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Foreign Aid and Foreign Policy: How donors undermine the effectiveness of overseas development assistance

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Abstract

Previous aid effectiveness studies have typically attempted to identify recipient-side conditions of aid effectiveness � such as �good policies�, political and economic stability, and �tropical effects� � using cross-country growth regressions. An obvious omission from this list of conditions is the extent by which donors are concerned with achieving geopolitical rather than developmental objectives, which may reduce aid effectiveness insofar as strategic donors have less incentive to hold the recipient government accountable for the developmentally effective use of aid receipts. Aid allocation regressions can (and are) used to demonstrate the importance of geopolitical considerations, but the author also shows that such regressions cannot be used to instrument for aid in a second stage growth regression, as is standard practice in this literature, because to do so would invoke the untested assumption that strategically motivated aid is just as effective as developmentally motivated aid. Instead the author tests the effect of lagged aid flows on growth, and subsequently demonstrates that: aggregate aid flows are estimated to have significant but moderately sized effects on growth; multilateral aid flows have roughly twice the effect of bilateral flows; but that the lower average effects of bilateral aid nevertheless obscure a substantial degree of heterogeneity in the bilateral aid coefficient which is again explained by the degree to which these flows are indeed strategically motivated.

Suggested Citation

  • Derek Headey, 2005. "Foreign Aid and Foreign Policy: How donors undermine the effectiveness of overseas development assistance," CEPA Working Papers Series WP052005, School of Economics, University of Queensland, Australia.
  • Handle: RePEc:qld:uqcepa:15
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    File URL: http://www.uq.edu.au/economics/cepa/docs/WP/WP052005.pdf
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    Cited by:

    1. Minoiu, Camelia & Reddy, Sanjay G., 2010. "Development aid and economic growth: A positive long-run relation," The Quarterly Review of Economics and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 50(1), pages 27-39, February.
    2. repec:bla:rdevec:v:21:y:2017:i:4:p:1425-1447 is not listed on IDEAS
    3. Gunatilake, H. & Fabella, R.V & Lagman-Martin, A., 2010. "Foreign Aid, Aid Effectiveness and the New Aid Paradigm: A Review," Sri Lankan Journal of Agricultural Economics, Sri Lanka Agricultural Economics Association (SAEA), vol. 12.

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