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Designing Development Programs to Build Capacity: Emerging Experience from R4D

A country’s capacity to effectively implement policies and programs has long been recognized as crucial for its progress. Inadequate capacity—for example, deficiencies in institutions and in the skills of their personnel—has left a long trail of disappointed expectations for faster reduction of poverty. Building stronger capacity has thus become a prominent priority in international development, as evidenced in such initiatives as the Paris Declaration for Aid Effectiveness and the Accra Agenda for Action. Recently, top African leaders have called for “efforts in building capacity that go beyond achieving the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) target of 2015.”

This paper discusses shared program design elements for capacity building across R4D's portfolio that have shown promise so far and have been well received by the beneficiary countries and groups:

  • Country-driven
  • Flexible and Tailored
  • Peer-to-peer learning

The paper's authors are R4D Senior Program Associate Aarthi Rao, Program Director Amanda Folsom, and Caroline Pang.

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