Aid Collaboration in Uganda

By Jessica Ernst

Aid collaboration has become a talking point without much action. However, Uganda has become a leader in collaboration through its innovative Poverty Eradication Action Plan (PEAP), which aligns Uganda’s national priorities with the United Nations (UN) Millennium Development goals. The PEAP gives aid donors a framework within which to operate and coordinate efforts. Many of Uganda’s largest donors joined together to create the Uganda Joint Assistance Strategy; a model that has been quickly adopted by other countries in the region. The partners pledged to uphold specific principles toward the goal of greater aid harmonization. The development organizations have evolved their partnerships with the government by opting into a new Government Aid Policy, which places the government as the lead on development issues. The degree of integration between donor and recipient is impressive, but must nonetheless contend with the high rates of corruption in Uganda. The unequal distribution of wealth by region and municipality also offers an opportunity to build partnerships with more fluidity, changing the composition, location, and funding of a partnership group depending on each situation.

About the Author:
Jessica Ernst has recently completed her concurrent Master of Public Administration and Master of Arts in International Relations at The Maxwell School of Syracuse University. During her studies, she completed internships with the Millennium Challenge Corporation in Washington, D.C. and the Private Sector Foundation Uganda in Kampala, Uganda. Prior to Jessica’s graduate work, she was a Fulbright grant recipient in Thailand, where she was an English Teaching Assistant. Jessica earned her Bachelor in Arts degree in Political Science and Law, Politics, and Society from Drake University through which she interned with the State Department in Lusaka, Zambia and studied abroad in Durban, South Africa.

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