UCL Research


Discover if your research is ODA compliant

Find out how to determine if your research is Official Development Assistance (ODA) compliant, and which countries are eligible for funding.

Official Development Assistance (ODA) funded research activity focuses on outcomes which promote the long-term sustainable growth of countries on the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) Development Assistance Committee (DAC) list.

ODA is administered using the promotion of the economic development and welfare of low and middle income countries (LMICs) as its main objective. To be counted as ODA, all activities (research or otherwise) must qualify under rules set down by the OECD.

To be ODA-eligible, the OECD states that research projects should be 'directly and primarily related to the problems of developing countries'. ODA must be embedded in your project from the beginning, and not added as an afterthought.

Read the OECD definition of ODA

Key questions to consider

Below are some key questions to consider when determining whether your proposal is ODA compliant:

  • Is the project or activity addressing the economic development and welfare of one or more LMICs?
  • Is this its primary motivation?
  • Is the LMIC in question on the OECD-DAC list?
  • Is the primary beneficiary either developing countries or developing and developed countries?
  • Is the country likely to be remain on the DAC list for the entire timescale of the funding?

Which countries are eligible for funding?

Only countries which are listed as Development Assistance Committee (DAC) countries on the OECD DAC list are eligible to receive ODA funding.

The DAC list is compiled by OECD, based on per capita GNI. DAC locations graduate from the list if they remain high income countries for three years.

View the DAC List of eligible countries

UCL guidance documents

Further UCL guidance for international researchers:

Contact your relevant research facilitator if you would like to see an example Pathway to Impact or ODA compliance statements.

ODA project categorisation on Worktribe

It is important that applicants capture ODA funding sources selecting the relevant tag in Worktribe. Information on overseas partners must be recorded in the Risk Assessment section.

Read UCL's ODA Worktribe guidance (pdf)