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Navigation by Judgment


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Table of Contents

Preface Acknowledgments Part I: The What, Why, and When of Navigation by Judgment Chapter 1. Introduction - The Management of Foreign Aid Chapter 2. When to Let Go: The Costs and Benefits of Navigation by Judgment Chapter 3. Agents - Who Does the Judging? Chapter 4. Authorizing Environments & the Perils of Legitimacy Seeking Part II: How Does Navigation by Judgment Fare in Practice? Chapter 5. How to Know What Works Better, When: Data, Methods, and Empirical Operationalization Chapter 6. Journey Without Maps - Environmental Unpredictability and Navigation Strategy Chapter 7. Tailoring Management to Suit the Task - Project Verifiability and Navigation Strategy Part III: Implications Chapter 8. Delegation and Control Revisited Chapter 9. Conclusion - Implications for the Aid Industry & Beyond Appendix I: Data Collection Appendix II: Additional Econometric Analysis Bibliography

About the Author

Dan Honig is an Assistant Professor of International Development at the Johns Hopkins University School of Advanced International Studies (SAIS). His research focuses on the relationship between organizational structure, management practice, and performance in developing country governments and foreign aid agencies. Honig has held a variety of positions outside of the academy. He served as special assistant and an advisor to successive ministers of finance in Liberia; ran an NGO focused on youth entrepreneurship in agriculture in East Timor; and has worked for local and international organizations in a number of developing countries. A proud Michigander, he holds a BA from the University of Michigan and a Ph.D. from Harvard's Kennedy School.


"Honig's brilliant new book shows that when implementation is complex, the ever greater tendency to reduce accountability to narrow accounting actually harms rather than helps aid effectiveness. Management and staff of every development organization will benefit from his insights." -Lant Pritchett, Professor of the Practice of International Development, Harvard Kennedy School "Dan Honig provides a novel, rigorous empirical examination of the outcomes of foreign aid efforts, opening up fresh possibilities for getting things done in unpredictable settings. In doing so, he offers an original approach to the age-old problems of delegation and control. Honig is a new voice to be reckoned with." -Walter W. Powell, Stanford University "Honig assesses the conditions under which high levels of agent discretion are likely to out-perform heavily controlled, top-down management practices when providing development assistance. He couples an impressive number of interviews with original statistical analysis to provide important and timely insights for scholars of international organizations and practitioners seeking to employ best practices in foreign aid delivery." -Sarah Bermeo, Sanford School of Public Policy, Duke University "In a panoramic study that establishes a new baseline for excellence in its domain, Dan Honig shows the vast costs of overzealous management, and why politicians and funders need to let foreign aid programs adapt themselves to local context." -Daniel Carpenter, Allie S. Freed Professor of Government, Harvard University "Honig has written an important book that deserves to be seriously engaged by both development practitioners and the scholarly community. Expertly mixing methods and drawing on systematic, comparative data, Honig explores the inner-workings of development agencies, demonstrating the conditions under which decentralizing authority to officials in the field generates better development outcomes. At a moment when how we deliver foreign assistance is a source of contentious political debate, Honig's contribution provides rigorous, empirical evidence to help guide policymakers as they consider organizational reform." -Jeremy M. Weinstein, Professor of Political Science, Stanford University

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