Learning from Experience

Perspectives on Poverty Reduction Strategies from Four Developing Countries

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Learning from Experience explores how the Poverty Reduction Strategy Initiative (PRSI) process is working, as seen from the perspective of four recipient countries. This initiative of the World Bank and IMF was introduced in 1999, with the aim of making aid more effective. It has been implemented in over forty low-income countries. Support for it from international institutions, donors and others, has ranged from enthusiastic to hostile.

The four country studies in this volume, from Tanzania, Ghana, Malawi and Bangladesh, consider the PRSI process under six headings: design of the strategy; the extent of country ownership and how to strengthen it; implementation; accountability; alignment of development partner support; and improving donor practices and procedures and cutting transactions costs.

Learning from Experience presents the effects of the PRSI process as they are experienced from recipient countries themselves, and will help international and national economic planners improve the way in which future Poverty Reduction Strategy plans are developed and implemented.




One of the key strengths of the Commonwealth is to bring together a diverse regional and cultural perspective on challenges that the membership is facing. This allows the sharing of lessons between nations and – where necessary – the promotion of change internationally. There is no greater or more important challenge facing either individual countries or the international community than reducing and eventually eliminating absolute poverty. This book is about the experience of four Commonwealth countries in the mechanics of meeting that challenge.


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