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Donor resilience index

Written by Mikaela Gavas, Tom Hart, Shakira Mustapha, Andrew Rogerson

Hero image description: Donor resilience index

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Frequently asked questions

Why do development agencies need a donor resilience index?

A standout achievement of the last two decades has been the dramatic fall in global poverty. But progress has been uneven, and today’s greatest development challenges are fragile states and transnational issues like climate change.

While international cooperation agencies need to adapt to this rapidly evolving global context, they also need to capitalise on their comparative strengths if they want to remain relevant, effective and resilient. The donor resilience index – uniquely – encourages agencies to think about whether they are preparing for the future.

Frequently asked questions

How do we define ‘resilience’?

There are two parts to the index:

  • A geographical part, which rewards spending in fragile countries and/or countries with a high poverty gap;
  • A thematic part, which rewards spending on global public goods, growth and social sectors.

The index proposes a hierarchy of aid allocations, with priority to fragile and high poverty gap countries and for global public goods, compared to growth and social sectors. More resilient donors on the index are those, firstly, with a larger share of the portfolio going to high poverty gap and/or fragile countries, relative to all other countries; and, secondly, with a larger share of global public goods spending, relative to spending on growth and social sectors.

Resilience, however, does not equal impact, and ranking on this index is not a reflection of the efficacy or effectiveness of country activities. Its purpose is not to assess agency performance, but to encourage long-term thinking and to stimulate debate on future priorities for donors.

Read the methodology

Frequently asked questions

How do I use the index?

The index can also be used as a toolkit to compare how countries are allocating their aid geographically and thematically. It allows you to select a different hierarchy of priorities (for example, instead of 'fragile countries and global public goods', you can select 'fragile countries and social sectors') to identify which other countries are key donors in those areas.