Project name: Tatweer (Iraq National Capacity Development)

Country: Iraq

Project Description:

MSI’s highly successful National Capacity Development program, or Tatweer – the largest public administration project funded by USAID since the 1960s – trained over 108,000 Iraqi civil servants in 15 critical Iraqi ministries and offices delivering services to the Iraqi people.  With Arabic-speaking advisers, the program helped rebuild Iraq’s civil service as part of a U.S. commitment to a strong, independent Iraqi government providing its people with food, medicine, power and a better future. The project’s emphasis was on long-term, sustainable Iraqi capacity to train civil servants and implement advances in their business processes.

Employees: Number of local employees: 275  Number of expats (including third party nationals [TCN]): 80                                                                                                                                                        

Funds:   Total: $339 million                          

Amount passed through as grants or subcontracts: $150 million



Major Companies

  • Louis Berger Group
  • RTI
  • NAPA
  • Cardno

Smaller Partners

  • Kaizen
  • Sallyport
  • ForumOne
  • AmidEast
  • AMEG

Much of the Iraqi government was a client for Tatweer. Special emphasis on:

  • Iraqi Ministry of Planning
  • National Center for Consultancy and Management Development
  • Central Office for Standards and Quality Control
  • Office of the Prime Minister
  • Presidency Diwan
  • Kurdish Regional Government

Capacity-building interventions:

Tatweer trained 108,000 Iraqi civil servants, leaving a permanent Iraqi capability to train its own staff. Tatweer’s mostly Arabic-speaking advisors built Iraq’s ministry training institutions to the point where government trainers could conduct the core courses in public administration without assistance. The institutions and their staff received master training in technical subjects, training administration and curriculum development, as well as NAPA-certified curricula in Strategic Planning, Leadership & Communications, Project Management, Budgeting, Finance, and Procurement, Information Technology and Human Resources. The government of Iraq has demonstrated the qualitative change that views training as a critical function of government by putting millions of dollars for training centers, staff and resources into the operating budget of ministries that worked with Tatweer.

Civil servants that benefited from Tatweer training have gone on to train other Iraq government officials; lead change programs within the government; establish new units within government structures to improve public administration; and push new initiatives that would improve the performance of their ministries. The improved business practices promoted by Tatweer advisors and alumna serve to streamline service delivery; simplified procurement rules facilitate the issuance of contracts to pick-up garbage and provide schoolbooks to Iraqi children. As a corollary benefit, the cycle of newly trained civil servants improving their working environments supports a shift from an immobile hierarchy to a culture of constant improvement, and to a devolution of authority to staff closer to their clients, the Iraqi people.

Sustainable legacy:

Tatweer has built a cadre of Iraqi government employees who have the skills and the commitment to return Iraq to its former preeminence as the region’s most progressive and responsive government.