USAID History Proposal – Pledge Request
Dear USAID Alumna/Alumnus,
Strongly encouraged by former USAID Administrator Peter McPherson and Center for Global Development President Nancy Birdsall at our Annual General Meeting in October 2014, the UAA Executive Committee has been seeking funding needed to prepare an independent, objective and concise history of USAID’s 55 years of development experience.
This history of USAID is needed as a means of explaining the value of development and the achievements of foreign aid. It can serve as a resource for better telling the USAID story as a key instrument of U.S. foreign policy and be the basis for developing the USAID section in the new United States Diplomacy Center now under construction. This volume should be useful to the American people and their representatives, to the international development and foreign affairs community and to those whose careers are committed to development. And, most important, it can capture important lessons learned that will help USAID continually improve the effectiveness of its work.
While significant progress has been made in this effort, additional financial support from the alumni community and others is essential. We seek pledges of any amount, the larger the better, to help us gather the $300,000 needed to undertake this project.
Due to the generosity of a number of former USAID Administrators as well as over 130 alumni, we have pledges in hand of about $170,000. We hope to raise about $150,000 more. We hope that the high level of the alumni’s demonstrated commitment will convince other sources to provide substantial funding, but thus far we have not been successful.
At this time we are only seeking your pledge of the amount we can count on to be contributed later when we are able to set a start date for this two year project. Please note – these contributions will be tax-deductible. To make a pledge, please click here.
The UAA has a unique opportunity to create a history of development as practiced by USAID and the countries with which it has worked for over 50 years. This history will seek to tell the real story of USAID as you experienced it – USAID’s many innovative and substantial accomplishments as well as the disappointments – and to share these lessons with today’s policy-makers and practitioners. The UAA is already committed to promoting the renewal and expansion of the ADST oral history program for USAID retirees, and USAID has recently signed an agreement with ADST to do just that. The UAA has recently completed a bibliography of articles, books, papers, reports and analyses by USAID retirees about their USAID experience and the challenges they tried to overcome. Both these current efforts are important complements to the history project.
An effort of this kind will be a serious and major undertaking requiring significant time and effort, sound judgment, and broad knowledge of USAID and the environment in which it has operated over the past five decades. It will require the support of many partners both to finance it and to ensure it is researched and written in a balanced, objective and easily accessible fashion. The end product should be a substantial but very readable book, with links to other sources for readers interested in digging deeper.
Thank you very much for your consideration and support. Once again, please make a pledge now by clicking here.
Alex Shakow on behalf of the UAA Executive Committee