RT023 - Aid and development: looking back, thinking ahead
Convened by Geske Dijkstra (Erasmus University Rotterdam, the Netherlands) and Nadia Molenaers (University of Antwerp, Belgium)

Chairs: Geske Dijkstra (Erasmus University Rotterdam) and Nadia Molenaers (University of Antwerp)

Panel members: Sarah Delputte (Ghent University), Mohammad Mizanur Rahman (Bangladesh Administrative Service), Jörg Faust (DIE, German Development Institute)

This Roundtable hosts a discussion amongst peers to reflect on: 1) the scientific lessons that can be drawn from research on the impact of aid promoting socio-economic change and social justice 2) current trends in aid and in the aid environment, and how they enable or constrain socio-economic change, and 3)  what the future holds for aid as a catalyst for socio-economic change and social justice. We formulate three questions, and ask panel members to give their responses or reflections on these questions. For each question, another panel member will start. After the reflections of the panel members, a discussion with the audience follows.

The three questions are:

  1. Given the increased aid fragmentation, and also increased remittances and direct foreign investment, when will we see the end of traditional ODA? And why bother?
  2. How can we explain the huge increase in attention for monitoring and evaluation of development aid, and at the same time the reduced space and attention for evidence-based policy making in aid?
  3. Given the multiplicity of actors, and the return of aid policies under the foreign policy objective, how can we give new meanings to solidarity? How can aid (ODA) contribute to social justice? Aid for alleviating poverty or aid for GPGs? Or just give money to the poor?