Conventional definitions of diplomacy previously reserved for state actors increasingly apply to non-state actors such as non-governmental organisations, civil society organisations, and international organisations. Development policy and intervention in the form of development aid has been reserved in the past to interactions between state actors such donor countries (developed countries) and beneficiary countries (developing or transition countries). While non-governmental organisations have always been active in the field of development aid as providers of services, they have not openly become political actors in the development policy field until recently.

This article describes in detail the application of development diplomacy in the context of international co-operation for poverty reduction in Highly Indebted Poor Countries. In particular, the authors describe the goal of the International Labour Organisation--a non-state actor--in advocating the inclusion of employment and Decent Work Agenda policies in Poverty Reduction Strategy Papers, an instrument developed by the International Monetary Fund and the World Bank. In order to achieve such inclusion, the International Labour Organisation mandated CSEND to create an advocacy based guidebook and negotiations simulation in order to influence future Poverty Reduction Strategy Paper negotiations.

In 2002, the International Labour Organization (ILO) decided to start an initiative aimed at increasing the Decent Work content of World-Bank convened Poverty Reduction Strategy Papers (PRSPs). The ILO Governing Body concluded its consideration of work in this area in March 2008. This present paper reviews the ILO experience from a partnership-building and development diplomacy point of view. The paper argues that, while significant progress has been achieved, there is a need to take the process one step forward in order to trigger a significant reframing of the PRSP debate and a shifting of its boundaries. This step will involve a partial repositioning of the ILO’s partnership building within the PRSP process and an effort to move beyond the traditional tripartite constituency of the ILO and build more systematic alliances with other segments of the national civil society as well as global poverty reduction advocacy groups.

CSEND conducted research on how to best include employment and decent work into the Poverty Reduction Strategy Papers (PRSP), the successor instrument of the IMF/WB following their failed Structural Adjustment Programme (SAP). CSEND drafted a major document titled "Decent Work and Poverty Reduction Strategies: An ILO Advocacy Guidebook" and developed a 24 role negotiation simulation concerning PRSPs. The simulation was pilot-tested in Ethiopia (2003) and Cameroon (2005). The Guidebook was published by ILO, Geneva, April 2005.

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New publication titled "Business - Government - NGO Relations: Their Impact on Global Economic Governance" in the book "Global Governance and Diplomacy: World's Apart ?", edited by Andrew F. Cooper, Brian Hocking and William Maley. 2008, Palgrave Macmillan