The following is the abstract for a chapter I’m writing in a soon-to-be-released book edited by Linda Brennan et al. Thank you in advance for any feedback.
The sustainability of development programs is affected by the way in which information is produced and disseminated. This chapter examines the role of communications in social and behavior change, with a focus on an Indonesian sanitation project, ‘Fantastic Mom’, which aimed to reduce infant mortality. It highlights the link between communications and sustainability, particularly the importance of empowering individuals and their communities through participation and capacity building. The chapter then combines these elements and introduces the Sustainable Change Marketing (SCHEMA) model, using it to analyze the results of Indonesia’s Fantastic Mom project. This project succeeded in changing behaviors and building capacity but failed to effectively engage decision makers, affecting its sustainability. Finally, the chapter reviews these findings and their implications for sustainability work in Southeast Asia and beyond, providing guidance for those planning, implementing and evaluating similar programs.
Reference: Linda Brennan, John Fien, Lukas Parker, Hue Duong, Mai Anh Doan and Torgeir Watne (2013 in press), Growing Sustainable Communities: A Development Guide for Southeast Asia, Tilde University Press.
Posted in Goodwin Collaboration, Ideas, Resources
Tagged Asia, behaviour change, brand, community, education, environment, government, health, Indonesia, innovation, maternal, media, partnership, Southeast Asia, sustainability, Vietnam, women
The United Nations has issued its joint strategic plan for Myanmar, a guide to what many international agencies will focus on during this early stage of Myanmar’s transition. Myanmar, geographically the largest country in Southeast Asia, has an estimated population of 58 million. It has maintained GDP growth at around 5 per cent annually in recent years and has seen positive trends in poverty-related indicators. The country has further growth potential, with natural resources, agriculture and open access to the sea. Favorably located between South and East Asia, Myanmar has access to the fast growing economies of China and India, as well as access to ASEAN countries.
To date, Myanmar’s development has been characterized by uneven growth. According to the latest Integrated Household Living Conditions Assessment (IHLCA) 2009/10, there continues to be a rural-urban gap, with rural poverty at 29% and urban poverty at 16%. Due to limited public investment, international sanctions and a closed political system, the country has not been able to reach its full potential.
The four priorities in the UN plan are: 1. encouraging inclusive growth; 2. access to social services; 3. reducing vulnerability to natural disasters and climate change; and 4. good governance, democratic institutions and human rights. To achieve success, this strategy will need strong partnerships with the government, private sector and the NGO community.
Posted in Opportunities, Resources
Tagged Burma, climate, climate change, democracy, governance, government, human rights, Myanmar, rights, services, UN, United Nations
South Korea has launched a new business initiative as it continues to raise its profile in the international development community. The Korean government has tapped the private sector to help by launching the “Development Alliance Korea,” the first cooperative network between the government and various private partners in the field of overseas aid.
During the ceremony, representatives from eight organizations – the Korea NGO Council for Overseas Cooperation, the Federation of Korean Industries, the Korean Council for University Education, the Korea Association of International Development and Cooperation, the Global Compact Network Korea, the UN Academic Impact Korea, the Foreign Ministry and the Korea International Cooperation Agency – signed an agreement to form the Alliance. UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon, Chairman Ahn Hong-joon of the National Assembly’s Foreign Affairs, Trade, and Unification Committee, and Co-chairs of the UN-MDGs Forum Lee Ju-young and Lee Nak-yun all delivered addresses.
The Alliance is designed as part of an effort to implement the commitments of the “Busan Global Partnership,” which was launched in June. The network carries significance as a close partnership forged between the government and the private sector in the field of international development cooperation. Korea is a seen as a new player in international aid but has been active since 1991, especially in the country’s relationship with North Korea.
In his piece in Foreign Policy, John Norris takes a look at how Rajiv Shah, USAID administrator, is fighting to make U.S. foreign aid programs less dependent on American for-profit contractors. At the same time, Shah is aiming to roughly double the amount of assistance that flows directly to governments, entrepreneurs, educational institutions, and NGOs in the developing world.
The 10 largest USAID contractors received more than US$3.19 billion in 2011, and more than 27 per cent of the agency’s funding was directed to American for-profit firms. If the for-profit contractor Chemonics were a country, it would have been the third-largest recipient of USAID funding in the world in 2011, behind only Afghanistan and Haiti.
The theory behind supporting local institutions is that if the goal of development is to build sustainable local capacity and ownership, developing countries should play a larger role in solving their own problems. This is seen as good development policy and it has the potential to save American taxpayers money through reducing spending. USAID hopes to reach its target of 30 per cent of its aid being channeled directly to local organizations in the developing world by 2015. Shah’s aggressive plan faces possible opposition should there be a change of government after the US elections in November. For-profit contractors have always had their strongest allies in the Republican party.
There is an opportunity for those organisations seeking to work with USAID to align themselves with this new agenda. By focusing on building capacity and local partnerships as much as how they deliver services, for-profit and not-for-profit organizations will be more likely to secure USAID support in the future.
announced that around three million women would be assisted with jobs, family planning and increased protection against domestic violence as part of a new $60m aid program in Indonesia, including in rural and remote populations.
The Australian Minister for Foreign Affairs, Bob Carr,
“Indonesia continues to make strong progress in women’s rights, education and jobs,” Senator Carr said. ”Nearly half of all school students are girls, and more women than men are enrolled in universities. But there’s more to be done, especially in rural and eastern Indonesia where female literacy, income and reproductive health are poor.”
Senator Carr also announced that Australia would provide up to $100 million over five years to help build Indonesia’s research capacity and study the impact of development assistance in alleviating poverty. The funding is designed to give Indonesia extra intellectual firepower to lift millions more people out of poverty. Examples of research could include promoting policies to ensure all children get vaccinated and women have access to midwives during childbirth.
Posted in Opportunities, Resources
Tagged AusAID, Australia, child, community, family, government, health, immunisation, Indonesia, maternal, poverty, violence