A series of decisions will be taken in the second half of 2009 about the architecture and staffing of the structures of the European Union’s Development Cooperation. This Background Note, which provides the context to these decisions and explores possible options, has been prepared as part of the European Development Cooperation Support Programme (EDCSP). The programme is an ODI initiative funded by the UK Department for International Development (DFID), which aims to support the debate on European Union institutional and policy change. To do so, the programme is constructing an infrastructure of knowledge, contacts and information on EU development cooperation.

ODI is Britain’s leading independent think tank on international development and humanitarian issues.