USAID’s Office of Transition Initiatives (OTI) engaged Dexis to advance the Government of Ethiopia’s ability to articulate and implement its democratic reform agenda in coordination with the U.S. Embassy and USAID colleagues in Ethiopia, in addition to international donors and other stakeholders.


The Dexis-led USAID/OTI Ethiopia project is a fast and adaptable team working to help the Government of Ethiopia (GOE) advance critical reforms and stabilize the political transition, which hopes to demonstrate success following the recent appointment of Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed. Despite achieving unprecedented and important human rights, democratic, and diplomatic milestones, worsening regional violence and increased ethno-nationalist sentiment threaten continued forward motion toward a stable, democratic society. Together with OTI, civil society, and GOE partners, Dexis has developed a robust workplan to support sustainable democratic change. This will be achieved by awarding small grant activities to people and organizations working to sustain democratic progress at the federal and regional level.


  • Will increase our understanding of how non-state actors leverage violence. The program will develop activities to counter these violent instigators and discourage conflict entrepreneurs.
  • Will help ameliorate significant cases of violence through programming in Addis Ababa and in regions of Ethiopia critical to the success of this democratic transition.
  • Will help build and strengthen an enabling environment for the GOE’s democratic transition through coordinated technical support, outreach programs, and public campaigns.
  • Will support new democracy programming by increasing transparency and professionalism during social and political events of critical importance to the transition.
  • Will encourage development of an “Ethiopian” identity as opposed to conflictive, ethno-nationalist ones.
  • Will increase Ethiopian trust in regional and federal governments and institutions through capacity-building work with key government and civic counterparts.
  • Will convene civil leaders and prominent media actors to counter negative messaging and amplify positive community voices on social media.
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