EU Policy Coherence for Development: From Moving the Goalposts to Result-based Management?

% Complete


    The 1992 Maastricht Treaty imposed a legal requirement on the European Community to try and improve the coherence of European policies promoting development. The Lisbon Treaty, which entered into force in December 2009, extends this Policy Coherence for Development (PCD) obligation to the whole European Union (EU).

    Recent EU policy proposals note that greater globalisation has led to European Union’s policies on developing countries having many more systemic ‘side effects’. The old dividing line between the EU’s domestic and external policies is rapidly losing relevance. Notwithstanding these changes and the legal obligation in the Treaties, the EU has not really been successful in fundamentally reforming some of its more obviously incoherent policies.

    Key Purpose of ECDPM Study

    This discussion paper analyses the present state of play in the European Union’s efforts to promote the
    coherence of its policies with development objectives, with a particular focus on the attempts to strengthen
    result orientation.

    Specifically, it provides an analysis of the PCD Work Programme published in the 2010 EC Spring Package and assesses the degree to which the EU has succeeded in improving the result orientation of PCD. Recognising that the EU is still at the start of the process, the paper furthermore aims to make a modest contribution to it by analysing the prospects for further improvement in two areas relevant to the Work Programme: impact assessments and PCD indicators.

    Key Findings of ECDPM

    • The PCD Work Programme is found to suffer from a number of shortcomings.
    • The institutional changes propelled by the Lisbon Treaty should result in proper attention being given to, responsibility taken and resources allocated for the promotion of PCD in the wider context of European external action.
    • There is a need to step up investments and efforts in moving from the current supply-driven approach to a multi-stakeholder dialogue.
    • More and better work needs to be performed in the field of impact assessment, including an analysis of the potential of specialist ‘development impact assessments’.
    • The only way for Europe to move forward with PCD and consolidate its international credibility and legitimacy under the present multitude of global challenges is through combining further strengthening its technical competencies with showing ample ‘global public guts’ through its interventions and decisions.
    Loading Conversation