The USAID Office of Transition Initiatives (OTI) is the office within USAID that supports U.S. foreign policy objectives by helping local partners advance peace and democracy in priority countries in crisis. Seizing critical windows of opportunity, OTI works on the ground to provide fast, flexible, short-term assistance targeting key political transition and stabilization needs.

OTI targets its uniquely-designed programming in countries experiencing a political crisis or emerging from conflict. Since 1994, OTI has helped establish a foundation for longer-term development assistance in 32 countries by promoting reconciliation, fostering peace and democracy, providing income generation, and jumpstarting nascent government operations.

Our Work

OTI works with local agents of change, including indigenous non-governmental organizations, civil society, media groups, and local and national government offices. Programs are designed to meet the specific needs of the country and, once started, OTI programs are responsive and designed to adjust to fluid situations. In addition to the core Transition Initiatives account, OTI programs have received funding from: the International Disaster and Famine Assistance (IDFA) Account, the Economic Support Fund (ESF), and funding through supplementals. OTI programs empower local partners to reduce conflict, increase transparency and accountability, and foster positive political change through:

• Quick-impact projects that highlight peace dividends

• Bringing people from feuding ethnic or religious groups to work productively together

• Disseminating fair and unbiased information more widely through open media outlets

• Fostering linkages between civil society and national and local government bodies

• Re-integrating ex-combatants and displaced persons and protecting vulnerable populations, often from refugee camps and persecuted minority groups

• Strengthening governance at the national and local level, encouraging more responsiveness to citizen needs

• Working directly with the country leadership to bolster strategic communications and functional capacity of the executive branch

Working for OTI

To respond quickly and effectively and meet its program objectives and mandate, OTI retains a group of high level professionals and experts under U.S. Personal Services Contracts (USPSCs). These knowledgeable and skilled professionals make up the vast majority of the OTI work force and are at its forefront implementing and achieving the office's programmatic goals and objectives. In additional to full-time USPSCs, OTI also utilizes their "bullpen," a highly skilled group of intermittent USPSCs that provide OTI with surge capability. These senior field and management advisors can be deployed quickly based on the needs of a program.

For additional information about OTI, please visit the USAID/OTI website or view the OTI Twenty-Year Report.

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