Resource Details

Resource Name:Systems Thinking and Institutional Performance: Retrospect and Prospect on USAID Policy and Practice
File:click to download: BrinkerhoffJacobstein_SystemsUSAID_IDG_working_paper_150417.pdf
Resource Type:Article
Short Desc:This paper examines how the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) has applied complex adaptive systems thinking to strategy and programming, reviewing selected examples from past applications and summarizing current initiatives. Drawing on key informant interviews and a variety of documents, the study identifies how Agency staff view systems, how systems thinking has influenced policy and operations, what enablers and barriers exist in introducing changes to incorporate systems thinking, and what the prospects for sustaining changes appear to be. Among the findings of the study are that USAID staff see the holistic perspective that systems thinking facilitates as valuable for developing country strategies and crafting project designs, and that the emphasis on flexibility, feedback loops, and adaptation improves implementation success.
Resource Date:01-Apr-15
Contact Person:Eric Sarriot
Related Topics:  Track 3: Complex Systems
 Global Development
 Health systems strengthening