Accountability Tools

Nutrition for Growth Accountability Tool

ACTION’s scorecard tracks the ambition and delivery of N4G commitments by the largest government and philanthropic donors and points out what is needed to meet global goals for improved nutrition.

In 2012, the World Health Assembly endorsed global targets to improve maternal and child nutrition by 2025—an ambitious vision now reflected in the Sustainable Development Goals. The 2013 Nutrition for Growth (N4G) event—where donors pledged US $4.15 billion for nutrition-specific and $19 billion for nutrition-sensitive programs—was an essential step on the long-neglected road to support country-owned efforts to improve child nutrition.

ACTION’s scorecard tracks the ambition and delivery of N4G commitments by the largest government and philanthropic donors, and points out what is needed to meet global goals for improved nutrition. Consistent and accessible reporting is essential for tracking to be accurate and meaningful. While these commitments are critical to meeting global targets, they are indicators for global progress rather than an exhaustive list of funding.

In 2016, a World Bank, Results for Development, and 1000 Days study estimated that it would cost an average annual investment of $7 billion over the next ten years to achieve four out of the six global targets, in addition to current levels of spending.1 This financial gap must be bridged by national governments, donors, and other stakeholders/mechanisms.

Overall, it’s clear that donors must meet existing commitments and also considerably increase nutrition investments to meet globally agreed targets.

Notes on Methodology

This scorecard lists a subset of N4G donors. A full list of donors and their commitments can be found in the N4G Executive Summary.

Nutrition for Growth Pledge: All Nutrition for Growth commitments, as well as calculations of increased commitments above baseline levels are from the N4G Executive Summary. Nutrition-specific and nutrition-sensitive definitions are also taken from this summary.

Ambition: Criteria considered in assessing ambition of individual N4G pledges included:

  • Did the donor include a pledge through 2020?
  • Did the pledge represent an increase above baseline?
  • Was a financial pledge of any kind included?
  • Did the pledge specifically mention an amount for nutrition-specific funding?

Ambition ratings were assigned using these criteria as follows:

  • 0-1 criteria met: “Inadequate” rating
  • 2-3 criteria met: “Business as Usual” rating, if a pledge to 2020 is missing
  • 3-4 criteria met: “Ambitious” rating, if a pledge to 2020 is included

The one ambition rating not matching this criteria is the World Bank Group given the large monetary value of their commitment.

2013 Pledge Delivery: Data on disbursements is taken from the 2015 Global Nutrition Report for donors who reported their own spending via this resource. Those not reported in the Global Nutrition Report are taken from the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development Query Wizard for International Development Statistics and are represented in current US dollars. This methodology is in line with the SUN Donor Network Methodology and Guidance Note to Track Global Investments in Nutrition. Pledge delivery analysis is based on an assumed constant annual rate of disbursement over each donor’s stated pledge period, with a 10 percent margin of error allowed in judging on-time delivery.

2014 Pledge Delivery: Data on disbursements is taken from the 2016 Global Nutrition Report for donors who reported their own spending. For the EU and for donors where self-reported data was unavailable, disbursement data is taken from the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development Query Wizard for International Development Statistics and are represented in US dollars (except for Ireland, where the donor agency reported spending in EUR only) in constant 2013 prices. Similar to the 2013 analyses, pledge delivery is assessed based on an assumed constant rate of disbursement over each donor's stated pledge period, with a 10 percent margin of error allowed in judging on-time delivery.

2015 Pledge Delivery: Data on disbursements is taken from the 2017 Global Nutrition Report. Full analysis on the implications of these new figures has not yet been conducted.

1 Shekar M et al. (2016). Investing in Nutrition: The Foundation for Development. Retrieved from http://thousanddays.org/resource/investing-in-nutrition/