Eight new stories highlighting effective development interventions have been released by the Overseas Development Institute. The stories span progress in healthcare, education, good governance, access to water, social protection and economic growth in countries across Africa and Latin America. Their publication completes an online collection of Development Progress Stories ahead of a final synthesis report to be launched later this year.
Their release coincided with an event held at the ODI to examine Africa after 50 featuring representation from the World Bank, the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation and the Rwandan High Commission.
Speaking at the event Punam Chuhan-Pole, Lead Economist for the Africa Region at the World Bank said:“The Development Progress Stories provide us with interesting cross-sector insights into what drives successful development. By sharing our understanding of what works and why, we can not only inform the debate on development issues but help African countries learn from each other.”
ODI Director Alison Evans said:“These stories show how smart policies and smart financing can really have an impact on people’s everyday lives. It’s a real asset to policy makers and politicians to be able to draw on such striking examples of how a steadfast commitment to reducing poverty can transform lives. They contain some strong evidence of innovation and change which I look forward to studying further in the forthcoming synthesis report.”
The latest case studies look at:
- Progress on health in Rwanda: Leadership, performance and health insurance
Rwanda, a very low-income country, has made significant progress in increasing the quality and quantity of health services and in improving health status, through an effective national but decentralised public health programme.
- South Africa’s social security system: Expanding coverage of grants and limiting increases in inequality
Provision of social grants has limited the growth of inequality and poverty among the poor in South Africa.
- Somaliland’s progress on governance: A case of blending the old and the new
Absence of easily recognisable formal state institutions should not be equated with an absence of institutions altogether.
- Rural water supply in Uganda: Major strides in sector coordination and performance
Since 1990, Uganda has made notable progress in increasing access to improved drinking water sources in rural areas and has taken major strides in improving its national and local rural water service delivery systems.
- Improved economic conditions in Malawi: Progress from a low base
Between 2004 and 2009, Malawi achieved economic growth rates well above the sub-Saharan African average. Over the same period, poverty and inequality fell and child health improved.
- Pipes and people: Progress in water supply in Burkina Faso’s cities
Since 2000, improved production and distribution in Burkina Faso have extended water supply to nearly 2 million people in the four principal urban centres in the country. In the capital, Ouagadougou, the number with access to the network more than doubled in six years.
- Social protection in Brazil: Impacts on poverty, inequality and growth
Brazil’s high inequality rate has been reducing since 1990, with positive impacts on income poverty. Social assistance has contributed to this scenario. Both pensions and transfers have increased access to education and health for poor households, although to date the evidence on impacts here is less promising.
- Benin’s progress in education: Expanding access and narrowing the gender gap
Having had one of the world’s lowest primary school enrolment rates and enormous gender disparities in 1990, today almost all Beninese boys and girls can access school.
The stories are all available to download from www.developmentprogress.org. In the coming months, ODI will complete the online publication of a planned library of twenty-four case studies, each highlighting progress from a different country, and will produce a Development Progress Stories synthesis report early in 2011.
This research is funded by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.