GGGI supports emerging and developing countries that seek to develop rigorous green growth economic development strategies. It does so by placing the best available analytical tools at their disposal, building their institutional capacity to apply these tools for their own purposes, and engaging them in an international process of mutual learning with other countries on a similar journey. It also supports the implementation of green growth plans by advising on their institutionalization in governmental structures and policy as well as by engaging private investors and public donors in their successful execution.
In order to stimulate a South-South dynamic of collective learning and refinement of green growth plan (GGP) methodology, the Institute’s country research series has an open architecture designed to facilitate the exchange of experience and knowledge by policymakers and experts engaged in GGP development around the world, whether or not such plans have been directly supported by GGGI. The overall aim is to facilitate a virtuous circle of experimentation and evidence-based learning by which developing and emerging countries accelerate the creation of a new approach to economic development that leapfrogs the resource-intensive and environmentally unsustainable strategy pursued by advanced countries in an earlier era.
Specific country services
During 2010, GGGI launched work in its first three partner countries: Brazil, Ethiopia and Indonesia. Work continued in these countries during 2011 and began in Kazakhstan, the United Arab Emirates, and Cambodia. In 2012, GGGI expanded into a number of other developing countries, including China, India, Jordan, Mongolia, Peru, Philippines, Rwanda, Thailand, and Vietnam. These programs are now in the scoping or setup stages.
Specific services tailored to each developing country include:
- Assessment of economic development and environmental sustainability objectives
- Micro economic modeling of detailed, sector-by-sector (i.e. power, transport, buildings, industry, agriculture, and forestry) CO2 mitigation potential, including cost-curves
- Macroeconomic analysis, assessing the potential impacts of a low-carbon transition on economic growth, employment, poverty reduction, trade, and other macroeconomic factors
- Detailed, step-by-step analysis of the plausible pathways from business-as-usual to the desired outcomes (back-casting)
- Analysis of the financial flows required by the transition, and an assessment of potential financing sources including both public & private and domestic & international sources
- Advice on the design of policies that could help deliver the desired outcome – drawing on the experience and expertise of “Best Practice Networks”
- Sharing of best practices on implementation and institutionalization of green growth plans
GGGI provides support for the development of green growth plans (GGPs) when it receives a high-level request from a developing or emerging country government. GGGI stipulates that its work is designed to meet simultaneously the interrelated imperatives of economic development and environmental sustainability. GGGI’s approach is particularly suited to developing countries because its point of departure and sine qua non is economic growth and broad-based progress in living standards rather than climate change or other environmental concerns, per se.
The precise scope of work for a GGP in each developing country depends on the starting conditions and specific challenges. At the most general level of GGP design, GGGI conducts a comprehensive diagnosis of a country’s green growth potential and its internal and external challenges. The diagnosis involves assessing territorial and socio-economic conditions as well as the potential in aligning development needs with required actions to avoid irreversible impacts of climate change, water scarcity, natural resource depletion, etc. Based on the result of the diagnosis, GGGI suggests a vision for the country on green growth, refines the policy options available for the GGP and sketches the implications for implementation in the context of the broader green growth strategy. More specifically, GGGI seeks to identify opportunities for national alignment around priority sectors and to prepare a corresponding green growth implementation roadmap for developing partner countries.
Critical sectors include: energy security/efficiency, water, resources management, green technology and industries, green infrastructure and urban infrastructure. But each GGP prioritizes sectors according to the country’s individual situation and development needs.
GGGI’s services are flexible to reflect its clients’ needs and capacity. In selected developing countries GGGI will employ a full-service approach by cultivating in-country presence, by working with in-country partners, and by developing tailor-made GGPs that carefully consider the circumstances and needs of each country. In utilizing funding most effectively, the Institute will serve countries to meet their specific development needs and circumstances so that the best practices in implementing GGPs will impact their societies to the maximum degree.
Two core models for supporting developing countries on formulating and implementing green growth plans:
Full service engagement
- Strong collaboration with in-country technical partners
- GGGI team members based in country long term
- Country specific cost curves and macroeconomic models
- Dedicated resources and flexibility to customize each process
- Individual projects but within a continuous engagement model
- Modular and quickly scalable model
- Reliance on rapid user-developed cost curves and macro tools
- Focus on technical assistance and capacity building for in-country partners
- Referrals to best practices and other NGOs for policy syndication
- Potential to move from need-specific to full-service engagement in the future
Locations for green growth planning
GGGI supports green growth planning and implementation at national, provincial or municipal levels, recognizing that many provinces or cities are larger in scale and potential impact than some countries. In creating its portfolio of locations for green growth planning work, GGGI prioritizes those places where:
- There is high-level and strong political commitment, preferably from the head of government or minister for finance or economy, and a clear domestic partner with which GGGI can develop a long-term relationship, engage in analysis and build institutional capacity.
- GGGI can add diversity to the portfolio, which will enable it to develop and test green growth plans in a variety of geographies and types of economies (e.g., resource rich, agricultural, manufacturing, etc.), thereby strengthening the explanatory power of its work. This includes working in countries with high impact on the global economy.
- There are particular needs that will draw upon GGGI’s strengths, especially its analytical capabilities.
Keys to success
GGGI emphasizes building a solid foundation for sustained implementation of the GGP for many years to follow. This is the reason why the lifecycle of a Country Program includes an explicit segment on Implementation and Partnership. GGGI has analyzed the obstacles to green growth efforts by developing countries, especially least developed countries (LDCs). There are four crucial elements to secure continuous implementation of GGPs:
- Institutionalization -– A GGP starts by proposing an institutional building process for its implementation. This includes the legislative designing of, and the institutional arrangement for, executing suggested policies serves to craft a national framework on green growth. This allows the green growth policy to be integrated into the whole national policy system and further secures continuous efforts at national and local levels. It constitutes also the stakeholders’ capacity building of the developing partner countries.
- Technology -- GGPs prioritize the development and diffusion of suitable green technology because it will enable the LDCs to leapfrog in their development process. Green technology provides a combination of benefits, including enhanced energy security and diffusion, reduced CO2 emissions and lower energy costs. Efficient transport and energy technologies are also important. GGGI will help design a technology platform tailored to each partner country’s development needs and circumstances.
- Capacity building – GGPs encourage significant capacity building to allow the partner country to further develop and implement the plan independently. Eventually that country will contribute content to GGGI’s network and assist other developing countries to build capacity. Capacity building constitutes the base by which LDCs can sustain any GGP. GGGI’s work on capacity building mobilizes both international and local experts which will create a collaborative base with relevant stakeholders, from high-level public officials to civil society.
- Financing – Appropriate financing is vital for the implementation of the GGPs . The policy framework around the GGP should stimulate private sector investment flows. Parallel to its support for the institutionalization of proposed measures under the GGP, GGGI will assist in identifying potential funding sources and facilitate contact between partner country governments and potential funding agencies.
South-South policy dialogue and experience sharing
In addition to providing support for green growth planning and implementation within individual developing and emerging countries, GGGI aims to create an open, global platform for the sharing of experience and insight among countries that are pursuing rigorous green growth strategies, whether or not these have been prepared with GGGI’s assistance. GGGI seeks to build a community of senior policymakers (e.g. vice ministers, directors general) having responsibility for the design and implementation of green growth plans within their countries from which they derive mutual, ongoing benefit. This Green Growth Leaders community will serve as a forum for peer exchange and advice, a global pool of expertise for other policymakers whose countries are contemplating green growth, a feedback mechanism for the comparative analysis and continuous improvement of green growth planning methodologies and an informal group of global ambassadors for the new development paradigm that is being forged out of their collective experience. The group will also be invited to provide guidance on the GGGI research agenda, thereby helping to ensure that our work is of the greatest possible relevance to those green growth practitioners who are operating at the cutting edge of the field especially in developing and emerging countries.