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Aid Effectiveness: Trends and Impacts of Shifting Financial Flows and Aid Effectiveness to Civil Society Organisations in Southern Africa

The study was carried out by the Chr. Michelsen Institute (Norway) in co-operation with Strategy & Tactics for the Southern Africa Trust. The team was composed of Elling N. TjØnneland and S&T partner Nobayethi Dube. The study was aimed at generating systematic knowledge and insight about the changes in aid policies and how they are affecting donor support to civil society in Southern Africa.

The study was conducted in seven SADC countries (Botswana, Lesotho, Mozambique, Namibia, South Africa, Zambia and Zimbabwe). Interviews were conducted with aid officials, civil society representatives and other stakeholders. During country visits the team interviewed a range of aid officials, representatives of civil society and other stakeholders.

The team found that aid effectiveness has so far focussed almost entirely on support to the state. Little attention has been paid to the role of civil society and how support to that sector can be improved, although aid to civil society is significant and increasing. It also notes that the bulk of this aid is channelled through Northern or international NGOs with only a minor portion being disbursed directly from the embassy or agency mission to local civil society organisations.

The main share of donor support to civil society is provided to organisations providing services in a range of sectors, such as health, education and agriculture. This has expanded with the additional funding to civil society organisations active in the HIV/AIDS area.
 

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