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Aid to Africa: So Much To Do, So Little Done Paperback – Apr 15 1999

3 out of 5 stars 1 customer review

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 318 pages
  • Publisher: University Of Chicago Press; 1 edition (April 15 1999)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0226468399
  • ISBN-13: 978-0226468396
  • Product Dimensions: 15.2 x 1.8 x 22.9 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 440 g
  • Average Customer Review: 3.0 out of 5 stars 1 customer review
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Inside This Book

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First Sentence
"Why," the senator asked, "with so much aid has there been so little development in sub-Saharan Africa?" Read the first page
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Front Cover | Copyright | Table of Contents | Excerpt | Index | Back Cover
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By A Customer on Nov. 22 2002
Format: Paperback
Like so many pieces of work about the effectiveness of aid, this piece by Lancaster has its strengths as well as its obvious blind spots. Lancaster does a relatively good job of analyzing the bureaucratic strengths and weaknesses of many of the larger national and multinational aid agencies. It is in this respect that the book shines. On the other hand, it is obvious that Lancaster is strongly wedded to neo-classical economic theory and this bias runs throughout the book and leads her to condemn many aid practices based almost solely on these fundamentalist beliefs. Even more damning, though, is her near absolute ignorance of the international economic and political realities that have destabilized Africa and that have been almost completely uncontrollable by the aid agencies that she so easily critiques. She even goes so far as to give her greatest praise to one of the few agencies that can be directly credited with much of the economic instability plaguing the continent, the World Bank. She is honest in her critique of USAID and DFID being partly handcuffed by their country's larger foreign policy goals, but fails to place blame at the feet of these agencies' mother nations for their roles in producing or at least aiding in the creation of political instability of the region. Still, with these very serious critiques aside, Lancaster does do a very good job in providing valuable organizational critiques of several very important aid agencies. In this respect, this is a valuable piece of scholarship. I just wish she had the ability to be more honest (as she is a former government employee and recipient of significant US government funding, it may not be realistic to expect this of her) or less blind.
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Amazon.com: HASH(0xa5261798) out of 5 stars 1 review
6 of 9 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0xa65da8e8) out of 5 stars Hit and Miss Nov. 22 2002
By A Customer - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Like so many pieces of work about the effectiveness of aid, this piece by Lancaster has its strengths as well as its obvious blind spots. Lancaster does a relatively good job of analyzing the bureaucratic strengths and weaknesses of many of the larger national and multinational aid agencies. It is in this respect that the book shines. On the other hand, it is obvious that Lancaster is strongly wedded to neo-classical economic theory and this bias runs throughout the book and leads her to condemn many aid practices based almost solely on these fundamentalist beliefs. Even more damning, though, is her near absolute ignorance of the international economic and political realities that have destabilized Africa and that have been almost completely uncontrollable by the aid agencies that she so easily critiques. She even goes so far as to give her greatest praise to one of the few agencies that can be directly credited with much of the economic instability plaguing the continent, the World Bank. She is honest in her critique of USAID and DFID being partly handcuffed by their country's larger foreign policy goals, but fails to place blame at the feet of these agencies' mother nations for their roles in producing or at least aiding in the creation of political instability of the region. Still, with these very serious critiques aside, Lancaster does do a very good job in providing valuable organizational critiques of several very important aid agencies. In this respect, this is a valuable piece of scholarship. I just wish she had the ability to be more honest (as she is a former government employee and recipient of significant US government funding, it may not be realistic to expect this of her) or less blind.


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