It’s that time of year again: CONCORD is busy preparing its annual AidWatch report. It is a key monitoring and accountability tool, looking into how much Official Development Assistance, or ODA, the EU (really) gives to partner countries, how effective it is and whether the EU and its Member States are serious about trying to leave no one behind, the hallowed principle of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.
The European Development Days, or EDD, is a development fair that is particularly useful to meet and to network, but also to exchange ideas and – hopefully – to learn. I’ll come back to exchange of ideas, but on the learning front, this year’s EDD was certainly a missed opportunity to demystify the Global Gateway – or rather, to go beyond the slogans.
When the rubber hits the road … who are you going to call? Civil society’s fundamental role in times of crises
I am struck, again and again, by how governments of all colours and persuasions – but clearly some more than others – can question the role of civil society. And not just question our role, but actively undermine it.
As International Women’s Day comes around again, and the European Union is facing a historic situation with war at its borders, I’ve been mulling over, and talking with colleagues about, the merits of feminist foreign policy and wondering whether the EU should adopt one.
The EU-AU Summit is a mere three weeks away, but civil society has been shut out from having any real influence over the shape or likely outcomes of the Summit. Our Director reflects on EU institutional behind-the-scenes power play and how it can affect civil society involvement.
The fifth UN Conference to support Least Developed Countries (LDC5, as it’s known) is around the corner. This is another moment – following hot on the heels of the disappointing COP26 – when the EU must step up. Given the extremely difficult situation that LDCs are facing, the EU must not only meet previous pledges but go further. Unrealistic? Maybe. Necessary? Definitely.
The latest revelations around Facebook have proven the scale of their misdeeds. What does this mean for an already shrinking civil society space? And who should be held responsible? The future is clearly digital. But that future must still respect human rights… and currently that is in the balance. That is why the EU’s efforts to curb the powers of such companies are so important.
Our Director assesses the latest State of the Union speech and reflects on how Europe is so busy playing catch-up that it fails to have its own gameplan. Which, as ever, results in people losing out.
In this month’s blog, our Director assesses the last Council Conclusions welcoming the fact that they address human development but regretting, once again, bland and repetitive commitments, as well as lack of new perspectives on aid.
In this month’s blog, Andrea Ordoñez, Director of Southern Voice, shares her reflections on a new role for INGOs. What would a new system look like? And, how can INGOs adapt to a more equitable development system? For sure this will require a proactive shift in power relations.