Multilateral approach – a program and level of commit- inet-level department for Global and Human Development.
ments designed to encourage and complement an in- Aspects of this proposal are closely modeled on the recom-
creased effort by other industrialized nations. mendations of the 2004 report of the Commission on Weak
• A new agency with new personnel – drawing upon the States and U.S. National Security sponsored by the Center for
most competent and dedicated career servants now in the Global Development. The Commission’s report, On the Brink:
field, and attracting the highest quality from every part of Weak States and U.S. National Security, recommended “that
the nation. the administration establish an integrated development
• Separation from military assistance – our program of aid strategy and implement it within a single, Cabinet-level de-
to social and economic development must be seen on its velopment agency.”
own merits, and judged in the light of its vital and distinc- InterAction endorses the central recommendation of the
tive contribution to our basic security needs. … Commission on Weak States and U.S. National Security (see
Appendix III):
President Kennedy’s concepts and principles stand the test The new Cabinet department would … incor-
of time to guide a new reform of U.S. foreign assistance pro- porate USAID, the Millennium Challenge Corpora-
grams. It is astonishing how far the U.S. Government has drift- tion, and some foreign assistance programs run
ed from these clear, compelling ideas over the last fifty years: by the Departments of State, Defense, Health and
• Instead of a unified administration and operation, today Human Services, and Agriculture. Of course, the
we have multiple “competing and confusing aid units” United States will always deploy some economic
scattered throughout the U.S. Government. assistance purely in support of diplomatic goals;
• Instead of “carefully thought through” country plans, to- resources for that purpose should remain in the
day we too often have “a series of individual, unrelated State Department. In addition, although Treasury
projects.” has been consistently effective in working with
• Instead of long-term planning and financing, we too often Congress to ensure appropriate U.S. leadership in
have short-term plans and funding. the multilateral development banks, those activi-
• The Millennium Challenge Account and Corporation were
created in 2003 to bring “(s)pecial attention to those na-
2 Radelet, Steve, Center for Global Development Essay, “Modernizing For-
tions most willing and able ... to reach the stage of self- eign Assistance for the 21st Century: An Agenda for the Next U.S. Presi-
sustaining growth,” but this promising move also “added dent,” March 2008, p. 7.
ties ultimately should move from Treasury to the USAID would become part of the DGHD. All international
new development agency as well, if it is to meet the health programs with in-country projects would become
challenges we have outlined. part of the DGHD, including PEPFAR and the President’s Ma-
laria Initiative. The DGHD would manage programs in key
A new Department for Global and Human Development development sectors, including agriculture, civil society,
would replace the weakened U.S. Agency for International economic growth, education, environment, good gover-
Development (USAID). The current national security strategy nance, health and rule of law. InterAction strongly believes
has recognized that diplomacy, defense and development that gender equality is essential for global progress and se-
are the three pillars of our national security. Yet the current curity. Gender equality and women’s empowerment should
administrative structure of the executive branch leaves the be guiding principles for DGHD activities in all sectors.
development component without the high-level, central- All functions relating to development and humanitarian
ized organization it needs to fulfill its role as an equal pil- assistance presently under the Department of State’s Bureau
lar. The DGHD’s Cabinet-level designation would give it the for Population, Refugees and Migration (PRM), including
clout to insist on the importance of effective development all non-domestic funding for migration and refugee affairs
strategies without being drowned out by louder voices in would be housed within the DGHD. Programs in the De-
the government arguing for an emphasis on other goals, partment of Agriculture (USDA) relating to food aid would
often to the detriment of development. An independent also move to the DGHD as would smaller programs in the
department-level voice dedicated to advocating for devel- Departments of Commerce and Labor and elsewhere. The
opment should facilitate striking the appropriate balance U.S. Government presently runs six poorly coordinated food
between various assistance tools and the valid imperatives aid programs, some of which have conflicting objectives.
of the Departments of State and Defense. Even a strength- While USDA would retain a role regarding food aid, these
ened USAID would lack the ability to get a seat at the table programs would be coordinated and rationalized under the
when these major decisions are discussed, could not coordi- DGHD, and would be run by the new department.
nate other Cabinet-level departments effectively, and would Recently created programs that give the Department of
not have the same ability to attract high quality staff “from Defense (DoD) a large role in development promotion also
every part of the nation.”3 would be moved to the DGHD. However, under the overall
coordination of the DGHD, DoD would continue to play a
Major Components and Organization4 key role in many complex international humanitarian relief
The Secretary of the DGHD would be the lead voice within operations.
the U.S. Government below the President on development All development programs in the Baltic States, Eastern
assistance and humanitarian issues and a leading advisor Europe and the states of the former Soviet Union presently
to the President on international issues. To ensure that this coordinated by the Department of State would move to the
voice is always heard when it must be, the DGHD Secretary DGHD.
would be a member of both the National Security Council The Millennium Challenge Corporation (MCC) would be-
and the National Economic Council. The DGHD would have come part of the DGHD. The many positive aspects of the
a seat on all major interagency groups where development MCC should be retained, including its emphasis on the
and/or humanitarian issues are discussed. provision of substantial, multi-year funds to well-governed
Most development assistance and humanitarian pro- democratic states, country ownership, transparent eligibility
grams, presently scattered across various U.S. Government criteria, the elimination of tied aid, and careful consultation
departments and agencies, would be placed in the DGHD. with local and international NGOs.
Roles regarding environmental issues would be divided
among the DGHD, the Department of State, the Environ-
3 In her book Security by Other Means, Lael Brainard of the Brookings
Institution, describes the current fragmentation of foreign assistance mental Protection Agency (EPA), the Department of the In-
within the U.S. Government, and after analyzing various models for terior, and other relevant parts of the U.S. Government, with
structure concludes that a more centralized and elevated organization the DGHD responsible for funding activities across the devel-
(i.e., a Cabinet-level department) is required to effectively utilize devel- oping world to respond both to global environmental chal-
opment assistance.
lenges and local environmental issues in particular countries
4 This section is not intended as an exhaustive presentation of the various
structural components of the DGHD. It does not discuss the need for cer- and regions, and the State Department in the lead in nego-
tain functions, such as legislative and public affairs, program and policy tiations on climate change and other critical environmental
coordination, and management and accounting, which any government issues. EPA would provide technical experts and assistance.
department must have. Instead, this section focuses on those structural The DGHD would coordinate closely with the State De-
components which would shift from various departments and agencies
partment’s Bureau for International Organizations regarding
to the DGHD, and particularly on structures where the focus and activities
are not obvious and require some explanation. U.S. support for international organizations, such as UNICEF,
the UN Development Program, the UN High Commissioner Appendix IV provides a notional allocation of roles be-
for Refugees (UNHCR) and the UN Office for the Coordina- tween the DGHD and various departments and agencies
tion of Humanitarian Affairs, whose primary missions relate presently funded through the 150 Account.
to development promotion and/or humanitarian response. The DGHD must be structured to work effectively with the
A new, joint office for the International Financial Institu- variety of private actors also working to promote global and
tions (IFIs) and debt should be created with personnel from human development. The HELP Commission’s recent report
both the DGHD and Treasury. The DGHD would lead on is- on foreign assistance reform, “Beyond Assistance,”6 notes:
sues concerning the World Bank and other Multilateral De- “Private philanthropists and foundations, multinational cor-
velopment Banks (MDBs); the Treasury would lead on issues porations, nongovernmental organizations, co-operatives,
concerning the International Monetary Fund (IMF). The two faith-based organizations and universities are increasingly
departments, along with other relevant U.S. Government engaged in the developing world through charitable giving
(USG) entities, would jointly manage debt relief and debt and through development activities which were formerly
financing issues. the exclusive purview of governments. … Our elected lead-
The DGHD would have a voice on U.S. Government trade ers should capitalize on the unique skills and assets that oth-
policy towards developing countries. More than one dozen er segments of our society can bring to bear.”
U.S. Government departments, agencies and other entities Expanded partnerships with private organizations should
currently have a role in trade issues. This list includes: the enhance the effectiveness of the DGHD. The DGHD should
U.S. Trade Representative (USTR); the Departments of Agri- look to expand recent initiatives in this area, and seek out
culture, Commerce, Health and Human Services, Justice, La- creative new actors and approaches to work with and sup-
bor, State, Transportation, and Treasury; USAID; and EPA. The port. This should include looking for ways to expand work
DGHD would have a seat on all major interagency groups with voluntary organizations, foundations and individual
working on trade issues. volunteers.
The Secretary of the new department would have a central The DGHD must possess a strong capacity to evaluate proj-
role regarding certain U.S. Government agencies and entities: ects, generate lessons learned, and not only communicate
• The Director of the Trade and Development Agency (TDA) this information within the DGHD, but also to share it with
would report to the Secretary of the DGHD. other bilateral and multilateral donors, recipient countries,
• The DGHD Secretary would maintain the seat that the civil society and other actors. Foreign assistance programs
Administrator of USAID presently has on the Board of the need to operate under one coherent system not merely to ac-
Overseas Private Investment Corporation (OPIC); count for where monies are being invested and for what pur-
• DGHD Secretary also would become an ex officio member pose, but, equally, to measure and understand whether and
of the Board of the Export-Import Bank; and how programs have helped improve peoples’ lives, e.g., by
• The appropriate regional DGHD Assistant Secretary would increasing literacy rates, decreasing infant deaths, sustaining
become an ex officio member of the Board of, respectively, communities’ natural resources, strengthening democratic
the Inter-American and African Development Foundations. institutions, and other similar measures. The DGHD should
integrate women’s empowerment and gender equality into
The Peace Corps would retain its independence outside all its activities and mechanisms for measuring success.
the DGHD.
State Department accounts that have a large security/mil- Resource Allocation, Coordination,
itary component would remain there, such as the Interna- and Staffing
tional Narcotics Control and Law Enforcement Account and Under the DGHD, overall resource allocation would pro-
the Non-Proliferation, Anti-Terrorism, Demining, and Related ceed in a radically different manner from what occurs today
Programs Account.
The State Department would retain control over political providing overall policy direction with USAID’s role to provide profession-
and security-related programs, including Economic Support al design and management of development programs. The State Depart-
Funds (ESF) and military assistance. However, the DGHD ment’s ability to require USAID to implement ESF programs that USAID
would work closely with the State Department to ensure finds inappropriate has varied from administration to administration. The
Clinton Administration had a Memorandum of Understanding governing
that ESF monies allocated for projects are used to promote State-USAID collaboration on ESF that reportedly led to a greater voice
development. ESF is rarely a cash transfer to another govern- for USAID and more appropriate development projects through ESF. The
ment. Much more frequently, ESF is provided as project as- Bush Administration has lowered USAID’s voice, reverting to older U.S.
sistance, and much of it is implemented by USAID.5 Government habits of using ESF as “walking around money” intended to
serve short-term U.S. interests with much less regard for effective devel-
opment promotion.
5 Problems occur when State insists that USAID implement patently inap- 6 For more discussion of the HELP Commission’s report and other recent
propriate projects. This happens when State officials confuse their role in studies of foreign assistance, see Appendix III.
under the “F” process of foreign assistance reform. The DGHD so the DGHD Country Director would work closely with the
would receive its budget from the Congress, and, based on ambassador and serve as the leader and voice of the DGHD
the relevant laws, would make decisions on the proper allo- within the Embassy. The DGHD Country Director would co-
cation of funds across countries and sectors. It would have a ordinate all DGHD activities in country, including all opera-
direct relationship with the Office of Management and Bud- tions of the present USAID Office of Foreign Disaster Assis-
get on budget issues; its budget would not be vetted by the tance (OFDA), Office of Transition Initiatives (OTI), and Office
State Department. The Department of State would play an of Food for Peace, as well as all of the international refugee
important role in providing advice to the DGHD on impor- functions presently under the State Department’s Bureau
tant diplomatic considerations to take into account when for Population, Refugees and Migration, the Department of
considering allocations, but ultimate decisions on budget Agriculture’s food aid programs and other smaller programs
levels would be based fundamentally on development and currently housed in the Departments of Commerce and La-
humanitarian criteria. bor and other parts of the executive branch.
Economic Support Fund (ESF) levels would be decided InterAction strongly believes in local ownership of pro-
upon by the Department of State after examining DGHD al- grams and partnerships with stakeholders. This can only be
location levels. For example, the State Department would done well when administered by staff based in the country;
examine country allocations by the DGHD, and, where it it cannot be done effectively from Washington. According to
concluded that a particular country required additional former USAID Administrator J. Brian Atwood:
assistance, would decide to allocate ESF. Then, in consulta- If a foreign agency is to be effective in assisting
tion with the DGHD, the most appropriate mix of programs a nation pursuing a development strategy, it must
would be decided upon. In ESF decisions, the State Depart- have adequate numbers of professionals on the
ment would have the lead in suggesting sectors, while the ground (including a large number of host-country
DGHD would retain the authority to design and manage the citizens), and programmatic flexibility to direct re-
most effective programs within the sector. ESF allocations sources where needed. Its professional represen-
could be made on rare occasions as direct cash transfers to tatives must have the standing and knowledge to
a country’s government, but most ESF funds would go to coordinate with the government and with other
projects designed and managed by the DGHD. donors. The skills needed are managerial, diplomat-
The U.S. Government has a variety of interests in many ic, and technical, combined with cultural sensitivity
countries of the world. These interests can include prevent- and language capacity.
ing conflict, fighting terrorism, strengthening civil society,
promoting democracy, strengthening the private sector, re- The Department for Global and Human Development
ducing child and maternal mortality, and many more. There must place most of its staff in the countries where it works
is not one “right” mix of programs in such complex situations, (including outside of capital cities where appropriate), at-
particularly given the constantly changing environment and tract high-quality personnel, and provide regular opportuni-
the involvement of multiple local and international actors. ties for in-service training. Placing sufficient numbers of tal-
Particularly in fragile states, careful coordination among the ented, trained, motivated personnel in cities like Jakarta and
Department of State, DGHD, DoD, and other U.S. actors will Monrovia is the best way to establish the types of programs
be required. and maintain the kinds of partnerships that will promote de-
InterAction supports close coordination among U.S. Gov- velopment in countries like Indonesia and Liberia.
ernment departments and agencies working internation- The DGHD will need to recruit a substantial number of pro-
ally. The Department of State would retain the lead role in fessionals who are highly skilled in particular technical areas.
the U.S. Government mandated to coordinate overall U.S. Some of these people will staff technical offices in Washing-
engagement in particular countries. The DGHD would en- ton; others will serve in DGHD field missions. The U.S. Gov-
sure that the development voice is not muffled as these ernment suffers from a drastically low number of technical
complex issues are discussed. Further, with most programs experts in such key areas as agriculture, democracy promo-
placed within the DGHD, the confusion of multiple Cabinet- tion, development economics, education, the environment,
level departments operating programs in countries around gender, and population. The new Development Leadership
the world would be addressed, with coordination processes Initiative (DLI) of USAID Administrator Henrietta Fore, in-
streamlined and rationalized. cluded in the administration’s FY 2009 Budget Request, is an
The U.S. ambassador in any country would remain the important step in the right direction. Under the DLI, “USAID
head of the country team, including DGHD representatives. will recruit, hire, and train 300 new Foreign Service Officers
Just as the Department of Defense regularly has defense at- (FSOs) in critical stewardship and technical backstops. The
tachés in U.S. embassies who works closely with the U.S. am- DLI will strengthen USAID’s capacity to provide leadership
bassador and serves as the voice of DoD within the Embassy, overseas to develop, implement, and integrate programs
that bring peace, prosperity, and security to the world.” This APPENDIX I.
important initiative should be dramatically expanded under President John F. Kennedy and Foreign
the DGHD. Assistance Structure
In 1961, barely two months in office, President John F.
Legislation Kennedy sent a “Special Message to Congress on Foreign
Creating such a Cabinet-level department requires pas- Aid.” Most of it could be applied nearly verbatim as a diag-
sage of new authorizing legislation to rewrite the Foreign nosis of today’s problems as well as a cogent reform pro-
Assistance Act of 1961, as well as revision of other legisla- gram. His message included the following:
tion relating to specialized programs, such as the Millennium … (N)o objective supporter of foreign aid can be
Challenge Act and the sections in the Farm Bill relating to satisfied with the existing program – actually a mul-
food aid. tiplicity of programs. Bureaucratically fragmented,
awkward and slow, its administration is diffused
over a haphazard and irrational structure covering
at least four department and several other agencies.
The program is based on a series of legislative mea-
sures and administrative procedures conceived at
different times and for different purposes, many of
them now obsolete, inconsistent and unduly rigid
and thus unsuited for our present needs and pur-
poses. Its weaknesses have begun to undermine
confidence in our effort both here and abroad.
The program requires a highly professional skilled
service, attracting substantial numbers of high cali-
ber men and women capable of sensitive dealing
with other governments, and with a deep under-
standing of the process of economic development.
However, uncertainty and declining public prestige
have all contributed to a fall in the morale and ef-
ficiency of those employees in the field who are
repeatedly frustrated by the delays and confusions
caused by overlapping agency jurisdictions and un-
clear objectives. Only the persistent efforts of those
dedicated and hard-working public servants who
have kept the program going, managed to bring
some success to our efforts overseas.
In addition, uneven and undependable short-
term financing has weakened the incentive for the
long-term planning and self-help by the recipient
nations which are essential to serious economic
development. The lack of stability and continuity
in the program – the necessity to accommodate
all planning to a yearly deadline – when combined
with a confusing multiplicity of American aid agen-
cies within a single nation abroad – have reduced
the effectiveness of our own assistance and made
more difficult the task of setting realistic targets
and sound standards. Piecemeal projects, hastily
designed to match the rhythm of the fiscal year are
no substitute for orderly long-term planning. …
Although our aid programs have helped to avoid
economic chaos and collapse, and assisted many
nations to maintain their independence and free-
dom – nevertheless it is a fact that many of the na-
tions we are helping are not much nearer sustained But I am not proposing merely a reshuffling and
economic growth than they were when our aid op- re-labeling of old agencies and their personnel,
eration began. Money spent to meet crisis situations without regard to their competence. I am recom-
or short-term political objectives while helping to mending the replacement of these agencies with a
maintain national integrity and independence has new one – a fresh start under new leadership.
rarely moved the recipient nation toward greater But new organization is not enough. We need a
economic stability. … new working concept.
If our foreign aid funds are to be prudently and At the center of the new effort must be national
effectively used, we need a whole new set of basic development programs. It is essential that the
concepts and principles: developing nations set for themselves sensible
• Unified administration and operation – a single targets; that these targets be based on balanced
agency in Washington and the field, equipped with programs for their own economic, educational and
a flexible set of tools, in place of several competing social growth-programs which use their own re-
and confusing aid units. sources to the maximum. If planning assistance is
• Country plans – a carefully thought through pro- required, our own aid organization will be prepared
gram tailored to meet the needs and the resource to respond to requests for such assistance, along
potential of each individual country, instead of a se- with the International Bank for Reconstruction and
ries of individual, unrelated projects. Frequently, in Development and other international and private
the past, our development goals and projects have institutions. Thus, the first requirement is that each
not been undertaken as integral steps in a long- recipient government seriously undertake to the
range economic development program. best of its ability on its own those efforts of re-
• Long-term planning and financing – the only way source mobilization, self-help and internal reform
to make meaningful and economical commit- – including land reform, tax reform and improved
ments. … education and social justice – which its own devel-
• Special attention to those nations most willing and opment requires and which would increase its ca-
able to mobilize their own resources, make neces- pacity to absorb external capital productivity.
sary social and economic reforms, engage in long-
range planning, and make the other efforts neces- And in May 1961, President Kennedy stated:
sary if these are to reach the stage of self-sustaining My decisions on foreign affairs organization are
growth. predicted on the following principles:
• Multilateral approach – a program and level of com- First, authority for the conduct of activities which
mitments designed to encourage and complement advance our foreign policy objectives should be
an increased effort by other industrialized nations. vested in the President or other officials primarily
• A new agency with new personnel – drawing upon concerned with foreign affairs.
the most competent and dedicated career servants Second, international activities of domestic agen-
now in the field, and attracting the highest quality cies should be clearly either (i) necessary extensions
from every part of the nation. of their normal domestic missions or (ii) undertaken
• Separation from military assistance – our program on behalf of and in support of programs and objec-
of aid to social and economic development must tives of the appropriate foreign affairs agencies.
be seen on its own merits, and judged in the light
of its vital and distinctive contribution to our basic
security needs. … APPENDIX II.
Recent Studies on Restructuring
I propose that our separate and often confusing Foreign Assistance
aid programs be integrated into a single Adminis- Three studies released in the second half of 2007, while
tration … differing on the specifics, all agreed on the importance of
The field work in all these operations will be un- foreign assistance and the need to significantly alter present
der the direction of a single mission chief in each structures and approaches. One report, “Embassies Grapple
country reporting to the American Ambassador. to Guide Foreign Aid”, was prepared by the Minority Staff of
This is intended to remove the difficulty which the the Senate Foreign Relations Committee. They endorsed the
aided countries and our own field personnel some- importance of foreign assistance and bemoaned the decline
times encounter in finding the proper channel of of USAID, but did not agree on the creation of a Cabinet-level
decision-making. … agency.
The next, the U.S. Commission on Helping to Enhance the APPENDIX III.
Livelihoods of People (HELP Commission), proposed a new Commission on Weak States and U.S.
structure for the State Department, and, in two annexes, National Security, “On the Brink: Weak
four of the Commissioners endorsed the creation of a new States and U.S. National Security,”
Cabinet-level Department of International Sustainable De- Center for Global Development, 2004
velopment. InterAction has commented on the HELP Com- In 2004, the Center for Global Development formed a bi-
mission’s recommendations: http://www.interaction.org/ partisan panel of 30 former U.S. Government officials and
media/20071207-HELPReport.htm. members of Congress, representatives of academia, civil so-
Also in its report, the Commission on Smart Power, orga- ciety, the private sector, think tanks and research centers as
nized by the Center for Strategic and International Studies the Commission on Weak States and U.S. National Security.
(CSIS), underscored the importance of development: “The Their report recommended a Cabinet-level development
most sustainable rationale for global development over time agency:
is this: American leaders ought to commit to global develop- A new architecture must give development issues
ment because it reinforces basic American values, contrib- a single, strong voice at the Cabinet level; better coor-
utes to peace, justice, and prosperity, and improves the way dinate the multiple agencies and entities that deliver
we are viewed around the world. Investing in development foreign assistance; play a role in development and trade
contributes to American security at home by promoting policy; establish a single, unified budget for develop-
stability abroad. A U.S. government effort that promotes a ment; and integrate strategies for countries and regions.
positive relationship with the world’s poor, their civil society Development policy is an increasingly important tool
institutions, and governments is in the interest of the Ameri- – it is more than just writing a check – and the United
can people.” The Commission called for the creation of a States needs to invest in developing the expertise and
“cabinet-level voice for global development.” Its rationale for capacity to wield it effectively.
this position is strong: “Internally, a cabinet-level voice could For all these reasons, the Commission proposes that
bring greater coherence across the aid community and the the administration establish an integrated development
entire U.S. foreign policy establishment and provide a sense strategy and implement it within a single, Cabinet-level
of common purpose for development personnel in the U.S. development agency.
government. Retention, recruitment, and training of experi- The new Cabinet department would not entail an
enced development staff are currently major challenges. Ex- expansion in bureaucracy but incorporate USAID, the
ternally, a cabinet-level voice for global development would Millennium Challenge Corporation, and some foreign
show a different American face to the world. Development assistance programs run by the Departments of State,
as a theme concerned with the world’s less fortunate and a Defense, Health and Human Services, and Agriculture.
process grounded in partnership helps to connect the Unit- Of course, the United States will always deploy some
ed States to foreign populations.” However, as with the HELP economic assistance purely in support of diplomatic
Commission, the Smart Power Commissioners did not agree goals; resources for that purpose should remain in the
on a specific model. State Department. In addition, although Treasury has
Finally, InterAction CEO Sam Worthington is part of a been consistently effective in working with Congress
new Modernizing Foreign Assistance Network, a coalition to ensure appropriate U.S. leadership in the multilateral
of NGOs, think tanks, and foreign policy experts, which development banks, those activities ultimately should
relased a proposal entitled, “New Day, New Way: U.S. For- move from Treasury to the new development agency
eign Assistance for the 21st Century.” That proposal recom- as well, if it is to meet the challenges we have outlined.
mends four specific actions: Develop a national strategy for Treasury should retain its strength on core economic is-
global development; Reach a “grand bargain” between the sues and continue to be responsible for the IMF, giving
Executive Branch and Congress on management authori- it a leading role in guiding U.S. policy toward the inter-
ties and plan, design and enact a new Foreign Assistance national financial institutions. These significant changes
Act; Increase funding for and accountability of foreign as- would need to be codified in a new Foreign Assistance
sistance, and; Streamline the organizational structure and Act written to replace the outdated authorizing legisla-
improve organizational capacity by creating a Cabinet- tion that currently governs U.S. development activities.
level Department for Global Development. The “New Day,
New Way” proposal is available here: http://interaction.
org/library/detail.php?id=6288
APPENDIX IV.
DGHD Role in Present U.S. Government
Programs Funded by the 150 Account
The following table lists in the first column the accounts
found in the administration’s FY 2009 request for interna-
tional affairs (150 Account). The second column lists which
U.S. Government entity presently controls funding. The third
column indicates what role the DGHD would have if such ac-
counts continued to exist upon its creation.
Two caveats are in order. First, this table is not intended to
suggest that this account structure would be optimal, or even
appropriate, after the creation of the DGHD; to the contrary,
any reform creating the DGHD also should rationalize and
reduce the overall number of accounts. Second, it does not
capture every activity discussed in this paper, since other in-
ternational development activities receive funding from dif-
ferent departments, such as Defense, Labor, and Commerce,
which are funded via other accounts in the Federal Budget.

Account Present Control Role of DGHD
Export-Import Bank of the United States Ex-Im Board Seat on Board
Overseas Private Investment Corporation OPIC Board Seat on Board
U.S. Trade and Development Agency Independent agency TDA Director reports to DGHD Secretary
Child Survival and Health Programs Fund USAID Lead
Development Assistance USAID Lead
International Disaster Assistance USAID Lead
Transition Initiatives USAID Lead
Development Credit Authority USAID Lead
USAID Operating Expenses USAID Abolish account
USAID Capital Investment Fund USAID Lead
USAID Foreign Service Retirement and Disability Fund USAID Lead
USAID Inspector General Operating Expenses USAID Lead
Economic Support Fund Department of State Coordinate with State
Assistance for Eastern Europe and the Baltic States Department of State Lead
Assistance for the Independent States of the Former Soviet Union Department of State Lead
Peace Corps Independent agency Coordinate with Peace Corps
Inter-American Foundation Foundation Board Seat on Board
African Development Foundation Foundation Board Seat on Board
Millennium Challenge Corporation MCC Board Replace State as lead
Global HIV/AIDS Initiative1* State Lead
International Narcotics Control and Law Enforcement State Coordinate with State
Andean Counterdrug Program State Coordinate with State
Migration and Refugee Assistance State Lead
U.S. Emergency Refugee and Migration Assistance Fund State Lead
Nonproliferation, Anti-terrorism, Demining, and Related Programs State Coordinate, as necessary, with State
Treasury Technical Assistance and Debt Restructuring Treasury Coordinate with Treasury
Foreign Military Financing State Input to State on dev’t implications on ap-
propriate countries
Peacekeeping Operations State Input to State on dev’t implications
International Military Education and Training State Input to State on dev’t implications on ap-
propriate countries
International Financial Institutions Treasury Shared coordination with Treasury
International Organizations and Programs State Coordinate with State on appropriate or-
ganizations and programs
P.L. 480 Title II (Food for Peace) USAID Lead
McGovern-Dole International Food for Education Agriculture Lead

1 *Provides much of the funding for the President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS
Relief (PEPFAR)
POLICY November 2008

PAPER

Why the U.S. Needs a
Cabinet-level
Department for Global
and Human Development

T
Previously published by he United States Government’s system for allocating and delivering foreign assistance
InterAction, July 2008. is badly broken and must be repaired. InterAction, the largest alliance of U.S.-based de-
velopment and humanitarian assistance nongovernmental organizations, released a
paper discussing seven principles that should guide foreign assistance reform (http://www.
interaction.org/files.cgi/4715_IA_development_principles.pdf). As part of the reform effort,
InterAction has also called for the creation of a Cabinet-level Department for Global and Hu-
man Development (DGHD). This paper discusses those principles as they relate to the need for
this new department.
The Department for Global and Human Development’s fundamental mandate will be to
promote people-centered, sustainable development (broadly defined and inclusive of the Mil-
lennium Development Goals1) and to provide humanitarian assistance. The long-term goal of
its activities is a stable, sustainable world of free, democratic, economically prosperous states
in which the worst aspects of poverty have been eliminated.
Effective work in this area is in the U.S. national interest. As the Commission on Smart
Power, organized by the Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS), explained in
its 2007 report:
American leaders ought to commit to global development because it reinforces
basic American values, contributes to peace, justice, and prosperity, and improves
the way we are viewed around the world. Investing in development contributes to
American security at home by promoting stability abroad. A U.S. government effort
that promotes a positive relationship with the world’s poor, their civil society institu-
tions, and governments is in the interest of the American people.

Background
Major U.S. Government foreign assistance programs began after World War II. Only two
decades later, responding to what he called the “haphazard and irrational structure” that
characterized the U.S. Government’s approach to foreign assistance, President John F. Ken-
nedy proposed and the Congress passed the Foreign Assistance Act of 1961. In 1961, Presi-
1400 16th Street, NW
dent Kennedy also created USAID as a “(u)nified administration and operation – a single
Suite 210
Washington, DC 20036
agency in Washington and the field, equipped with a flexible set of tools, in place of several
202-667-8227
reform@interaction.org 1 The eight Millennium Development Goals are to: (1) eradicate extreme poverty and hunger; (2) achieve univer-
sal primary education; (3) promote gender equality and empower women; (4) reduce child mortality; (5) improve
maternal health; (6) combat HIV/AIDS, malaria, and other diseases; (7) ensure environmental sustainability; and (8)
www.interaction.org develop a global partnership for development. The Bush Administration has endorsed these goals.
competing and confusing aid units.” 6. Humanitarian assistance programs should continue
Nearly five decades later, the U.S. Government’s system for to be a core part of foreign aid and be guided by the
allocating and delivering foreign assistance is badly broken principle of impartiality to conform with international
and must be repaired yet again. Drawing on the insights of humanitarian law.
President Kennedy, recent studies and extensive experience 7. U.S. foreign assistance programs should be under
from six decades of nongovernmental organizations’ (NGOs) civilian control and run by development profession-
work on development and humanitarian issues, InterAction als in order to be appropriate for the public abroad. The
recommends the creation of a Cabinet-level Department for U.S. military should be engaged in foreign assistance
Global and Human Development as a critical component of delivery only in exceptional circumstances when they
the broader effort to rebuild U.S. foreign assistance. have unique capabilities or responsibilities, e.g. during
We believe this name emphasizes the major attributes natural disasters when the logistical capabilities of the
that the new department must have: military may be crucial in providing life-saving assis-
• Global because the department will focus on global is- tance, or during conflict that precludes the presence of
sues. The DGHD will lead U.S. Government international civilian aid workers.
programs on HIV/AIDS, avian flu and other health threats,
as well as climate change and biodiversity conservation. It The balance of this paper examines each of these princi-
will play a role within the U.S. Government on trade issues ples in the context of the call for a new department:
with the developing world. The department also will be 1. Poverty reduction must be a primary objective of
global in its focus on participation and collaboration with U.S. foreign assistance because it promotes stability.
recipient country governments, other donors, multilateral Today’s U.S. Government programs are not as effective as
organizations, and, crucially, with civil society. they should be in reducing poverty for two main reasons:
• Human because the department will focus on people- • tensions between short-term political and security goals
centered development. Its core purpose will be to im- and long-term development goals too often lead to deci-
prove human well-being and alleviate the worst aspects sions to fund poorly-designed programs that fail to pro-
of human suffering. mote either those short-term goals or development goals;
• Development because the department will focus on sus- and
tainable development. It will develop and manage coordi- • the proliferation of uncoordinated programs throughout
nated approaches to alleviate poverty, promote sustain- the Executive Branch results in less effective achievement
able, equitable economic growth, and respond to global of development goals than will occur under the unifying
challenges. structure of a department.
The Foreign Assistance Act of 1961, the Act that pres-
Principles for effective foreign ently governs most U.S. foreign assistance programs, has
assistance and the need for a required a particular focus on poverty reduction since it
new department was revised in the early 1970s. However, the Act itself was
The experience of the InterAction community teaches enacted nearly fifty years ago, is more than nine hundred
that an effective reform of U.S. foreign assistance must incor- pages long, and has been amended numerous times. The
porate the following seven principles: present Act no longer provides coherent guidance to the
1. Poverty reduction must be a primary objective of Executive Branch on foreign assistance; rather, it is a smor-
U.S. foreign assistance because it promotes stability. gasbord from which any policy can be chosen and justified.
2. Achieving the long-term objectives of global pros- The Foreign Assistance Act must be rewritten to re-empha-
perity and freedom depends upon sustainable de- size the focus on poverty reduction. The creation of a de-
velopment as a long-term process, which should not partment like the one proposed in this paper will be critical
be sidetracked for any short-term political agenda. to ensuring that Executive Branch execution of the revised
The achievement of long-term development goals re- law reflects that focus while also providing necessary coor-
quires a patient and steady approach. dination within the U.S. Government and between the U.S.
3. Cohesion and coherence, in place of current frag- and other actors.
mentation, are necessary to achieve the effective use A focus on poverty reduction requires balancing short-
of foreign assistance resources. term efforts to directly attack poverty and longer-term ef-
4. Building local capacity promotes country ownership forts to promote broad-based economic growth, thereby
and leads to self-sufficiency. reducing poverty. InterAction believes that the new depart-
5. Harmonize priorities among U.S. government agen- ment must implement programs and policies that lead to
cies, multilateral institutions and recipient governments measurable improvements over the short to medium-term
to assure the best use of resources. in human well-being, particularly among the poorest.
2. Achieving the long-term objectives of global pros- was undercut by giving the State Department primacy over
perity and freedom depends upon sustainable de- both diplomacy and development. The creation of a new
velopment as a long-term process, which should not Department for Global and Human Development will take
be sidetracked for any short-term political agenda. the core insight of the Bush Administration regarding the
The achievement of long-term development goals importance of development and create an organizational
requires a patient and steady approach. structure that finally will provide global and human devel-
This principle should guide efforts to alleviate the ten- opment with the voice (and the seat at the table) it needs
sions between short-term political and security goals and to be a truly effective counterpart for the Departments of
long-term development goals. Today, these tensions too Defense and State, and to provide the strong organization it
often lead to decisions to fund poorly-designed programs needs to be effective internationally.
that fail to promote either those short-term goals or devel-
opment goals. 3. Cohesion and coherence, in place of current frag-
This problem was exacerbated by the Bush Administra- mentation, are necessary to achieve the effective
tion’s reorganization of foreign assistance in early 2006, use of foreign assistance resources.
when the Secretary of State created a new senior position in This principle should guide efforts to address the prolifera-
the Department of State, the Director of Foreign Assistance tion of uncoordinated programs throughout the Executive
(DFA), and a new office at State of people working for the Branch that results in less effective achievement of develop-
DFA. This official and accompanying office were dubbed “F.” ment goals than would occur under the unifying structure
This decision has led to a near merger of USAID within the of a department
Department of State, with accompanying confusion of de- The U.S. Agency for International Development, the pri-
velopment and diplomatic goals. mary agency currently responsible for U.S. foreign assistance
Carol Lancaster and Ann Van Dusen anticipated many programs, is weak, poorly organized, and has been demoral-
of the problems of placing the central coordinating offi- ized and eviscerated by severe staff shortages. Further, U.S.
cial for foreign assistance within the State Department in a foreign assistance programs are chaotically spread across
prescient study published in 2005, Organizing Foreign Aid: dozens of government departments and agencies in fifty
Confronting the Challenges of the Twenty-first Century. They different, largely uncoordinated programs. The creation of
discussed the critical distinction between aid “allocated to “F” has not had a large effect in reducing the overall incoher-
countries (usually by the Department of State) primarily for ence of U.S. Government efforts internationally. The present
diplomatic reasons – to fortify or reward a friendly state” and effort under “F” cannot even assert effective control over oth-
aid allocated “to achieve developmental goals (for example, er aid activities within the Department of State, such as the
to expand education or promote agriculture).” Office of the Global AIDS Coordinator, much less over other
These two goals are emphatically not the same, even Cabinet-level assistance programs run by the Departments
though aid allocated for diplomatic and/or security reasons of Agriculture, Energy, Labor, and many others, without any
is often implemented by USAID. They stress this crucial point: effective overall coordination.
“development work is quite distinct from the core activity of There is broad agreement, including among actors as di-
the [D]epartment [of State],” since “[d]evelopment implies a verse as Secretary of Defense Gates, the bipartisan members
long-term engagement in bringing about social change in of the HELP Commission, and Oxfam on the need to elevate
other countries, requiring a set of skills and a consistency the importance of development and to improve the coher-
over time that can prove a poor fit with the skills and more ence of U.S. Government foreign assistance programs. This
short-term time horizon and modus operandi associated was the intent of the Bush Administration’s creation of “F.”
with traditional diplomacy.” However, as Gerald Hyman, a former senior official at USAID,
Writing before the “F” process began, Lancaster and Van noted in his recent report, Assessing Secretary of State Rice’s
Dusen noted that “USAID’s current strategic planning process Reform of U.S. Foreign Assistance, the “F” experience has not
is … too control oriented and Washington driven …” Since been a happy one:
then, the “F” process has resulted in changes to foreign assis- (H)ow did the reform turn out? The answer, in
tance that have significantly exacerbated these problems. short, is that the reform, whose goals of transforma-
InterAction has concluded that neither the “F” process tion, transparency, and accountability are unassail-
nor a “super State Department,” as proposed by some, is the able, has, in practice, dramatically centralized not
way to reach the goal of a coherent, effective, well-coordi- only the large strategic issues but also the tactical
nated, well-managed, powerful set of programs within the ones. It has created an unwieldy system directed by
U.S. Government that promote global and human develop- a small core staff, which cannot possibly keep pace
ment. InterAction further believes that the importance of with the details necessary to make its own reform
development, while recognized by the Bush Administration, system work, let alone be wise or knowledgeable
enough to make the good decisions the reform will be better able to insist that the U.S. Government develop
system requires. The reform has marginalized em- a coherent, well-balanced strategy for fragile states such as
bassies in the design and delivery of assistance, al- Haiti, Guinea, Guinea-Bissau, the Democratic Republic of the
though that defect was mitigated somewhat after Congo, and others that do not receive adequate attention
the first year. And finally, the process by which the from policymakers focused on shorter-term challenges.
reform was created also marginalized those who
might have made it better, especially the congres- 4. Building local capacity promotes country ownership
sional oversight panels that would be asked to au- and leads to self-sufficiency.
thorize and appropriate resources in its wake. The Self-sufficiency, so that foreign assistance is no longer
old system needed reform, and unquestionably the required, is the ultimate goal for countries that receive U.S.
Rice initiative has brought improvements – but not development assistance. Capacity building programs for
nearly enough and at too high a price. For example, governmental and nongovernmental organizations are es-
festering problems of fragmentation and incoher- sential to reaching this goal. Effective design and implemen-
ence have been addressed, but in a way that cre- tation of these programs is a great challenge, particularly in
ates very substantial problems. Overall, the benefits the fragile states, and building local capacity can be a com-
of the reform have not been worth the costs. plex, long-term process. At present, USAID cannot effectively
support this essential goal.
The DGHD will incorporate the vast majority of U.S. Govern- The most effective way to build local capacity is through
ment development programs, simplifying the task of coordi- locally-designed and managed projects. This, however, is a
nation and providing both cohesion and coherence to U.S. labor intensive undertaking, requiring well-trained U.S. Gov-
Government development and humanitarian efforts. How- ernment personnel based in-country to ensure that such
ever, cohesion and coherence are required not only within projects are well-designed and targeted, and that they are
U.S. Government development and humanitarian programs, appropriately monitored and evaluated to ensure that they
but between such programs and others, particularly those produce the intended, measurable results. A new depart-
managed by the Departments of State and Defense. ment will have local capacity building as one of its goals and
The new Department for Global and Human Develop- would employ sufficient numbers of trained staff to design
ment will work in a variety of environments, ranging from effective programs in this area. The DGHD needs sufficient
states, such as Pakistan (see Appendix I), Colombia, and Af- personnel, a cadre of Foreign Service Officers that is double
ghanistan, where the U.S. is pursuing multiple objectives or more the size of today’s USAID direct-hire personnel, to
through multiple departments, to states in sub-Saharan support these local development activities.
Africa and elsewhere, where it will often be the largest U.S. USAID’s present weakness has multiple negative conse-
Government department providing assistance. Its Cabinet- quences. The U.S. Government’s current capacity to support
level designation will give it the clout to insist on the impor- country ownership is crippled by a drastically low number
tance of effective development strategies in countries such of technical experts in such key areas as agriculture, de-
as Pakistan, without being drowned out by louder voices in mocracy promotion, development economics, education,
the government arguing for an emphasis on other goals, of- the environment, and population. This shortage of profes-
ten to the detriment of effective development promotion. A sionals combines disastrously with the requirement that
department-level voice advocating for development should USAID programs large amounts of money according to the
make it easier to reach the appropriate balance between labyrinthine directives of the Foreign Assistance Act and the
various assistance tools and the valid imperatives of the De- cumbersome regulations designed to implement the law. As
partments of State and Defense. a result, USAID is unable to take the risks required to build
Fragile states in sub-Saharan Africa and elsewhere pose local capacity by working directly with local organizations.
different challenges for the U.S. Government. Many of these Instead of managing programs to improve governance, pro-
countries are not high on the list of U.S. short-term foreign mote private sector-led growth, and strengthen civil soci-
policy priorities and do not receive substantial amounts of ety’s role in ensuring transparency and participation, USAID
foreign assistance or U.S. attention. The greatest risk now, increasingly funds massive, multi-billion dollar, worldwide
particularly in the states of the Sahel and the Horn of Af- contracts with dozens of U.S.-based implementers. These In-
rica, is that the present confusion between diplomacy and definite Quantity Contracts (IQCs) can lead to inappropriate
development is being compounded by the elevation of the organizations undertaking large-scale activities in countries
role of the U.S. military in development. As in Pakistan, if the where they have little or no prior experience.
militarization of U.S. assistance continues, U.S. credibility and The current USAID Administrator, Henrietta Fore, has rec-
effectiveness in promoting development in Africa and else- ognized that personnel shortages undermine development
where will continue to be undermined. A new department effectiveness. Her Development Leadership Initiative (DLI),
included in the administration’s FY 2009 Budget Request, effectiveness of U.S. activities. The DGHD will strengthen
is an important step in the right direction. Under the DLI, the ability of the U.S. to respond in a coordinated fashion to
“USAID will recruit, hire, and train 300 new Foreign Service these emergencies, making efficient and effective use of the
Officers (FSOs) in critical stewardship and technical back- many tools of the U.S. Government.
stops. The DLI will strengthen USAID’s capacity to provide In particular, the DGHD will lead in coordinating the
leadership overseas to develop, implement, and integrate U.S. response to emergencies, using, when needed, the
programs that bring peace, prosperity, and security to the tremendous logistical resources of the Department of De-
world.” This important initiative should be dramatically ex- fense, but always in a coordinated approach. Various pro-
panded under the DGHD. posals circulating in Washington suggest the creation of a
Gender equity is a key component of building local capacity new cadre of experts to enhance the U.S. ability to respond
and ownership. It should be an integral part of development to such emergencies. Too often, such proposals do nothing
practice and a key goal of development programs. Effective to address the weakness of USAID today and the strengths
programming in this area requires a keen understanding of of the many private voluntary organizations that focus on
local realities. Currently, programs to promote gender equity response to humanitarian emergencies. Strengthening U.S.
are under-resourced and not sufficiently priorititized. The capabilities in this area should concentrate on the actual
DGHD, with more appropriately staffed Missions, will be able strengths and weaknesses of engaged private actors and
to design and manage the range of programs necessary to the U.S. Government.
promote local ownership with gender equity.
7. U.S. foreign assistance programs should be under ci-
5. Harmonize priorities among U.S. government agen- vilian control and run by development professionals
cies, multilateral institutions, and recipient govern- in order to be appropriate for the public abroad.
ments to assure the best use of resources. The Bush Administration is the first to clarify the impor-
As discussed above, the creation of a Cabinet-level depart- tance of three areas of international engagement: develop-
ment will harmonize priorities within the U.S. Government ment, diplomacy, and defense. As the 2006 National Security
and facilitate efforts to coordinate effectively with other ac- Strategy of the United States explains, “Development rein-
tors. To harmonize priorities among the new department, forces diplomacy and defense, reducing long-term threats
multilateral institutions, and recipient governments, it is es- to our national security by helping to build stable, prosper-
sential that a new administration refocus U.S. international ous, and peaceful societies.” However, the U.S. Government
engagement on much greater collaboration and harmoniza- today possesses a weak development arm. This means that,
tion with these and other actors. although the U.S. Government has conceptually endorsed
The present administration has emphasized unilateral ap- the importance of these three areas, it has not yet taken ad-
proaches, with inadequate attention to coordination with equate actions to match its rhetoric.
other donors, recipient governments, and others. Various Development is a profession, as different from diplomacy
reports released over the last year, including the report as diplomacy is from work on defense issues. Although it has
of the Commission on Smart Power and the Georgetown understood the importance of these three areas, the Bush
University report America’s Role in the World: Foreign Policy Administration has not acted on the need for professional-
Choices for the Next President stress the need for the U.S. to ism to achieve development goals. Indeed, it has sometimes
emphasize collaboration with and participation in inter- acted as if the disparate skills of development professional,
national organizations as an essential restructuring of U.S. diplomat, and soldier were interchangeable. In particular,
engagement policies. The DGHD will further this goal by the administration sometimes has assigned development
creating a central location for coordinated engagement by tasks to diplomatic and military professionals. They have not
the U.S. with others on sustainable development and hu- performed well. At the same time, the administration too
manitarian assistance programs. often undervalued the importance of civilian development
professionals working both within the administration and in
6. Humanitarian assistance programs should continue nongovernmental organizations.
to be a core part of foreign aid and be guided by the Diplomacy, defense, and development all are important
principle of impartiality to conform with interna- components of U.S. international action. All three need to be
tional humanitarian law. strong. The U.S. Government at present is only organized for
The U.S. has long been a world leader in providing highly effective action in two of these three areas. The Departments
effective, rapid assistance during humanitarian emergen- of State and Defense are powerful actors within the U.S. Gov-
cies. Nevertheless, division of responsibilities across various ernment. The Department for Global and Human Develop-
departments and agencies, including the Departments of ment must have its own seat at the table alongside State and
State, Defense and Agriculture, and USAID, undercuts the Defense, and must be staffed and managed by development
professionals, not controlled by others with different train-
ing and expertise.
InterAction’s principles clearly state the need for coordi-
nation and coherence in U.S. Government programs. Par-
ticularly in fragile states, alleviating poverty and promot-
ing economic growth, human rights, democracy and good
governance require effective action to promote peace and
security. This often implies actions involving the U.S. military,
such as military education and training programs. Defense
professionals, led by Secretary Gates, already have recog-
nized that when peace and security exist in a region, it is es-
sential that civilian professionals be in place to design, man-
age and implement sustainable programs to fight poverty
and promote economic growth, human rights, democracy
and good governance. Furthermore, interrelated, coordi-
nated diplomatic and development initiatives are necessary
to promote sustainable development. Therefore, InterAction
supports close coordination among U.S. Government actors
working in these areas. The Secretary of State would retain
the statutory authority as the person under the President
ultimately responsible for U.S. activities internationally. The
U.S. Ambassador in any country would remain the head of
the country team, which would include Department of De-
fense professionals as well as those working for the DGHD.
This coordination role for the Secretary and Department
of State should not be confused with the deep understand-
ing, experience and ability required to manage programs in
development and humanitarian response. Just as the U.S.
military is the repository of U.S. Government expertise on
defense issues, the new department will serve as the re-
pository of U.S. Government expertise in development and
humanitarian response. In this context, InterAction believes
that the U.S. military should be engaged in non-military for-
eign assistance delivery only in exceptional circumstances
when they have unique capabilities or responsibilities, e.g.
during natural disasters when the logistical capabilities of
the military may be crucial in providing life-saving assis-
tance, or during conflict which precludes the presence of
civilian aid workers.

Conclusion
The United States Government’s system for allocating
and delivering foreign assistance is badly broken and must
be repaired. As this paper has highlighted, principles that
should guide foreign assistance reform in general also
demonstrate the need for a Cabinet-level Department for
Global and Human Development as part of that reform
process. Recognizing that creating such a department is a
significant organizational undertaking, InterAction has also
produced a separate paper with recommendations on how
to structure the department and details of its operational
role in relation to other departments and agencies in the
U.S. Government
APPENDIX I. ture of the partnership.
Pakistan, Soft Power, and the Misuse of 3. Become more catalytic and more flexible.
Foreign Assistance When a crisis arises, the cry to do something is
A Perilous Course: U.S. Strategy and Assistance to Pakistan, great, and the first response is often to do what
a study by the Center for Strategic and International Stud- is already being done at greater scale with the
ies (CSIS) released last year prior to the tragedy of Benazir same partners. This is compounded by struc-
Bhutto’s assassination analyzed what happens when devel- tural inflexibility in the way aid is allocated
opment is undervalued in U.S. Government efforts: and disbursed. Once money has been appro-
For American assistance to be effective in a large- priated and programmed, shifting money to
aid-recipient state such as Pakistan, it must go be- needed problems is infrequently attempted.
yond transactional, quid pro quo deals and address The United States should do more to encour-
the country’s main drivers of conflict, instability and age innovation and entrepreneurism among
extremism. Despite more than $10 billion in U.S. as- aid delivery in Pakistan. America should recog-
sistance since September 11, 2001, distrust, dissat- nize its own limitations and seek to play more
isfaction and unrealistic expectations continue to of a catalytic role in building local capacity.
undermine the official goal of developing a strong, 4. Develop an integrated strategy aligned
strategic and enduring partnership. with resources. This research has suggested
Pakistan’s main drivers of conflict, instability and that the United States does not have a well-
extremism include: a culture of impunity and injus- integrated Pakistan strategy that cuts across all
tice, discontent in the provinces, ethnic and sec- relevant departments and agencies. Points of
tarian tensions, a rapidly growing and urbanizing collaboration may occur, but it is ad hoc rather
youth population, and extremist views among tra- than the norm. …
ditional allies. Militant groups exploit these under- 5. Integrate hard and soft power. There is no
lying conditions to recruit followers on the basis of magic formula for striking the right balance
a narrative of shared suffering and injustice and the between coercion and getting Islamabad to
failure of the state to provide stability or prosperity. share the same goals as America. There is a
The vast majority of U.S. assistance to Pakistan clear imbalance of resources, however, go-
since September 11, 2001, however, has not been ing to short-term security cooperation over
directed to Pakistan’s underlying fault-lines, but to longer-term relationship building. With only
specific, short-term counterterrorism objectives … about 25 percent of embassy employees in Is-
lamabad coming from the State Department,
The authors of the CSIS study made five recommendations the civilian side of the U.S. government does
to reformulate U.S. assistance to Pakistan: not have the right people, training or funds
For U.S. assistance to be effective in a large-aid-recipi- to be a capable partner for the Department
ent nation like Pakistan, it must move toward the follow- of Defense or the intelligence community. A
ing five goals: strategy driven by security personnel often is
1. Broaden the partnership. Aid works best skewed to short-term, concrete targets, even
when donor objectives are aligned with the though this may account for only 10 percent
aims of local partners, grounded in local re- of what building long-term security actually
alities and open to regular evaluation by local requires. The development community would
residents. … not have to fear that poverty alleviation would
2. Increase transparency. This study has be subjugated to national security priorities in
demonstrated that there is little transparency a post-9/11 world if there could be a consensus
in how much money the United States spends established between civilians and the military
in Pakistan and where it goes. After months of on both sides of the aisle that poverty may not
research, there is still a feeling that billions of produce terrorists in any direct sort of way, but
dollars could be unaccounted for even though that it is an underlying condition easily exploit-
simple reporting mechanisms are available. ed all over the world.
The lack of transparency hurts policymakers’
ability to make strategic decisions on the basis These recommendations highlight the role that a Depart-
of all available information. It also makes pub- ment for Global and Human Development can play in ensur-
lics both in the United States and in Pakistan ing that development promotion in countries such as Paki-
less trusting and more cynical about the na- stan becomes an integral part of U.S. policy.
POLICY November 2008

BRIEF

InterAction Public Policy Working Group
Organization URL
Academy for Educational Development www.aed.org
Action Against Hunger www.actionagainsthunger.org
Action Aid www.actionaid.org
Adventist Development and Relief Agency www.adra.org
International
Africare www.africare.org
Aga Khan Foundation U.S.A. www.akdn.org
Air Serv International www.airserv.org
American Friends Service Committee www.afsc.org
American Jewish World Service www.ajws.org
American Red Cross www.redcross.org
American Refugee Committee www.archq.org
AmeriCares www.americares.org
Bread for the World www.bread.org
CARE www.care.org
Catholic Medical Mission Board www.cmmb.org
Catholic Relief Services www.crs.org
Center for Health and Gender Equity, Inc www.genderhealth.org
Centre for Development & Population Activities www.cedpa.org
(CEDPA)
CHF International www.chfinternational.org
Child Health Foundation (CHF) www.childhealthfoundation.org
Christian Children’s Fund www.christianchildrensfund.org
Church World Service www.churchworldservice.org
Concern Worldwide www.concernusa.org
Congressional Hunger Center www.hungercenter.org
Counterpart International www.counterpart.org
Ethiopian Community Development Council, Inc www.ecdcinternational.org
Florida Association for Volunteer Action in the www.favaca.org/
Caribbean and the Americas (FAVACA)
Food for the Hungry www.fh.org
Friends of the World Food Program www.friendsofwfp.org
Global Health Council www.globalhealth.org
Habitat for Humanity International www.habitat.org
Heartland Alliance www.heartlandalliance.org
Hebrew Immigrant Aid Society www.hias.org
Heifer International www.heifer.org
1400 16th Street, NW
Suite 210
InsideNGO www.InsideNGO.org
Washington, DC 20036 Institute for Sustainable Communities www.iscvt.org
202-667-8227 Interplast www.interplast.org
reform@interaction.org Int’l Catholic Migration Commission www.icmc.net
Int’l Center for Research on Women www.icrw.org
Int’l Crisis Group www.crisisweb.org
www.interaction.org International Medical Corps www.imcworldwide.org
InterAction Public Policy Working Group (cont)

Organization URL

Int’l Orthodox Christian Charities www.iocc.org
Int’l Reading Association www.reading.org
International Relief & Development www.ird.org
International Rescue Committee www.theirc.org
Jesuit Refugee Services USA www.jrsusa.org
Joint Aid Management www.jamusa.org
Life for Relief and Development www.lifeusa.org
Lutheran World Relief www.lwr.org
Management Sciences for Health www.msh.org
MAP International www.map.org
Medical Teams International www.medicalteams.org
Mental Disability Rights International www.mdri.org
Mercy Corps www.mercycorps.org
Minnesota International Health Volunteers www.mihv.org
National Peace Corps Association www.rpcv.org
ONE Campaign www.one.org/
Opportunity International www.opportunity.org
Oxfam America www.oxfamamerica.org
Pact www.pactworld.org
Pan American Development Foundation www.padf.org
PATH www.path.org
Pathfinder International www.pathfind.org
Physicians for Human Rights www.phrusa.org
Plan USA www.planusa.org
Population Action International www.populationaction.org
Project HOPE www.projecthope.org
ProLiteracy Worldwide www.proliteracy.org
Refugees International www.refugeesinternational.org
Relief International www.ri.org
RESULTS, Inc. www.results.org
Save the Children www.savethechildren.org
The Hunger Project www.thp.org
U.S. Committee for Refugees and Immigrants (USCRI) www.refugees.org
U.S. Committee for UNDP www.undp-usa.org
U.S. Fund for UNICEF www.unicefusa.org
Winrock International www.winrock.org
Women for Women International www.womenforwomen.org
Women Thrive Worldwide www.womenthrive.org
World Vision www.worldvision.org
World Wildlife Fund www.worldwildlife.org
Regulatory

NGO Space
Constraints on
U.S. Government

U.S. Government Regulatory
Constraints on NGO Space
POLICY November 2008

BRIEF

Regulatory Constraints
on NGO Space
Recommendations
Problem
It is imperative that the following three policies be eliminated:
Three Executive (1) USAID’s Partner Vetting System (PVS) to vet NGO personnel and leaders; (2) the
branch initiatives Department of Treasury’s Voluntary Guidelines intended to prevent charities funnel-
undermine
ing money to terrorists; and (3) the anti-prostitution policy requirement for organiza-
the ability of
nongovernmental tions receiving money from the President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR)
organizations through USAID and the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS).
(NGOs) to effectively
implement U.S.
foreign assistance 
Actions
programs. Two Partner Vetting System:
intended to help • Suspend implementation of the rule that created the PVS while using consultative
fight terrorism
process between USAID and the NGO community to design a workable alter-
put the lives of
NGO staff at risk native system that protects NGOs, the government and the public against the
by requiring the unintended diversion of U.S. funds to terrorist organizations without putting U.S.
organizations to NGO personnel at undue risk;
perform tasks Department of Treasury Voluntary Guidelines:
associated with • The Department of Treasury should drop its Anti-Terrorism Financing Guidelines:
intelligence
Voluntary Best Practices for U.S. Based Charities and endorse in their stead the
services. The third
needlessly puts Principles of International Charity developed by over 39 American NGOs, founda-
countless others tions, grant makers, legal firms, and public interest advocates. This will remove
at risk by denying NGOs from roles usually performed by security and intelligence personnel; and
them access to Anti-Prostitution Pledge Requirement:
programs that can • USAID and HHS should revise their guidelines as applied to domestic and for-
help them avoid
eign NGOs to comply with the August 2008 federal court ruling (which found it
contracting HIV/
AIDS. unconstitutional to compel U.S.-based groups to adopt the U.S. Government’s
requirement), and allow the most effective groups to partner with the U.S. in the
fight against HIV/AIDS. 

Results
1400 16th Street, NW
Suite 210 American NGOs would be able to more effectively implement U.S. foreign assistance
Washington, DC 20036
programs without having to sacrifice constitutional rights or put their staff in physi-
202-667-8227
reform@interaction.org cal jeopardy.

www.interaction.org
Background
These three executive branch initiatives under- In March 2005 the group also produced Principles of Inter-
mine the ability of relief and development organizations to national Charity which it proposed that the Department of
effectively implement U.S. foreign assistance programs by Treasury issue in lieu of its Guidelines. The Department of
restricting access to important groups and discouraging Treasury declined to do so, but has twice revised the initial
the cooperation of key local partners. Some put U.S. civil- Guidelines in response to criticism, most recently in Septem-
ians in harm’s way  by requiring them to undertake tasks ber 2006. The Working Group and its members remain con-
normally the responsibility of security and intelligence ser- cerned that the Guidelines are discouraging charitable giv-
vice operatives. ing and are being used inappropriately by federal officials.
In December 2006 the Working Group wrote to Secretary
Partner Vetting System Paulson re-iterating its request that the Guidelines be with-
On July 17, 2007, USAID published a notice in the Federal drawn in favor of its Principles of International Charity.
Register describing the agency’s intent to create a new Part-
ner Vetting System (PVS). The notice proposed vetting indi- Anti-Prostitution Pledge Requirement
viduals and officers from non-governmental organizations The Global AIDS Act of 2003 required that organizations
(NGOs) that apply for USAID contracts, grants and coopera- receiving funds under the Act have or adopt a policy explic-
tive agreements to ensure that neither USAID nor USAID- itly opposing prostitution. Until May 2005 USAID and HHS
funded activities were inadvertently benefitting terrorists. did not enforce the policy requirement against U.S.-based
The PVS will affect every nonprofit organization that applies NGOs. But in May and June 2005 the two agencies issued
for USAID funding, and thousands of NGO employees and directives imposing the policy requirement on their U.S.
board members – a list of people that includes religious NGO implementing partners without providing any guid-
leaders and members of Congress – will be forced to turn ance on what activities would no longer be permissible.
over private personal information. Furthermore, in propos- Because prostitutes can spread HIV/AIDS, many NGOs have
ing the new PVS, the agency has ignored the fact that U.S. programs to encourage their cooperation in measures to
NGOs already have procedures in place to certify that funds control the disease. In January 2006 InterAction entered the
are not diverted to terrorists or terrorist organizations. The federal courts with an amicus brief supporting the position
proposed system, which was effectively put forth with no that the directives were an unconstitutional abridgement
consultation with the NGO community, dangerously blurs of the free speech rights of American citizens. The Federal
the lines between USAID and the various security agencies District Court in New York agreed but the administration ap-
of the U.S. government. If the employees of U.S. NGOs work- pealed its decision to the Second Circuit Court. Before that
ing abroad are suspected of working in concert with U.S. in- Court could issue a ruling the administration adopted a tac-
telligence agencies, the threat of terrorist acts against them tic that sent the case back to the District Court. There the
can only increase. Nonprofit relief and development organi- directives were again ruled unconstitutional, resulting in
zations are often the only non-security, non-military face of another administration appeal to the Second Circuit Court,
the American people in some of the most dangerous places where the matter now rests (November 2008).
in the world. If NGOs are forced to restrict their operations
in these places – which they will if the PVS is implemented
– we will be ceding the streets of the world to the kinds of
violent extremists that this policy aims to target.

Treasury Department Voluntary Guidelines
In November 2002, without any prior consultation with
the affected organizations, the Department of Treasury is-
sued Anti-Terrorism Financing Guidelines: Voluntary Best
Practices for U.S. Based Charities. A broad coalition of grant-
makers, NGOs, foundations, law firms, and public interest
groups formed the Treasury Guidelines Working Group of
Charitable Sector Organizations and Advisors and submitted
common and individual comments criticizing the Guidelines
as unnecessary, impractical, and likely to pose dangers to
American citizens working for these organizations abroad.
POLICY November 2008

BRIEF

InterAction USAID Management Reform
Working Group

Organization URL

Academy for Educational Development www.aed.org
Adventist Development and Relief Agency International www.adra.org
Africare www.africare.org
Air Serv International www.airserv.org
America’s Development Foundation HQ www.adfusa.org
American Friends Service Committee www.afsc.org
American Red Cross www.redcross.org
American Refugee Committee www.archq.org
Bread for the World www.bread.org
CARE www.care.org
Catholic Relief Services www.crs.org
Centre for Development & Population Activities (CEDPA) www.cedpa.org
CHF International www.chfinternational.org
Christian Children’s Fund www.christianchildrensfund.org
Concern Worldwide www.concernusa.org
Congressional Hunger Center www.hungercenter.org
Counterpart International www.counterpart.org
Enterprise Development International www.endpoverty.org
Florida Association for Volunteer Action in the Caribbean www.favaca.org/
and the Americas (FAVACA)
Food for the Hungry www.fh.org
Global Health Council www.globalhealth.org
Habitat for Humanity International www.habitat.org
Heifer International www.heifer.org
Helen Keller International www.hki.org
INMED Partnerships for Children www.inmed.org
InsideNGO www.InsideNGO.org
Institute for Sustainable Communities www.iscvt.org
Int’l Crisis Group www.crisisweb.org
International Medical Corps www.imcworldwide.org
International Relief & Development www.ird.org
International Rescue Committee www.theirc.org
Int’l Youth Foundation www.iyfnet.org
Jesuit Refugee Services USA www.jrsusa.org
1400 16th Street, NW
Lutheran World Relief www.lwr.org
Suite 210
Washington, DC 20036
Management Sciences for Health www.msh.org
202-667-8227
MAP International www.map.org
reform@interaction.org Mercy Corps www.mercycorps.org
National Association of Social Workers www.naswdc.org
Opportunity International www.opportunity.org
www.interaction.org Oxfam America www.oxfamamerica.org
InterAction USAID Management Reform
Working Group

Organization URL

Pact www.pactworld.org
PATH www.path.org
Pathfinder International www.pathfind.org
Physicians for Human Rights www.phrusa.org
Plan USA www.planusa.org
Refugees International www.refugeesinternational.org
Relief International www.ri.org
Save the Children www.savethechildren.org
United Methodist Committee on Relief www.umcor.org
Winrock International www.winrock.org
World Vision www.worldvision.org
World Wildlife Fund www.worldwildlife.org

InterAction Humanitarian Policy and Practice
Counterterrorism Working Group

Organization URL

AmeriCares www.americares.org
Adventist Development and Relief Agency International www.adra.org
America’s Development Foundation www.adfusa.org
American Friends Service Committee www.afsc.org
American Near East Refugee Aid www.anera.org
American Red Cross www.redcross.org
CARE www.care.org
Catholic Relief Services www.crs.org
CHF International www.chfinternational.org
Christian Children’s’ Fund www.christianchildrensfund.org
CIVIC www.civicworldwide.org
Concern Worldwide www.concernusa.org
Ethiopian Community Development Council www.ecdcinternational.org
Food for the Hungry www.fh.org
Habitat for Humanity International www.habitat.org
Heart to Heart www.hearttoheart.org
Heifer International www.heifer.org
InsideNGO www.InsideNGO.org
International Crisis Group www.crisisweb.org
International Medical Corps www.imcworldwide.org
International Relief & Development www.ird.org
International Rescue Committee www.theirc.org
International Youth Foundation www.iyfnet.org
Lutheran World Relief www.lwr.org
InterAction Humanitarian Policy and Practice
Counterterrorism Working Group (cont)

Organization URL

Management Sciences for Health www.msh.org
Mercy Corps www.mercycorps.org
Plan USA www.planusa.org
Save the Children www.savethechildren.org
Winrock International www.winrock.org
World Vision www.worldvision.org
NGO and
Military Relations

NGO and Military Relations
POLICY November 2008

BRIEF

The U.S. Military’s Expanding Role
in Foreign Assistance
Recommendations
Problem
The Congress and new Administration should ensure civilian agencies have the
The military’s necessary mandates, funding and personnel to lead U.S. diplomatic, humanitarian
growing and development efforts. The military should not take on development work to
involvement in
compensate for resource gaps in USAID and the Department of State. The currently
humanitarian
and development expanding assistance programs of the Department of Defense should be thoroughly
assistance is a evaluated to ensure effectiveness in meeting its security objectives. U.S. military
serious concern to should, as a rule, be used in disaster relief as a last resort, in situations requiring an
nongovernmental extraordinarily quick response or large lift capacity. The military response should be
organizations limited in geographic and programmatic scope, and should always be in support of
(NGOs). Its
civilian agencies.
operations often
blur the line
between NGOs Actions
acting in accord
with humanitarian • Rebuild civilian personnel and resource capacities at the Department of State and
principles, and the a newly constituted, elevated independent development agency (see separate
military’s pursuit briefing paper) by providing robust support in the international affairs budget;
of political and • Rewrite and reauthorize the Foreign Assistance Act to promote and protect hu-
security objectives.
manitarian and development priorities, including reinvigorating related expertise
In the development
arena differences and resources; and
in mandate and • Conduct a full review of Department of Defense programs and regional combat-
training make the ant command activities relating to foreign assistance. Determine the appropriate-
military a poor ness and effectiveness of the Department’s security, humanitarian and develop-
substitute for ment aid programs and the extent to which they are redundant.
civilian experts.

Results
These steps will help address the imbalance among the three pillars of national se-
curity: defense, diplomacy and development. In combination, they will improve U.S.
Government capacity to address poverty through effective development assistance
1400 16th Street, NW and eliminate duplicative Department of Defense programs, thus freeing up scarce
Suite 210 military resources for tasks critical to its core mission.
Washington, DC 20036
202-667-8227
reform@interaction.org

www.interaction.org
Background
Since 1998, the Department of Defense’s (DOD) derstanding of local societies, employ largely local staff, and
share of U.S. Official Development Assistance (ODA) in- design projects with community participation and cultural
creased from 3.5% to 22%. The DoD has dramatically sensitivity to ensure sustainability. NGOs operate in a mul-
expanded its relief, development and reconstruction as- tilateral context with the host government taking the lead,
sistance through programs such as Section 1207, the Com- and, when local institutions are  not functioning, with the
manders’ Emergency Response Program (CERP) and the UN. As a result, instead of using weapons or armed guards
Combatant Commanders’ Initiative Fund, and through the for their security, NGOs rely on an “acceptance” model that
activities of the regional combatant commands, particularly rests upon perceived impartiality and the trust of the com-
AFRICOM and SOUTHCOM, and the Provincial Reconstruc- munities in which they work. In conflict situations, NGO
tion Teams (PRTs). staff generally keep their distance from the military unless
Like the military, humanitarian non-governmental orga- deemed necessary to address civilian needs. This is not an
nizations (NGOs) adhere to a strict set of principles and stan- expression of hostility to the military, but instead a neces-
dards of behavior. For NGOs these are based on the  Code sary and vital measure for their security – security that de-
of Conduct for the International Red Cross and Red Crescent pends on community belief in their neutrality and indepen-
Movement and Non-Governmental Organizations in Disaster dence from political and military actors.
Relief. This code of conduct binds signatories to the follow- The military, therefore, should not consider NGOs as “force
ing key principles: extenders” or assume their cooperation, and should leave
• The Humanitarian Imperative: Every human being has development and humanitarian response to civilian agen-
the right to humanitarian assistance when affected by a cies and NGOs as much as possible. NGOs recognize that
natural or man-made disaster; communication with military actors is mutually beneficial
• Independence: NGO staff must not knowingly allow when conducted in a neutral space, and guidelines exist to
themselves to be used by governments or other groups help improve NGO-military relations when they operate in
for non-humanitarian purposes; and a common space. Although the InterAction- Department of
• Impartiality: Assistance is provided according to need, Defense Guidelines apply in hostile and potentially hostile
without regard to race, religion, nationality or political af- environments, they are useful in any environment where
filiation. the military is present.
The military should focus on its mandate and its strengths
Militaries have frequently been involved in natural disas- including security sector reform, maritime security, and mili-
ter response where their logistical resources, air and marine tary-to-military trainings in civilian protection and HIV/AIDS.
transport capabilities, and engineering services can be of However, when the military does engage in humanitarian and
significant help in specific contexts. Such efforts are most development activities, its involvement should be approved,
effective when coordinated with civilian expertise, which led and coordinated by civilian agencies. It is important that
can be found in USAID, the United Nations and NGOs. the “do no harm” principle is respected. The military should
In other disaster contexts, however, the military’s involve- develop clearly specified security and developmental objec-
ment can be deeply problematic. The U.S. military’s chief tives before implementing any assistance project and should
focus is security. Its relief and development activities em- regularly monitor progress towards achieving these goals.
phasize winning the “hearts and minds” of a population. Relations between the military and NGOs should adhere to
Moreover, the military generally lacks specialized humani- the Guidelines (attached) and military uniforms should be
tarian and development expertise. Quick-impact projects worn at all times, without exception.
and other force protection activities motivated by security
objectives may undermine sustainable development proj-
ects and relationships built by NGO workers. Well-intended
projects may have negative consequences and are often
unsustainable due to the military’s short-term goals and
high turnover. Relief activities by the military can also com-
promise the security of NGO staff in or near conflict areas
by blurring the lines between humanitarian and military
personnel.
NGOs take a different approach: they generally make a
long-term commitment to a situation, acquire a deep un-
POLICY November 2008

BRIEF

Peacekeeping
Recommendations
Problem
Recognizing the contribution of UN peacekeeping to the achievement of our
In recent years strategic objectives, the U.S. should seek to strengthen the UN’s ability to deploy
United Nations the large, multidimensional peacekeeping operations needed to resolve the world’s
members (including
complex conflicts situations. The U.S. should show positive leadership through
the U.S.) have
charged UN consistent financial and material support, the promulgation of necessary UN institu-
peacekeeping tional reforms, and the development of stronger institutional linkages between the
operations have U.S. Department of State and the UN peacekeeping system. Furthermore, the U.S.
been charged should actively use its leadership position on the UN Security Council to ensure that
with increasingly peacekeeping is not weakened and discredited through irresponsible deployments.
complex and
dangerous
tasks. However, Actions
heightened
expectations and • Demonstrate the renewed U.S. commitment to UN peacekeeping through the
responsibilities have prompt and complete payment of the U.S. share of current UN peacekeeping
not been matched costs, and the payment of U.S. peacekeeping arrears;
with the increases • Remove the legislative cap on U.S. contributions to UN peacekeeping opera-
in financial, tions, allowing us to fully meet our obligations to the UN and to pay off all arrears
material, and
incurred under the cap;
political support
necessary to fulfill • Use U.S. leadership to ensure that UN peacekeeping missions are provided with
these mandates the resources necessary to fulfill their mandates, including equipment, troops,
and meet related and political backing to resolve the crises in areas in which peacekeepers deploy;
expectations. • Use U.S. leadership on the UN Security Council to ensure that UN peacekeeping is
used responsibly and judiciously; and
• Take a leading role in the reform of UN institutions needed to reinforce the UN’s
ability to mount credible, sustained peacekeeping operations, during which
peacekeepers guilty of human rights violations are held to account.

Results
1400 16th Street, NW Re-investment in UN peacekeeping will strengthen and expand the capacity of the
Suite 210 UN to effectively and consistently protect civilians, and stabilize weak and failing
Washington, DC 20036
states. It will also send a strong signal of the Administration’s intention to reclaim
202-667-8227
reform@interaction.org the U.S. role as a respected leader in the international community.

www.interaction.org
Background
There are over 100,000 UN peacekeepers deployed in prove the security situation for Somali people or the delivery
20 missions on four continents around the world. These op- of humanitarian assistance.
erations all originate with the UN Security Council, which au- And yet, regardless of the enormous challenges faced by
thorizes the missions through Security Council Resolutions modern peacekeeping, the multilateral UN approach has
and regularly reviews their mandates. proved to be a successful and cost efficient way to promote
Since the end of the Cold War, UN peacekeeping no lon- international peace and security. A 2005 RAND study found
ger resembles the “classical” observation missions of lightly that multinational UN forces are far better suited than uni-
armed troops monitoring ceasefire agreements. Today’s lateral U.S. forces to perform peacekeeping responsibilities.
peacekeeping missions are complex operations deployed Furthermore, the Office of Management and Budget gave
into active conflict zones. Modern peacekeepers are asked the U.S. contributions to UN peacekeeping (CIPA account) its
to create stability, protect civilians, demobilize ex-combat- highest rating under the OMB Program Assessment Rating
ants, and guide the development of democratic institutions Tool. As part of this assessment, UN peacekeeping efforts
that respect human rights and uphold the rule of law. Peace- were judged to be consistent with State Department objec-
keeping today often represents a comprehensive effort to tives, consistently achieving stated the goals.
stabilize and reconstruct failed and failing states. As a permanent member of the Security Council with the
The UN Department of Peacekeeping Operations man- power to veto any Security Council Resolution, the U.S. ef-
ages UN civilian and military peacekeepers working to pro- fectively has the right to withhold approval for any mission
mote values and institutions that coincide directly with U.S. or mandate it considers ill conceived. Yet the U.S. routinely
political and strategic interests. Throughout the world, UN continues to underfund the U.S. share of the costs of these
peacekeeping efforts strive to prevent conflict, protect civil- operations – this despite the fact that we have approved
ians affected by armed conflict, to uphold the human rights, the missions. This, in turn, encourages other UN member
and to promote stability and good governance. For example, states to do the same, with the result that UN peacekeep-
in southern Sudan UN peacekeepers have been deployed to ing operations routinely fall behind in payments for troops
support and promote the U.S.-backed Comprehensive Peace and equipment, jeopardizing the ability of peacekeepers to
Agreement that brought over two decades of brutal civil war do their jobs, and thereby putting vulnerable people even
to an end. further at risk.
Reports of sexual abuse by UN peacekeepers threaten The U.S. has a projected debt of over $1.3 billion based on
to overshadow their positive contributions to prevent and the administration’s FY09 CIPA request due to a legislative
secure peace. While the UN has implemented significant re- cap on U.S. contributions to UN peacekeeping operations.
forms to prevent and address sexual exploitation and abuse Congress retroactively lifted the 25% cap on payments to
by peacekeepers, including mandatory pre-deployment UN peacekeeping for 2005 – 2008 and provided $190 million
trainings and the establishment of a conduct and discipline to pay off some of its debts through the FY08 supplemental.
unit at headquarters and in the field, more needs to be done. The FY09 appropriations bill contains language to prevent
The U.S. should press troop contributing countries to hold further arrears and Congress and the Administration should
accused nationals legally accountable and to incorporate continue to work together to permanently remove the leg-
the prevention of sexual exploitation and abuse into stan- islative cap to demonstrate our commitment and support to
dard military training. these critical peacekeeping missions.
In spite of the complexity, sensitivity and danger involved In short, despite the amazing strides and accomplish-
in conducting modern UN peacekeeping, UN missions are ments of UN peacekeeping over the last two decades, the
routinely deployed with mandates that far exceed the equip- system under tremendous financial and political strain – this
ment, staff, troop numbers and political support they re- at a time when the need for and demands on it are greater
ceive to get the job done. Also problematic is the increasing than ever. The new Administration has the opportunity to
inclination of UN member states to deploy UN peacekeepers use leadership on this matter to re-assert the U.S. as a global
into situations where there is no peace to keep, creating un- leader in the defense of human rights, the prevention of
reasonable expectations and damaging the credibility of the mass atrocities, and a leader of states by making a renewed
UN peacekeeping system as a whole. For example, current commitment to the development and responsible use of UN
US pressure to deploy a large-scale peacekeeping operation peacekeeping.
in Somalia ignores the reality that military intervention in an
environment where there is no peace to keep will actually
result in a further escalation of violence, and will not im-
POLICY November 2008

PAPER

Guidelines for Relations
Between U.S. Armed Forces
and Non-Governmental
Humanitarian Organizations
in Hostile or Potentially
Hostile Environments

O
Previously published by n March 8, 2005, the heads of major U.S. humanitarian organizations and U.S. civilian
United States Institute and military leaders met at the U.S. Institute of Peace (USIP) to launch a discussion on
of Peace, InterAction,
the challenges posed by operations in combat and other nonpermissive environments.
and the Department of
Defense, July 2007. The Working Group on Civil-Military Relations in Nonpermissive Environments, facilitated by
USIP, was created as a result of this meeting.
InterAction, the umbrella organization for many U.S. NGOs, has coordinated the non-gov-
ernmental delegation.1 Repre­sentatives from the Department of Defense, the Joint Chiefs of
Staff, the State Department, and the U.S. Agency for Inter­national Development have partici-
pated on behalf of the U.S. Government.

1. Recommended Guidelines
Guidelines for Relations between U.S. Armed Forces and Non-Governmental Humanitarian
Agencies in Hostile or Potentially Hostile Environments
The following guidelines should facilitate interaction between U.S. Armed Forces and Non-
Governmental Organizations (see Key Terms) belonging to InterAc­tion that are engaged in hu-
manitarian relief efforts in hos­tile or potentially hostile environments. (For the purpos­es of these
guidelines, such organizations will henceforth be referred to as Non-Governmental Humanitar-
ian Or­ganizations, or NGHOs.) While the guidelines were devel­oped between the Department
of Defense (DOD) and Inter-Action, DOD intends to observe these guidelines in its deal­ings with
the broader humanitarian assistance com­munity. These guidelines are not intended to consti­
tute advance endorsement or approval by either par­ty of particular missions of the other but are
premised on a defacto recognition that U.S. Armed Forces and NGHOs have often occupied the
same operational space in the past and will undoubtedly do so in the future. When this does oc­
1400 16th Street, NW
cur, both sides will make best efforts to observe these guidelines, recognizing that operational
Suite 210
Washington, DC 20036
necessity may require deviation from them. When breaks with the guidelines occur, every effort
202-667-8227
should be made to explain what prompted the deviation in order to promote transparency and
reform@interaction.org avoid dis­traction from the critical task of providing essential relief to a population in need.

1 The InterAction delegation includes CARE, Catholic Relief Services, the International Medical Corps, the Interna-
www.interaction.org tional Rescue Committee, Mercy Corps, Refugees International, Save the Children, and World Vision.
A. For the U.S. Armed Forces, the following guidelines that follow, NGHOs should minimize their activities at mili-
should be observed consistent with military force protec- tary bases and with U.S. Armed Forces personnel of a nature
tion, mission ac­complishment, and operational require- that might compromise their inde­pendence.
ments: 7. NGHOs may, as a last resort, request military pro­tection
1. When conducting relief activities, military personnel for convoys delivering humanitarian assis­tance, take advan-
should wear uniforms or other distinctive clothing to avoid tage of essential logistics support available only from the
being mistaken for NGHO representatives. U.S. Armed Forces military, or accept evacuation assistance for medical treat-
personnel and units should not display NGHO logos on any ment or to evacuate from a hostile environment. Provision
military clothing, vehicles, or equipment. This does not pre- of such military support to NGHOs rests solely within the
clude the appropriate use of symbols recognized under the discretion of the military forces and will not be undertaken
law of war, such as a red cross, when appropriate. U.S. Armed if it interferes with higher priority military activities. Sup­port
Forces may use such symbols on military clothing, vehicles, generally will be provided on a reimbursable basis in accor-
and equipment in appropriate situations. dance with applicable U.S. law.
2. Visits by U.S. Armed Forces personnel to NGHO sites
should be by prior arrangement. C. Recommendations on forms of coordination, to the
3. U.S. Armed Forces should respect NGHO views on the extent fea­sible, that will minimize the risk of confusion be-
bearing of arms within NGHO sites. tween military and NGHO roles in hostile or potentially hos-
4. U.S. Armed Forces should give NGHOs the option of tile environments, subject to military force protection, mis-
meeting with U.S. Armed Forces personnel outside military sion accomplishment, and operational requirements are:
installations for information exchanges. 1. NGHO liaison officer participation in unclassified secu-
5. U.S. Armed Forces should not describe NGHOs as “force rity briefings conducted by the U.S. Armed Forces.
multipliers” or “partners” of the military, or in any other fash- 2. Unclassified information sharing with the NGHO liaison
ion that could compromise their independence and their officer on security conditions, operational sites, location of
goal to be perceived by the population as independent. mines and unexploded ordnance, hu­manitarian activities,
6. U.S. Armed Forces personnel and units should avoid and population movements, insofar as such unclassified in-
interfering with NGHO relief efforts directed toward seg- formation sharing is forthe purpose of facilitating humani-
ments of the civilian population that the military may re- tarian operations and the security of staff and local person-
gard as unfriendly. nel engaged in these operations.
7. U.S. Armed Forces personnel and units should respect 3. Liaison arrangements with military commands prior
the desire of NGHOs not to serve as implementing partners to and during military operations to deconflict military and
for the military in conducting relief activities. However, in- relief activities, including for the purpose of protection of
dividual NGOs may seek to cooperate with the military, in humanitarian installations and personnel and to inform mili-
which case such cooperation will be carried out with due tary personnel of humanitarian relief objectives, mo­dalities
regard to avoiding compromise of the security, safety, and of operation, and the extent of prospective or on­going civil-
independence of the NGHO community at large, NGHO rep- ian humanitarian relief efforts.
resentatives, or public perceptions of their independence. 4. Military provision of assistance to NGHOs for hu­
manitarian relief activities in extremis when civil­ian provid-
B. For NGHOs, the following guidelines should be ob- ers are unavailable or unable to do so. Such assistance will
served: not be provided if it interferes with higher priority military
1. NGHO personnel should not wear military-style cloth- activities.
ing. This is not meant to preclude NGHO per­sonnel from
wearing protective gear, such as hel­mets and protective 2. Recommended Processes
vests, provided that such items are distinguishable in color/ A. Procedures for NGHO/military dialogue during con-
appearance from U.S. Armed Forces issue items. tingency planning for DOD relief operations in a hostile or
2. NGHO travel in U.S. Armed Forces vehicles should be potentially hostile environment:
lim­ited to liaison personnel to the extent practical. 1. NGHOs engaged in humanitarian relief send a small
3. NGHOs should not have facilities co-located with facili- num­ber of liaison officers to the relevant combatant com-
ties inhabited by U.S. Armed Forces personnel. mand for discussions with the contingency planners respon-
4. NGHOs should use their own logos on clothing, vehicles, sible for designing relief operations.
and buildings when security conditions permit. 2. NGHOs engaged in humanitarian relief assign a small
5. NGHO personnel’s visits to military facilities/sites should number of liaison officers to the relevant combat­ant com-
be by prior arrangement. mand (e.g., one liaison was stationed at U.S. CENTCOM for 6
6. Except for liaison arrangements detailed in the sec­tions of the first 12 months of the war in Afghanistan, and one was
in Kuwait City before U.S. forces entered Iraq in 2003). D. Possible organizations that could serve as a bridge be-
3. The relevant military planners, including but not lim­ited tween NGHOs and U.S. Armed Forces in the field2, e.g., U.S.
to the Civil Affairs representatives of the rele­vant command- Agency for International Development’s (USAID’s) Office of
er, meet with humanitarian relief NGHO liaison officers at a Military Affairs, State Department’s Office of the Coordina-
mutually agreed location. tor for Reconstruction and Stabilization (S/CRS), and the
UN’s Humanitarian Coordinator:
B. Procedures for NGHOs and the military to access as- If the U.S. Agency for International Development or the
sessments of humanitarian needs. U.S. military and NGHO State Department’s Office of the Coordinator for Reconstruc-
representatives should explore the following: tion and Stabilization agree to serve a liaison function, they
1. Access to NGHO and military assessments directly from should be prepared to work with the broader NGHO commu-
a DOD or other U.S. Government Web site. nity in addition to U.S. Government implementing partners.
2. Access to NGHO and military assessments through an The UN’s Humanitarian Coordinator or his/her rep­
NGO serving in a coordination role and identifying a com- resentative could be a strong candidate to serve as liaison
mon Web site. because he/she normally would be responsible for working
3. Access to NGHO and military assessments through a U.S. with all NGHOs and maintaining contact with the host gov-
Government or United Nations (UN) Web site. ernment or a successor regime.

C. Procedures for NGHO liaison relationships with com- Key Terms
batant commands that are engaged in planning for mili- Non-Governmental Organizations (NGOs): In wider us-
tary operations in hostile or potentially hostile environ- age, the term NGO can be applied to any nonprofit organiza-
ments. (NGHO liaison personnel are provided by the NGHO tion that is independent from government. However, for the
community): pur­poses of these guidelines, the term NGO refers to a pri-
1. The NGHO liaison officer should not be physically locat- vate, self-governing, not-for-profit organization dedicated
ed within the military headquarters, but if feasible, should be to alle­viating human suffering; and/or promoting education,
close to it in order to allow for daily contact. health care, economic development, environmental protec-
2. The NGHO liaison officer should have appropriate ac- tion, hu­man rights, and conflict resolution; and/or encour-
cess to senior-level officers within the combatant com­ aging the establishment of democratic institutions and civil
mands and be permitted to meet with them as necessary society. (JP 3-08/JP 1-02)
and feasible. Non-Governmental Humanitarian Organizations (NG­
3. There should be a two-way information flow. The NGHO HOs): For the purposes of these guidelines, NGHOs are or­
liaison officer should provide details on NGHO capabilities, ganizations belonging to InterAction that are engaged in
infrastructure if any, plans, concerns, etc. The military should humanitarian relief efforts in hostile or potentially hos­tile
provide appropriate details regarding minefields, unexplod- environments. NGHOs are a subset of the broader NGO
ed ordnance, other haz­ards to NGHOs, access to medical fa- community.
cilities, evacuation plans, etc. Independence for NGHOs: Independence is defined in the
4. The NGHO liaison officer should have the opportunity same way as it is in the Code of Conduct of the International
to brief military commanders on NGHO objectives, the Code Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC)
of Conductof the International Federation of Red Cross and and NGOs Engaged in Disaster Relief: Independence is de-
Red Crescent Societies (IFRC) and NGOs Engaged in Disas­ter fined as not acting as an instrument of government foreign
Relief, the United Nations Inter-Agency Standing Com­mittee policy. NGHOs are agencies that act independently from
(IASC) Guidelines, country-specific guidelines based on the governments. NGHOs therefore, formulate their own poli-
IASC Guidelines, and, if desired, The Sphere Project Humani- cies and implementation strategies and do not seek to im-
tarian Charter and Minimum Standards in Disaster Response. plement the policy of any government, except insofar as it
U.S. Armed Forces personnel should have the opportunity to coincides with their own independent policies. To maintain
brief NGHOs, to the extent appropriate, on U.S. Government independence, NGHOs will never knowingly—or through
and coalition goals and policies, mon­itoring principles, ap- negligence— allow themselves, or their employees, to be
plicable laws and rules of engage­ment, etc. used to gath­er information of a political, military, or econom-
5. The NGHO liaison officer could continue as a liaison at ically sensitive nature for governments or other bodies that
higher headquarters even after a Civil-Military Operations may serve purposes other than those that are strictly humani­
Center (CMOC) or similar mechanism is established in-coun-
try. Once this occurs, liaison officers of individual NGHOs
2 In situations in which there is no actor to serve as a bridge, a US military
could begin coordination in-country through the CMOC for Civil Affairs cell could serve as a temporary point-of-contact between NG-
civil–military liaison. HOs and other elements of the US Armed Forces.
tarian, nor will they act as instruments of foreign policy of
donor governments.
InterAction: InterAction is the largest coalition of U.S.-
based international development and humanitarian non­
governmental organizations. With over 165 members op-
erating in every developing country, InterAction works to
overcome poverty, exclusion, and suffering by advancing
ba­sic dignity for all.
POLICY November 2008

BRIEF

Contributors to NGO and Military Relations Policy Brief

Organization URL
American Jewish World Service www.ajws.org
American Red Cross www.redcross.org
American Refugee Committee www.arcrelief.org
CARE www.care.org
Catholic Relief Services www.crs.org
CHF International www.chfinternational.org
Christian Children’s Fund www.ccfusa.org
Church World Service www.churchworldservice.org
Habitat for Humanity International www.habitat.org
International Medical Corps www.imcworldwide.org
International Rescue Committee www.theirc.org
Jesuit Refugee Service www.jrsusa.org
Mercy Corps www.mercycorps.org
Oxfam America www.oxfamamerica.org
Refugee Council USA www.rcusa.org
Refugees International www.refintl.org
Relief International www.ri.org
Save the Children www.savethechildren.org
US Fund for UNICEF www.unicefusa.org
Women’s Commission for Refugee Women and Children www.womenscommission.org
World Vision www.worldvision.org

InterAction Humanitarian Policy and Practice Working Group

Organization URL
Action Against Hunger (USA) www.actionagainsthunger.org
Adventist Development and Relief Agency International www.adra.org
African Medical & Research Foundation, Inc. www.amref.org
Africare www.africare.org
Air Serv International www.airserv.org
Alliance to End Hunger www.alliancetoendhunger.org
American Friends Service Committee www.afsc.org
American Jewish Joint Distribution Committee www.jdc.org
1400 16th Street, NW
Suite 210 American Jewish World Service www.ajws.org
Washington, DC 20036 American Near East Refugee Aid www.anera.org
202-667-8227 American Red Cross International Services www.redcross.org
reform@interaction.org American Refugee Committee www.archq.org
Americares www.americares.org
America's Development Foundation www.adfusa.org
www.interaction.org Ananda Marga Universal Relief Team www.amurt.net
InterAction Humanitarian Policy and Practice Working Group (cont)

Organization URL

Baptist World Alliance/Baptist World Aid www.bwanet.org
Brother's Brother Foundation, The www.brothersbrother.org
Campaign for Innocent Victims in Conflict (CIVIC) www.civicworldwide.org
CARE www.care.org
Catholic Medical Mission Board www.cmmb.org
Catholic Relief Services www.crs.org
CHF International www.chfinternational.org
Christian Children's Fund www.christianchildrensfund.org
Christian Reformed World Relief Committee www.crwrc.org
Church World Service www.churchworldservice.org
CONCERN Worldwide US Inc. www.concernusa.org
Congressional Hunger Center www.hungercenter.org
Counterpart International, Inc. www.counterpart.org
Direct Relief International www.directrelief.org
Doctors of the World, Inc. www.dowusa.org
Episcopal Relief and Development www.er-d.org
Ethiopian Community Development Council www.ecdcinternational.org
Food for the Hungry www.fh.org
Friends of Liberia www.fol.org
GOAL USA Fund www.goalusa.org
Handicap International www.handicap-international.us
Heart to Heart International www.hearttoheart.org
Hebrew Immigrant Aid Society www.hias.org
Help the Afghan Children www.helptheafghanchildren.org
Immigration and Refugee Services of America www.refugees.org
International Aid www.internationalaid.org
International Catholic Migration Commission www.icmc.net
International Medical Corps www.imcworldwide.org
International Orthodox Christian Charities www.iocc.org
International Relief and Development www.ird-dc.org
International Relief Teams www.irteams.org
International Rescue Committee www.theIRC.org
Islamic Relief www.irw.org
Jesuit Refugee Service/USA www.jrsusa.org
Korean American Sharing Movement www.kasm.org
Latter-day Saint Charities www.providentliving.org
Lutheran World Relief www.lwr.org
MAP International www.map.org
Mercy Corps www.mercycorps.org
Mercy-USA for Aid and Development, Inc. www.mercyusa.org
National Peace Corps Association www.rpcv.org
Northwest Medical Teams www.nwmti.org
Operation USA www.opusa.org
Oxfam America www.oxfamamerica.org
Partners for Development www.pfd.org
Physicians for Human Rights www.phrusa.org
Presbyterian Disaster Assistance and Hunger Program www.pcusa.org
InterAction Humanitarian Policy and Practice Working Group (cont)

Organization URL

Project HOPE, The People-to-People Health www.projecthope.org
Foundation, Inc.
Refugees International www.refugeesinternational.org
RELIEF International www.ri.org
Salvation Army World Service Office, The www.sawso.org
Save the Children www.savethechildren.org
Trickle Up Program, The www.trickleup.org
U.S. Association for the UN High Commissioner for www.unrefugees.org
Refugees
U.S. Fund for UNICEF www.unicefusa.org
United Jewish Communities www.ujc.org
United Methodist Committee on Relief www.umcor.org
World Concern www.worldconcern.org
World Education www.worlded.org
World Emergency Relief www.worldemergencyrelief.org
World Relief Corporation www.worldrelief.org
World Vision www.worldvision.org
Priorities
Humanitarian

Humanitarian Priorities
POLICY November 2008

BRIEF

Humanitarian Funding Priorities

Recommendations
Problem
A revitalized USAID and Department of State, through their respective policy and
The United States planning units, must be given the mandate to adopt significant reforms to system-
does not have atize and streamline humanitarian assistance in order to effectively and efficiently
the funding
respond to growing global needs. Unclear and often artificial divisions of responsi-
mechanisms
necessary to bility between agencies, between humanitarian and development assistance, and
respond to the between natural disaster and conflict-induced displacement response, have led to
quick onset of inefficiencies in the planning, management and funding processes. The practice of
humanitarian under-funding humanitarian accounts in the regular budget and addressing the re-
emergencies. maining gaps through supplemental bills (see separate briefing paper) has also been
Additionally, the
deeply problematic and prevents help from reaching people in need.
United States
consistently
underfunds the two Actions
primary responders
to international • Fully fund humanitarian accounts in the regular budget and use supplemental
humanitarian funding only for truly unanticipated emergencies;
crisis’s, the • Increase the Department of State’s Bureau for Refugees, Population and Migration
Department of (BPRM) Emergency Refugee Migration Assistance (ERMA) funding ceiling to $200
State’s BPRM and
million and speed up the approval process by allowing draw-downs to be certified
USAID’s Office of
Foreign Disaster by the Secretary of State, rather than the President;
Assistance (OFDA), • Provide USAID’s OFDA with a minimum budget of $550 million at the beginning of
reducing the USG’s each fiscal year to prevent regular supplemental budget requests and ruptures in
ability to respond provision of life-saving assistance; and
rapidly and with • Create a Transition Fund of $300 million for USAID to bridge the “relief to develop-
the flexibility
ment” gap in countries transitioning out of conflict.
necessary to
adequately address
emergencies. Results
By providing USG humanitarian and development assistance experts with quickly acces-
sible and flexible funding, the US will be able to respond rapidly and nimbly to emer-
1400 16th Street, NW gencies as they occur. This will underscore the position of the United States as a leader in
Suite 210 effective assistance and as a compassionate defender of vulnerable populations around
Washington, DC 20036
the world. The creation of a Transition Fund will allow USAID to build upon the suc-
202-667-8227
reform@interaction.org cesses of humanitarian programs during the transition to development assistance and
its flexibility will allow for shifts in programming mechanisms during the transition from
conflict to stability.
www.interaction.org
Background
The United States is known as a generous and emergency response to the recovery and development
compassionate donor nation, but the mechanisms by which stage, it has become clear that USAID does not have an ef-
the U.S. Government is able to respond to quick onset emer- fective mechanism to facilitate the shift from one type of
gencies and to transition from emergencies into recovery assistance to another. There is no consistent approach to
and development assistance do not allow for the rapid and transferring support to basic social services such as health
flexible response that is necessary for these situations. and education, often provided through NGOs, to the con-
Humanitarian accounts should be fully funded during the trol of national ministries in countries emerging from con-
regular appropriations process. The trend of underfunding flict. Within USAID, it is unclear where the responsibility
humanitarian accounts such as IDA, MRA, ERMA, and emer- lies to ensure a coherent transition, and there is rarely a
gency food aid in the regular budget means that OFDA and “handshake” between USAID’s Bureau for Democracy and
BPRM must seek to fill in the missing funds through emer- Humanitarian Assistance (DCHA) and the regional bureaus
gency supplemental budgets. The irregular process causes responsible for more traditional development assistance
scale-backs and shutdowns of life-saving programs, reduc- when programs are being transitioned from one type of as-
es crisis readiness, and creates costly inefficiencies when sistance to another. Because of this, there are many exam-
staff is let go and then re-hired. Even if the humanitarian ples of humanitarian assistance programs ending without
accounts are replenished, the irreversible human conse- development assistance picking up support for basic social
quences result in lost lives, malnourished children, and the services, causing already vulnerable populations to lose
spread of disease. access to key basic services such as health and education,
The Department of State’s Bureau for Population, Refu- which then contributes to continuing instability. Of partic-
gees, and Migration (BPRM) can use the Emergency Refugee ular concern in communities coming out of conflict is the
Migration Assistance (ERMA) draw-down mechanism to ac- impact that sexual violence has had on women and their
cess an additional $100 million in the case of an emergency families. Addressing the physical and psychological needs
that creates or impacts a refugee population. However, this of women who have survived sexual violence is extremely
draw-down requires Presidential approval, which can slow important to the recovery process for communities coming
the process down considerably. The Secretary of State has out of conflict and this particular issue, along with the rein-
the contextual knowledge and the judgment to determine tegration of child soldiers, is often lost in this “relief to devel-
whether and when these funds should be used and would opment” gap. To address this gap and allow for a more flex-
be able to respond more quickly than the President. It would ible response to transition situations (which can fluctuate
make sense to shift draw-down approval to the Secretary of between emergency and recovery as peace processes are
State in order to allow BPRM to react more swiftly. Also, the being worked out), USAID should be provided with a Transi-
$100 million ceiling has not been reviewed for over a de- tion Fund of $300 million, which the Administrator can ac-
cade, and as costs for these responses have increased in line cess specifically to support the transition process. The funds
with increases in related food and transportation costs, this accessed should be programmed by the regional bureaus,
ceiling should be increased to $200 million. with a clear plan developed in coordination with DCHA that
USAID’s Office for Disaster Assistance (OFDA) responds to would prevent gaps in basic social services.
more than one hundred emergencies worldwide each year.
OFDA consistently spends more than $550 million per year
on these responses, yet is just as consistently underfunded
at the beginning of the fiscal year at less than $350 million.
This underfunding at the outset then means that OFDA
must seek to fill in the missing funds through emergency
supplemental budgets. As these supplemental budgets
take months for Congressional approval and for the money
to hit the books, often the supplemental tranche is not avail-
able for use by OFDA and its implementing partners until
close to the end of the fiscal year. In the meantime, OFDA is
unable to respond to ongoing crises at the level at which its
emergency response experts deem necessary.
As some of the key crises that the humanitarian commu-
nity has been dealing with are starting to transition from
POLICY November 2008

BRIEF

Afghanistan
Recommendations
Problem
To further the conditions needed for sustainable peace, instead of focusing on simply
Despite significant backstopping short-term military objectives, U.S. humanitarian and development
investments in assistance should be coordinated with the efforts of the Government of Afghanistan
Afghanistan’s
and other donors, and it should focus on alleviating poverty, building local capacity,
reconstruction
since 2001, the and reintegrating the 5 million returning refugees. Rather than relying on military
country remains and quasi-military actors to conduct relief and development efforts, the U.S. should
highly unstable use civilian experts to carry out such assistance and strictly separate this work from
as the lives and military-related efforts and actors such as the Provincial Reconstruction Teams (PRTs).
livelihoods Afghans
are constantly
threatened due Actions
to deteriorating
• Develop a coordinated assistance strategy with the Afghan government and
security, military
operations, the donors to ensure that assistance is poverty-focused, better balanced among stable
global food and conflict-affected and poppy-growing areas, and builds the capacity of Afghan
crisis, corruption, civil society;
persistent poverty, • Re-establish a clear and consistent separation between military and civilian-led
uncoordinated assistance efforts. The PRTs should return their to their original focus on sectors
international
where they hold a comparative advantage, such as security sector reform and sup-
actors and weak
governance. port for extending the Afghan government’s presence;
• Request the Government Accountability Office to conduct a comprehensive
review of U.S. assistance to Afghanistan to evaluate the effectiveness of funding
mechanisms and performance of all implementing actors in addressing develop-
ment objectives;
• Provide the leadership and resources to address the looming humanitarian crisis
through long-term measures coordinated with the relevant Afghan ministries; and
• Take all measures to prevent civilian harm and displacement during military opera-
tions. Immediately report any incidents to the Afghan government and humanitar-
ian actors to provide assistance.

1400 16th Street, NW
Suite 210
Results
Washington, DC 20036
The recommended actions will shift the focus of U.S. assistance to efforts that ensure
202-667-8227
reform@interaction.org aid efficiently and effectively addresses the root causes of the poverty which domi-
nates so much of Afghanistan and serves as a catalyst for sustainable development.

www.interaction.org
Background
Afghanistan is one of the least developed coun- proach could contribute to further deterioration of security
tries in the world, with deep-seated poverty characterized and undermining of government legitimacy in previously
by limited economic infrastructure and high rates of illitera- stable parts of the country.
cy and maternal and child mortality. Decades of war and in- NGOs are under attack. Over the last six months, kill-
effective governance have destroyed most of Afghanistan’s ings, kidnappings and other violence against NGOs have
political and economic infrastructure. U.S.-based NGOs have increased drastically, threatening their ability to work in
been working in Afghanistan and with Afghan refugees for Afghanistan. The provision of humanitarian and develop-
decades, building relationships with communities, building ment assistance by U.S. military actors sometimes heighten
a deep understanding of their needs and preferences, and insecurity for NGOs, which rely on perceived impartiality, the
creating opportunities for development. clear distinction between combatants and non-combatants,
While international attention has settled on military con- and the acceptance by local communities to maintain se-
flict, poppy production and roadside explosions, the efforts curity in conflicted and insecure environments. All efforts,
of international NGOs and their Afghan colleagues, who have including adherence to the InterAction-DoD Guidelines and
undertaken longstanding, peaceful initiatives to rebuild Af- Afghanistan-specific civil-military guidelines, must be made
ghanistan, merit greater consideration and support. to distinguish between the activities of military actors and
The growing food crisis in Afghanistan, evidenced by ris- those of NGOs.
ing food prices and extreme food shortages, will exacerbate Military operations have led to displacement and a 20%
the situation. The urban poor, widows, orphans, the elderly, increase in civilian deaths over last year. The high civilian
the disabled and recently returned refugees are the most death toll threatens to undermine Afghans’ support for in-
vulnerable populations. Long-term measures to strengthen ternational military forces, as well as the Afghan government
food security, reduce the vulnerability to disasters and ex- and security forces. The U.S. and other military actors must
ternal shocks, and enhance the effectiveness of agricultural take all measures to enhance the protection of civilians, en-
assistance and land and water management should be de- sure accountability through immediate and independent
veloped immediately with the relevant Afghan ministries. assessments and consistently report incidents to the UN and
International assistance remains heavily imbalanced in humanitarian agencies to ensure that those affected receive
a number of ways. Geographically, assistance is concen- the appropriate assistance.
trated disproportionately on the capital, the most insecure
and poppy-growing areas of the country. As a result, more
peaceful regions are neglected even though they often
present the greatest opportunity for successful develop-
ment. Donors’ choice of aid implementers is also imbalanced
with much of the assistance going to the wrong actors, such
as the military and contractors which often have limited de-
velopment experience and knowledge of the local environ-
ment. The multitude of pooled funds has also contributed
to the inefficient disbursement of funds. A careful balance
must be struck in a multi-year assistance strategy which uses
a diversity of implementers and funding mechanisms to
support sustainable development throughout the country.
Quasi-development efforts and “hearts-and-minds” activi-
ties focused on security objectives have minimal, and often
negative, development impacts for most people. Assistance
activities carried out by international military actors, par-
ticularly the Provincial Reconstruction Teams (PRTs) often
end up fueling corruption and providing strength for local
power holders who too often do not have the long-term de-
velopment needs of the local people in mind. In fact, PRTs
sometimes actually contribute to insecurity, resentment and
hostility by failing to consult with the community and blur-
ring the lines between military and civilian activities. This ap-
POLICY November 2008

BRIEF

Burma (Myanmar)
Recommendations
Problem
U.S. policy towards Burma traditionally focused first and foremost on achieving
Burma is one of the political goals and has seen limited success over the past 20 years. In this same
poorest countries period, living conditions for millions of Burmese have undergone a devastating slide
worldwide but it
downwards. They live constantly on the brink of humanitarian crises, and Cyclone
receives 20 times
less international Nargis has shown that any shock can have disastrous consequences. The U.S. must
aid than comparable give greater priority to humanitarian issues, and recognize not only the immediate
developing benefits of aid, but also the importance that strengthening civil society through aid
countries. Other work will have for long-term democratization in the country.
donors now
separate politics
from humanitarian Actions
aid, and have
• Ensure humanitarian needs are met regardless of political concerns. Separate
significantly
increased resources political objectives from humanitarian needs;
to Burma. The • Join the U.K. and European Union in increasing support for independent humani-
U.S. should follow tarian work inside Burma. Additional funding to programs inside Burma should
suit and increase not decrease commitments to organizations in Thailand;
humanitarian aid • Increase assistance to independent humanitarian programs in Burma gradually,
inside the country.
with $20 million for FY2009, $25 million in 2010, and $35 million in 2011;
• Travel to Burma to directly assess the situation, including the ability of the United
Nations (UN) and nongovernmental organizations (NGOs) to provide humanitar-
ian assistance inside the country and to assess the impact of the U.S. mission; and
• Work with operating agencies, the UN, and Association of Southeast Asian
Nations (ASEAN) to ensure independent aid operations, full accountability, and
transparency, protection of local staff and partners, and involvement of beneficia-
ries at all stages of the aid process.

Results
Greater humanitarian engagement will respond to urgent needs, thereby reducing
1400 16th Street, NW mortality and vulnerability while also increasing people-to-people contact. A focus
Suite 210 on training and capacity building for community-based organizations will foster
Washington, DC 20036
civil-society development and promote a break from traditional patronage systems
202-667-8227
reform@interaction.org that foster political support for the Burmese regime.

www.interaction.org
Background
Months after Cyclone Nargis, which devastated tarian aid. Despite this view, other administration and con-
large swaths of the coastal region and killed an estimated gressional staff continue to resist expanding U.S. assistance.
140,000 people, the world has an outdated image of the As a result of these policies, the U.S. is in danger of ending
situation inside Burma based on the traditional image of its cyclone relief program at the end of 2008. Currently, there
the nation as largely closed to outside assistance efforts. Aid is no Administration request nor any congressional appro-
agencies today report an unprecedented level of access and priations for new humanitarian assistance and recovery pro-
mobility in the Ayeyarwady Delta, which is a tribute to the grams in 2009.
successful fight by the international community for humani- UN aid agencies and international NGOs go to pains to
tarian access. To maintain these gains and provide the pos- ensure that their work does not benefit the regime. To this
sibility that these new, relaxed operating rules will spread out end, these groups can document their use of independent
of the delta throughout the country, the U.S. must maintain firms in purchasing, transport and the delivery of goods and
its commitment to providing humanitarian aid to Burma. services, and are transparent with donors about all contracts
Before Cyclone Nargis struck, Burma was already widely they hold to allay any concerns.
believed to be one of the poorest countries in the world. The Local staff and cooperation with local NGOs and commu-
UN Development Program estimates GDP per capita in Bur- nity-based organizations underpin the operations of interna-
ma as the 13th lowest in the world. The average Burmese fam- tional agencies. At the village level, rice banks, health promot-
ily spends 75% of its income on securing food supplies. Less ers, religious associations and other informal entities have
than 50% of children complete primary school and according emerged as effective, independent partners for international
to the UN Children’s Fund (UNICEF) 104 of every 1,000 chil- organizations. Support for international aid efforts often also
dren in Burma die before the age of 5 – the second-highest directly strengthens independent Burmese civil society.
rate outside Africa, after Afghanistan. Burma also has the A lack of political progress cannot justify the prolonged
highest HIV rate in Southeast Asia; and malaria, a treatable suffering of ordinary Burmese, who are in large part inno-
and preventable disease, is still the leading cause of mortality cent victims of the prolonged political stalemate. The U.S.
and morbidity. must re-think its Burma strategy and look at increasing hu-
While international aid for cyclone relief has been impres- manitarian assistance if it is to meet its goal of supporting
sive, including a $50 million contribution from the U.S., non- the people of Burma.
cyclone related programs provide Burma with less overseas
development assistance: a mere $2.88 per person. This is less
than the per capita amount for any of the other poorest 50
countries – a group in which the average is more than $58
per person.
Western donor governments traditionally have imposed
broad-based sanctions on Burma, including limiting humani-
tarian and development assistance to minimal levels in order
to pressure the military government into reforms.
Recently, however, recognizing the lack of significant suc-
cess of their traditional approach and the high level of need,
European donors have changed course and begun increas-
ing humanitarian assistance to Burma. The European Com-
mission plans to raise its funding inside Burma to $63 mil-
lion by 2010. The United Kingdom (UK) plans to provide $36
million by 2011. This increased humanitarian aid is matched
by a tightening of sanctions targeted specifically at govern-
ment officials and their cronies by both the UK and Euro-
pean Union.
Outside of cyclone relief, U.S. policy-makers continue to
deny funding for humanitarian assistance to Burma, with mi-
nor exceptions for HIV and avian flu programs. U.S. officials
most familiar with the country – those in Rangoon and in re-
gional offices in Thailand – support greater levels of humani-
POLICY November 2008

BRIEF

Chad
Recommendations
Problem
The U.S., in close partnership with France, the European Union and other critical
Eastern Chad is host African actors such as Libya, must press the warring parties in Chad to fulfill their
to roughly 250,000 commitments, including their commitment to release all children from their forces,
Sudanese refugees
and fully implement the terms of all peace agreements that have been signed. In
from neighboring
Darfur. Furthermore, order to stabilize the security and political situation, the Government of Chad should
some 185,000 enter into an inclusive political dialogue with all opposition groups including the
Chadians have been rebel factions and normalize its relationship with the Government of Sudan.
internally displaced
and approximately
700,000 civilians
Actions
in eastern Chad • Put pressure on the Government of Chad and the country’s political and armed
are threatened
opposition groups to engage in an inclusive dialogue aimed at resolving the root
by ongoing
violence between causes of Chad’s internal crisis;
the Chadian • Develop and support a comprehensive approach to bring an end to child recruit-
government and ment by both the Chadian military and the numerous rebel groups operating in
rebel groups based eastern Chad;
in Sudan. • Provide adequate, predictable funding for early-recovery projects – in the con-
text of an overarching Chadian development strategy – in order to fill immediate
service and infrastructure gaps while also contributing to long-term development;
and
• Support the United Nations Secretary-General’s request for a stronger, broader
mandate for the UN Mission in the Central African Republic and Chad (MINURCAT)
which would support civilian police, and Chadian justice sector and governance
reform.

Results
Immediate investment in the protection of civilians will signal to the Chadian people
that the U.S. has not forgotten them in the shadow of Darfur. By applying pressure to
1400 16th Street, NW the Government of Chad to engage in an inclusive dialogue with armed and political
Suite 210 opposition, the U.S. will help to ensure the stabilization of both Chad, and the central
Washington, DC 20036
African region.
202-667-8227
reform@interaction.org

www.interaction.org
Background
Internal and Regional Insecurity: Insecurity in (MINURCAT) to eastern Chad and northeastern Central Af-
Chad is the product of a variety of domestic and regional rican Republic to ensure security within the refugee camps.
crises. It has been the site of a protracted civil war in which The resolution also authorized the European Union to de-
a number of often fragmented rebel movements continue ploy a military force (EUFOR) to provide area security and
to launch attacks on towns throughout the east. The rebels force protection for the lightly armed UN police. Unfortu-
receive support and protection from the Government of Su- nately neither the mandate nor the configuration of the
dan, just as Sudanese rebels receive support from the Gov- peacekeeping forces adequately addresses the generalized
ernment of Chad, with the spillover exacerbating the conflict threat of banditry and impunity, both of which expire in
and humanitarian conditions in the Central African Repub- March 2009.
lic. Chadian rebels have established bases inside Darfur and The resolution of the conflict in Chad will require both an
launch attacks from inside Sudanese territory, including the inclusive, internal political dialogue, and sustained pressure
February 2008 attack on the Chadian capital of N’Djamena on both the Governments of Chad and Sudan to normalize
that nearly overthrew the government. Likewise, the Darfur relations and stabilize the border areas of these two vola-
rebel group JEM (the Justice and Equality Movement) uses tile countries. In the interim, the U.S. should support efforts
the Zaghawa-dominated Bahai region of Chad as a safe area to ensure that civilians in Chad – both Sudanese refugees
in which to regroup and launch attacks into Sudan, such as and Chadians themselves – are protected by offering strong
the unprecedented May 2008 attack on Khartoum. political and material support to an expanded and well-re-
Chad’s rebels, however, do not represent the most imme- sourced UN mission, which includes a military component,
diate threat to civilians. These groups, which include well civilian police, and Chadian justice sector and governance
trained, disciplined officers who defected from the Chadian reform, as well as supporting efforts to stem the recruitment
military, do not systematically attack civilians. Rather, the of children into armed forces and factions.
greatest threat to civilians and humanitarian operations is
banditry. Bandit groups, which sometimes involve local au-
thorities, the Chadian military, and moonlighting police or
gendarmerie, act with almost complete impunity. They have
been responsible for chronic car-jackings and the violent
looting throughout the east.
Child Recruitment: The conflict and displacement situ-
ation in eastern Chad has made refugee and internally dis-
placed (IDP) children particularly vulnerable. Many children
have been separated from their families, physically attacked,
or recruited by fighting forces from all sides of the conflict.
As members of militias and armed groups move into refugee
camps and IDP sites, refugee and displaced children are es-
pecially vulnerable to recruitment and forced labor. Children
as young as nine years old are being forcibly and/or volun-
tarily recruited into armed forces. In 2007, the Chadian gov-
ernment signed the Paris Principles, which aim to protect
children from recruitment and assist those who have been
involved with armed groups, and agreed to stop recruitment
and start the release of all children. The Chadian national
army, militias supported by the Chadian government, and
Chadian rebel groups, however, all continued recruiting chil-
dren within IDP sites and host communities. Thousands of
children are also recruited from refugee camps located close
to the Sudan border by Sudanese armed groups, including
the Janjaweed, the JEM and the Sudan Liberation Army.
The International Response: In September 2007 the
UN Security Council authorized the deployment of United
Nations Mission in the Central African Republic and Chad
POLICY November 2008

BRIEF

Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC)

Recommendations
Problem
A comprehensive U.S. policy in the DRC must address both the pervasive poverty
Ongoing conflict and immediate needs of all Congolese, while focusing substantial diplomatic energy
between the on resolving the conflict in the eastern part of the country, ensuring the stability
Congolese
that will allow political and economic development to take root. Increased humani-
government led
by President tarian and development funding, support for good governance, and reforms in the
Joseph Kabila and security and justice sector are critical to ensuring that the Congolese are able to
multiple rebel and move this vast, complex and key regional power forward in a positive direction for
militia groups has the benefit of its 60 million inhabitants and the region. A resolution to the conflict in
created widespread the east is also critical to Congo’s future and the U.S. has a huge role to play.
regional instability
and a devastating
humanitarian crisis Actions
in which over 1
million have been • Assert U.S. leadership, with the United Nations and regional and donor govern-
internally displaced, ments, to ensure an end to fighting and implementation of the 2007 Nairobi and
45,000 die monthly Goma Peace Agreements;
from conflict • Support a comprehensive plan to address and prevent sexual violence with: sup-
and disease, and port to survivors, their families and communities; accountability for perpetrators;
sexual violence is
and protection by peacekeepers and national security forces;
at unprecedented
levels. • Assist the Congolese government in professionalizing its armed forces and police
to protect the civilian population;
• Fully pay the U.S. share of the budget for the UN peacekeeping mission (MONUC),
and work to improve the effectiveness of MONUC in protecting civilians from
abuse;
• Significantly ramp up U.S. Government spending on humanitarian and develop-
ment efforts, as well as on transition programs that bridge the gap between relief
and development; and
• Press for better control of natural resource extraction as it fuels conflict and hu-
man rights abuses such as child labor.

1400 16th Street, NW
Suite 210
Results
Washington, DC 20036
While the challenges in the DRC are complex and not easily solved, an engaged U.S.
202-667-8227
reform@interaction.org leadership taking effective action as outlined above can have an enormous positive
impact on the lives of millions of Congolese, and indeed on the entire region.

www.interaction.org
Background
The protracted war in the Democratic Republic over 300,000 live as refugees in other countries. Recent at-
of Congo (DRC or Congo) amounts to one of the deadliest tempts to end the longstanding conflict include the Nairobi
conflicts since World War II. Over the past decade, fighting Communique signed by Rwanda and DRC in November
between government forces and rebel groups in the eastern 2007, aimed at disarming and repatriating former Rwandan
region of the country has resulted in the loss of more than soldiers who fled to Congo after the genocide. The Goma
five million lives. The war which began in 1998, and which Agreement signed by the government and 22 armed groups
stems in part from the 1994 Rwanda genocide, at one point in January 2008 called for a cease-fire and laid out a plan to
involved armies from eight neighboring nations and was la- end hostilities. Despite the slow progress in implementing
beled “Africa’s First World War”. It came to an official end with the agreements and the serious challenges to their viability,
a comprehensive peace agreement signed in 2002, which both agreements are considered the last best hope for sus-
the U.S. helped to broker. While Rwandan and Ugandan tainable peace in the region.
troops who had been fighting directly and through proxy Over the years, the U.S. has played an important role in
groups in the east withdrew, former Rwandan soldiers, many responding to the Congo crisis, using its diplomatic muscle
of whom participated in the genocide, remained in hiding in to facilitate recent peace agreements and supporting the
eastern Congo and are implicated in much of the violence UN peacekeeping mission (MONUC), the transitional elec-
that occurs today. tions process, and the provision of emergency relief, health,
But they are not alone. All sides in this conflict are impli- education and other basic services. Consolidating real gains
cated in war crimes of unfathomable proportions. UNICEF in the region, however, will require an even greater invest-
estimates that hundreds of thousands of women have been ment of funding, expertise and use of U.S. influence. If the
raped, constituting the worst pandemic of sexual violence in U.S. does not act, the consequences will be grave not only
the world. In some displacement camps, more than 70% of for Congolese but also for the region as a whole.
women have been raped. Gang rape, rape of girls as young
as eight, and genital mutilation of rape victims are pervasive.
All parties to the conflict have forcibly recruited as many as
40,000 children to fight and carry out atrocities.
In 2006, the country held its first presidential and parlia-
mentary elections in 40 years. Despite hopes that the post
election period would usher in peace and stability, it has
proven difficult to break free from decades of exploitation
by foreign nations, individuals and armed groups, and per-
sistent conflict, economic stagnation and corruption. These
factors have left Congo extremely poor despite its unrivaled
regional natural resource wealth, with virtually no modern
infrastructure and minimal basic services for the majority of
the population, who live on less than $1 per day. Instabil-
ity continues to plague the region and deprive it of almost
all modern infrastructure. Opportunities for education and
jobs are limited, making recruitment of young people easy
for armed militias; and the challenges of integrating for-
merly violent opponents into a new political system, have
created enormous obstacles to securing peace. The Con-
golese government’s authority remains weak, and multiple
armed groups take advantage of this power vacuum. With
porous borders, weapons and military equipment still flow
into the eastern DRC with ease, fueled in part by the illegal
exploitation of mineral wealth. Robust assistance for security
sector reform in the military, police and justice systems, are
required to build the Congolese government’s capacity to
protect civilians and its vast territory.
Today, over 1 million people are internally displaced and
POLICY November 2008

BRIEF

Ethiopia
Recommendations
Problem
Despite some progress in the Ethiopian government’s approach to chronic food
Up to 16 million insecurity, the development and emergency needs throughout the country are
Ethiopians, extremely high and the mobilized response is grossly inadequate. Without additional
roughly 20% of the
funding, full humanitarian access throughout the country, and transparency, people
population, are at
extreme risk due including many children may needlessly die. Greater implementation of relevant les-
to increasingly sons learned elsewhere about addressing chronic vulnerability would produce more
intense and effective and sustainable results. The United States, with other donors and the United
frequent droughts Nations, should lead efforts to ensure the protection of civilians and the preservation
and rising food of humanitarian access to the conflict-affected Ogaden region.
costs exacerbated
by inappropriate
policies, Actions
overpopulation,
lack of investment • Spearhead a campaign to mobilize new resources from the international commu-
in agriculture and nity to respond to the current food crisis with a comprehensive approach that ad-
pastoral livelihoods, dresses agriculture, livelihoods and livestock protection, health, education, civilian
and insecure protection, water and sanitation, and land tenure;
land tenure. • Press Prime Minister Meles to increase transparency and acknowledge the scope of
The Ethiopian
the humanitarian crisis in order to ensure timely, needs-based assistance;
government’s
unwillingness • Encourage the Ethiopian government at the highest levels to work with civil-soci-
to accept the ety organizations (CSOs) to revise the draconian law restricting such groups; and
magnitude of • Call on all parties to the conflict in the Ogaden to respect international humani-
the food crisis tarian law, protect civilians and permit the provision of impartial humanitarian
undermines the assistance to those in need.
international
community’s
ability to respond Results
effectively.
Immediate and effective assistance efforts, including a broad range of interventions,
will avoid famine and save lives. Medium and long-term efforts to support recov-
ery and rebuild the agricultural sector will increase food security and resilience to
1400 16th Street, NW external shocks.
Suite 210
Washington, DC 20036
202-667-8227
reform@interaction.org

www.interaction.org
Background
Ethiopia is one of the most food insecure coun- National Liberation Front (ONLF), escalated in 2007. Civilians
tries in the world and the recent food crisis threatens to af- bear the brunt of indiscriminate attacks, killings and destruc-
fect up to 20% of the population and plunge millions deeper tion of livelihoods by both parties. The Ogaden has been se-
into poverty. An estimated 6.4 million additional people re- verely affected by the drought and food price crisis, yet the
quire food assistance while more than 7 million people are Ethiopian government  has restricted access to the region,
considered to be chronically food insecure and depend on preventing NGOs from providing assistance to populations
assistance each year. While some of these shortages have in need and exacerbating the humanitarian situation.
been triggered by a lack of rain, the increasing intensity of Independent humanitarian action and humanitarian co-
seasonal droughts, inappropriate policies, overpopulation, ordination throughout the country have been threatened
a lack of investment in agriculture and pastoral livelihoods, by the Ethiopian government’s politicization of needs as-
and insecure land tenure have made people vulnerable to sessment/analysis and responses. For example, the govern-
the point where even the slightest external shock sets off a ment maintains a high level of control over information,
humanitarian crisis. actors and activities and has been unwilling to publicly ac-
Ethiopia has made significant progress in analyzing and knowledge the scale of the need. The U.S. must use its lever-
responding to chronic vulnerability and predictable sea- age to press the Ethiopian government to take immediate
sonal hunger, but many challenges remain, particularly in actions needed to avoid a large-scale famine.
terms of integrating relief and development frameworks
before, during and after an emergency.
In 2005, the Government of Ethiopia, together with a
group of donors, launched a Productive Safety Net Program
(PSNP) to provide predictable food and/or cash transfers to
chronically food insecure people across the country. Today,
the PSNP provides 7.2 million people with monthly support
to meet their food needs during the traditionally lean pe-
riod from January until June.
In order to respond to additional, and less predictable
needs, the federal government regularly leads major multi-
agency and multi-sectoral needs assessments. These form
the basis for an annual “humanitarian requirements” docu-
ment that contains estimates of the official numbers of af-
fected people and of the funds needed to assist them. In
October 2008, the government updated its 2008 humani-
tarian requirements document to acknowledge that 6.4
million people would require food and non-food assistance
in 2008. Many agencies on the ground believe this number
is purposely underestimated by over 20%.
Currently, the emergency assistance being delivered is
not enough to meet the enormous, existing needs. In addi-
tion, the assistance delivered fails to reflect lessons learned
that could improve its lasting impact in the face of chronic
vulnerability. While food aid is an important part of the cur-
rent emergency response, efforts should be broadened to
include a much greater range of non-food interventions
to improve food security. For example, there is an urgent
need to increase resources for immediate livestock and live-
lihoods protection – if livestock (which are an important
source of income) die, communities will remain dependent
on aid for months or even years to come.
The long-simmering conflict in the Ogaden, in eastern
Ethiopia, between the Ethiopian government and Ogaden
POLICY November 2008

BRIEF

Iraq
Recommendations
Problem
U.S. leadership in responding to this humanitarian crisis has not been strong enough.
Millions of Iraqis The U.S. must work with the Government of Iraq, the United Nations and other inter-
have been violently national stakeholders to develop a comprehensive strategy to meet the needs of dis-
displaced and made
placed and vulnerable Iraqis, both inside and outside of the country. It must include
vulnerable. Inside
Iraq, insecurity is plans for creating the conditions for voluntary, safe, dignified and sustainable returns
compounded by a to Iraq; rigorous diplomacy with host countries to ensure refugees have access to legal
lack of economic protection, basic services and legal income and increased resettlement of vulnerable
opportunities, basic refugees to the U.S.
services and safe
shelter. Those who
fled to neighboring Actions
countries have
• Develop a multi-year strategy for humanitarian and development assistance for
depleted their
savings, cannot Iraq. Lead this assistance with a White House-level coordinator working with appro-
legally work, and priate US government humanitarian agencies;
fear being forced • Commit to fulfilling at least 50% of future appeals for Iraq’s humanitarian cri-
to return. sis from the UN, International Organization for Migration and International
Committee of the Red Cross appeals and strong funding for NGOs;
• Press the Iraqi government to allocate adequate funding and work with it to build
capacity to address the humanitarian needs of displaced and other vulnerable
Iraqis, inside and outside the country;
• Promote refugee returns to Iraq only when they can be voluntary, safe and
sustainable, in consultation with UN High Commission on Refugees (UNHCR),
displaced Iraqis and the governments of Iraq and host countries;
• Increase Iraqi resettlement target to at least 45,000 for FY09, although not at the
expense of other refugee populations. Find durable solutions for refuges in camps
in Syria and Jordan;
• Ensure adequate funding for domestic refugee assistance to meet the needs of
increased arrivals and special needs of this population; and
• Fully implement the Refugee Crisis in Iraq Act (P.L. 110-181).
1400 16th Street, NW
Suite 210
Washington, DC 20036 Results
202-667-8227
reform@interaction.org These steps will increase the capacity of the Government of Iraq and regional host
countries to address the humanitarian and protection needs of displaced and other-
wise vulnerable Iraqis, leading to greater stability in Iraq and the region.
www.interaction.org
Background
Extreme violence, human rights violations and vive on savings. But their savings are rapidly running out,
targeted persecution have touched almost all corners of the and food and fuel prices in the region have dramatically
Iraqi population. More than 2.7 million Iraqis are internally increased. Jordan and Syria do not provide work autho-
displaced, and millions more have sought refuge in neigh- rization for Iraqi refugees and most host countries do not
boring countries. Over the past year, Iraq has seen dramatic recognize their refugee status and refugee rights. As a re-
reductions in violence. But as security gains are consolidat- sult, refugees are vulnerable to exploitation and pushed to
ed, Iraqi citizens will begin to expect more from their na- engage in risky survival strategies, including child labor and
tional and local government, including increased access to prostitution, and for some, return to displacement or perse-
basic services such as electricity, clean water, basic health- cution in Iraq.
care and education. Increasing the ability of the Govern-
ment of Iraq to provide these services will ease the suffering Vulnerable Groups
of the Iraqi population. It will also contribute to stability in Particularly vulnerable groups include but are not limited
Iraq and lay the groundwork for conditions that can lead to to: religious and ethnic minorities, including the Chaldo-As-
voluntary, safe, sustainable returns of displaced Iraqis. syrian Christians, Sabaeans, Yzedis, and Turkmen; refugees
While the U.S. has increased humanitarian assistance in Iraq, including Palestinians, Sudanese, and Iranian Kurds;
and resettlement for Iraqis since 2006, the U.S. response is women, including widows; children, including orphans or
incommensurate with the scope of the need. Equally trou- unaccompanied minors; elderly Iraqis with serious medical
bling is the fact that there seems to be no clear long-term needs; and victims of torture and violence. Iraqis with real
strategy to address the crisis that is likely to become a pro- and perceived ties to the United States or international or-
tracted one. Significantly more resources and coordination, ganizations are also extremely threatened.
both within the US government and with international
stakeholders, are needed to address the crisis in a compre-
hensive manner. Until this foundation is set, the U.S. should
strengthen its assistance to the millions of Iraqis who have
fled their homes and are living in difficult conditions in oth-
er parts of Iraq or in urban centers in Jordan, Syria, Egypt,
Lebanon, Iran, and other countries in the region, with the
largest numbers in Syria and Jordan. In addition, there are
close to 3,000 Palestinian refugees in Iraq who have tried to
flee and have long been refused entry by Jordan and Syria;
they currently live in life-threatening, inhospitable camps
along the Iraqi-Syrian border.

Urgent Humanitarian Needs of Displaced and Other
Vulnerable Iraqis
Insecurity, war, neglect and the targeting of many pro-
fessionals have left Iraq’s education and health sectors in
a state of crisis. Some internally displaced Iraqis, who are
squatting in residential or public buildings, are at risk of
eviction and further displacement. Many other vulnerable
Iraqis lack access to clean drinking water, food rations, ad-
equate health care, education, income and livelihoods, and
other services. Some too impoverished to flee even within
Iraq are struggling to protect themselves and meet their
most basic needs. And the conditions of the basic services
that do exist remain highly problematic. For example, Iraq’s
dilapidated sanitation and water system contributed to a
serious cholera outbreak as recently as September 2008.
Many Iraqi refugees in neighboring countries came from
middle class backgrounds and were initially able to sur-
POLICY November 2008

BRIEF

Somalia
Recommendations
Problem
Somalia must be a higher priority for the new administration. It will require a com-
Somalia is prehensive, inter-agency strategy for peace and stability, integrating political, secu-
experiencing rity and humanitarian efforts. It should engage the United Nations Security Council
a massive
to strengthen human rights components in the UN Political Office in Somalia and
humanitarian
crisis: 1 million ensure that possible deployment of a UN peacekeeping force is only pursued when
people internally there is a peace to keep. The U.S. Government should work to ensure that Somali ref-
displaced and ugees are afforded international protection in the countries to which they have fled
more than 3 million and provide financial support for programs targeted at refugees in host countries.
needing assistance
as fighting
rages involving Actions
U.S.-supported
• Condemn violations of international humanitarian and human rights law in Somalia;
Ethiopian forces,
the internationally- • Support an independent, international initiative to investigate human rights viola-
backed Transitional tions and hold perpetrators accountable;
Federal Government • Call on the Government of Kenya to ensure that its border with Somalia remains
(TFG) and armed open for refugees and access by humanitarian aid efforts;
opposition groups. • Provide robust support to humanitarian efforts to promote the protection of aid
Severe drought,
workers and unhindered access for the provision of assistance;
record-high food
prices and insecurity • Provide adequate funding to address potential shortfalls in emergency humanitar-
that hampers the ian assistance (including continued common humanitarian air services and secu-
humanitarian rity coordination) and development aid to provide vulnerable groups, including
response are women, with education, employment and training opportunities, in coordination
exacerbating the with local civil society projects;
crisis.
• Hold the TFG accountable for the bilateral assistance it receives, particularly com-
pliance with its commitment to facilitate access for humanitarian aid; and
• Work with allies to draft a timeline to ensure predictable navy escorts for World
Food Program (WFP) ships carrying critical food assistance through pirate-infested
waters.

1400 16th Street, NW
Suite 210
Results
Washington, DC 20036
A U.S. policy that prioritizes humanitarian assistance and supports a negotiated po-
202-667-8227
reform@interaction.org litical settlement in Somalia, which would further long-term U.S. interests in regional
stability.

www.interaction.org
Background
Somalia has some of the lowest development and manitarian focal point with which the aid community can
humanitarian indicators in the world following seventeen engage on access issues, such as checkpoints and arbitrary
years of conflict and insecurity. However, the crisis has never taxation. Abusive behavior by TFG security forces and their
been as acute as it is today; a direct consequence of the con- Ethiopian allies, as well as the lack of government capacity
flict that ensued following the arrival of Ethiopian troops in and services throughout the country has resulted in scant
January 2007. The conflict has spread from Mogadishu to popular support and its perception as an illegitimate and
most parts of South and Central Somalia, involving the TFG, externally-imposed body by Somalis.
backed by the Ethiopia military, and a myriad of armed op- The Government of Kenya sporadically closes its border
position groups including splinters including the Eritrean- with Somalia, in violation of Kenya’s obligations under in-
backed Union of Islamic Courts, Islamist groups such as ternational and its own refugee laws. As well as stopping
al-Shabab, as well as clan-based and business interests. The many Somalis from seeking refuge in Kenya, the closures
U.S. is perceived as playing an important role in the conflict also prevent humanitarian assistance and personnel from
by financially supporting the Ethiopian army and the TFG crossing into Somalia.
and by conducting periodic counter-terrorism operations in In the wake of the fighting, an African Union peacekeep-
Somalia targeting alleged Al-Qaeda operatives. As the con- ing force (AMISOM) was authorized in January 2007. The
flict rages on with no clear end in sight, the Somali people mandate of AMISOM is primarily to protect the TFG institu-
bear the brunt of the violence. tions in Mogadishu. Currently its mandate does not include
According to the United Nations, the number of people protection of civilians.
needing humanitarian assistance has increased to nearly 3.2 Previous experience in Somalia with both UN and U.S.
million people or 43% of the Somali population. The short- forces testifies to the difficulties of deploying an external
fall in supplies of food needed for supplementary feeding peacekeeping force when there is no political process or
for children suffering from acute malnutrition is extremely peace to keep. The current U.S. pressure to deploy a large-
serious. Lawlessness extends along Somalia’s extensive scale peacekeeping operation – whatever form it might take
coastline, making these critical shipping lanes the most – ignores the reality that military intervention in this polar-
dangerous in the world. Somali pirates have held hundred ized environment will actually result in a further escalation
of seafarers and dozens of ships hostage, collecting millions of violence, and will not improve the security situation for
in ransom to fuel their attacks. WFP ships carrying the vast Somali people or the delivery of humanitarian assistance.
majority of Somalia’s food aid have also been targeted and There can be no military solution to the crisis in Somalia.
in October 2008, the UN Security Council issued Resolution
1838 urging member states to protect WFP’s shipments.
While some countries provide intermittent naval escorts for
shipments carrying mostly U.S.-donated food, the U.S. Navy
has failed to provide this critical service despite its presence
in the region.
Throughout the recent conflict, Somalia’s civilians have
been the victims of human rights abuses and violations of
international humanitarian law committed by all parties to
the conflict, including rape, extra-judicial executions, arbi-
trary detention, and indiscriminate and disproportionate
attacks on civilians and their property. Civilians have been
killed, internally displaced and have fled the country due to
fighting in the capital Mogadishu and across southern and
central Somalia.
Civil society humanitarian workers, journalists and human
rights defenders have been harassed, arrested, robbed, kid-
napped, carjacked, executed and killed by roadside bombs.
Bilateral assistance into Somalia flows through the TFG,
which lacks the capacity to facilitate and coordinate hu-
manitarian assistance. There is no designated ministry for
humanitarian assistance and the TFG does not have a hu-
POLICY November 2008

BRIEF

Sri Lanka
Recommendations
Problem
The U.S. Government should take all possible steps to ensure the conflict receives
The 25-year civil priority attention from the international community. The Sri Lankan government and
war between the Tamil rebels must be held accountable for protecting civilians in the areas they con-
Government of
trol, including allowing freedom of movement to safety and providing humanitar-
Sri Lanka and
rebels has been ian organizations (NGOs) with unfettered access to those in need. Use international
characterized by pressure to press both sides to end the fighting and embrace a sustainable solution
a disregard for to the underlying political and social causes of the conflict.
the protection
of civilians and
the internal
Actions
displacement of • Prioritize protection of civilians, a return to the ceasefire and reaching a negotiated
over half a million
solution to the conflict, at both the United Nations and in its relations with the Sri
people. The crisis
continues to be Lankan government and influential nations like India and Japan;
largely ignored by • Provide full diplomatic and financial support to UN and NGOs efforts to reach,
the international protect and assist civilians in need;
community • Ensure that U.S. security assistance does not further contribute to violations
despite escalating against civilians;
violence resulting
• Maintain the position that Sri Lanka will not be considered for a Millennium
in continued
displacement and Challenge Compact until the government shows a substantial improvement in its
civilian deaths. human rights record;
• Push for a full and impartial investigation of crimes against innocent civilians,
including the murders of the 17 Action Contre Le Faim aid workers, and insist that
those responsible for such abuses be held accountable; and
• Provide the necessary resources to mitigate conflict, ensure a sustainable peace,
rebuild conflict-affected areas and allow for the safe return and reintegration of
those displaced.

Results
1400 16th Street, NW By putting the Sri Lankan conflict high on its diplomatic agenda for the Asia region,
Suite 210 the U.S. will help bring desperately needed attention to a hidden humanitarian
Washington, DC 20036
disaster, increase the chances assistance will reach those in need, and help lay the
202-667-8227
reform@interaction.org groundwork to resolve a conflict that is a potentially destabilizing factor in an im-
portant region.

www.interaction.org
Background
The conflict between the Government of Sri Lanka tance to the Sri Lankan government, such as military train-
and the rebel Tamil Tigers (LTTE) has raged for twenty-five ing and equipment, has raised concerns that such assistance
years since the outbreak of communal violence between the could contribute to violence against civilians. The deteriora-
island’s Sinhala majority and the Tamil minority. The conflict tion in security and in the government’s human rights record
is exacerbated by ethnic tensions and significant economic led the Millennium Challenge Corporation to suspend more
disparities along ethnic and geographic fault lines. The war than $11 million intended for Sri Lanka in FY08.
has killed an estimated 70,000 people and displaced over Over time, the U.S. must help provide the resources re-
1,000,000 from their homes. A significant number of dis- quired to rebuild conflict-affected areas, ensure a sustain-
placed people were displaced yet again by the 2004 Asian able peace and allow for the safe return and reintegration
tsunami, which ravaged conflict-affected and conflict-sensi- of the displaced. With hundreds of thousands of Sri Lankan
tive areas of Sri Lanka. lives hanging in the balance, the U.S. and other govern-
Several attempts at a negotiated settlement have been ments must move this crisis to the top of the humanitarian
made over the years, the most promising being the Norwe- agenda and give this issue the focused attention and action
gian-led efforts that resulted in 2002 ceasefire, which largely it requires.
held until the election in November 2005 of President Mahi-
nda Rajapaksa, who ran on a platform of defeating the Tigers
militarily. Tensions escalated in 2006 due at least in part to
perceptions of unequal distribution of Tsunami funds.
After a period of rising tensions, with both parties commit-
ting provocations, the ceasefire was formally abandoned in
2006 with open warfare and acts of terrorism. After a hard-
fought campaign that displaced close to 200,000 civilians,
the government re-established control over Tamil areas in
the eastern part of the country and is now waging a pitched
battle to regain ascendency in the north.
The LTTE rebels have responded to the government’s
campaign with strong resistance. In September 2008, all
communications were cut to the affected area, and both UN
humanitarian assistance NGOs were ordered to leave. New
population displacements have resulted as civilian institu-
tions, including schools and churches, continue to be sub-
ject to bombardment. Access by road to the region has been
cut, resulting in serious shortages of food, medicine and es-
sential supplies. The LTTE are preventing civilians from flee-
ing to safe zones not currently affected by the conflict.
All of this adds up to a desperate humanitarian crisis that
requires the priority attention of the U.S. and the interna-
tional community. Certain countries, particularly India and
Japan, have special influence in Sri Lanka, and U.S. diplo-
matic efforts should include continued targeted outreach to
those governments.
In 2006, 17 aid workers from Action Contre la Faim were
murdered in the eastern region. A national investigating
commission was established, but the commission of observ-
ers authorized by the Sri Lankan President decided to termi-
nate its work in March 2008 citing a lack of government co-
operation in carrying out a transparent and comprehensive
investigation.
The LTTE has been designated a terrorist organization by
the State Department since 1997. Bilateral security assis-
POLICY November 2008

BRIEF

Sudan
Recommendations
Problem
Previous U.S. efforts to address Sudan failed in part because we addressed each crisis
The crisis in Sudan in isolation and disregarding regional influences, overlapping actors, parallel tactics,
is a web of conflicts. and the underlying causes of many of the problems. Focusing on Darfur while the
The 2005 peace
Comprehensive Peace Agreement (CPA) and the East Sudan Peace Agreements (ESPA)
agreement to end
decades of war in falter and violence explodes in neighboring Chad, will not bring peace to Darfur or
southern Sudan is the rest of Sudan. As Sudan moves closer to the elections scheduled in 2009, the U.S.
at risk of collapsing. must reinvigorate diplomatic efforts in support of the CPA, assist return and recovery
In Darfur, conflict, efforts in the South, and address the immediate humanitarian needs in Darfur.
widespread human
rights abuses and
mass displacement Actions
continue after 5
• Appoint a full-time U.S. Presidential envoy to ensure implementation of the CPA
years, humanitarian
access is severely and the work of the United Nations (UN) Joint Chief Mediator to promote success-
reduced, and the ful Darfur peace talks that include civil-society;
peace process has • Mobilize diplomatic and financial resources to address the transition from humani-
made no progress. tarian to development programs in the South to ensure a tangible peace dividend,
A peace agreement while pressing the Southern Sudanese government to make recovery and assis-
for the East is
tance for returnees a much higher priority;
also languishing
unimplemented. • Engage European, Chinese and regional African and Arab partners to increase and
coordinate pressure on the many parties to the Darfur conflict to respect interna-
tional humanitarian law, and agree and adhere to existing ceasefire agreements;
• Work with the UN to ensure that the peacekeeping forces for Darfur (UNAMID) and
in the South (UNMIS), particularly in the flashpoint of Abyei, are first and foremost
effective at protecting civilians; and
• Work to ensure that humanitarian agencies can access all those who require
assistance.

Results
1400 16th Street, NW The steps outlined above will ensure that existing efforts address the root causes and
Suite 210 provide civilians with the necessary protection and humanitarian assistance. They
Washington, DC 20036
will also provide support to prevent the collapse of the CPA and re-start the Darfur
202-667-8227
reform@interaction.org peace process.

www.interaction.org
Background
Sudan, Africa’s largest country, has been wracked entry and movement of humanitarian personnel through-
by violent conflict for much of its independent history, re- out the country.
sulting in weak governance, chronic poverty and little in- The dire situation continues despite the world’s largest
frastructure. The unequal distribution of its oil wealth and humanitarian operation on the ground and unparalleled
violent competition over increasingly scarce land and water grassroots mobilization, particularly in the United States.
resources fuel much of Sudan’s conflicts. International leaders have found themselves compelled
The 22-year civil war in the south killed 2 million people to act by the public but unable to dramatically change the
and left over 4 million displaced. Despite the signing of the situation on the ground. As of the fall of 2008, parties to the
CPA in 2005 between the Government of Sudan and the Su- conflict have more to gain by fighting than talking. The in-
danese People’s Liberation Movement/Army, many of the centives for peaceful coexistence are not yet there. The best
milestones set out in the CPA have not been met, and there model for reconciliation in Darfur is the best model for the
is serious danger that key CPA requirements for elections country as a whole: the CPA. It is crucial that this landmark
in 2009, a referendum on self-determination for the south agreement be vigorously supported for the credibility and
in 2011, resolution of disputed border areas of the oil-rich legitimacy of any political negotiation going forward with
Abyei region, and sharing of oil revenue will also not be the Government of Sudan.
honored. While the UN Mission in Sudan (UNMIS) deployed After the failure of numerous ceasefire agreements, the
a peacekeeping force to support the implementation of world responded to the crisis in Darfur by sending peace-
the CPA, the May 2008 flare-up in Abyei demonstrated keeping forces to protect civilians and facilitate humanitar-
their weak capacity to protect civilians. Collapse of the CPA ian assistance; first the African Union in 2004, and now the
would mean return to war between north and south Sudan United Nations-African Union ‘hybrid’ mission (UNAMID).
and extinguish any prospect of peace in Darfur. Yet almost one year into its deployment and with less than
An estimated 2 million southern Sudanese have returned half of its members in country, UNAMID has failed to pro-
home since 2004, but only a fraction have access to basic vide adequate protection to the people of Darfur. The force
services, such as clean water, primary health care, education lacks critical equipment, personnel and training resources
and the creation of livelihoods. Failure to address reintegra- leaving the people of Darfur, humanitarian agencies and
tion and recovery needs throughout Sudan generates frus- even its own peacekeepers vulnerable to ongoing attacks
tration and exacerbates communal tensions, which could and extreme violence.
ultimately jeopardize the success of the peace processes. While not the only cause, the continuation of the Darfur
The Eastern Sudan Peace Agreement (ESPA) ended fight- crisis is due, in part, to the failure of the U.S. and others to see
ing between the government and the Eastern Front in 2006 the challenges in Sudan as connected and overlapping. Sus-
but remains fragile. While the eastern region is among the tainable peace in Darfur hinges on the implementation of
most marginalized regions in Sudan with morbidity rates as the CPA and ESPA. The CPA and ESPA include power sharing,
high as those found in Darfur, few international NGOs work wealth sharing and security provisions, that if implemented,
there and little information on humanitarian conditions ex- could contribute to the decentralization and democratiza-
ists. Increased humanitarian and development funding is tion of Sudan and therefore address some of the root causes
needed for this neglected region’s recovery. of Darfur’s crisis. Conversely, failure to implement these
Five years into the crisis in Darfur, protection, assistance agreements could result in a return to numerous localized
and sustainable peace remain out of reach for the people conflicts or even large-scale conflict across Sudan. Recov-
in Darfur. More than 4.5 million people are affected by the ery and reconstruction assistance for the transitional areas
conflict and in need of humanitarian assistance. Aid work- along Sudan’s contentious north-south border and for East-
ers in the region are finding it increasingly difficult and dan- ern Sudan has not met community needs or expectations.
gerous to reach the people in need. Humanitarian access As a result, peace in the south and east remains fragile.
has dramatically decreased due to violence by various par-
ties to the conflict and bureaucratic impediments placed
by the Government of Sudan. The U.S. should support safe
access by continuing to adequately fund the UN’s Humani-
tarian Air Service, which provide essential transport for aid
workers and supplies; ensuring that UNAMID prioritizes the
protection of humanitarian actors; and by pressing the Gov-
ernment of Sudan to remove bureaucratic obstacles on the
POLICY November 2008

BRIEF

Uganda
Recommendations
Problem
This long-standing regional crisis is now at a crossroads, where sustainable peace is
In northern Uganda, possible but not guaranteed. The Juba Peace Process created tangible gains, includ-
despite peace talks ing improvements in security and humanitarian access, but strong and decisive U.S.
that produced a
diplomatic leadership and reconstruction assistance will be vital to a sustainable
landmark cease-
fire agreement peace: continued high-level political focus on peace and reconciliation, augmented
and a measure of by a robust effort to restore viable communities, will provide a peace dividend that
security allowing removes the incentives for returning to fighting while it also contributes to broader
many people to regional stability.
return home after
two decades of
war, the Lord’s Actions
Resistance Army
• Appoint a high-level diplomat to monitor and advance regional security and en-
(LRA) leadership
remains at large, sure the full implementation of the Final Peace Agreement;
destabilizing the • Hold the Government of Uganda accountable for its Peace and Reconstruction
broader region Development Plan (PRDP). Sustainable peace will require that the U.S. and its part-
and obstructing ners work with the Government of Uganda to ensure follow-through on commit-
lasting peace, while ments to rebuild the North;
separate tensions
• Develop a clear USAID transition strategy with robust, flexible funding. A compre-
are on the rise in the
Karamoja region. hensive, USAID transition plan that addresses the transition from relief to develop-
ment is urgently needed to ensure basic services needed to encourage voluntary
return of refugees and others displaced by the fighting; and
• Support human rights in the troubled Karamoja region. The Government of
Uganda must respect human and civil rights while conducting its forced disarma-
ment activities, and the Karamojong must likewise respect the rule of law. Reports
that U.S. military will begin activities in the area are disconcerting, as they could
exacerbate tensions in this flashpoint.

Results
1400 16th Street, NW These steps would support sustainable peace in northern Uganda and contribute to
Suite 210 stability in the eastern part of the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Sudan, and the
Washington, DC 20036
Central African Republic.
202-667-8227
reform@interaction.org

www.interaction.org
Background
For over two decades, the war in northern Ugan- basic services such as schools, clean water, and health clinics
da has caused a humanitarian crisis for millions of civilians have yet to be restored. Many families have responded by
and exacerbated other conflicts in the region. Since 1986, keeping a foot in both worlds, with parents returning home
northern Uganda has been embroiled in a conflict involving to work in the fields and children left, unprotected, in the
the rebel Lord’s Resistance Army (LRA) and the Government camps to attend school, where they are vulnerable to exploi-
of Uganda, causing a widespread regional security and hu- tation and abuse. Police and judicial infrastructures, crippled
manitarian crisis. Considered one of the worst humanitarian during the war, are unable to address high rates of sexual
crises in the world, more than 1.8 million people – eighty violence or emerging disputes over land. Combined with
percent of the population in northern Uganda – were forced the massive levels of trauma caused by the war, these chal-
to flee their homes, living in squalid camps in which 1,000 in- lenges are preventing the people of northern Uganda from
dividuals died each week. Lacking popular support, the LRA emerging from the shadow of this 22 year-old conflict.
resorted to abducting children to serve as soldiers, bonded As the situation in northern Uganda transitions from the
labor and sex slaves. Between 30,000 and 66,000 children emergency phase, a funding gap has occurred. Humanitarian
were kidnapped over the course of conflict, with abductees assistance is decreasing before development programs are
forming as much as 90 percent of the LRA’s ranks. implemented. U.S. funding for recovery activities in north-
Over the course of 20 years, the Government of Uganda’s ern Uganda is hampered by its inflexibility – only $2 million
inability to protect civilians or defeat the LRA – largely due to of the $125 million for FY08 is un-earmarked, restraining the
tribal and regional indifference, and war profiteering – gave ability to meet the fluid transition needs from war to peace.
way to the current regional crisis that merited international More attention needs to be paid to the deteriorating situa-
action and greater policy focus, both within the Bush Admin- tion in the Karamoja region in the north, where the Ugandan
istration and the international community. After significant military’s excessively violent response could unravel any sta-
public and congressional pressure, the U.S. eventually sup- bility gained. The US Government must raise these concerns
ported the Juba Peace Process, which was initiated in Au- with the Government of Uganda and encourage greater
gust 2006 by the Government of South Sudan, supported by economic and development investments that will help to
regional governments and the United Nations. The process address the underlying causes of tensions.
secured a landmark cease-fire agreement and made signifi- True peace, reconciliation, and development in Northern
cant strides towards addressing the broader political and Uganda are dependent on a good-faith effort by the Gov-
economic grievances of the population in northern Uganda; ernment of Uganda to address the underlying causes of the
but it stalled in May 2008 when LRA rebel leader, Joseph conflict. However, the United States has traditionally been
Kony, refused to sign the Final Peace Agreement. Despite this unwilling to publicly push the GoU to meet its obligations
serious setback, regional leaders have called for continued towards its population in the North. We must hold all sides
engagement between the parties, while retaining a forum to accountable, and this includes ensuring that the GoU’s bud-
address regional security and development issues. getary and policy decisions, particularly in the Peace and Re-
This unresolved crisis has now become a broader regional construction Development Plan, reflect a real commitment
security problem, as the LRA has expanded their attacks and to rebuilding the North.
abductions of civilians in South Sudan, the Democratic Re-
public of the Congo and the Central African Republic (CAR).
LRA attacks in South Sudan threaten implementation of that
region’s hard-won Comprehensive Peace Agreement with
the Sudanese government in Khartoum. LRA activity in east-
ern Congo has heightened tensions between the Ugandan
and Congolese governments, while roaming attacks have
destabilized the border areas inside CAR. Within this context
of regional instability, a number of actors continue to pro-
vide covert support to the LRA.
Despite improved stability in northern Uganda, almost
half of the nearly two million people forced from their homes
remain in displacement camps. They now face the difficult
decision of whether to leave these crowded and disease-
ridden camps for the uncertainty of life back home, where
POLICY November 2008

BRIEF

West Bank/Gaza
Recommendations
Problem
The U.S. government, along with the parties to the conflict and the Quartet (the dip-
Humanitarian lomatic mediating group in the Israeli-Palestinian peace process, made up of the U.S.,
conditions in the Russia, the European Union and the United Nations) should encourage Israeli and
West Bank and
Palestinian officials to reach agreement on actions to improve humanitarian workers’
Gaza have sharply
deteriorated since movement and access for basic goods and services. The Administration must imme-
2006 and NGOs diately reinvigorate the peace process through support for broader efforts towards
cannot fulfill their reconciliation between the Palestinian factions, and to bring all parties back to the
mission due to negotiating table.
violence, restrictions
on their movement
and access to Actions
humanitarian
• Work with the Israeli and Palestinian authorities to ensure full implementation
goods, and the lack
of visible progress in of the 2005 Access and Movement Agreement, establish procedures to open the
settling the Israeli- crossings and restore full humanitarian and commercial access to and from the
Palestinian conflict. West Bank and Gaza;
The continued and • Work with Israeli and Palestinian authorities to set a broadened definition of
deteriorating plight humanitarian goods needed to maintain and rehabilitate basic public services, al-
of the Palestinians
lowing for reactivation of all stalled humanitarian and development projects, with
increases hostility
toward the U.S. a view toward increasing assistance to reflect the severity of the need;
across the region • Demonstrate firm political support for the agreement on the cessation of violence
and hinders and press concerned parties to adhere to its terms; and
prospects for peace. • Promote broader efforts at reconciliation, including those by neighboring
countries, within the Occupied Palestinian Territory and between Israel and the
Palestinians.

Results
The recommended actions will alleviate suffering amongst Palestinians and Israelis
alike as well as promote confidence in the feasibility of a negotiated settlement of
1400 16th Street, NW the conflict. Building confidence in the peace process and its prospects will en-
Suite 210 courage parties to return to the negotiating table and move the region closer to a
Washington, DC 20036
lasting peace.
202-667-8227
reform@interaction.org

www.interaction.org
Background
The humanitarian situation for the 3.8 million Valid, approved medical cases from both the West Bank and
Palestinians living in the West Bank and Gaza has steadily Gaza are sometimes kept waiting at the crossings for up to
deteriorated since the January 2006 elections. In the West five hours.
Bank, approximately 50% of the population lives below the Humanitarian organizations are also having trouble ful-
poverty line, with unemployment rates soaring to nearly filling their missions in Gaza. USAID-funded construction
30%. Despite the 2005 Access and Movement Agreement, projects have stopped due to the lack of building materials
increases in West Bank checkpoints, along with a myriad of and cement. Pre-school feeding programs have been cut
trade restrictions have severely impacted the movement of back and the provision of psychosocial counseling stopped
people, aid workers and goods, and have created major ob- because NGOs’ most senior experts do not have the visas
stacles to people’s efforts to support themselves and their required to enter Gaza from the West Bank and their trucks
families. Supplies such as medicine, fuel, cement, spare in Gaza do not have gasoline to reach outlying areas.
parts and seeds for humanitarian and development pro- The fragile agreement on the cessation of hostilities be-
grams are difficult or impossible to access. Moreover, West tween Israel and Hamas is holding and has brought some
Bank closures, property confiscations and the widespread improvements in security conditions for both sides. Its
destruction of land, wells and water harvesting cisterns collapse would turn an already dire situation into a disas-
have prevented access to much-needed water. ter. Maintaining and strengthening the agreement to ease
Palestinians living in Gaza face particularly difficult cir- the humanitarian situation requires the U.S. to exercise its
cumstances as evidenced by the high rate of unemploy- unique influence, and international and regional support.
ment, the large number of people requiring food assistance,
and the declining quality and quantity of water. With a 79%
unemployment rate and spiraling food prices, approximate-
ly 75% of the 1.5 million people in Gaza must rely on food
assistance from World Food Program and UNRWA (the UN
mission for the area). The quality and quantity of water are
also declining, with 40 percent of the population having
water only for a few hours a day or even a week. The limited
availability of spare parts and fuel stocks needed to operate
the sewage pumps means that Gazans have no means of
safely disposing of the sewage. The waste is being pumped
into the Mediterranean every day creating a serious risk of a
communicable disease outbreak and posing long term en-
vironmental risks not only in Gaza but also along the Egyp-
tian and Israeli coastlines.
Studies further report that there has been an increase in
chronic disease and malnutrition among children under
five in the Gaza Strip, with an increase in children suffering
from diarrhea, insomnia and anxiety. There also has been an
increase in spousal and child abuse and a 50% rise in the de-
mand for anti-depressants, reflecting the sense of malaise
and hopelessness amongst the population in Gaza.
The Palestinian economy has severely deterioriated and
has virtually collapsed in Gaza, stymieing development ef-
forts and contributing to increasing and entrenched pover-
ty. The closures have led to the suspension of 95% of Gaza’s
industrial operations, as businesses can neither access the
inputs they need for production, nor the crossings to export
what they produce. Medical care is also insufficient due to
the lack of supplies in Gaza; and there is only limited access
to Israeli hospitals, as evidenced by parked ambulances
around Gaza, unable to operate due to lack of fuel and parts.
POLICY November 2008

BRIEF

Disaster Risk Reduction
Recommendations
Problem
Disaster Risk Reduction (DRR) is the systematic development and application of poli-
Natural disasters cies, strategies and practices that minimize vulnerabilities and disaster risks through-
have increased four- out a society. DRR activities help mitigate the adverse impacts of natural hazards and
fold over the last
prepare communities for such events, many of which will be exacerbated by climate
20 years, affecting
the poorest and change. As a signatory to the Hyogo Framework for Action, (the international com-
most vulnerable munity’s commitment to better address and coordinate DRR), the U.S. must vigorously
communities support international DRR initiatives and investments aimed at safeguarding vulner-
most severely. able communities to save lives and minimize the loss of assets among the poor.
The increase in
frequency and
magnitude of Actions
disasters reduces
• Increase participation by the Government of the U.S. in global efforts to reduce the
recovery time
and increases vulnerability of impoverished communities at risk for disaster;
vulnerability, • Establish an on-going multi-stakeholder national task force that brings together
undermining government, academia, the private sector, nongovernmental organizations (NGOs)
investments in and other civil society actors, to promote, support and strengthen the U.S. commit-
humanitarian relief ment to the Hyogo Framework for Action as other leading nations have done;
and development
• Increase support for DRR activities such as flood control and coastal management
and progress toward
the Millennium that diminish the negative impact of human activity and climate change;
Development Goals. • Establish a point person at USAID to liaise with U.S. NGOs on DRR activities; and
• Promote mainstreaming of DRR activities into USAID-funded development activi-
ties by following USAID/OFDA’s example of committing at least 10% of program
resources to disaster preparedness and mitigation programs.

Results
Taking these steps to invest in Disaster Risk Reduction will:
• Save lives and reduce human suffering in the face of disasters, demonstrating U.S.
commitment to the world’s most vulnerable communities;
1400 16th Street, NW • Gradually reduce the costs of responding to disasters and protect development
Suite 210 program investments;
Washington, DC 20036
• Increase countries’ capacity to respond to hazards; and
202-667-8227
reform@interaction.org • Result in more effective foreign assistance by reducing the impact of hazards and
supporting faster recovery.

www.interaction.org
Background
According to the 2007 World Disasters Report sure the impact Sidr may have had without the disaster risk
released by the International Federation of the Red Cross, reduction measures put in place, the statistics clearly sug-
the number of natural disasters1 worldwide has increased gest the measures have saved hundreds of thousands of
by 40% from the previous decade. The number of disaster lives for only a few dollars per life per year.
victims also increased by at least 30% from 2004-2007, as re- There is robust international commitment to DRR. The
ported in data from the Center for Research on the Epidemi- 2005 World Conference on Disaster Reduction was held in
ology of Disasters. Climate change exacerbated the record Kobe Japan, just days after the Indian Ocean tsunami, a di-
number of natural disasters across the world in 2007, up saster underscoring the importance of effective detection
nearly 20% from 2006. Vulnerability to disasters is increas- and early warning systems. One hundred sixty-eight coun-
ing due to rapid and unplanned urbanization, diminished tries (including the U.S.) adopted the conference’s Hyogo
coping mechanisms, and shorter recovery periods between Framework for Action2 (HFA) to strengthen international
disasters. commitment to DRR with the goal of a substantial reduc-
The achievement of every Millennium Development Goal tion of disaster losses (in lives and in social, economic and
(MDG) is endangered if DRR measures are not put in place. environmental assets) of communities and countries by the
The eradication of extreme poverty and hunger (MDG 1) year 2015.
will not be achieved where disasters result in the loss of
human life and livelihoods. Progress toward reducing child
mortality by two thirds (MDG4) is undermined when prop-
er disaster preparedness and mitigation strategies are not
in place, as disasters reduce access to clean water and, in-
crease vulnerability to water-borne disease, a top-five factor
in child mortality. The world cannot effectively combat HIV
and AIDS, malaria, and other diseases (MDG 6) while poor
health and nutrition weaken immunity following disasters.
In addition to saving lives and reducing vulnerability, DRR
measures are cost effective. The U.S. Geological Survey and
the World Bank calculated that $40 billion invested in physi-
cal or engineering DRR measures (e.g., adequate infrastruc-
ture design) would have saved $280 billion in losses from
natural disasters in the 1990s. In China, $3.15 billion spent
on flood control over the last 40 years has averted $12 bil-
lion in losses.
Case studies demonstrate the benefits of relatively low
cost DRR programs in terms of saving lives and reducing the
vulnerability of people living at risk. For example, in the last
38 years Bangladesh has experienced three cyclones with
similar high intensity levels. Due to effective partnership
on DRR between the Government of Bangladesh and inter-
national donors (including USAID and its Office of Foreign
Disaster Assistance (OFDA)), mortality resulting from 2007’s
Cyclone Sidr was reduced to 3,363 deaths as compared
to nearly 500,000 and 138,000 deaths due to cyclones in
1970 and 1991 respectively. These DRR measures included
cyclone shelters, early warning systems, and community- 2 The Hyogo Framework for Action has five priorities:
based preparedness measures. The annual cost of these 1. Ensure that disaster risk reduction is a national and local priority with a
measures totaled $460,000. While it is impossible to mea- strong institutional basis for implementation;
2. Identify, assess and monitor disaster risks and enhance early warning;
1 Disaster is defined here as “a serious disruption of the functioning of a 3. Use knowledge, innovation, and education to build a culture of safety
community or society causing widespread human, material, economic, or and resilience at all levels;
environmental losses which exceeds the ability of the affected commu- 4. Reduce the underlying risk factors; and
nity or society to cope using its own resources.” 5. Strengthen disaster preparedness for effective response at all levels.
POLICY November 2008

BRIEF

Contributors to Humanitarian Priorities Policy Briefs

Organization URL

American Jewish World Service www.ajws.org
American Red Cross www.redcross.org
American Refugee Committee www.arcrelief.org
CARE www.care.org
Catholic Relief Services www.crs.org
CHF International www.chfinternational.org
Christian Children’s Fund www.ccfusa.org
Church World Service www.churchworldservice.org
Habitat for Humanity International www.habitat.org
International Medical Corps www.imcworldwide.org
International Rescue Committee www.theirc.org
Jesuit Refugee Service www.jrsusa.org
Mercy Corps www.mercycorps.org
Oxfam America www.oxfamamerica.org
Refugee Council USA www.rcusa.org
Refugees International www.refintl.org
Relief International www.ri.org
Save the Children www.savethechildren.org
US Fund for UNICEF www.unicefusa.org
Women’s Commission for Refugee Women and Children www.womenscommission.org
World Vision www.worldvision.org

InterAction Humanitarian Policy and Practice Working Group

Organization URL

Action Against Hunger (USA) www.actionagainsthunger.org
Adventist Development and Relief Agency International www.adra.org
African Medical & Research Foundation, Inc. www.amref.org
Africare www.africare.org
Air Serv International www.airserv.org
Alliance to End Hunger www.alliancetoendhunger.org
American Friends Service Committee www.afsc.org
American Jewish Joint Distribution Committee www.jdc.org
1400 16th Street, NW
American Jewish World Service www.ajws.org
Suite 210
Washington, DC 20036
American Near East Refugee Aid www.anera.org
202-667-8227
American Red Cross International Services www.redcross.org
reform@interaction.org American Refugee Committee www.archq.org
Americares www.americares.org
America's Development Foundation www.adfusa.org
www.interaction.org Ananda Marga Universal Relief Team www.amurt.net
InterAction Humanitarian Policy and Practice Working Group (cont)

Organization URL

Baptist World Alliance/Baptist World Aid www.bwanet.org
Brother's Brother Foundation, The www.brothersbrother.org
Campaign for Innocent Victims in Conflict (CIVIC) www.civicworldwide.org
CARE www.care.org
Catholic Medical Mission Board www.cmmb.org
Catholic Relief Services www.crs.org
CHF International www.chfinternational.org
Christian Children's Fund www.christianchildrensfund.org
Christian Reformed World Relief Committee www.crwrc.org
Church World Service www.churchworldservice.org
CONCERN Worldwide US Inc. www.concernusa.org
Congressional Hunger Center www.hungercenter.org
Counterpart International, Inc. www.counterpart.org
Direct Relief International www.directrelief.org
Doctors of the World, Inc. www.dowusa.org
Episcopal Relief and Development www.er-d.org
Ethiopian Community Development Council www.ecdcinternational.org
Food for the Hungry www.fh.org
Friends of Liberia www.fol.org
GOAL USA Fund www.goalusa.org
Handicap International www.handicap-international.us
Heart to Heart International www.hearttoheart.org
Hebrew Immigrant Aid Society www.hias.org
Help the Afghan Children www.helptheafghanchildren.org
Immigration and Refugee Services of America www.refugees.org
International Aid www.internationalaid.org
International Catholic Migration Commission www.icmc.net
International Medical Corps www.imcworldwide.org
International Orthodox Christian Charities www.iocc.org
International Relief and Development www.ird-dc.org
International Relief Teams www.irteams.org
International Rescue Committee www.theIRC.org
Islamic Relief www.irw.org
Jesuit Refugee Service/USA www.jrsusa.org
Korean American Sharing Movement www.kasm.org
Latter-day Saint Charities www.providentliving.org
Lutheran World Relief www.lwr.org
MAP International www.map.org
Mercy Corps www.mercycorps.org
Mercy-USA for Aid and Development, Inc. www.mercyusa.org
National Peace Corps Association www.rpcv.org
Northwest Medical Teams www.nwmti.org
Operation USA www.opusa.org
Oxfam America www.oxfamamerica.org
Partners for Development www.pfd.org
Physicians for Human Rights www.phrusa.org
Presbyterian Disaster Assistance and Hunger Program www.pcusa.org
InterAction Humanitarian Policy and Practice Working Group (cont)

Organization URL

Project HOPE, The People-to-People Health www.projecthope.org
Foundation, Inc.
Refugees International www.refugeesinternational.org
RELIEF International www.ri.org
Salvation Army World Service Office, The www.sawso.org
Save the Children www.savethechildren.org
Trickle Up Program, The www.trickleup.org
U.S. Association for the UN High Commissioner for www.unrefugees.org
Refugees
U.S. Fund for UNICEF www.unicefusa.org
United Jewish Communities www.ujc.org
United Methodist Committee on Relief www.umcor.org
World Concern www.worldconcern.org
World Education www.worlded.org
World Emergency Relief www.worldemergencyrelief.org
World Relief Corporation www.worldrelief.org
World Vision www.worldvision.org