Rebuilding our public institutions to solve global challenges

We need to transform the way the United States and other international partners invest in global development.
From September to December 2023, Unlock Aid went on a global roadshow to convene hundreds of stakeholders for a series of discussions to ask: “If we could redesign the U.S. approach to global development, what would we do differently?”

We presumed we would likely reach different conclusions in the 2020s that we did when we first built global development systems in the immediate aftermath of the Second World War.

Based on what we heard, we've now published a new “Principles for Global Development” to outline the way the United States must change the way it partners with countries and communities around the world.

A new, more abundant U.S. approach to global development should be centered on decentralizing decision-making and transferring resources to local and proximate communities, investing far more resources in ways that promote sustainable economic growth, decoupling humanitarian response from long-term development investments, and better leveraging innovation to solve the hardest problems of our time. The U.S. needs to restructure its global development architecture to achieve this vision, complete with new mission statements, new human resources systems, greater transparency, a mandate to act with greater urgency and agility, and an orientation toward delivering results. The U.S. must also lead by example and hold itself accountable to the same standards that it expects of others.

We'd love your feedback. Read our proposed "New Principles for Global Development" and let us know what you think.

We need to build to new coalition of players who share our vision for the future. That includes diaspora communities, business leaders, investors, entrepreneurs, advocates - and you.

Chime in

We want you to read our proposed "New Principles for Global Development" and share your thoughts on what you loved, what needs fixing, or what else you think the United States and international partners need to do differently.

Read our proposed
New Principles for Global Development
Let us know what you think

Listening Tour Key Dates

Illustrated map of continents with colored pins on event locations
Location pin incon
New York, NY, USA
September 17, 2023
Location pin incon
DAKAR, Senegal
Science Saves Lives Conference
October 8, 2023
Location pin incon
AfriLabs Annual Gathering
October 12, 2023
Location pin incon
San Francisco, CA, USA
October 27, 2023
5:00-7:00PM PT
Location pin incon
ridgecrest, nC, usa
October 18, 2023
8:00AM – 5:00PM
Location pin incon
Seattle, WA, US
Global Washington Goalmakers Conference
December 7, 2023
Location pin incon
miami, fl, usa
Innovation Conference
September 13, 2023
Location pin incon
Washington D.C., USA
Final Convening

Setting expectations


We asked participants to join us in these conversations ready for blue-sky thinking. We know all the reasons why the system is struggling to adapt - procurement red tape, outdated business practices, risk-averse culture, the list continues.

Instead we asked, “If we got to start over, what would we do differently?”

Based on what we heard, we developed a set of proposed New Principles for Global Development. Give it a read and provide us with your feedback on what we missed.

Unlock Aid logo