Ideas to Action:

Independent research for global prosperity


US Development Policy

Register here for the event featuring MCC CEO Dana Hyde on Thursday, February 26.

In the recently released MCC at 10 series, Franck Wiebe and I offered a number of recommendations for how MCC could strengthen the way it implements its model.  This model, which is based on key principles of aid effectiveness, is a worthy one and one that MCC has largely implemented well over its first decade.  However, there is some room for improvement. 

All in all, we offer nearly 30 recommendations, both for MCC and for external stakeholders who are eager to see MCC succeed.  Here are some of the key suggestions:

  • Maintain a transparent, evidence-based system for picking partner countries, but maintain a keen and nuanced understanding of the strengths and limitations of the policy indicator data, especially when interpreting the scorecards of current partner countries.  A strict interpretation of imprecise data can lead to irrational decisions. (more detail)
  • Embrace subsequent compacts as a sensible way to continue to engage the right set of relatively well-governed countries. (more detail)
  • Enforce the agency’s commitment to investing only in projects that are cost-effective, that is, projects for which the value of projected benefits exceeds the cost of implementation. (more detail)
  • Improve results reporting by providing a portfolio-wide evaluation strategy that describes which activities are subject to rigorous impact evaluation (and justifies why less rigorous methods are selected for other activities), publishing all evaluation reports (both midterm and ex-post) in a timely manner, and demonstrating how MCC is applying lessons learned from evaluations to current programming. (more detail)
  • Improve an already strong track record on transparency to increase accountability to US-based and in-country stakeholders. (more detail)
  • Experiment with outcome-based funding models that further build upon MCC’s locally driven development approach. These models would provide partner governments with the flexibility to find the best ways, within their own local context, to achieve agreed upon targets.  (more detail)

What does MCC say about its goals for the next ten years?  A number of current priorities are outlined in the agency’s FY2016 budget justification, and include things like exploring regionally focused investments, using its compacts to leverage more private sector investment, and deepening its commitment to sharing and learning from results.  But what else is the agency thinking? 

Come join us on Thursday (Feb. 26, 9:30–11:00) for an open conversation with MCC’s 4th CEO, Dana J. Hyde.  She’ll reflect on MCC’s first ten years and outline a vision for the agency’s future.  CGD’s Ben Leo and the Brookings Institute’s Homi Kharas will then join her in a discussion about the challenges and opportunities MCC faces in its next 10 years, after which the floor will be open for questions.  Come hear about the future of MCC, and bring your questions for Ms. Hyde, as well.


CGD blog posts reflect the views of the authors, drawing on prior research and experience in their areas of expertise. CGD is a nonpartisan, independent organization and does not take institutional positions.