For too long, United States government development efforts have worked at cross purposes with the very people who are trying to lead lasting change in poor countries. For at least two decades, US assistance has been rightly derided as opaque, supply driven, and not focused on delivering the results that people in poor countries say they need.
Current US reform efforts intend to allow countries to lead in their own development. Oxfam's inquiry shows that local development leaders are noticing—and valuing the change. However, the US government must accelerate and deepen these reforms if it hopes to meet the expectations of people in developing countries.
To find out how recent reforms, in particular Implementation and Procurement Reform, Country Development and Cooperation Strategies, Feed the Future and the Millennium Challenge Corporation, are changing US foreign assistance, Oxfam America interviewed and surveyed people involved in US development efforts—both Americans and other stakeholders—in seven countries (Bangladesh, Ghana, Malawi, Peru, the Philippines, Rwanda, and Senegal) over the summer and fall of 2012.
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