By David R. Morrison
Aid and Ebb Tide: A historical past of CIDA and Canadian improvement Assistance examines Canada’s combined list due to the fact 1950 in moving over $50 billion in capital and services to constructing international locations via ODA. It focuses particularly at the Canadian foreign improvement organisation (CIDA), the association mainly chargeable for supplying Canada’s improvement suggestions. Aid and Ebb Tide demands a renewed and reformed Canadian dedication to improvement co-operation at a time while the distance among the world’s richest and poorest has been widening alarmingly and hundreds of thousands are nonetheless being born into poverty and human lack of confidence.
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Extra info for Aid and Ebb Tide: A History of CIDA and Canadian Development Assistance
Accordingly, Chapter 11 revisits the historical evidence about the impact on aid policy of domestic interest groups, intra-governmental politics, the international aid regime, and organizational behaviour. Some significant conclusions emerge: that non-state domestic actors have had a greater impact on policy-making than statists would have us believe; that, despite manifest sensitivity to the needs of capital and specific business lobbies, CIDA has been more responsive to the interests and demands of NGOs and NGIs than dominant-class theorists have suggested; that developmental impulses within the Agency 26 Aid and Ebb Tide have been muted as it has tried to accommodate itself to the political and commercial objectives pursued by more powerful interests elsewhere in government; that an increasingly influential transnational discourse among multilateral and bilateral donor agencies has had a profound effect on CIDA's programming priorities and its relations with domestic interests, other bureaucratic players, and recipient countries; and that the translation of policy into operational reality has been frustrated by bureaucratic impediments, disbursement pressures, regulatory controls, and inadequate evaluation.
The persistence of this vision also helps to explain the description of CIDA's culture as "idealistic" by a team of management consultants who studied the Agency in 1991: The high sense of mission found in most employees and managers reflects the strong belief that strictly developmental criteria and absolute respect for the culture and orientation of recipient countries must prevail over any other considerations. Historically, consideration for Canadian economic interests abroad, and the use of profits or benefits to motivate firms or individuals, are looked at with suspicion, if not contempt.
While the choice of presidencies 24 Aid and Ebb Tide as time periods is arbitrary, it does have a logic beyond simple convenience. The president of CIDA has not only enjoyed the power and prestige of a deputy minister, but has often played a more public and visible role than the conventional Ottawa mandarin. This remained true even when the Agency was shifted from the general oversight of the secretary of state for External Affairs, the norm in the Trudeau and early Chretien years, to the specific responsibility of a junior minister during the Progressive Conservative administrations of 1979-80 and 1984-93 and again under the Liberals after 1996.