Resources: Internal agency CD learning initiatives and resources

Note: Many of the resources listed below have been developed by institutions and organizations for their own internal purposes, which means there is restricted access to many items in this list because they are available only to the staff of the relevant institution. This is why some of what is listed below has only a very general description and no clear reference to assess relevant documents. Many also have a sectoral or thematic basis, rather than a generic, cross-cutting approach to CD. At a later stage of package development further work will be done to explore these resources and their availability more fully.

Austrian Development Agency: has been working to improve its human resource strategy and related training, including those in relation to practical approaches for capacity development. In August 2011 a handbook on capacity development in partner countries was finalized (available in English and German).

Asian Development Bank: has a capacity development website resource centre ( Also in 2007 ADB issued a  Medium-Term Framework and Action Plan for CD that sets out a strategy to improve human resource management for capacity development, emphasizing learning and experience sharing.

AusAID: has an intranet site that provides updates on international research, practical guides and tools on capacity development. It is designed to be for learning purposes for AusAID staff

CIDA: Canada has developed a CD Toolkit that includes tools for newcomers to CIDA’s approach to capacity development. Not really training, but still for learning purposes.

DANIDA: has a training course for its staff of the ROACH approach – Result-Oriented Approach to Capacity Change.

EuropeAid: has been reviewing existing methodological packages and developing new training material in line with the Backbone Strategy. They have produced a toolkit for capacity development and a capacity development resource,, at

FAO: are developing series of resources books/reference manuals as a ‘Learning Solutions’ series on CD as tools to support FAO staff to develop more effective CD strategies and practices.

GIZ: (the newly merged DED, GTZ and InWent) have GTZ: have a specific CD resource for their staff called Capacity Works and also an extensive range of capacity building programmes and resources available on

JICA: Task Force on Aid Approaches produced the Capacity Development Handbook for JICA Staff. is a working group of donor agencies concerned with training for capacity development:

OECD-DAC: have a team focusing on capacity development within the aid effectiveness agenda and have published important studies such as The Challenge of Capacity Development: working towards good practice.

SNV: Has/is developing several relevant learning initiatives. Especially:

  • Building an extensive platform on what they call “The SNV Way”. CD is considered the core of SNV work, so this learning resource for SNV staff brings together a range of interesting conceptual materials, methods, tools etc. It is used in certain structured ways/trajectories for induction as well as for other learning programs. The resource is being developed and should be available maybe mid 2011.
  • Exploring the possibilities of a “professional learning initiative” for Southern and Northern professionals around CD/change management & facilitation / social innovation. This is to offer something to fill the gap because there are so few advanced professional learning opportunities available for an increasing community of capable Southern professionals. It relates to boosting Southern leadership, ‘the capacity of capacity builders’ and change agents and strengthening S-S exchange.

SIDA: has developed an e-learning training programme which explains what capacity development is and how it can be used in development cooperation. Capacity development is now a regular feature of training programmes for new programme officers.

The Netherlands: to improve capacity development skills of staff members in Dutch missions, the Support Program for Institutional and Capacity Development (SPICAD) was launched in 2006 and renewed for two more years in 2008. The programme focused on awareness, knowledge and skills for capacity development, to increase the effectiveness of development activities carried out by the Netherlands in partner countries. The Effectiveness and Quality Department was planning to organize a master class on capacity development to bring together good practices and lessons.

UNDP: have a specialised capacity development programme and team see and also the Virtual Development Academy has a generic Capacity Development course for UNDP staff.

UN Habitat: Have an Ongoing initiative to support strengthening of training institutions globally, but with specific attention to Africa. Part of the initiative is to support the shift from training institute to CD/learning institute, which involves changing internal practices. Funding is allocated for a generic study on CD in the urban context for feed into the UN Habitat corporate strategy.

UN Staff College: addresses capacity development in a number of its courses.

United States Agency for International Development (USAID): the Economic Growth and Trade department have recently developed a handbook for their staff on Human and Institutional Capacity Development.

World Bank: have a range of resources available at their Capacity Development Resource Center.

World Bank Institute: have developed the Capacity Development Results framework and were also working on other learning resources, including a model and training on how to design a learning process within sectors. They have recently published ‘Steps for Designing a Results-Focused Capacity Development Strategy’.

Next section: Other sources