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Connecting People and Ideas for Integrated Development

SUNY Center for International Development Wins $2.9M Contract to Support Democratization of African Nation Project to Help the National Assembly of Malawi Pursue Executive Oversight Role


April 14, 2006

ALBANY - Chancellor John R. Ryan today announced The State University of New York Center for International Development (SUNY/CID) was awarded a $2.9 million contract from the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) to work with the National Assembly of Malawi to support democratization in the African nation.

The $2.9 million contract, designed to support an agreement by the Government of Malawi, USAID and Millennium Challenge Corporation (MCC), a U.S. government corporation, will fund the two-year project. The goal is to strengthen Malawi's system of checks and balances by helping the National Assembly fulfill its constitutional mandate to scrutinize the use of public funds and conduct oversight of the executive branch. SUNY/CID is on a list of just five organizations nationwide that are able to compete for $100 million in USAID projects to improve the capacity and performance of foreign legislatures. To date, SUNY/CID has been awarded nine projects totaling $32.3 million under the USAID International Legislative Strengthening Technical Assistance Indefinite Quantity Contract (IQC) announced in May 2004.

"SUNY/CID draws upon the State University's vast intellectual and technical resources and serves as a key component of the University's overall commitment to excellence in international education, cross-cultural exchange, and sustainable development," Ryan said. "At the same time, CID creates expanded global opportunities for SUNY students and faculty to work in partnership with other great universities around the globe. This latest award is another example of SUNY fulfilling its public service mission."

One of the most densely populated countries of Sub-Saharan Africa, Malawi has been a multi-party democracy since 1994. Its current government was democratically elected in May 2004. SUNY/CID is a university-wide institution that designs and implements international technical assistance projects, conducts policy-oriented research, and contributes to both the theory and practice of international development. Through its in-country development projects, SUNY/CID works to enhance the capacity of developing nations to meet critical challenges.

The SUNY/CID staff, based in the Malawi capital of Lilongwe, is collaborating with the University at Albany's Center for Legislative Development (CLD) to implement the MCC project. Established in 1970 as part of the Rockefeller College of Public Affairs & Policy, CLD has worked throughout the world to help make legislatures effective governing institutions.

"CID has earned a worldwide reputation working in partnership with government institutions and universities around the world and this project adds to its impressive portfolio," said James Ketterer, director of SUNY/CID. Since 1986, the SUNY/CID has implemented more than $142 million in international development projects on five continents in the areas of democratization, economic development, and environmental policy. SUNY/CID is currently working on major projects in Afghanistan, Bolivia, Jordan, Kenya, Morocco, Tanzania and Zimbabwe.

SUNY/CID is among the world's most active university centers in international development, with implementation and research activities funded by the U.S. Agency for International Development, the Organization of American States, the Inter-American Development Bank, the United Nations Development Program, the U.S. Information Agency, the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe, and the Andrew W. Mellon, Tinker, Ford, and Soros Foundations. For more information see

Launched by President Bush in 2004, the Millenium Challenge Corporation is a U.S. Government corporation that provides development assistance to some of the poorest countries in the world. MCC recognizes sound policies and good governance as critical to poverty reduction and economic growth in developing countries.

The State University of New York is the largest comprehensive university system in the United States educating more than 414,000 students in 6,688 degree and certificate programs on 64 campuses.

View All SUNY/CID News Stories from 2006