Locals in the aid recipient countries will have the best descriptive term. We should probably ask them before we start patting ourselves on the back on how development aid is an alternative to their lackluster foreign direct investment.
In a new year in which the candidates will rehash arguments about American exceptionalism, it is worth paying attention to a little known aspect of American foreign policy that breaks the mold in many ways.
A country should always be in the driver's seat, making decisions as they arise -- no one knows a road like a local citizen. Helping countries as they learn to drive that road is the goal of capacity building.
With official development assistance representing a much smaller share of the resources flowing into developing countries, we have to think differently about how we use it. We need to shift our approach and our thinking from aid to investment.
If in the last few years you got out your checkbook or credit card and donated to help rebuild Haiti, rescue Pakistanis from floods or fund a school in Tanzania, your contribution did not make its way into global aid figures.
In these hard economic times, we cannot blindly rely on donor governments to endlessly reach into their budgets to give more. Rather, we must think creatively about new ways to financially support global health and development goals.
The NGO model has proved relatively sturdy but has also inhibited experimenting with other approaches to promote social change. As we move into new regions and issues, we must develop fresh ways of engaging with local actors.
If effective, informed development is, in fact, the desired endpoint of the World Bank and partner international organizations, they must strive to empower communities and encourage local ownership, fostering a true and equal partnership with civil society.
Increased focus on private sector development, trade preferences, direct investment and serious focus on accountability will take us toward a middle ground on foreign aid that moves us forward rather than lagging in debate.
The UN claims there is a siege on Gaza when it has given $200 million to the strip in the past year -- $190 million more than it has given to Haiti after the natural disaster there claimed the lives of an estimated 230,000.
If we seize this chance, we can help the people of Haiti escape their cycle of poverty and deprivation fueled by merciless natural disasters. The international community owes them a Marshall Plan-magnitude effort.
Afghanistan is in urgent need of the basics for survival in one of the poorest countries on Earth -- seeds, fertilizer, roads, power, schools, and clinics -- much more than it is in the need of another 30,000 troops.