Donors Doing Political Economy Analysis: From Process to Product (and Back Again?) –Fisher and Marquette (2014)


This paper argues that attempts to mainstream political thinking in most donor agencies have used a political economy analysis (PEA) approach, and yet this has been largely ineffective. Marquette and Fisher note that, since the early 2000s, donor agencies have put forward a variety of PEA frameworks and approaches, however, very little has changed in terms of how donors work and implement programmes in practice. The paper argues that PEA has become no longer fit for purpose as it has become a product that is ‘sold’ to donors but ‘done’ by external consultants. In order to remedy the weaknesses of PEA, the paper calls for a third generation approach that would be led by donor agencies' own staff and include recipient governments in the analysis.