From a report for the Overseas Development Council by W. Donald Bowles and Elena B. Arefieva:
U.S. and Soviet scientists and others have met frequently in scientific and cultural exchanges, but the idea of the two countries mounting cooperative efforts to assist third parties is very new. In our view, the case for joint U.S. and U.S.S.R. efforts in the development cooperation field -- efforts ranging from parallel, separately administered work to more closely integrated development projects or programs where these are desired by developing-country partners and feasible -- is compelling on many grounds... .
While significant differences remain, there has been something of a convergence of Soviet and Western views on the strategy of and policy toward development assistance, which in turn reflects changes in foreign policy and in the ideological emphasis of the two countries. Today, East and West both acknowledge the important role that markets can play in development, the critical needs of agriculture, the stimulating effects of exports, and the importance of limiting the sphere of government intervention. With some exceptions, the common goals emerging from this convergence are the alleviation of global poverty and the transfer of resources from developed to developing countries to help them overcome lags in education, public health and technology -- all with less regard than in the past to the sociopolitical path that they have chosen to pursue. Some joint U.S.-U.S.S.R. efforts already are in place. Currently, many cooperative agreements between the United States and the Soviet Union provide for the exchange of personnel, information, and technology in science, technology, education, and cultural areas, and the number of such agreements is increasing.