Which models of donor coordination are most effective for managing multi-donor inputs to deliver technical assistance?


Where the delivery of development assistance is fragmented and donor agencies’ activities lack coordination, transaction costs are likely to be exorbitant and the proliferation of parallel service delivery structures undermines both the efficacy and legitimacy of the recipient state’s institutions (German Development Institute 2011). In the area of anti-corruption, inconsistencies in donor approaches entail additional challenges, such as enabling recipient governments to jettison much-needed governance reforms. Although experts have been calling for greater coordination between donors on anti-corruption work for over two decades, progress has been slow and considerable structural constraints remain. These barriers range from the prosaic – development agencies’ differing reporting and funding cycles – to the pathological – instinctive bureaucratic competition. This query surveys various modalities of donor coordination, grouped into three broad categories: funding, information sharing and international engagement. It then considers which forms of donor coordination lend themselves to initiatives designed to tackle sophisticated forms of corruption, such as money laundering and illicit financial flows. A review of the available literature suggests that coordination structures, such as multi-donor trust funds, may facilitate joint approaches in recipient countries, while information-sharing vehicles, such as the OECD’s Anti-Corruption Task Team, could foster high-level dialogue without fixating on the harmonisation of donors’ policies and procedures.

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