Government’s Conflict Stability and Security Fund “unsatisfactory in most areas” according to ICAI

The Independent Commission for Aid Impact (ICAI) today gave an Amber / Red rating for their performance review of the Conflict Stability and Security Fund (CSSF), signifying concerns over the effectiveness of its aid programmes and the Fund’s commitment to sharing learning from its own experience.

Tamsyn Barton Chief Executive of Bond, the UK’s network of International Development NGOs, said:

‘It is disappointing to read that whilst ICAI reported that the CSSF provides a valuable channel for responding to conflicts around the world, it also confirms the concerns civil society have consistently raised around its ability to meet the needs of the world’s poorest and most vulnerable people.

Despite years of civil society engagement and numerous reviews, the CSSF still has inadequate results management practices, limited data to evidence value for money and is inconsistent when it comes to the quality of its programmes.

At a time when aid and development are under intense scrutiny, it is critical that the CSSF rapidly puts into effect the recommendations of this report to demonstrate effectiveness and value for money. Many of Bond’s members are keen to see the Department for International Development (DFID), recently acknowledged by ICAI as a global champion on value for money, given a greater role in supporting the design, implementation and monitoring and evaluation of the CSSF’s programmes.

We very much welcome recent efforts by CSSF to improve and work with civil society, and both Bond and its members will continue to work with the CSSF to ensure their work delivers for the women, men, children and families living in conflict-affected and fragile states.”


Notes to Editor

  1. The Government works through the CSSF to provide development and security support to countries which are at risk of conflict or instability. The CSSF supports activities such as security, defence, peacekeeping and peace-building. It is the largest Fund spending official development assistance (ODA) outside of DFID, with a total spend of around £1104m, with an ODA spend of £518m and non-ODA budget of £586m
  2. Areas of concern flagged by ICAI’s CSSF review include: Inadequate results management, the quality of the programming is inconsistent, human rights risk management is inconsistent
  3. The ICAI CSSF performance review comes against a backdrop of the increased scrutiny surrounding the Fund. In January 2017, the Joint Committee on the National Security Strategy accused the fund of failing to provide enough information around the objectives, operations and accomplishments of the CSSF. This was followed by a National Audit Office report which found that the departments responsible for spending aid outside of DFID, as part of a cross-government aid strategy, lacked transparency and accountability around aid effectiveness. This lead to the National Security Adviser ordering a capability review into the £2 billion spent by the National Security Council, including through the CSSF, which is due to be published on 28 March 2018.
  4. Bond is the UK network for organisations working in international development. Bond unites and supports a diverse network of over 450 civil society organisations and allies to help eradicate global poverty, inequality and injustice.
  5. For further information please contact Maryam Mohsin, [email protected] or 07555 336029