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Dynamics - May 2012 - Improving aid distribution - EY - Global

Stepping up development transformations

Improving aid distribution

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Public reporting of aid by country, sector and outcomes is essential for an informed civil society.

International development is at its most effective when aid is provided to governments that have a relationship with their citizens based on transparency and accountability, and so legitimately own the development agenda, suggests Maryam Kennedy, Partner with Ernst & Young LLP.

Critics have increasingly questioned why cash-strapped governments should continue to fund overseas programs at a time when public services are reduced and domestic spending cut back.

To answer these critics, governments are improving programs to track the aid and stressing country ownership of the development agenda.

Once development policies and priorities are understood, appropriate governance and transparency need to be embedded in order to counter the ongoing challenge of corruption.

Public reporting of aid by country, sector and outcomes is essential for an informed civil society.

Open, honest and timely reporting through public accounts, which includes progress against development priorities, is therefore essential. Donors’ compliance with International Aid Transparency Initiative standards will significantly help by making all payment transactions, contract data and results information publically available for scrutiny.

Clear consultative forums for discussion and agreement on national priorities need to be developed because stakeholders need to be accountable to citizens of donor and recipient countries.

Electoral, stakeholder and community support will assist the implementation of practical programs that address local needs — “effective aid” from the citizens’ perspective.

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Dynamics, December 2012

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