Drivers of Change is the name that some donor governments are giving to a learning exercise at country level that recognises these weaknesses and tries to overcome them, by reversing the relationship between country-focused understanding and programme design. It is an effort to adopt a more historically-informed, less technocratic approach to aid policy, focusing on the way change happens, and how economic, social and political factors interact over the long-term. It involves standing back from every-day tasks to pose some hard questions about how donor organisations relate to institutions and actors in the country. It invites the staff of development agencies to ask questions not only about their in-country partners, but also about themselves, how well they know the country, what impact they have and how they are perceived.
John Farrington, Rachel Slater and Rebecca Holmes