My experience with USAID, as well as my past experiences working with various development organizations, has shaped much of what I know and how I currently view the field of development. In recent years, it seems that the development field has begun to realign its underlying philosophies, approaches, models, and financial structures. The current focus on global health, and the trend toward greater technical and organizational integration and coordination, presents an unprecedented opportunity for the international community to increase its development assistance capacity.
Over the past few years, I have begun to forge my path into the world of development. In my current position, I have the opportunity to work on such topics as tuberculosis, neglected tropical diseases, and environmental health. I also help manage multimillion dollar health grants for USAID with WHO and the CDC.
“The world is starting to grasp that there is no policy more effective in promoting development, health and education than the empowerment of women and girls.”
Kofi Annan, International Women’s Day, 8 March 2006
Focusing on individual pieces of the overall development goal is an excellent approach, but to be more effective, organizations are beginning to cooperate in similar focus areas using their individual comparative advantage in a collaborative manner. Organizations are also integrating their collective resources to prevent overlap and ensure a more well-rounded overall development program. Similarly, the disintegration of separate compartmentalized approaches for all technical areas, such as disease, poverty, nutrition, education, and the economy, is slowly beginning to emerge.