Britain's Department for International Development has for decades been a leader within the British government on ensuring value for taxpayer money. Over the years it has pioneered cost-benefit analysis; rigorous impact evaluations; and transparency of spending—innovations that were subsequently taken up by the rest of government. In the 1990s, the most senior civil servant in the department, Sir Tim Lankester, blew the whistle on a project to finance a dam in Malaysia because it was not a good use of development aid.
With rigorous economic research and practical policy solutions, we focus on the issues and institutions that are critical to global development. Explore our core themes and topics to learn more about our work.