ECDPM's Weekly Compass update

European Centre for Development Policy Management Weekly Newsletter
4 September 2015

Melissa Julian

Head of Communications

Dear <<First name>>,

We’re back from our August leave and hope that those of you who also had vacation in July and August enjoyed it.
In this issue, we include ECDPM articles, videos, podcasts and media coverage you might have missed in July. High on the agenda of course is migration and we feature a blog by ECDPM’s Anna Knoll and Asmita Parshotam which looks at the EU's approach to 'root causes' of the current unprecedented levels of migration from Africa and the Middle East. 

In July we also saw the Third International Financing for Development Conference in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. James Mackie was there and shares his thoughts on the next steps between 'FFD3' and the upcoming summits and conference on development, trade and climate change. 

Other issues included look at the future of the ACP Group, implementation of the Sustainable Development Goals, and food security.

Next Friday, we’ll send you a Weekly Compass covering what happened in EU-Africa relations and international cooperation in August and these first two weeks of September. If you want to have a sneak preview, visit The Filter which we’re now updating daily.
All the best,



Editor's Pick 

Migration - Ask the right questions, get the right answers

The EU aims to make concerted efforts to address the situation of migrants arriving at its borders. While it has ambitions for ‘comprehensive’ action and pursues various policy avenues, the comprehensiveness of action is constrained by how the debate is framed. An example is the focus on root causes of migration, which has done little to foster a balanced and comprehensive view of what is a very complex issue. ECDPM’s Anna Knoll and Asmita Parshotam argue that rather than framing migration as an issue that needs to be addressed ‘out there’ through development aid, EU leaders should also look more ‘at home’ to which policies can be reformed to support and create sustainable livelihoods in its neighborhood and beyond – including for current and potential future migrants.

Policy News 

The ACP and the WTO: what ambitions in trade and development?
The discussions on the future of the African, Caribbean and Pacific (ACP) group beyond 2020 are picking up speed. One area in which the ACP leadership sees a clear added value for further collective action is in promoting trade, industry and regional integration. ECDPM’s Alfonso Medinilla Aldana ask what we can learn from almost four decades of ACP engagement in multilateral trade negotiation. And what can we expect in terms of ACP collective positioning in the WTO’s trade and development agenda? One key lesson we can draw is that building a coalition around a more ‘defensive’ agenda, like maintaining trade preferences and securing Special and Differential Treatment, is easier than around more ‘offensive’ interests or real economic integration across regions. Is the ACP, as a political body, equipped for this kind of task which requires a much stronger political cohesion and proper mobilisation of resources for delivering the necessary accompanying technical preparation?

Financing for Development Conference – a steady start to a rocky road ahead?
If the degree of consensus achieved in the process for the Third Financing for Development Conference (FFD3) is anything to go by, the omens look good for the post-2015 agenda and the agreements that need to be achieved for a new set of UN Sustainable Development Goals. This was just the first hurdle to cross out of three international fora in 2015, but all things considered it went reasonably well. This bodes well for the UN General Assembly in September. But December’s COP21 Climate Summit in Paris is another matter, writes James Mackie in our latest Talking Points blog. Mackie was in Addis Ababa this week with our Press Officer Emily Barker, to discuss with many of the 7,000 delegates the importance of implementing clear policies to use finance effectively for development. He spoke at a side event on ‘ODA and Fragile Environments: The shift of Development Finance and Assistance in the Post-2015 Agenda’ and was interviewed by several African media organisations, including in Addis Fortune



The European perspective on #FFD3
James Mackie is interviewed by Addis Fortune in the sidelines of the Third International Conference on Financing for Development (FFD3) in Addis Ababa. In this exclusive interview with Getachew Alemu, James discussed the findings of the European Report on Development and Europe’s internal crisis and its impact on global development.

Why Europe needs a global strategy
The challenges facing Europe today have global implications and require global solutions. From the Greek crisis to migration and climate change, the EU must seek answers beyond its borders, says ECDPM’s Director Ewald Wermuth in a joint op ed in Euractiv with the Directors of the European Think Tanks Group (ETTG). 

Poverty, consumption and violence: Tough choices ahead for Europe post-2015
A cornerstone of the global agreement on the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) is the idea that they will be ‘universal’. ECDPM’s Alisa Herrero, Anna Knoll and Sebastian Große-Puppendahl, in an article for Euractiv, illustrate what universality will concretely mean for Europe, looking at the examples of poverty, consumption and violence.

Situation in the Sahel
Why is the coordination of international strategies in the Sahel so vital? ECDPM’s Damien Helly spoke to Afroline’s Joshua Massarenti on the situation in the Sahel and his interviews were published in French in several newspapers across the Sahel region. Damien talks about how each government in the Sahel can coordinate its international cooperation at national and local level; here on how local governance is not immune from from aid dependency; and here on how working in isolation does not provide added value.

WE ARE HIRING! Join ECDPM and IFPRI as Young International Professional

The selected candidate will work with ECDPM and the International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI) as a junior researcher - spending 6 months at ECDPM in Maastricht followed by 6 months at the IFPRI office in Dakar. This exciting position offers the possibility to gain practical experience: you will have the opportunity to write papers and publications, and directly participate in key agriculture and trade policy processes in Western Africa. We are looking for candidates with at least one year of relevant work experience and a recent postgraduate qualification in agricultural economics, international economics, development studies or other related social science and a keen interest in the area of food security in developing countries. Deadline for applications is 9 September 2015.


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Other recent blogs and articles

From one grain to another: the rise of rice in West Africa
“If agricultural development and food security are to be achieved in West Africa, the under-tapped potential for regional collaboration and integration has to be unlocked”, writes ECDPM’s Carmen Torres on our Talking Points blog. 

From ‘universality’ to European reality?
Europe will have to think hard on how to translate globally-agreed goals and targets into ambitious, meaningful, fair and context-specific national and regional policies that are relevant and in its strategic interests. ECDPM’s Sebastian Große-Puppendahl delves deeper into one of the case studies of a recent Discussion Paper on Universality and Differentiation in the Post-2015 Development Agenda.

Improving the business climate in developing countries: a realistic goal or another holy grail?
The Netherland’s policy in support of private sector development in developing countries puts the private sector where it ought to be - at the centre - say ECDPM’s Paul Engel and Bruce Byiers in a blog originally published by Platform OiO (Ondernemen in Ontwikkelingslanden)

Towards a new European Neighbourhood Policy
The EU needs to find a long-term vision for its relationship with North African countries argues ECDPM is its contribution to the EU’s review of the European Neighbourhood Policy. The EU should also support cultural relations in a mutually beneficial way, involving grassroots and cultural actors. Finally, the EU needs to empower civil society to contribute to local and national policy and decision-making. 

Recent Podcasts 
The post-2015 agenda has framed sustainable development as a 'universal' project. Rhys Williams, Communications Officer at ECDPM is joined by James Mackie, Sebastian Große-Puppendahl, Anna Knoll and Hanne Knaepen to discuss the idea of ‘universality’ and ‘differentiation’ and why are they so important to sustainable development.

‘The risk of not taking risks in development cooperation’
ECDPM’s James Mackie interviews Alexander De Croo, Deputy Prime Minister of Belgium and Minister of Development Cooperation in the margins of the Finance for Development meeting in Addis Ababa on 14 July, 2015.


Publisher: The Weekly Compass is produced by ECDPM with financial resources provided by our core and institutional funders: The Netherlands, Belgium, Finland, Ireland, Luxemburg, Portugal, Denmark, Sweden and Switzerland.

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Melissa Julian

Head of Communications,

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Editor: Rhys Williams 
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Emily Barker

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Tanit Parada-Tur
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