On 9 December 2019, Geovana Zoccal presented her research project “Beyond North and South Differences – Strengthening trilateral cooperation for global development”. Geovana is researcher at the BRICS Policy Center in Rio de Janeiro, an important partner of the German Development Institute / Deutsches Institut für Entwicklungspolitik (DIE) in Brazil, and has been working in the Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ) for the past two years thanks to a scholarship by the Alexander-von-Humboldt Foundation. The panel was chaired by Heiner Janus (DIE) and included Geovana, Rita Walraf (BMZ), JI Lanlan (China Institute for South-South-Cooperation in Agriculture and participant of the 2019 MGG Academy) as well as Sven Grimm (DIE). The discussion highlighted the strategic potential of trilateral cooperation as a special form of a multi-stakeholder setting. Beyond the small financial volume of this cooperation modality, trilateral cooperation can be seen as particularly apt for mutual learning and for cooperation with states that have graduated from development assistance.
Especially from the turn of the 21st century, new modalities, new actors and new relationship dynamics have been established in international development coopeartion. No longer is traditional Official Development Assistance (ODA) between a donor and a recipient country the sole guiding practice of international development cooperation. March 2019 saw the 2nd UN High-Level Conference on South-South Cooperation (BAPA+40), consolidating South-South cooperation as central to achieving the 2030 Agenda and highlighting the role of triangular cooperation.