Columbia International Affairs Online: Working Papers

CIAO DATE: 12/2011

Brave New World: A Literature Review of Emerging Donors and the Changing Nature of Foreign Assistance

Julie Walz, Vijaya Ramachandran

November 2011

Center for Global Development


This paper investigates the scale and scope of emerging donors, many of which are developing economies themselves. Annual aid flows from new donors (so-called non-DAC donors) vary greatly and are somewhere between $11 billion and $41.7 billion, or 8 and 31 percent of global gross ODA. The new donors are not a monolithic group but instead represent three distinct models of aid delivery, described here as the DAC Model, the Arab Model and the Southern Model. In each model, there is room for donors to improve their transparency and accountability. Most are unlikely to join the DAC, but the international donor community can still encourage reporting and disclosure. To engage the non-DAC donors, the forum for international aid coordination might need to be moved away from the OECD-DAC platform; the DAC could instead serve as one donor caucus within a larger international system of aid reporting.