When aid relationships change: DFID’s approach to managing exit and transition in its development partnerships
The Independent Commission for Aid Impact (ICAI) critically reviews DFID’s exit and transition process, and provides important recommendations.
ICAI examined how well the Department for International Development (DFID) managed the process of ending bilateral aid, or transitioning to new forms of development partnerships in seven countries.
The review found that in several cases the department had not specified clear objectives for its new development partnership or detail on how that partnership would work, and that the process was not well communicated – within recipient countries or to the UK public.
The review also found examples of poor planning, which led to weaknesses in a number of areas including staffing and relationship management.
In each country, the end to financial aid did not necessarily mean an end to all forms of aid, with flows including technical assistance, centrally managed programs and spending by departments other than DFID continuing.
Overall, ICAI awarded DFID’s performance on exiting and transitioning from development partnerships an ‘Amber-Red’ – requiring significant improvement.