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Noteworthy News – 8.31.2009

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This weekly posting includes key news stories and opinion pieces related to foreign assistance reform and the larger development community.

What we’re reading this week: All USAID Administrator, all the time.

  • It’s Time for Foreign Aid Reform (Huffington Post – David Beckmann, August 28) – With leadership from President Obama and coordination between these various actors, I am confident that foreign assistance reform will move forward and finish the task President Kennedy set out nearly 50 years ago.  Although it isn’t clear yet whether the administration and Congress will choose fundamental reform over the patchwork approach, one thing is irrefutable: we can’t afford for our leaders to hurry up and wait when so much is at stake.
  • Experts Concerned by Leaderless USAID (NPR-Michelle Kelemen, August 27) – Now development experts are encouraging the Obama administration to get its act together soon. Raymond Offenheiser is president of Oxfam America and a leading voice in a coalition called the Modernizing Foreign Assistance Network.  Mr. RAYMOND OFFENHEISER (President, Oxfam America): I think what really worries us is that if we don’t get that leader in place pretty soon, and I guess we feel there’s a real urgency to it, that things are going to begin moving forward. There’s just an enormous amount of momentum behind this reform process.
  • Friday round up (ForeignPolicy.com-Laura Rozen, August 28) – USAID: An association of foreign assistance groups, the Modernizing Foreign Assistance Network, represented by PR firm the Glover Park Group, has launched a poll asking who should be the next USAID administrator.

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