November 2014

Invitations to participate

Contribute to LenCD: Book Reviewers wanted

We are seeking volunteers to review new books on capacity development published this year. We currently have two books that we would like to match up with reviewers:

  • Managing Africa's Natural Resources: Capacities for Development, edited by Kobena Hanson, Cristina d'Alessandro, and Francis Owusu – published September 2014
  • Media and Development by Martin Scott – published May 2014

In exchange for writing a book review to be posted as a blog on the LenCD website, you will receive a free copy of the book for you to keep. If you are interested in contributing, please Please include a short introduction about yourself including why you would like to be a reviewer.

Help shape the future of Capacity4Dev

Capacity4Dev are inviting users to contribute to the revamping of their website. The website will be reorganised to meet the demands of both users and the organization. Capacity4Dev are seeking the opinions, insights and feedback of users to assist them at this turning point.

Please click here to contribute by 28th November 2014

Network news

Still time to apply: Capacity development online course

DiploFoundation is still accepting applications for the online course in capacity development based on the LenCD Learning Package.  The course aims to provide development practitioners with an understanding of the key concepts involved in capacity development. The main focus is on building practical skills for better design, planning, implementation and assessment of capacity development initiatives. This nine-week online course is based on a collaborative approach to learning, involving a high level of interaction with lecturers, guest experts, and the other participants.

The deadline for the January 2015 course is 10th December 2014

For more information click here or contact DiploFoundation at

The EU strengthens regional cooperation with Latin America

The EU has announced a regional cooperation package for Latin America for 2014-2020. The Multiannual Indicative Programme (MIP) will allocate €925 million over seven years. Whilst economic growth has been strong over the last decade, the region suffers from some of highest levels of inequality in the world. The programme places a strong emphasis on strengthening regional, state and local capacity to tackle inequality, security issues, poor service delivery, fiscal policy, climate change and also develop stronger trade ties with the EU.

To find out more click here

CD insights: selected case stories, research and shared experience

Institutions Taking Root: Building State Capacity in Challenging Context

This new World Bank Group report examines how institutions can succeed in fragile states, drawing on research from Lao PDR, Sierra Leone, The Gambia, and Timor Leste. The research shows that successful institutions focus on delivering results and generating legitimacy at the same time. They do this through a combination of internal management reforms and creating strong external connections to navigate their broader socio-political environment.  The authors move away from studies focused on political stability and argue that the success of individual institutions can have a broader effect on state legitimacy.

Access the full publication here

Global health experts weigh in on health systems strengthening

In the light of the Ebola crisis in West Africa, health system strengthening is of increasing concern to the global community. How can communities develop the capacity to strengthen their systems so they can control future epidemics?  In this webinar, experts from the UN Population Fund, GlaxoSmithKline, Janssen, and Gavi debate the advancement of health care systems and the role international actors can play.

Watch the full discussion here

Vocational education and training

The European Training Foundation (ETF) has published a new toolkit on vocational education and training and capacity development.  It aims to support the development of tools and methods to meet capacity development needs and provides guidance on measuring the impacts of capacity building activities.  The toolkit is addressed to ETF operational units, other practitioners working on vocational education and training, and partner country policy-makers.

The toolkit is accessible here

Capacity development in economic policy agencies: reflections from two CD advisers

Harry Greenwell and Bede Moore reflect on their work as economic capacity development advisers in the South Pacific in a new blog post and technical paper.  They discuss the challenges they faced regarding setting priorities, engaging with their counterparts and assessing the success of their work. Their recommendations to future advisers include: take time to establish priorities; recognise the importance of management capacity; effective relationships are critical; carefully judge when to and when not to intervene; measuring progress is important but difficult; carefully consider incentives; and capacity development requires specialised skills and expertise.

Read the blog post or technical paper

Capable Partners Learning Agenda on Local Organization Capacity Development

This extensive report examines the relationship between USAID and local organisations with regards to capacity development, based on research with 325 organisations in 9 countries. It recommends that donors should be more self-reflective, capacity development should be internally motivated and address real-world problems, that the question of whose capacity is being built and why needs to be explicitly dealt with, and that existing capacities must be recognised rather than overlooked. It also notes that resistance to change is often rooted in a lack of will, not a lack of skill, and that there are increasing opportunities for collaboration between civil society and the public sector.

Read the full article here