Debates: Increasing IO Efficacy

My research partner and I have been attempting to tackle a problem highlighted by various local officials in Bosnia about International Organizations and NGOs. The issue is that oftentimes external aid often involves a team of people who come in, provide a few training sessions, and then leave. These sessions can often be complicated, and don’t address practical skills local officials need in order to properly implement government reform. This is especially true when NGOs are focusing on improving local government and increasing citizen participation.
My thought on a possible solution was that instead of short term training programs, NGOs should create multi-stage long-term plans that involve assigning a few experts to stay in each municipal level administrative office to ensure new policies and practices are implemented correctly. The overall goal for these governments is to increase the effectiveness of local government while simultaneously increasing transparency and reducing corruption. These “foreign attach├ęs” would essentially be on assignment for a few years, possible switched out with every so often, just the way diplomats are in embassies. Local staff and officials that remain would help with continuity, but the idea is that they would have constant guidance and supervision on their operations. As each office better understands the culture of good governance and is able to weed out corruption, the number of foreign advisors would reduce, or their terms would decrease until finally they are only sent for annual evaluations and check-ups.

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Aid and Democracy, Finding the Least Imperfect Solution

To start things off, I really want to thank the Weingartners for this opportunity to research with Professor Pickering this summer. Last year I stumbled upon the complex nature of Eastern Europe almost entirely by accident, and I am now completely consumed by the fascinating politics of this region. From my two classes on this area and my discussions with Professor Pickering, there are three main points about Eastern Europe that make it both incredibly interesting and endlessly frustrating:

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