UNU Wider, DIIS join forces to answer Pind’s question

The new programme, entitled Research and Communication on Aid, is to be funded with DKK 10 million by the Danish Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

The UN University in Helsinki, WIDER, and the Danish Institute of International Studies in Copenhagen will carry out the programme.

“What moves a society forward?” This is the big question at the centre of this research programme, said Development Minister Søren Pind at the launch.

The Minister says development thinking must undergo a fundamental shift in thinking from a focus on inputs to a focus on outputs. “To anchor Danish development assistance in a merciless focus on results,” he says.

Pind wants aid programmes to be designed in ways that are flexible enough that they can be adjusted and improved as the reality changes. He wants a rigorous assessment of all available evidence and research on what works and what doesn’t work in development assistance.

The other aspect of the research project is to see how communication can be improved in the interest of demonstrating value for money, and ensuring the legitimacy of the aid. Pind refers to a recent poll that found that while most Danes are in favour of aid, three out of four do not think aid makes any difference.