The practice of strategic planning in developing countries is intimately linked to the gradual introduction of Sector Wide Approaches (SWAp) in development cooperation from the mid-1990s onward. SWAp is a recent cooperation paradigm aiming at a more equal partnership between donors and recipient countries. It is based on the awareness that donor assistance can only be effective if it directly supports the implementation of a clear national sector policy and strategy which are formulated and owned by the recipient country. Hence the interest of Ministries of Education in recipient countries to prepare national strategic sector plans. By endorsing the Paris Declaration on Aid Effectiveness in 2005, aid recipient countries committed themselves to exercise leadership in preparing and implementing national development strategies and to translate these national development strategies into results-oriented plans and programmes.
VVOB supports some parts of processes of strategic educational planning at ministry level. VVOB works in two countries (Suriname and Kenya) on one or more particular elements of the strategic planning process. The interventions of VVOB in these countries aim at strengthening the capacity and autonomy of ministries and their personnel in various stages of the strategic planning process.
In Suriname Progress supported the process to develop a clear and univocal vision and mission document by and for the Ministry of Education services of Inspection and Guidance. In Kenya VVOB supported the 'Kenya Sector Support Programme', a sector-wide framework setting out overall objectives and targets. VVOB was part of the preparation team of this framework.