Comprehensive Development Framework (CDF)
The CDF is an approach to development planning initiated and pursued by the World Bank. It includes financial, economic, and fiscal aspects as well as social and humanitarian factors, and maps the inputs of all actors (including donors) to coordinate a coherent framework of macroeconomic, structural, and social reforms for poverty reduction. The World Bank emphasizes that the CDF is essentially a process, not a blueprint, and that all its elements are interdependent: social, structural, human, governance, environmental, economic, and financial.
The CDF has its operational expression in the Poverty Reduction Strategy Paper (PRSP) although the conceptual and practical links between CDF and PRSP initiatives are not always clear. To some extent, the PRSPs have come to eclipse the CDF process.
The CDF is based on a number of core principles:
- Developing countries must be allowed to own the policy agenda.
- Effective partnerships must be built with all the relevant stakeholders in a programme of reform, including stronger partnerships among governments, donors, civil society, the private sector, and other development stakeholders.
- Bilateral and multilateral development agencies must be encouraged to cooperate with each other more effectively.
- Social concerns should be given equal weight with macroeconomic and structural ones in setting policy priorities and strategies.
- There must be a transparent focus on development results to ensure better practical success in reducing poverty.
The CDF was developed partly in response to criticism that World Bank policies paid too little attention to poverty reduction; critics continue to maintain that the macroeconomic, structural, and social reforms recommended by the CDF process are informed by the same analysis that informed Structural Adjustment Programmes (SAPs).
The International Monetary Fund supports the CDF by providing long-term financing through its Poverty Reduction and Growth Facility (PRGF). Thirteen countries are now taking part in the CDF initiative, most on a self-selecting basis.