Last week, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, alongside USAID Administrator Raj Shah and others, rolled out the first-ever Quadrennial Diplomacy and Development Review (QDDR). As MFAN Co-Chairs Rev. David Beckmann and George Ingram said in their statement: “With today’s release of the first-ever Quadrennial Diplomacy and Development Review (QDDR), the Obama Administration has finalized its road map for how U.S. foreign aid can be made more effective, efficient, and accountable in the 21st century. This is absolutely critical in a resource-constrained world where our efforts to save lives and help vulnerable people build their own livelihoods are as important as our military and diplomatic activities.”
MFAN’s Partners responded in force to the release, noting the positive efforts to reduce bureaucratic inefficiencies while boldly pointing to areas where the QDDR is not clear. Below is a collection of excerpts from news stories and opinion pieces featuring MFAN experts from across the network:
- Foreign Policy’s Josh Rogin—of The Cable blog—reported twice on the rollout. MFAN Partner Oxfam America’s Paul O’Brien, vice president of policy and advocacy, posed a question to the Secretary at the Town Hall last Wednesday on whether the QDDR addresses the tension between short-term diplomatic priorities and long-term development priorities. Clinton responded: “I don’ think there’s any way to resolve it. I don’t think it will disappear but there is a way to diminish it. But we’ve got to have somebody in each country that actually speaks for the entire government.” In a follow-up report, Rogin quoted several MFAN Partners, including MFAN’s Co-Chairs: “David Beckmann and George Ingram, co-chairs of the Modernizing Foreign Assistance Network (MFAN), called for the reforms in the QDDR to be codified in law through corresponding congressional action. “These reforms would pay major dividends in terms of lives saved and improved around the world — and they would make sure that U.S. taxpayer dollars are getting into the hands of people who need them. But they will only have lasting impact if the Administration and bipartisan Members of Congress work together to develop and pass legislation that establishes them in law,” they said in a statement.”
- Devex posted a round-up of reactions to the QDDR, including from MFAN’s Co-Chairs, MFAN Principal Connie Veillette of the Center for Global Development, MFAN Principal Noam Unger of the Brookings Institution, ONE CEO and MFAN Principal David Lane, MFAN Principal and InterAction CEO Sam Worthington, and MFAN Partner Oxfam America’s Paul O’Brien.
- In his report, the Christian Science Monitor’s Howard LaFranchi quotes MFAN Principal and executive director of the US Global Leadership Coalition Liz Schrayer, who comments, “The QDDR represents a bold step toward implementing a smart-power foreign policy by elevating our civilian power and ensuring effective, results-driven programs,” says Liz Schrayer, executive director of the US Global Leadership Coalition.”
- IPS News reported on the rollout, which included a quote from MFAN Principal and InterAction President Sam Worthington: “We urge Congress to support the many positive changes being proposed and to provide the necessary resources for USAID and the State Department as they implement a new, more effective, approach to global development.”
- Worthington also had an op-ed in The Huffington Post exploring the role State and USAID each play in humanitarian relief and disaster response, as laid out in the QDDR.
Other notable coverage of the rollout includes:
- State Dept. review calls for emphasis on averting global crises (The Washington Post, December 16)
- Clinton Pledges Bigger Role for Besieged State Department (The New York Times, December 15)
- Clinton Seeks To Revamp Diplomacy, Development (AP, December 15)
- Clinton launches reform of US diplomacy (AFP, December 15)
- Clinton Presents Plan to Overhaul State Department Operations (Bloomberg, December 15)