Welcome to the growing community of South-South practitioners. This platform offers a space to come together and exchange knowledge, discuss, learn and connect around South-South cooperation and knowledge exchanges. For more about South-South cooperation and knowledge exchange, follow the links below.
South-South cooperation, loosely defined as an exchange of expertise between governments, organizations and individuals in developing nations, is gaining importance and momentum. More and more, developing countries help and support each other with knowledge, technical assistance, and/or investments. This has brought an important new dimension to the aid landscape, and the growth potential for this type of cooperation is enormous. As a result, South-South cooperation was highlighted by the Accra Agenda for Action (AAA) – the 2008 agreement that reinforces the aid effectiveness principles of the Paris Declaration (.pdf) – as a valuable and necessary input for enhancing cooperation effectiveness and achieving development results.
A strong driver behind the South-South momentum is the increasing role and leadership of middle-income countries in the international system. Such developments, and others brought on by globalization in the last 50 years, have been seeing the rise of “a new aid architecture”. Foreign assistance is becoming part of an integrated multilateral system. Twenty years ago, the 22 members of the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development with the Development Assistance Committee (OECD/DAC) accounted for 95% of total aid to developing countries. Today, aid to developing countries is delivered through more than 150 multilateral agencies, 33 bilateral members of the OECD/DAC, at least 10 non-DAC governments and a growing number of global theme or issue specific ‘Vertical Funds’. Developing nations are increasingly looking towards their ‘southern’ counterparts, whether they be middle or low income countries, fragile states, or OECD countries, for knowledge, expertise and advice. These developments, coupled with the growing number of organizations dedicated to learning and education, as well as growing access to new technologies in the developing world, has brought South-South Knowledge Exchange to the forefront of conversations in the South-South community.
There are numerous challenges to strengthen South-South cooperation at the operational level. How to cope with growing demand? How to increase effectiveness and impact? How to design South-South knowledge exchanges? What are viable business and financing models? How to capture and share best practices? How to increase coordination amongst the various actors? This site aims to explore, develop and advance the growing work in South-South cooperation, knowledge exchange and learning by bringing together a diverse range of actors and experts to discuss emerging topics, share best practices, explore design and methodological considerations of learning, and connect with colleagues in the wider South-South community.
South-South Cooperation (SSC) has been loosely defined as an exchange of expertise between governments, organizations and individuals in developing nations. This community seeks to arrive at a more concrete definition. To contribute your thoughts, visit the Discussion Group – Defining SSC. Input from this discussion will be added to the Wikipedia entry on South-South Cooperation.