The politics of the results agenda: What can we learn from development cooperation history in Sweden and the UK?

13 february, 13:00-15:00, Hörsalen Myntkabinettet, Slottsbacken, Stockholm

The results agenda has been (and arguably still is) influential on how development assistance is governed, implemented and communicated. While it is a sound policy to expect results from development assistance, as in any other issue area, the results agenda has arguably had important implications on aid management and on the implementation of aid.

Sweden and the UK share many similarites in this regard, and as a complement to Sidas Development Talks on February 14, Reclaim the Results, this EBA seminar will discuss and compare Swedish and UK experiences. The specific focus is on what can be learnt from history on how domestic governments shape aid bureaucracies as well as what we know of the effects of implementation of results management reforms.

Janet Vähämäki, SCORE, will reflect on the topic based on her PhD thesis and an EBA Development Dissertation Brief where she has analysed the quest to report on results and how results reforms have been implemented in Swedish development aid since the 1960s. Craig Valters and Brendan Whitty will base their presentation on the recent ODI paper The Politics of the Results Agenda in DFID: 1997-2017. During the seminar we will critically analyse similarities, differences, and potential ways forward in how to constructively managing expectations in development assistance.


13.00 Welcome and introduction
Arne Bigsten, EBA

The Rise and Fall of ”Results Initiatives” in Swedish Development Aid
Janet Vähämäki, Ph.D., Stockholm Center for Organizational Research (SCORE)

The politics and management of aid and development: reforming the results agenda
Brendan Whitty, Ph.D, External Associate, International Development, University of East Anglia
Craig Valters, Research Fellow, Overseas Development Institute

Panel discussion
Janet Vähämäki
Brendan Whitty
Rebecka Kitzing Ivarsson, Senior Advisor, RBM, Sida
Lennart Peck,  RBM Specialist, Department for International Development Cooperation, Swedish Ministry for Foreign Affairs

15.00 Seminar ends