Statement on Peer Review of U.S. Global Development Efforts

For Immediate Release

Thursday, July 28, 2011
USAID Press Office

Washington, DC - Donald Steinberg, Deputy Administrator of the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID), issued the following statement on behalf of the United States regarding a comprehensive review of U.S. global development efforts.

Today the Development Assistance Committee (DAC) of the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) released the results of a year-long assessment of policies and programs across the U.S. government to promote international development, respond to humanitarian emergencies, and strengthen transitional and post-conflict nations. Each member of the DAC is reviewed by its peers every four years; as a DAC member, the United States both receives reviews and conducts them. We find the 2011 DAC review of the U.S. government's global development efforts to be fair, objective and rigorous, and express our thanks to the DAC and peer reviewers from the European Union and Denmark for their comprehensive efforts.

We are gratified that the review concludes that the United States has made significant progress since the 2006 review in areas critical to efficient and cost-effective foreign assistance. The DAC highlights U.S. government leadership in such areas as promoting public-private partnerships, applying strict standards of measurement and evaluation, adopting clear policy guidance from senior leadership, meeting commitments to assistance flows to Africa and the poorest developing countries, and ensuring that the U.S. Agency for International Development is empowered to serve as a world-class development agency. It praises the United States as a generous and compassionate leader in assistance to humanitarian emergencies around the world. The DAC also cites the Millennium Challenge Corporation's focus on country ownership, predictability in funding, and evidence-based results as a model of delivering assistance in line with established principles of aid effectiveness.

The DAC recognizes as "game changing documents" and "significant political achievements" both President Barack Obama's Policy Directive on Global Development, and the State Department's and USAID's Quadrennial Diplomacy and Development Review (QDDR). These policies elevate development as a core pillar of civilian power, equal in status with diplomacy and defense. The review notes that the QDDR provides the roadmap to implement this strategic vision, and welcomes the measures now underway to achieve this outcome, including under the USAID Forward reform agenda.

The DAC notes that the U.S. government's efforts are "creating a positive dynamic which raises high expectations among U.S. stakeholders and partners," and urges further action to meet these expectations. In particular, it calls on the Administration to secure cross-government ownership of its development vision through strong communication and strategic engagement among U.S. government agencies and with Congress and non-governmental actors. It also encourages the United States to ensure its domestic and foreign policies support the efforts of developing countries by identifying key priority areas where it will pursue coherence between development goals and other domestic and foreign policies. While recognizing the constraints of U.S. budget and fiscal situations, it urges the United States to ensure adequate funding for these priorities in the future.

As these are just a sampling of findings and recommendations, we encourage all interested observers of U.S. development programs to read the DAC Peer Review of the United States in its entirety here.

On behalf of the U.S. government, I would like again to thank the OECD/DAC for the preparation of this thorough and informative assessment.

Last updated: June 01, 2012

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