The Crisis in Official Development Assistance (ODA) Statistics: Needed Revamp Would Lift Japan, Lower France

Sorry for the silence here.

I worked on two main projects over the last month. For GiveWell and Good Ventures, I began reviewing what is known about the economic impacts of immigration in receiving countries, particularly on low-wage workers. Good Ventures is considering labor mobility as an area in which it could actively support policy advocacy. But they want due diligence on the concern that allowing more immigrants in will depress earnings for those already here. I’ll share more of that work when it’s ready.

And for my old employer, the Center for Global Development, I wrote a paper that expands on my earlier work on how foreign aid should be defined for purposes of statistics. CGD posted the paper last Thursday and a blog post about it this morning. Go read that. (More blogging for CGD will follow.)

I think that for once, my timing is good. The Development Assistance Committee, which manages aid statistics, has been reviewing the definition of Official Development Assistance for the last 18 months. It will convene several consultative meetings in the next few weeks and more in the fall. Over the rest of the year, the DAC staff will be bringing options to the governing board, which consists of donor representatives, which will need to confront the policy and political issues and hash out a deal.