The North-South Institute

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NSI Ottawa Forum: Multilateral Development Cooperation in a Changing Global Order

Jun 20 2011

The North-South Institute (NSI) held a high level Forum in Ottawa in 2011 titled Multilateral Development Cooperation in a Changing Global Order which critically examined the effectiveness of international development assistance channeled to and through multilateral organizations.

The June 20-21 event brought together more than 220 participants including 40 experts from Canada and around the world.

The conference sought to determine how key multilateral development actors – such as the United Nations and the World Bank – could better serve the poor in the context of an evolving global order.

The UN, the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund were founded some 65 years ago to address pressing development issues of the day.

The international landscape has changed considerably since then and of ongoing concern is how aid dollars reach developing countries to help those who need it most. The conference also sought to assess how current processes are working for the poor.

Furthermore, the conference addressed the emerging issue of development being in a state of flux as countries like Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa (BRICS) – long-time aid recipients, are becoming aid donors and working outside the multilateral framework.

NSI wrote in its closing report on the forum, that:

  • multilateral organizations must modernize
  • effective multilaterals are sorely needed, and
  • advanced countries must make their development assistance more relevant to the needs of developing nations

The focus of NSI’s 2012 Ottawa Conference will be the governance of natural resources.

Insights gained from the conference are captured in the 2011 edition of the Canadian Development Report.

Conference Presentations and Speeches