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Question 7: Local Governance

Question 7: Local Governance

Posted by Patrick Coonan on 20 Aug 2014

During a plenary session at the TOPS/FSN Network Knowledge Sharing Meeting in July 2014, Susan Bradley of Food for Peace (FFP) asked the food security implementers in the room for their thoughts on key questions regarding the updating of the FFP Strategic Plan. This is the seventh question in that series. 

We welcome your thoughts and will be sharing your ideas directly with FFP. You can view the small group report out from the plenary session for this question by skipping to minute 58:00 of this recording.


Many of the approaches utilized by FFP partners at a community level – both in emergency and development programs – incorporate principles of democratic governance. Examples might be the establishment of a water-users group, a PTA, or an emergency distribution committee. Yet these are rarely seen as building blocks for more deliberate “governance” activities.

Given that poor governance is a common contributor to hunger in areas where FFP works, is there more we should do to use FFP interventions as a vehicle to strengthen governance?

Local Governance

Posted by Gabrielle.Ben on 5 Sep 2014

At this time, we do not feel as if FFP interventions should do more than what it is currently doing to strengthen governance. FFP should limit its interventions to food security related activities only.

Question 7

Posted by lwilkinson on 5 Sep 2014

Poor governance is always a factor - we can use our programs to help stregthen it by working with government actors that are engaged all along the way.  We ask that hand over be part of the exit strategies and that our programs work with government, but if we were to be honest with ourselves its talked and sometimes done.  But if we really looked at how we do it its in such a way that we rarely help build capacity.  We are just checking a box to say we did it.  We need to look at how we can incorporate democratic ways of doing things by promoting transparency and improved decision making processes.  Involving the beneficiaries more in the processes and facilitating dialogues with their government - this is just to name a few.


support local governance linked to food security only

Posted by Emmet Murphy on 8 Dec 2014

Title II programs are multi-facted in nature, so USAID FFP should consider playing to the strengths of these programs with a focus on improved food security. Rather than overly expanding the mandate of a Title II program to improve local governance, a task better left to a DA-funded democracy and government effort, USAID can capitalize on areas related to food security. Examples include:

- early warning committees (tracking rainfall, market prices, MUAC)

- disaster risk reduction committees (very good example in Malawi)

- water user committees

- safety net committees

I suggest building upon the best examples of these groups. I'm quite wary of adding additional focus areas to an already heavily-laden Title II food security program.

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