Published September 2019
Official Development Assistance and peacebuilding: 10 year trends
By Ayham Al Maleh

Ayham Al Maleh is an Associate Policy Officer with the Peacebuilding Support Office, working on Pathways for Peace and the UN-World Bank Partnership on Crisis Affected situations. He has followed the Pathways for Peace study in various capacities since its inception in 2016 and support the UN-World Bank Steering Committee for Crisis-Affected Situations. Prior to joining the UN Ayham worked at the Copenhagen Centre for Resolutions of International Conflict, as well as the NGO Teach First Denmark. Ayham Al Maleh holds a Master’s in International Political Economy from the University of Warwick, UK and a Bachelor’s in Political Science from the University of Aarhus, Denmark.

The views and interpretations in this section do not necessarily represent the views of the United Nations.

The Secretary-General’s report on Peacebuilding and Sustaining Peace¹ highlights that nearly half of all people living in extreme poverty reside in fragile and conflict-affected states. Unless concerted action is taken by 2030, that figure is expected to rise to 80% by 2035.² At the same time, peacebuilding and conflict prevention remains a cost-effective way to safeguard development gains – with US$ 1 invested in prevention, resulting in US$ 16 saved by one estimate.³ By another estimate – the United Nations-World Bank study on Pathways for Peace: Inclusive Approaches to Preventing Violent Conflict costs of conflict far outweigh the costs of prevention by anywhere between US$ 5-70 billion. Increasing donor spending on peacebuilding in conflict-affected countries remains an important lever by which the international community can focus on prevention and contain rising human and economic costs of violent conflicts. The present section lays out the current trends in Official Development Assistance (ODA) to conflict-affected countries as well as to peacebuilding ODA in conflict-affected countries⁴ updating the findings of a 2017 report on ‘Stocktaking of Peacebuilding Expenditures: 2002–2013’ by the Institute of Economics and Peace and the UN’s Peacebuilding Support Office (PBSO).⁵