Devex World Wraps Up, Explores Future of International Development Work

On June 14 2016, a one day conference was held by Devex to bring together “thinkers and doers, change-makers and expert practitioners who make global development happen”. The assembly met in Washington, D.C. to discuss the growth of forward-thinking partnerships, emerging technology, and the anticipated progress and goals of the international development community.

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Ben Rhodes speaking at Devex World. (Source: DEVEX)

The discussions held at this conference “would have been unheard of 10 years ago,” PATH CEO Steve Davis said. Throughout the day, a multitude of innovative ideas were shared by leading professionals from over 300 organizations including:

  • Uber’s international chief Matt Devlin and Julie Hanna of Kiva spoke on the impact of crowd-driven data and solutions that arise from it.
  • Former marine Jake Harriman and former Wall Street banker Mark Tercek now both lead respected social entrepreneurship funds. These “nontraditional” actors were featured speakers to highlight the new course of development practices — and how different industries and disciplines can supply fresh perspectives and answers.
  • Deputy National Security Advisor for Strategic Communications Ben Rhodes talked about how “NGOs and philanthropies can be effective in ways that governments are not.”
  • The United Nations Development Program and the ONE Campaign demonstrated the strengths of virtual reality tours to connect individuals to places like a ‘Syrian refugee camp in Jordan or a village at the foot of Mt. Kilimanjaro”. The VR programs are used as lobbying tools to appeal on issues in a way that numbers cannot.
  • International Rescue Committee President and CEO David Miliband discussed the issues that face the 60 million people presently affected by conflict — and how the development and humanitarian sectors must align to help those most in need.