Ownership in Name, But not Necessarily in Action; Comment on “It’s About the Idea Hitting the Bull’s Eye”: How Aid Effectiveness Can Catalyse the Scale-up of Health Innovations”

Document Type : Commentary


MRC Unit The Gambia, London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine, London, UK


A recently-published paper by Wickremasinghe et al assesses the scalability of pilot projects in three countries using the aid effectiveness agenda as an analytical framework. The authors report uneven progress and recommend applying aid effectiveness principles to improve the scalability of projects. This commentary focuses on one key principle of aid effectiveness – country ownership; it describes difficulties in defining and achieving it, and provides practical steps donors and recipient governments can take to move forward towards country ownership.


Main Subjects

  1. Wickremasinghe D, Gautham M, Umar N, Berhanu D, Schellenberg J, Spicer N. “It’s about the idea hitting the bull’s eye”: how aid effectiveness can catalyse the scale-up of health innovations. Int J Health Policy Manag. 2018;7(8):718-727. doi:10.15171/ijhpm.2018.08
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  3. Martinez Alvarez M. Development Assistance for Health in Tanzania: Has the Sector Wide Approach achieved the principles of aid effectiveness? London: Global Health and Development, London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine; 2014.
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  7. Martinez-Alvarez M, Acharya A, Arregoces L, et al. Trends in the alignment and harmonization of reproductive, maternal, newborn, and child health funding, 2008–13. Health Aff (Millwood). 2017;36(11):1876-1886. doi:10.1377/hlthaff.2017.0364.
  8. European Commission. The EU’s partnership with The Gambia. https://ec.europa.eu/europeaid/eu-partnership-gambia-factsheet_en.  Published 2018.
  9. Martinez-Alvarez M, Borghi J, Acharya A, Vassall A. Is Development Assistance for Health fungible? Findings from a mixed methods case study in Tanzania. Soc Sci Med. 2016;159:161-169. doi:10.1016/j.socscimed.2016.05.006
Volume 7, Issue 11
November 2018
Pages 1053-1055
  • Receive Date: 15 June 2018
  • Revise Date: 23 July 2018
  • Accept Date: 24 July 2018
  • First Publish Date: 01 November 2018