DFID conference and White Paper in Development Drums

I went to London for the DFID conference on 9 and 10 March on “Securing Our Common Future”.

The latest Development Drums – a podcast about development issues – includes an interview with DFID Permanent Secretary Minouche Shafik and a discussion about the Conference with Nancy Birdsall and Simon Maxwell.

3 thoughts on “DFID conference and White Paper in Development Drums”

  1. I don’t want to exaggerate, but I don’t recall listening to a discussion, or series of discussions, lasting just over an hour, in which so many absolutely fundamental issues were analysed and brought together by such well-informed, enlightened and articulate people. It takes an effort to concentrate on what amounts to a sound-track without visual images for that length of time, but one is increasingly gripped as the debate develops and I for one felt real regret when it was brought to a close, with so much more to be said.

    This should be compulsory listening in schools and universities and government departments and company board-rooms — and in the White House and the Congress and the Palace of Westminster. It’s impossible to listen to this without one’s prejudices and preconceived ideas being challenged in the most positive and forward-looking ways.

    I should add, however, that I found it deeply depressing in highlighting the sheer improbability that the essential measures identified as urgently needed to avert disaster will in real life be adopted by the world’s national leaders or accepted by public opinion in the rich countries. But there’s no alternative, as Mrs T might have said, to saying loudly and clearly what must be done, even if we know it almost certainly won’t be. I tremble for my grandchildren.

    I ought to declare a family (paternal) interest, but deny that it has warped my judgement!


  2. Just wanted to leave a quick note saying how much I’m enjoying the podcast series. They really have become essential listening. Any chance of getting Michela Wrong on to speak further about the tension she found between DFID and the Embassy in Kenya? She made some very interesting points her new book about the folly of measuring aid success purely in terms of how much cash is pushed out the door and the failure to change policy in light of Anglo-Leasing. Perhaps that is the sort of issue Easterly was referring to when making the connection between corruption and budget support?

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