Why “Local to Global” Is as Important as “Global to Local”


Today Chemonics and Devex launch Global to Local, a three-week discussion about the importance of investing in sustainable and inclusive systems in developing countries. I am excited for Chemonics to have the opportunity to host this conversation with Devex, because this issue has never been more important.

We all know development challenges are complex. The Sustainable Development Goals reflect this reality and set out a strategy to meet those challenges head on, calling for the development community to align around a common agenda. But to succeed, that common agenda must be driven by local voices, and any solution we propose needs to be tailored to the local context.

Global goals, local solutions

The Global to Local campaign is really driven by the idea of inclusion. We will explore how to get the right voices at the table, how to ensure they are heard, and how to define actionable steps that all have a role to play in delivery. Yes, it can be a challenge, but without building true partnerships with local groups, governments, civil society, and individuals, we run the risk of fitting an otherwise workable solution into a context where it is not appropriate. And that wastes resources we just don’t have.

Local to global is just as important

Focusing on local solutions also reminds us that “local to global” is as important as “global to local.” I have seen over and over in my time in this field that tailoring even best practices to the local context is critical. I have also seen just as many times how important it is to learn from that experience so we can replicate that experience—the solution or methodology that worked and the way we worked with local groups to adapt it. When we share both of those things widely across the industry, the challenges of being fully inclusive are reduced.

I look forward to the next three weeks, as we discuss how we invest in local systems and solutions, bring new voices into the conversation, and work together to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals. Please join the conversation at pages.devex.com/global-to-local and at #Global2Local on social media.

Posted in: Strategic Solutions
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