The UK government has announced a major £51million investment to the International Growth Centre (IGC) to enable it to expand its work from 12 to 15 countries.
The IGC, which is based at the London School of Economics and Political Science (LSE) in partnership with the University of Oxford, provides independent and demand-led growth policy advice directly to governments based on rigorous analysis and frontier research. It is funded by the UK’s Department for International Development (DFID).
The £51 million investment will enable it to continue operations in existing partner countries across South Asia and sub-Saharan Africa, but also to expand its work through a renewed focus on key growth concerns. The IGC has already helped governments in Pakistan, Rwanda, Bihar and Bangladesh to reform their tax structures in order to boost revenue collection and has assisted governments in Ghana, Zambia and Mozambique to work towards harnessing wealth from their mineral resources.
LSE Professor Robin Burgess, director of the IGC, said:
“Increasing economic growth is critical to improving living standards for millions of people in the developing world to lift them out of poverty. Providing concrete evidence based on rigorous analysis and frontier research on what policies work to engender economic growth is a key offering of the IGC to policy makers across Africa and Asia. We are delighted that DFID’s continued support will enable us to deepen and expand our work in bringing the worlds of research and policy closer together.”
Professor Paul Collier, University of Oxford and co-director of the ICG said:
“Governments of poor countries struggle with daunting problems, some unique to their own circumstances. Soundly-based policy choices that respond to these problems can pay dividends far in excess of the cost of the underlying knowledge. Global excellence in knowledge that helps poor countries to help themselves - the mission of the IGC - is money well-spent.”
Justine Greening, UK secretary of state for international development, made the announcement in a speech at the London Stock Exchange. She addressed Britain’s continued investment in international development and said:
“International Development is in our interests not just because it creates new markets, but because I believe it can deliver a more balanced, resilient global economy…I want DFID to do more to help build up strong and investable business environments in the developing countries themselves. That means helping countries build their own tax base, squeezing out corruption and providing the technical advice that means when economic growth does happen, countries are well placed to then reap and reinvest the gains.”
Since its launch in 2008, the IGC has provided independent advice to 13 countries  and managed 10 research programmes spanning topics such as agriculture, trade, infrastructure and urbanisation and state capabilities. More on the IGC can be found at http://www.theigc.org
Contact: LSE Press Office, 020 7955 7060, email@example.com
1 The IGC currently has fourteen active country programmes in thirteen countries –
Bangladesh, Ethiopia, Ghana, India (Bihar state and Central), Liberia, Mozambique, Pakistan, Rwanda, Sierra Leone, South Sudan, Uganda, Tanzania and Zambia.
27 March 2013