About CDA

CDA Collaborative Learning Projects (CDA) is a non-profit organization committed to improving the effectiveness of those who work to provide humanitarian assistance, engage in peace practice, support sustainable development, and conduct corporate operations in a socially responsible manner. We combine rigorous analysis with pragmatic field-level work and deliver practical tools to field staff and policymakers alike.

Our Vision

Our vision is a future where communities and nations demonstrate resilience, drive their own development, and resolve conflicts without resorting to armed violence.

Our Mission

CDA’s mission is to advance that vision by supporting the application of lessons from collaborative learning processes to improve effective and accountable engagements that result in significant, positive, lasting change for people and societies.

Our Expertise

CDA is widely recognized for its established expertise in the professional fields of Accountability and Feedback Loops, Conflict Sensitivity/Do No Harm, Peacebuilding Effectiveness, and Responsible Business.

Our expertise is rooted in evidence-based collaborative learning projects, and in the extensive advisory work, that we have completed and continue to perform. Throughout the years we have worked in more than seventy conflict-affected and fragile contexts!

CDA is based in the United States, but now has an office in Myanmar, which was established to support local application of conflict-sensitivity practices.

If you, or someone you know, is the trustee of a grant-making body we would welcome the opportunity to discuss our work and how you or they might become involved. Please contact Executive Director Peter Woodrow at pwoodrow@cdacollaborative.org or call 617 661 6310.

CDA Staff

CDA maintains a group of core staff that has extensive experience in zones of conflict. They have worked in over ninety countries and travel regularly to field locations. They have worked with several hundred international and local organizations, including governments, United Nations agencies, the World Bank, universities, training centers, corporations and non-governmental organizations.

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CDA Staff Photo
Annual Reports
What is the difference between CDA Collaborative Learning Projects and Collaborative for Development Action?

The Collaborative for Development Action, Inc. was founded as a small consulting agency in 1985 by Mary B. Anderson and Catherine A. Overholt. CDA, Inc. was active in health policy, primary and secondary education, rural development, alternative technologies and evaluations, and gender dimensions of international assistance. As CDA, Inc. increasingly raised its funds from government donors, it became clear that a non-profit entity would provide a better base for its work.  Consequently, CDA Collaborative Learning Projects was created in 2003 as the continuing non-profit home for these efforts.

What does CDA stand for?

Historically, CDA stood for the acronym of our legal name between 1985-2003: The Collaborative for Development Action. Since 2003 CDA no longer stands for the acronym, and our legal name was changed to: CDA Collaborative Learning Projects.