Based on historical research into Dutch policy-making and its effects, this contribution sets out some of the backgrounds of Dutch development aid. Over the decades aid policies have been subject to changing fashions of ideas and approaches. Looking back, one can distinguish ideas appearing, disappearing, and being rediscovered. The present focus on a combined agenda of aid, trade and investment is an example. This text offers some historical background to the role of trade in Dutch development policy. Doing so, it traces the inception of aid as an instrument to work for an improvement of human conditions since the 1940s. It will show that trade as a basic approach in combination with aid is older than generally assumed. These historical developments will add perspective to the centre piece of this present contribution. It deals with the way local culture played a role in the peculiar genesis of the Dutch fishery project in Lake Victoria between 1964 and 1974, and shows how the Dutch perspective on aid influenced this particular project. As for unintended consequences, the fishery project contributed to the dramatic changes in the lake’s ecosystem that have occurred over the past decades. This historical example also serves to illustrate that temporary projects are ill-fitted to address structural issues at hand in the developing world, and that the belief in the suitability and manageability of aid instruments carries risks of unintended effects that have an impact far beyond the immediate goals of development experts.
|Status||Gepubliceerd - 14 feb 2017|