International development, UK aid and Official Development Assistance spending

8th August 2017
Author: Stephen Thompson

This helpdesk provides an introduction to international development, UK aid and Official Development Assistance (ODA) spending. It was developed over five days. Unlike previous helpdesk reports, the current paper does not provide a summary of relevant evidence, but rather it was designed to introduce someone unfamiliar with the field of international development to some of its complexities through the provision of resources. It includes hyperlinks to sources rather than a traditional referencing system, to make follow-up learning as easy as possible for the reader. There are five main sections. The first section introduces international development and signposts where the reader can look for further information on this topic. The second section provides some information on the global context of international development. The third sections details the UK parliament’s guiding principles, legislation and strategy for international development. The fourth section provides an overview of UK ODA spending.

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Suggested Citation

Thompson S. (2017). International development, UK aid and ODA spending - an overview. K4D Helpdesk Report. Brighton, UK: Institute of Development Studies.


8th August 2017


Continent: Europe, Global

Country: United Kingdom