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U.S. Department of State

Diplomacy in Action

Strategic Goal 2 - Public Benefit and Summary of Performance and Resources

Bureau of Resource Management
February 24, 2012


Public Benefit

Photo showing elected parents and community members attending a Board of Trustees meeting in Egypt, to determine, prioritize and meet the school's needs.

A transparent, empowered school board process in Egypt raises election turnout and expectations. Elected parents and community members attend a Board of Trustees meeting in Egypt, to determine, prioritize and meet the school's needs. USAID

The U.S. Government supports just and democratic governance for three related reasons: (1) as a matter of principle, (2) as a contribution to U.S. national security, and (3) as a cornerstone of the broader development agenda. The National Security Strategy makes clear that supporting the expansion of democracy and human rights abroad is in our national interest. U.S. leadership in promoting capable, transparent, accessible, and accountable public institutions and economic growth is key to achieving successful and sustained transitions to democracies and universal freedoms around the globe. The Department and USAID work to build the essential institutions of democratic accountability, including the advancement of rule of law and human rights, good governance, political competition and civil society.

Summary of Performance and Resources

Pie chart summarizing the FY 2011 resource invested for Strategic Goal 2. Values are: State Operations: $0.779 billion. Foreign Operations: $2.517 billion. Total resources invested: $3.296 billion.

The Department and USAID allocated $3.296 billion toward this Strategic Goal in FY 2011, which is 7 percent of the total State-USAID budget supporting all strategic goals. The Department and USAID met or exceeded targets for 42 percent of their performance indicators for Strategic Goal 2. Forty-six percent of indicators were below target, and ratings were not available for 12 percent that are new indicators or data are not yet available.

Closing the Gap

Chart summarizing the gap between the current progress of countries that have graduated from U.S. Government foreign assistance and the top 20 country beneficiaries of U.S. Government foreign assistance in the Governing Justly and Democratically index. Values are as follows by sector on a 1 to 5 scale: Average Gap: 1.5.  Political Rights: 1.7.  Civil Liberties: 1.7.  Media Freedom: 1.3.  Rule of Law: 1.6.  Anticorruption: 1.3.

The Department and USAID work with governments and civil society to build and strengthen effective and responsive democratic governments that value and support good governance, political rights, civil liberties, media and religious freedom and rule of law. As noted at right, the top 20 beneficiaries of U.S. Government assistance (blue) have considerable progress to make in order to attain the level of just and democratic governance achieved by a select group of countries that have graduated from U.S. Government assistance (red)1. The positive results of U.S. Government assistance for democracy and governance programs as reported below are helping to close that gap.

Key Selected Achievements

  • Provided voter and civic education to over 19 million people, trained more than 50,000 election observers, and deployed almost 2,000 election observers to South Sudan-where credible elections enabled the peaceful transition of South Sudan into its own nation-and to Tunisia-where U.S. Government technical assistance contributed to peaceful constitutional assembly elections.
  • Assisted over 4,300 civil society organizations in 60 countries engaged in advocacy interventions through the legislative process to improve government transparency and accountability.
  • Called upon leaders of governments and civil society in the Fourth High Level Forum on Aid Effectiveness in 2011 in Busan, South Korea to emphasize democracy, rights, and good governance in the final Declaration of the Partnership for Effective Development Cooperation, stating that the Millennium Declaration identifies promoting human rights, democracy and good governance an integral part of our development efforts.
  • The United States is a party to the Voluntary Principles on Security and Human Rights, which bring together governments, companies, and NGOs to ensure companies take tangible steps to minimize human rights abuses in the surrounding communities as they extract resources in some of the most challenging places in the world. This year, the Department helped negotiate a consensus among 19 oil, gas and mining companies, seven governments, and 10 NGOs on a new core document that outlines the expectations of participants, and lays out a plan to pursue the creation of a legal entity to help companies maintain high standards.

1 For more information on the Closing the Gap chart above, see Closing the Gap Methodology. (back to text)


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