9:30—11:00 AM
Center for Global Development
2055 L St NW
- Fifth Floor
Washington, DC 20036

How Should Donors Decide? Allocation Rules to Guide Aid Spending in Global Health


Alec Morton, Professor of Management Science, University of Strathclyde


Christoph Kurowski, Global Lead, Health Financing, World Bank Group


Amanda Glassman, Chief Operating Officer and Senior Fellow, Center for Global Development

In recent years, there has been tremendous progress in improving the treatment and prevention of diseases, resulting in millions of lives saved around the world. While some of this progress is due to economic growth, aid from several bilateral, multilateral, and philanthropic donors has made important contributions to reducing the global burden of disease. In this seminar, Alec Morton will present new research focusing on decision rules to guide how donors should allocate aid money given that resources are limited.

Some have made the case that donors should prioritize interventions based on their cost-effectiveness—that is the ratio of costs to benefits. However, Morton and co-authors argue that donors should fund not the most cost-effective interventions, but rather interventions which are cost-ineffective for the recipient country. This would encourage the country to contribute its own domestic resources to the fight against disease. To this end, they propose an alternative decision rule to guide the allocation of aid money, whereby donors subsidize interventions “at the margin” from the point of view of the recipient country.


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