Government acts to strengthen development aid fund after report

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The government has today (Monday 22 July 2019) responded to the Independent Commission for Aid Impact (ICAI) review of the Newton Fund and accepted all 6 of its recommendations.

5 of the recommended measures are already being implemented due to BEIS own ongoing evaluation processes.

The Newton Fund’s primary objective is to reduce poverty by generating and putting into use knowledge and technology to address development challenges and advance development for the poorest people and countries.

The ICAI recommended that:

  1. BEIS should ensure that the Fund increases its focus on achieving its primary purpose, which is to meet the development needs and priorities of its partner countries.

    (Accepted and already implementing).

  2. The Newton Fund should ensure it meaningfully considers options for reducing gender inequality and reports against its progress.

    (Accepted and already implementing).

  3. BEIS should ensure that the funding practices of the Newton Fund comply with both the letter and the spirit of the untying commitment.

    (Accepted and already implemented).

  4. BEIS should improve the governance and accountability of the Newton Fund and put in place a strategy setting out how it will maximise development impact as its primary purpose.

    (Accepted and already implementing).

  5. BEIS should improve the Newton Fund’s approach to and measurement of value for money.

    (Accepted and already implementing).

  6. The Newton Fund should improve its approach to monitoring, evaluation and learning at the Fund level.

    (Accepted and already implementing).

The government has also published the BEIS Research and Innovation Official Development Assistance (ODA) annual report which provides a summary of both the Newton Fund and Global Challenges Research Fund (GCRF), and financial information for 2017 to 2018. The report also covers how these funds support capacity building for a more sustainable future and how the funds contribute to wider UK government objectives.

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