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USAID Contribution

Capable Partners Learning Agenda on Local Organization Capacity Development

Thomas Dichter

The Learning Agenda focuses on local organizations, their capacity development and USAID’s role vis a vis both. The practical goal of the project is to help USAID more fully understand the implications of its avowed intention to partner more with local organizations and bolster country ownership. We wanted to flesh out the day-to-day reality of local organizations, the challenges they face as participants in their country’s development and in their relationships with donors. 

Between May 2012 and September 2013, the research team conducted fieldwork in nine countries (Sri Lanka, Morocco, Jamaica, Peru, Moldova, Nepal, Tanzania, Kenya, the Philippines, and India), meeting with local organizations of many different types as well as USAID Missions in each country. Taking a qualitative approach, a total of 325 organizations were interviewed, along with 70 USAID personnel. IA historical study of USAID work in capacity development was conducted, in addition to a literature review and a network analysis of local organizations and donor relationships in Tanzania and Nepal.

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