USAID’s Global Development Lab Provides Model For Funding Development Innovation, Measurement

Devex: Innovation in development
Rachel Vogelstein, director and senior fellow for women and foreign policy at the Council on Foreign Relations

“…Launched in April 2014, the Global Development Lab is USAID’s newest entity, designed to fund breakthrough innovations to ‘accelerate development impact faster, cheaper, and more sustainably.’ … While these out-of-the-box ideas have the potential to accelerate development gains, one of the lab’s greatest challenges is how to measure impact — particularly in areas such as democracy, human rights, and governance. The lab is piloting sensors and mobile surveys in an attempt to obtain timely and gender-disaggregated data, but more work is certainly needed. Though the lab is still a work in progress, its approach to innovation in development is a model to consider incorporating into the next stage of development funding” (7/22).