Seeking balanced ownership in changing development cooperation relationships

Keijzer, Niels / Stephan Klingebiel / Charlotte Örnemark / Fabian Scholtes
External Publications (2018)

Expert Group for Aid Studies (Report 2018:08)

ISBN: 978-91-88143-43-3

According to the Paris Declaration and the 2030 Agenda, ownership is a prerequisite for effective development cooperation. How can the principle of ownership be promoted in today’s complex development cooperation, in which the numbers of actors have increased?  
This is the subject of the Expert Group for Aid Studies report Seeking balanced ownership in changing development cooperation relationships. The report contains two country case studies – on Liberia and Rwanda – as well as interviews with the Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency (Sida) and the Ministry for Foreign Affairs, and studies on documents concerning ownership in a Swedish development cooperation context.  
The authors note that ownership remains relevant as a guiding principle in international development cooperation. The trend from country-to-country cooperation to various forms of support through UN bodies and specialised global funds has created new conditions and competing interests for ownership. An understanding of ownership and how it can be promoted in the complex reality of today needs to be thoroughly re-examined. 

The study recommends the following:

1. Starting a discussion within the OECD-DAC on effective development cooperation that has global ownership right up to the end of the process.

2. Establishing an international code of conduct in accordance with agreed ownership principles concerning development cooperation funding to and via UN bodies and global funds.

3. Sweden should formulate an explicit policy and approach for how to promote ownership in development cooperation that includes numerous partners.

About the authors

Keijzer, Niels

Social Science


Klingebiel, Stephan

Political Science


Further experts

Bergmann, Julian

Political Science 

Dang, Vy

Political Science 

Erforth, Benedikt

Political Science 

Esser, Daniel

Development Studies, Human Geography 

Furness, Mark

Political Science 

Grimm, Sven

Political Science 

Hackenesch, Christine

Political Science 

Koch, Svea

Social Science 

Löpelt, Sarah

International environmental and development policy 

Scholtes, Fabian


Strupat, Christoph


Weinlich, Silke

Political Science