The Commonwealth Fund for Technical Co-operation (CFTC) provides technical expertise to the public sector by employing professionals on specialist assignments in Commonwealth member countries.
More than 350 experts are deployed each year on assignments that range from a few days to two or three years in length.
What is a CFTC assignment?
Assignments typically involve a mix of policy advice and guidance, strategy development and implementation, institutional capacity development and mentoring and skills training for senior level officials.
Key programmatic areas of focus for the Commonwealth are currently:
- Democracy (elections, election management)
- Public institutions (criminal justice, law development, human rights, public administration)
- Special development (public health, education, gender)
- Youth (policy, participation)
- Economic growth and sustainable development (trade, global finance, debt management, ocean governance & natural resources)
- Small states and vulnerable states (climate finance, resilience)
The CFTC approach emphasises country ownership by delivering technical assistance on a demand-driven basis. Our work focuses on delivering relevant change through ‘best fit’ rather than ‘best practice’ responses to the challenges of development. Fundamentally, our focus is on strengthening national capabilities through institutional development and capacity-building with a view to long-term sustainability.
Technical assistance is delivered predominantly on a south-south basis, and also aims to mainstream gender considerations throughout all project work.
Leveraging expertise that exists across the Commonwealth, we work closely with in-house thematic advisers to mobilise long-term support for member countries. Support is provided in many forms, including:
- dispatch of long and short term experts;
- supporting twinning arrangements and exchanges between our members;
- undertaking of research and feasibility studies and targeted capacity building activities;
- and providing a 'referrals facility' to respond to requests for assistance in areas of work outside the Secretariat's strategic focus, but which could be supported by:
- Commonwealth family of organisations;
- other Commonwealth member states; or
- relevant international organisations and other entities.