Leveraging USAID through Private-Sector and Military Partnerships

The U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) has worked for more than half a century to help improve the lives of people around the world as an essential component of U.S. foreign policy. Throughout much of its history, the agency had primary responsibility for funding these efforts. But today most of the resources—financial and otherwise—available for the stabilization and development of fragile states come from the private sector and U.S. military.

Having been relieved of most of the primary funding burden, the agency over the last couple of decades has begun to redeploy its financial and technical resources, using them instead to ensure that private-sector and military efforts in fragile states are effectively mobilized for sustainable impact. By working in fragile states with local and international private-sector partners—and when appropriate, pursuing its efforts in cooperation with the military—USAID has gained the ability to better engage with populations to identify and address the root causes of instability and thereby design better, more sustainable initiatives that can provide long-term solutions.
Photo credit: ROBERTO SCHMIDT/AFP/Getty Images

Greg Huger

Senior Associate, Project on U.S. Leadership in Development