Management of the 0.7% ODA spending target

The government’s approach to managing its aid-spending target has become increasingly effective and well-coordinated across government – but making the process more flexible in future could reduce the “significant” impact of major economic shocks.

  1. Status: Completed
  2. Published: 24 November 2020
  3. Type: Rapid review
  4. Subject: Government processes and systems
  5. Assessment: Unrated
  6. Lead commissioner: Tamsyn Barton

Read the approach summary paper

Our approach

This rapid review set out to explore how well the UK government manages the ODA spending target.

Our review covered the period from 2013 to 2019, and built on previous reviews conducted by the National Audit Office. As part of our research, we carried out a strategic review of key government documents, interviews and focus group discussions, and case study samples of government departments, cross-government funds, and other aid spending. As a rapid review, it is not scored.

Reviewing the commitment of 0.7% itself was not within the remit of this review. We focused on how ODA spending departments and cross-government structures such as the Senior Officials Group managed the value for money risks associated with the spending target. We also explored how ODA spending departments have generated and applied lessons learnt to their approaches on value for money in managing the 0.7% spending target.

Review questions

We sought to answer the following questions:

  1. Relevance: What is the process for allocation, monitoring and management of ODA spending targets to individual departments, and how well is this process governed and managed?
  2. Efficiency: What are the value for money risks associated with meeting the spending target, and how well do the responsible departments mitigate them?
  3. Learning: To what extent have departments reduced the value for money risks associated with meeting their spending target?

Read the annotated bibliography



Published 20 August 2020

Evidence gathering



Published 24 November 2020

Government response

Published 22 January 2021

ICAI follow-up

Published 30 June 2022

Further follow-up

Published 18 July 2023