The politics of the results agenda in DFID: 1997-2017

Craig Valters, Brendan Whitty

Research output: Book/ReportOther report


The United Kingdom's Department for International Development (DFID) was created 20 years ago. In this time, its budget has grown dramatically and its management has shifted. One of the most dominant shifts is towards the ‘results agenda’ – a political agenda for foreign aid, associated with fixed target-setting, which has changed the way DFID operates around the world.

In this report we analyse how and why the results agenda emerged. Our primary focus is on the politics of the story, how it has intersected with DFID's management, and the response to these changes. We ask whether DFID's results management is fit for purpose; that is, does it reflect the UK's development ambitions? To answer these questions, we interviewed more than 60 people, including former Secretaries of State, senior civil servants and international development experts.
Original languageEnglish
Place of PublicationLondon
PublisherOverseas Development Institute (ODI)
Publication statusPublished - 11 Sep 2017

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