CEO, Adam Smith International
240 Blackfriars Road
London, SE1 8NW
Chair, International Development Committee
House of Commons
London, SW1A 0AA
18th March 2021
Adam Smith International are supportive of your committee’s inquiry into the philosophy and culture of aid, particularly following the significant upheaval faced by the FCDO after its merger, the Integrated Review, and the cuts to International Development budgets. While an overarching strategy document from the UK Government in the form of the Integrated Review is welcome, we believe that work to solidify and scrutinise its objectives and delivery should be ongoing, and that the document should not remain static.
As a principle stakeholder to the UK Government across multiple departments, we are particularly interested in any work your committee may undertake, both in relation to this specific inquiry and in general, on the long term strategy underpinning the “British Values” emphasis the UK Government has placed on the FCDO and MoD. As delivery partners to the UK Government, it has become increasingly apparent that additional emphasis in procurement will be placed upon “social value” but it has so far remained unclear as to whether or not these social values have been drawn up in line with the “British Values” the FCDO are now placing emphasis upon.
We would also be interested in any work your committee may do to drill down into the relationship between Cabinet Office procurement changes, FCDO changes to delivery partners and contracting, and their subsequent scrutiny mechanisms in the House of Commons. It is increasingly clear that the Cabinet Office reforms to procurement will have an impact on FCDO procurement in addition to the changes FCDO are planning, and we would be interested to hear your committee’s and indeed other stakeholders’ views on how the Public Administration Committee will work alongside the IDC and FAC to provide scrutiny to the FCDO in light of these changes.
Finally, as always, we are keen to support the committee in looking at the robustness of the relationship between FCDO and its delivery partners, at home and abroad, and ongoing scrutiny of this is not only welcome, but something we would like to actively participate in.
We look forward to engaging with your committee on this inquiry.