The Donor Tracker- a tool for evidence-based advocacy

The Donor Tracker, created by SEEK Development, analyses official development assistance (ODA) to help facilitate evidence‑based advocacy in global development. The online resource was established to address the need for a ‘one-stop’ source for understandable information and analysis of major donors of ODA. As an app and website, the Donor Tracker provides free and easy access to data-driven insights into donors’ strategic priorities, funding trends, and decision-making processes, while highlighting potential opportunities for key players to advocate for development.

The Donor Tracker Logo

In-depth analyses contextualize data to help experts and non-experts alike understand the political and practical contexts in which donors make their ODA funding decisions. The information provided is independent and supports a range of advocates, i.e. civil society organisations, multilateral institutions, think-tanks, journalists, and government officials.

Use of the Donor Tracker

Features of the Donor Tracker:

The Donor Tracker provides an analysis of qualitative and quantitative data on 14 major donor countries who are members of the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development’s Development Assistance Committee (OECD DAC). Collectively they contribute 90% of the world’s ODA. These donors include: Australia, Canada, the European Union, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, the Netherlands, Norway, South Korea, Spain, Sweden, the United Kingdom, and the United States of America.

Each country profile analyses how a donor’s funding works in terms of its total ODA amount; its strategic priorities for development; who makes decisions regarding policy, funding, and implementation; how the ODA budget is structured and allocated; and opportunities to engage in the budget process. In addition, each profile includes ‘deep dives’ that focus in greater depth on five specific sectors: agriculture, nutrition, education, global health, and global health research and development (R&D). These sectors were chosen as they are inherently linked to the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), as well as efforts to alleviate poverty. Donor profiles and deep dives are all available for download.

The data comparison tool enables users to create customized charts that compare donors across chosen variables. As an example, the following chart visualizes agriculture ODA as a percentage of total ODA for Italy, South Korea, and Norway.

DT Graph Example

With the key:

 Key for Graph

Additionally, quarterly ‘highlight stories’ provide comparative analyses on trends and topics that are not only important to the global development community but that offer strong arguments to support advocacy and strategic decisions. Highlight stories in 2017 included an analysis of the impact of the refugee crisis on development budgets and policies and an overview of the autumn ‘budget season’ across several European countries.

Additionally, the Donor Tracker keeps users informed with regular policy updates and events that are relevant to the global development community. This information can be filtered by country and topic area; soon it will be possible to receive these updates via weekly emails. 

The Donor Tracker team frequently participates in global development events, adding an interesting perspective to discussions with cross-cutting insights into ODA flows by the world’s major ODA donors.


Ways to get in touch:


Twitter: @DonorTracker

SEEK Development is a consulting group based in Berlin, Germany that works to support and shape development with its provision of support in strategy and policy, knowledge generation and advocacy, organizational evaluation and development to leading institutions.