Should the voices of senior consultants feature more prominently in public debates on international development?
It has probably happened to you before as well: Every so often I receive a short facebook message or email by a senior development consultant – women and men with probably 15, often 20 or more years of paid professional employment inside the ‘aid industry’ – they basically started before it was even called an ‘industry’! The messages are usually short, sometimes straight from ‘the field’ (i.e. really uncomfortable, dangerous and complex locations ) and often along the lines of ‘little do you/that researcher/this journalist really know about organization X or the crisis in region Y’. But with very few exceptions, these voices rarely make into the development blogosphere , let alone find their way into virtual, classroom or policy discussions. The proverbial ‘I will write a book about my time in the industry once I have retired’ approach only works for very few and even if they manage to write that book, the distance of a few years between what happened in, say, Rwanda and the publica