Development Co-operation Report 2023: Debating the Aid System

This 60th anniversary edition focuses on ways to accelerate the implementation of commitments in support of comprehensive and inclusive development progress. The report puts the voices of those representing the diverse experiences and perspectives of low- and middle-income countries and their populations at the centre. Drawing on the latest research and insights from practitioners, academia and civil society experts, it takes stock of opportunities and challenges confronting the aid system.

It also presents concrete ideas for action with the objective of keeping development co-operation relevant and impactful. These ideas are organised under four ways forward: Deliver existing commitments and unlock progress; support locally led transformation in partner countries; modernise business models and financial management practices to align strategies, budgets and delivery; and rebalance power relations and find common ground for partnerships.

This report contains an overview and three main parts. The overview and accompanying infographic present key messages from the report on the opportunities and challenges for both development co-operation and official development assistance (ODA), its key policy instrument, to be fit for purpose in a rapidly changing landscape.

Part I explores the political economy of aid. It presents major trends, challenges and opportunities that are shaping development co-operation, including geopolitical tensions, the emergence of new actors and global inequalities, finance for climate change, feminist foreign policies and aid dependency.

Part II focuses on aid relevance in a complex system. It analyses two decades of trends in ODA policy and allocations, performance against key financing and effectiveness commitments, and emerging responses to pressures on development co-operation – for example, locally led development and lessons on aid effectiveness in extremely fragile settings.

Part III turns to adapting to evolving demands for ODA across regions. It examines how partners can respond better to national development priorities and preferred modalities and instruments while ensuring long-term sustainability.

The full report is published in English and French. An electronic version is available on line here

The report will no longer include the “development co-operation at a glance” profiles, as have previous editions. Instead, individual data and policy priorities for more than 90 official and philanthropic providers of development finance are available on line here Summary charts and graphs can be found here.

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