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Geoff Parcell

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What proportion of development funds enables peer-to-peer learning between developing countries?

Sanjay asks "How do we make sure that development and aid money actually goes to the people who most need it?" and focuses on corruption. But I'm wondering what proportion of the money for aid and development goes on conferences, consultants and research as opposed to creating opportunities for the lateral transfer of knowledge?


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    Oct 31 2012: Have you done an internet search for this? If no one has compiled this already, doing it will be a big job, given the abundance of sources of aid and the likelihood that record-keeping on the receiving end is not necessarily thorough, itemized as you wish, or comparable in terms of defnitions across recipients.
    • Oct 31 2012: I haven't found anything useful yet, Fritzie. What's your instinctive figure?
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        Oct 31 2012: As I have not seen any data on this and have no expertise in how the governments of developing countries allocate money, I do not have any basis for reliable instincts and therefore will not produce a wild guess.

        Beyond this, I don't know how separable expenditures on conferences, research, and consultants are from creating opportunities for lateral transfer of knowledge. Conferences normally are precisely about building relationships and fostering information sharing among those who don't run across each other convenient in the normal course of life. Research as to best practices and their potential transferability is a potentially highly useful tool in identifying which sorts of lateral transfers from among all the possibilities might be most fruitful. I know consultants are used for bringing technologies to communities, technologies which may well be informed by application in other developing countries. I don't know if that no longer counts to you as facilitating lateral transfer. I know it is not typically peer direct to peer, but I don't know that a strategy of this kind is less beneficial to all concerned.

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