Sri Lanka: Exploring ‘Ownership’ of Aid-Funded Projects: a Comparative Study of Japanese, Norwegian and Swedish Project Aid

  • Alf Morten Jerve
  • W. D. Lakshman
  • Piyadasa Ratnayake


A project approach to the study of ownership in aid relationships The current debate and hence much of the literature on aid effectiveness tend to take a country perspective (OECD/DAC 1996; WB 1998; Tarp et al. 2000; Easterly 2003; WB 2003). The same goes for discussions of ownership and partnership in the relationship between recipients and donors. When countries are made the unit of analysis and the focus of discourse, however, it leads to great simplification of a complex institutional landscape. Countries do not own policies or exercise ownership in developmental processes — their institutions do. Some institutions in a country will exercise strong ownership in its cooperation with donors, while others are puppets on donors’ strings. An effective aid partnership is said to rest on mutual understanding and mutual responsibility, combined with strong recipient ownership of policy making and implementation processes. While this is not too difficult to express in overall political agreements at government level, the situation at the level of operations is different.


Donor Agency World Bank Research Cooperation Recipient Organisation Dental Faculty 
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Copyright information

© Alf Morten Jerve, W. D. Lakshman and Piyadasa Ratnayake 2008

Authors and Affiliations

  • Alf Morten Jerve
  • W. D. Lakshman
    • 1
  • Piyadasa Ratnayake
    • 2
  1. 1.University of ColomboSri Lanka
  2. 2.Saga UniversityJapan

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