How Can a Post-2015 Agreement Drive Real Change? Revised Edition

The political economy of global commitments

Published: 21 November 2012
Duncan Green, Senior Strategic Advisor, Oxfam GB; Stephen Hale, Deputy Advocacy and Campaigns Director, Oxfam International; Matthew Lockwood, Climate Change Team Leader, Institute of Development Studies

What are the lessons of the Millennium Development Goals process? What has been their impact on aid and on decision making by national governments?

This discussion paper seeks to inform the post-2015 debate by examining these questions. It argues that leverage over national governments and civil society involvement will increasingly eclipse leverage on aid as the determining factor of post-2015 success and discusses how alternative international instruments can achieve such traction.

This paper was revised after online discussion of a draft version. It is a discussion paper, intended to provoke reflection and debate, and does not represent Oxfam policy positions. The authors welcome further comments – email

Related links

The Millennium Development Goals

Video: Good Aid

Briefing paper: 21st Century Aid: Recognizing success and tackling failure