Reading between the lines of the Bangladesh-Myanmar MOU

By Jim Della-Giacoma* In signing a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with Bangladesh on the return of Rohingya refugees, Myanmar portrayed the agreement as “a win-win situation for both countries” and a victory for neighbours resolving their differences without the interference of outsiders. But the deal may also reveal that wider conflicts are brewing. Myanmar is …

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Playing in the sand-box or the tar-pit? Supporting politically-informed programming in large ‘Facilities’

As I exited my last position at The Asia Foundation, William Cole challenged me to: …report back in a year and tell me if its possible to think and work politically in high-value, multi-sector facility mechanisms So, after our involvement in three such 'Facilities' over the last 12-18 months[1], what is the verdict? Are we …

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Facilities deserve a place in development

By Jacqui de Lacy *This blog was also published simultaneously by Devpolicy on 13 November 2017. There are many ways to build a house.  One way is to choose your own architect, surveyor, plumber, electrician, carpenter….  You will get your family a great house, but it will take lots of your time, progress may be …

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Myanmar Rohingya crisis: Australia needs to stand up and help as the situation worsens

By John Blaxland and Elaine Pearson [Original article posted on ABC News 16 September 2017] The world seems to be sitting on its hands as the Rohingya crisis in Myanmar descends into what the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights has described as "a textbook example of ethnic cleansing". In just three weeks, more than …

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Aid, deep thinking, and national security

Written by Jacqui De Lacy Prior to coming in to Government Julie Bishop, possibly softening us up for future budget cuts, often said that quality matters over quantity when it comes to aid expenditure.  It is hard to argue with this logic. It seems clear that the Government has comprehensively delivered on its commitment to reduce …

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Divide and Conquer: Citizen Voice without Contested Politics

By Rebecca Haines In the development community, we typically interpret a government pushing for greater decentralisation as a positive step for governance reform and an opening for greater citizen participation and voice. Donors invest considerable funds in supporting the decentralisation processes of global governments, and NGOs focus energy and resources on preparing citizens to influence …

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Governance, Foreign Policy and Populism – All the Fun things

From Australia and Canada’s decision to integrate their development agencies, to the resurgence of nationalism in the UK and US and the flat-lining of public support for aid (see below graph from IDS) – major bilateral donors are increasingly bringing aid closer to the heart of government operations. As a result, the ‘old’ aid policy …

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‘Good’ Governance – Remembering the Role of Values and Beliefs: A Recipient Nation’s Perspective

By Anar Ulikpan This blog is a response to the post entitled "What is this Governance Thing Anyway?"  In very simple and broad terms, governance is a process through which public/community goods and services are coordinated to serve its peoples’ best interests in an equitable and fair manner. Countries with ‘good’ governance are expected to have …

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DDD4 Jakarta

The fourth meeting of the ‘Doing Development Differently’ movement (as one of its founders, Michael Woolcock, calls it) was held over two days in Jakarta a couple of weeks ago. Jointly hosted by the Government of Indonesia, the World Bank and Australia’s Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade, the workshop attracted over 200 participants from …

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