Policy & Practice - A Development Education Review



Reflections and Projections
Autumn 2005

Guest Editorial: Preface

Conor Lenihan, T.D.

It gives me great pleasure to write the preface for the first issue of “Policy and Practice: A Development Education Review”.

Educators need space and time to reflect on policy and practice, especially in as complex a field as development. Education cannot be static; those working in the area require constant updating both in terms of content and methodologies. All too often educators feel the need ‘to deliver’,’ to be out there’, ‘to do the work’ and do not allow themselves the breathing space to take a step back and reflect on how they can and should approach their work. I am confident that this journal will make a significant contribution to creating the space necessary for such thought and help stimulate a lively debate on professional development education.

The Development Cooperation Ireland programme is widely regarded as a first class one. Ireland’s programme of official assistance to developing countries enjoys a worldwide reputation for effective, high quality aid, which makes a real difference to the lives of the poorest of the world. The Taoiseach has recently announced that Ireland will reach the UN target of 0.7% of GNP on Overseas Development Assistance (ODA) by 2012. This means that the coming years will see huge increases in the Government’s spending on ODA – for example, by 2007, the total budget will be €773 million. A key challenge for us will be to maintain the current quality of the programme, as it continues to expand. It is a challenge we will meet. As a Government we have a responsibility to let the public know how their money is being spent. With the planned increases, this responsibility is greater than ever and one which we are taking very seriously

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