chapter  7
11 Pages


In this final chapter we summarize what has been said so far, review the major problems with foreign aid policy as revealed through the BRC model, and make recommendations for improving both the process and results. Foreign aid is planned and funded like most US domestic policies, but it is unique in that it has both a domestic and international component. Since foreign aid (military, food, development) is the most tangible vehicle of US foreign policy, it receives most of the blame (as a perennially unpopular congressional issue) but little of the praise because its results lack visibility and attribution. Lacking a political base of its own (most of its clients are abroad; powerful domestic clients of its subproducts distort results), foreign aid has been moved along by conflicting pressures from all directions, mostly in response to some actor’s (DOD, State, Presidency, Congress) perception of military threats or developmental need. Decisions have not generally been informed by realistic field assessments, largely because the institutions making foreign aid policy are primarily interested in other issues (DOD-defense; Congress-domestic policy; USDA-US agriculture, etc.). Foreign aid becomes an unstable byproduct of other policies.