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Our Journey

We are striving to become a dynamic, global think tank that inspires people to act on injustice and inequality through collaborative research and ideas that matter for people and the planet.

The development sector has long been criticised for being deeply imbued by its colonial past and structural racism. ODI’s history is as old as the official ending of the colonial project itself. We played a part in the emergence of the development project: the sector, its priorities and activities, and continue to influence and shape them today.

So we are fundamentally rethinking the development project and our place within it. We welcome this need to confront our own history and acknowledge how the continued legacies of the colonial era hamper efforts to achieve greater fairness and justice.

This journey will lead us to transform how we work with partners, conduct research, convene, deliver policy and advice, and how we communicate.

You may notice us use different terminologies in our communications, convene more varied voices and develop more collaborative research.

It is an ongoing process of reflection and change, from which we hope to learn and grow.

Our action plan to achieve change

  • Fundamentally change the way we design and conduct research and advisory work

    The people we work with are partners. We are embedding principles of co-creation and design, whilst creating feedback loops and knowledge sharing activities to ensure our evidence generation meets the world's complex challenges.

  • Achieve substantive transformation of our programmes

    We are transforming our programmes so that justice, equity and the redistribution of political and economic power which challenge historical imbalances are at the heart of what we do.

  • Make our external affairs accessible, inclusive and global

    We are working towards reflecting our ambitions through our communications, and are changing how we represent the people the work with, challenging harmful stereotypes and creating the foundations for more translated content and elevating non-ODI voices.

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