Authors: Matthew Andrews
March 2008
Publication:
John F. Kennedy School of Government, Harvard Universtiy

Most members of the development community, and especially those in multilateral and bilateral organizations, agree that politicians are centrally important to development. Fewer agree, however, on how to ensure effective political engagement in development programs and reforms. It is questionable whether many practitioners or theoreticians even have clear ideas about what effective political engagement looks like. Terms like political will and political commitment lack clarity and operational import; it is unclear what they are and even more unclear how to foster them. This chapter attempts to shed light on why such a key issue is poorly understood and to suggest ideas for thinking about it.

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