Think tanks and academic actors

Promoting the emergence of ideas to better understand the issues and to improve the relevance and effectiveness of development policies
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Brochure ODI, think tank
AFD maintains relationships of work, research, and reflection with numerous think tanks, centers of study and research, universities and institutes of higher learning, and innovation centers—both in France and abroad. These partnerships may involve intellectual production, project assistance, or consulting.


The Center for Global Development (CGD) is a research center created in the United States in 2001. Its mission is to contribute to changing the policies and practices of rich countries and powerful institutions, in order to reduce poverty and inequalities in the world.

To do so, it makes use of independent and authoritative research to develop new knowledge and practical solutions. Thanks to creative communication and awareness raising, CGD collaborates with decision-makers, practitioners, opinion leaders, the media, and committed citizens to transform ideas into actions.

CDG, which opened a European office in London in 2011, has acquired its international reputation in particular through its role in promoting debt-reduction initiatives, its program to encourage vaccination against pneumonia (advance market commitments for vaccines), and its “Cash on Delivery Aid” initiative, a new aid approach that focuses on results, encourages innovation, and strengthens government accountability to citizens rather than donors.

AFD is involved in several projects and has been participating for about the last 10 years in the regular holding of the “Migration and Development” academic conferences.

Since 2003, CGD has been publishing the Commitment to Development Index (CDI) annually. This index ranks 27 rich countries, members of the Development Assistance Committee (DAC) of the OECD, in terms of the coherence and quality of their development policies targeting poorer nations. It covers seven dimensions: quality of aid, trade, financial flows (investments), migration, environment, security, and technology. The annual revision of the index, carried out by the London office, is the occasion for the meeting of the consortium of members, which AFD joined in 2014.


The Overseas Development Institute (ODI) is an independent think tank created in 1965 and based in London. It helps fuel reflection on the issues related to international and human development. ODI is one of the most influential international think tanks on these issues.

ODI has been working with AFD since the launch of its Future Development Agencies (FDA) program. We share reflections on the prospects for development cooperation. In particular, in-depth dialogue has been carried out within the framework of our “AFD 2025” outlook work.


meeting ODI
© Michael Nagie for ODI


Other possibilities for collaboration were identified in 2016, on themes for reflection and action common to both of our institutions: climate, vulnerabilities, and development financing. It’s within this framework that a partnership agreement was signed on December 19, 2016, between AFD and ODI, amounting to 100,000 euros. This agreement provides AFD with privileged access to ODI’s expertise on the major trends and issues regarding development policy. It includes the production of reports and in-depth studies, as well as the joint organization of side events focusing on the major themes of aid and development financing.

This partnership also expands the audience of our experts, who now benefit from the very broad coverage of the think tank within the international community, this thanks to dedicated platforms and social networks.


Friends of Europe, meeting, think tank


Friends of Europe is an independent European think tank that deals with many development issues. Its goal is to generate discussion and change in Europe and beyond.

The Development Policy Forum (DPF) was created in 2008. AFD is a founding partner, as are the German development agency (GIZ), the European Commission, the World Bank, the United Nations, and the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA).

Led by Friends of Europe, DPF organizes conferences on the new models of development. The AFD managers and experts who participate in its conferences regularly have the opportunity to showcase our ideas and publications to European institutions.