About us

Our History

Established in 2003, the Global Donor Platform for Rural Development brings together donors that share a common vision on the role of agriculture and rural development in tackling global poverty and hunger.

About us

Our History

Established in 2003, the Global Donor Platform for Rural Development brings together donors that share a common vision on the role of agriculture and rural development in tackling global poverty and hunger.

The Platform convenes donor organizations making substantive investments in agriculture, rural development and food systems issues to exchange information, discuss emerging priority issues and determine effective strategies to address them.


  • Donor Platform milestones

  • Global events and meetings

The Platform convenes donor organizations making substantive investments in agriculture, rural development and food systems issues to exchange information, discuss emerging priority issues and determine effective strategies to address them.

Here are some of the Platform’s milestones throughout the years:


  • Donor Platform milestones

  • Global events and meetings


The Platform turns 20

2023 Annual General Assembly coincides with the Donor Platform’s 20th anniversary

This milestone reflected in the AGA theme “20 Years of rural development and aid effectiveness: Where are we now and where are we going?” and took place on 26-27 October 2023 at IFAD HQ in Rome, Italy. View the recordings.

“Looking back almost 20 years to 2003 when the Platform was established, we see that the fundamental challenges of rural development remain. The Platform has a clear role to play in continuing to focus global attention on these challenges, which remain front and centre in discussions on food systems transformation.”
– Tristan Armstrong, Co-Chair (GDPRD Annual Report 2021)

9-15 October: Annual meeting of IMF and World Bank in Morocco

The United States is lobbying G20 partners for pledges to increase their lending capacity by US$100 billion.

September: SDG Summit at the September United Nations General Assembly (UNGA)

August: The BRICS grouping targets expansion

Membership applications are invited from Argentina, Egypt, Ethiopia, Iran, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates, to take effect 1 January 2024.

July: UN Report on Progress towards the 2030 Sustainable Development Goals

The halfway report says achievement of the goals is threatened, and that the world is “on the brink of a climate catastrophe and current actions and plans to address the crisis are insufficient”. Without transformative action to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, the goal of limiting the rise in global temperatures to 1.5oc will be at risk, and with it the lives of more than three billion people.

June: Meeting for a New Global Financing Pact in France


September 2022: Bridgetown Initiative, launched by Barbados Prime Minister Mia Mottley

Proposals include reform of World Bank and International Monetary Fund, and concessional funding for climate change adaptation and mitigation projects

First hybrid Annual General Assembly after COVID-19 pandemic

After two years of virtual meetings due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the Platform held its first hybrid in-person and virtual Annual General Assembly (AGA) at IFAD Headquarters in Rome, Italy. The AGA was entirely dedicated to “Implementing National Pathways for Food Systems Transformation to Accelerate Progress Towards the SDGs in Times of Crisis and Conflict”. Read more

The Platform continues a series of roundtables responding to the multiple global crises

  • “Addressing the Impacts of the War in Ukraine on 3F (Food, Fuel, Fertilizer) Prices for Rural Small-Scale Producers” Read more.
  • “Reshaping food systems financing in a crisis and post-crisis environment: Driving donors’ commitments” Read more.

A white paper is released, providing global donors with options to transform our food systems


“2021 was an important year for the GDPRD as we engaged intensively on the food systems agenda.”
– Conrad Rein, Co-Chair (GDPRD Annual Report 2021)

Launch of stocktaking report on donor coordination to food systems

The report provides an overview of the scale of food systems-related funding and actions currently supported by donors. It was launched at the high-level food systems event “Leveraging Change: The Role of Donors in Food Systems Transformation”.

A New Strategic Plan (2021-2025)

As part of that process, a stocktaking analysis was commissioned of the Platform’s activities, performance and achievements over a five-year period (2015-2020). Read more.

See all Platform activities around the food systems agenda.


2020 Annual General Assembly helped shape the Platform’s contribution to the UN Food Systems Summit

The theme, “Strengthening Coordination Towards SDG2: Pathways for Food Systems Transformation”opened the discussion on what processes were needed at local, national, regional and global levels to underpin food systems transformation, and how donors could catalyse such processes.

The International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD) hosts the Platform’s Secretariat

On 1 January 2020, the Platform Secretariat transitioned from the Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) to IFAD. Prior to this date, the the secretariat was coordinated by the GIZ on commission of the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ) for sixteen years. Both IFAD and BMZ are founding members of the Global Donor Platform.

  • Annual General Assembly hosted by the Swiss Development Cooperation (SDC) in Zurich/Maennedorf, Switzerland, as an inward-focused retreat. Read more.
  • Annual General Assembly hosted by the European Commission in Brussels, Belgium, titled “Agenda 2030 put into practice: what future for rural development?”. First High-Level session at an AGA. Read more.
  • Annual General Assembly focused on coherence between trade and agricultural policy – “Agricultural Trade and Rural Development – Duet or solo Playing?”
  • The Paris Accord on Climate Change, signed by 196 countries, sets out to limit global warming to 1.5oc, and provides mechanisms to finance efforts to combat and adapt to climate change.
  • Platform New Strategic Plan Meeting held in Thun, Switzerland, to develop the Strategic Plan 2016-2020.
  • The Sustainable Development Goals (SDGS) are adopted by all member states of the United Nations, embracing 17 interlinked objectives to accelerate human development and well-being.
  • Two Annual General Assemblies, in Paris, France and Florence, Italy.
  • The Global Donor Working Group on Land is created during the World Bank Conference on Land and Poverty in Washington, D.C.
  • Annual General Assembly hosted by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of The Netherlands in The Hague. The theme: “Food, farmers and markets”.
  • China launches Belt and Road Initiative, a global infrastructure development strategy.
  • Annual General Assembly hosted by Germany and held at the GIZ and KfW Berlin offices in January, titled “Strengthening resilience in ARD”.
  • The Global Partnership for Effective Development Collaboration established in Busan, South Korea, set new principles for aid effectiveness
  • The Platform launched a new website in February, showcasing the work of Platform members and making ARD and FS materials and analyses assessible. The Platform established a Twitter account and YouTube channel to produce regular eUpdates, eDiscussions and virtual briefings. The Platform co-hosted the third European Forum for Rural Development in Palencia, Spain.
  • Annual General Assembly held in Rome, Italy, co-hosted by the International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD) and the Global Mechanism (GM) of the United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification (UNCCD).
  • L’Aquila Summit on Food Security, convened in Italy by the G8 in July, triggers the launch of a UN task force to address the challenge of food security.
  • High Level Meeting on Food Security for All – Madrid, Spain. the Platform co-chaired a roundtable on intensifying and coordinating country-level action.
  • Policy Dialogue on High Food Prices: Outlook and Mid-term Donor Response – Paris, France, co-organised by the Platform and Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD).
  • World Development Report draws attention to continuing importance of agriculture as a fundamental instrument for sustainable development, poverty reduction, and achieving the Millennium Development Goals.
  • Fourth Platform General Assembly held in Geneva, Switzerland. The General Assembly focused on the strategic direction of the Platform following the food and fuel price shocks of 2007/8 and the role of the Platform in the global aid architecture.
  • Third Platform Annual General Assembly in Paris, France: presentation of a new Charter, creation of the Board, election of Steering Committee, election of chairs.
  • First Platform Annual General Assembly, Brussels, Belgium
  • Donor Consultation Workshop on CAADP, Geneva, Switzerland.
  • Second Platform Annual General Assembly, Washington DC, United States.
  • Donor Consultation Workshop on the World Development Report 2008, Washington D.C, United States.
  • Fourth Platform Meeting, Washington DC. to create an action plan for Platform support to in-country harmonisation and alignment efforts in the four pilot countries.
  • Fifth Platform Meeting, Paris, France. Theme: Endorsement of the Platform governance charter and creation of the Steering Committee (SC).
  • Presentation of the Platform at Rural Week, Washington DC.
  • Second Platform Meeting held in Paris, France, to establish a work plan.
  • Third Platform Meeting held in Bonn, Germany, to select four Platform pilot countries.
  • The World Bank, BMZ, FAO, CIDA, the Netherlands and IFAD decide to set up the GDPRD during Rural Week, in Washington DC, United States. BMZ agreed to host a Secretariat in Bonn, Germany.
  • Platform foundation meeting held in Bonn, Germany, hosted by BMZ. BMZ and FAO agree to co-chair the Platform.
  • World Food Summit, Rome, Italy: first discussion of the concept of donor coordination and the importance of agriculture to reduce hunger.
  • The World Bank proposed a Global Forum for Rural Development, highlighting the importance of harmonising and donor coordinating donors as part of its new strategy at the first European Forum on Rural Development Cooperation in Montpellier.