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Targeting Aid to the Needy and Deserving: Nothing But Promises?

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  • Peter Nunnenkamp
  • Gustavo Canavire
  • Luis Triveño

Abstract

By reallocating aid to where it is needed most and where a productive use is most likely, donors could help alleviate poverty in developing countries. The rhetoric of donors suggests that this insight has increasingly shaped the allocation of aid. However, we find little evidence supporting the view that the targeting of aid has improved significantly. Most donors provide higher aid to relatively poor countries, but so far the fight against poverty has not resulted in a stronger focus on recipient countries with particularly high incidence of absolute poverty. Many donors failed to direct aid predominantly to where local conditions were conducive to a productive use of inflows. The response of donors to changing institutional and policy conditions in recipient countries turns out to be fairly weak. In particular, we reject the proposition that multilateral donor institutions provide better targeted aid than bilateral donors.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Kiel Institute for the World Economy in its series Kiel Working Papers with number 1229.

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Length: 51 pages
Date of creation: Oct 2004
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:kie:kieliw:1229

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Keywords: bilateral aid; multilateral aid; poverty; economic policy assessment; quality of institutions;

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References

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  1. Berthelemy, Jean-Claude & Tichit, Ariane, 2002. "Bilateral Donors' Aid Allocation Decisions: A Three-dimensional Panel Analysis," Working Paper Series UNU-WIDER Research Paper , World Institute for Development Economic Research (UNU-WIDER).
  2. Alesina, Alberto & Weder, Beatrice, 2002. "Do Corrupt Governments Receive Less Foreign Aid?," Scholarly Articles 4553011, Harvard University Department of Economics.
  3. Oecd, 2003. "Aid Effectiveness and Selectivity: Integrating Multiple Objectives into Aid Allocations," OECD Journal on Development, OECD Publishing, vol. 4(3), pages 7-40.
  4. Boone, Peter, 1996. "Politics and the effectiveness of foreign aid," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 40(2), pages 289-329, February.
  5. Nunnenkamp, Peter, 2002. "IWF und Weltbank: trotz aller Mängel weiterhin gebraucht?," Kiel Discussion Papers 388, Kiel Institute for the World Economy (IfW).
  6. Dollar, David & Alesina, Alberto, 2000. "Who Gives Foreign Aid to Whom and Why?," Scholarly Articles 4553020, Harvard University Department of Economics.
  7. William Easterly, 2002. "The Elusive Quest for Growth: Economists' Adventures and Misadventures in the Tropics," MIT Press Books, The MIT Press, edition 1, volume 1, number 0262550423, December.
  8. Dollar, David & Levin, Victoria, 2004. "Increasing selectivity of foreign aid, 1984-2002," Policy Research Working Paper Series 3299, The World Bank.
  9. Peter Nunnenkamp, 2002. "Shooting the Messenger of Good News: A Critical Look at the World Bank's Success Story of Effective Aid," Kiel Working Papers 1103, Kiel Institute for the World Economy.
  10. Collier, Paul & Dollar, David, 1999. "Aid allocation and poverty reduction," Policy Research Working Paper Series 2041, The World Bank.
  11. Oecd, 2002. "Aid volume, channels and allocations for poverty reduction," OECD Journal on Development, OECD Publishing, vol. 3(3), pages 33-46.
  12. P. Guillaumont & L. Chauvet, 2001. "Aid and Performance: A Reassessment," Journal of Development Studies, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 37(6), pages 66-92.
  13. Rati Ram, 2003. "Roles of Bilateral and Multilateral Aid in Economic Growth of Developing Countries," Kyklos, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 56(1), pages 95-110, February.
  14. Henrik Hansen & Finn Tarp, 2000. "Aid effectiveness disputed," Journal of International Development, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 12(3), pages 375-398.
  15. Rolf J. Langhammer, 2004. "Halving Poverty by Doubling Aid: Is There Reason for Optimism?," The World Economy, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 27(1), pages 81-98, 01.
  16. Michael A. Clemens & Steven Radelet, 2003. "The Millennium Challenge Account: How Much is Too Much, How Long is Long Enough?," Working Papers 23, Center for Global Development.
  17. McGillivray, Mark, 2003. "Aid Effectiveness and Selectivity: Integrating Multiple Objectives into Aid Allocations," Working Paper Series UNU-WIDER Research Paper , World Institute for Development Economic Research (UNU-WIDER).
  18. Philipp Harms & Matthias Lutz, 2004. "The Macroeconomic Effects of Foreign Aid: A Survey," University of St. Gallen Department of Economics working paper series 2004 2004-11, Department of Economics, University of St. Gallen.
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