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Foreign & Commonwealth Office: Cross-Whitehall initiative: Driving prosperity and combating global poverty by understanding how the UK can have the greatest impact

The UK’s cross-government £1.2 billion Prosperity Fund aims to bring prosperity and raise people out of poverty around the world. We’ve created a new way to track the impact taxpayers’ money is having. The government sees this as having the potential to bring sweeping change to people’s lives.

The cross-government Fund’s programmes aim to create jobs and prosperity in middle-income countries, and trade for the UK, by fuelling economic growth. These programmes help countries from Brazil and Colombia to Kenya and India with everything from tackling corruption and improving regulation to supporting the development of future cities and reforming financial services.

To help the Fund demonstrate it’s having an impact and delivering value for money, we’ve helped teams from 24 programmes define what they want to achieve. We’ve also helped them develop indicators to track their progress.

We’ve also designed and built a cloud-based system called Prospero to monitor and report on Fund and programme performance. Its analytics let civil servants, ministers, diplomats and other officials track exactly where money is spent and the results the money is producing. The system can illustrate how a programme makes an overall impact by creating jobs, for example it can also show how that programme boosts social inclusion by creating them for men and women, young and old, and low-income families.

Prospero can present this information in a variety of formats, whether it’s at-a-glance headlines or in-depth reports. As programmes develop, it will show the types of interventions that make the biggest difference and how best to spend the Fund’s budget.

It could also have a future beyond the Prosperity Fund. In a recent review, the government’s Infrastructure Projects Authority described Prospero as ‘a potential game-changer’.

This has been a complex piece of work in a fast-moving environment. The PA team's understanding of our needs and the context in which we are working has been excellent and their willingness to shift emphasis when we have required it has been greatly appreciated.

Andrew Millar, Head of Monitoring, Reporting, Evaluation and Learning at the FCO


Contact the economic development team


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