This Sunday, Brazilians decide between two progressive women presidents. How do they compare?

Duncan Green - October 2, 2014

Oxfam’s  country director, Simon Ticehurst (right), fills in the background ahead of this weekend’s election Some colleagues asked me this week, what is going to happen in the elections and who should I vote for? First up, prediction is not my forte. Last year in June I sent an optimistic briefing on Brazil to Oxfam´s CEO, saying that poverty was coming down, inequality was coming …

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Is Brazil’s social/economic miracle running out of steam just as the World Cup arrives?

Duncan Green - June 4, 2014

Is Brazil’s shambolic preparation for the World Cup a symptom of a deeper malaise? Oxfam researcher Katherine Trebeck (@ktrebeck) reflects on a recent visit I bandy about the term ‘economic model’ quite a lot, usually prefaced by the word ‘broken’ in reference to the UK’s purported economic recovery. But the UK is not alone in meriting a derogatory descriptor.  In a recent trip to Brazil I …

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What do Protests in Turkey, Brazil etc have in common? Six surprising facts

admin - June 27, 2013

Nice reflection from Moises Naim in El Pais. It was published in Spanish, so this is brought to you c/o Google Translate – took about 15 minutes to tidy up the rough edges. V impressed. “First it was Tunisia, then Chile and Turkey. And now Brazil. What do the street protests in such different countries have in common? Several things … and all amazing. One. …

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Brazil v South Africa: what can the BRICS tell us about overcoming inequality?

admin - March 20, 2013

The blog’s inequality week here in South Africa continues with some thoughts on inequality and the BRICS. An edited version of this post appeared earlier this week on the FT’s Beyond BRICS blog The acronym may have been cooked up in far-off New York, but the BRICS grouping of countries is starting to generate some interesting life of its own. Last week, I was in …

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Is food the new oil? Fertiliser wars and Brazil as food superpower

admin - August 30, 2010

In the Financial Times, Javier Blas gives us the back-story to the attempt by the world’s largest mining company, BHP Billiton, to buy its largest fertiliser company, PotashCorp. Suddenly fertiliser is big business: in the first eight months of the year, deals valued at $61bn have been announced by companies in the industry, a high that more than doubles the peak hit in 2008. Why? “Countries …

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Brazil's boom; Africa's pentecostals; food fears and more reasons to invest in health: highlights from this week's Economist

admin - July 6, 2010

Another bumper issue of the Economist this week. Here are some snapshots from my four favourite articles: Politics: A three page feature on Brazil, as its election campaign kicks off today. Constitutional term limits means that Lula is stepping down, despite 75% approval ratings (amazing, after eight years in office), but the country’s success means his chosen successor, Dilma Rousseff, is ahead in the polls: …

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Successful Green Industrial Policy – Brazilian biofuels

admin - May 11, 2010

The highly polarized debate on the role of industrial policy in development is dominated by discussions of the East Asian tigers, so good to see a discussion from another continent on what makes for successful state intervention – Brazil and biofuels. Here’s the highlights from a recent article by Tarun Khanna of the Harvard Business School and Santiago Mingo of the University of Miami School …

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What can the BRICS teach us about reducing poverty?

admin - November 19, 2009

An excellent new paper from the prolific Martin Ravallion, head of the World Bank’s research department, compares the successes in poverty reduction in three of the biggest beasts of the developing world: China, India and Brazil. Between them, these countries are home to a bit less than half the world’s poor people, but it used to be a lot more. Each has combined market-oriented reforms …

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Brazil is top of the world on an environmental issue – recycling

admin - January 21, 2009

I’m mugging up on green jobs as part of the research for a forthcoming paper on the need for a ‘global green new deal’ and came across this great and (to me) unexpected example from Brazil. It’s drawn from UNEP’s ‘Green Jobs’ paper. Brazil is the global leader in aluminium can recycling — some 10.3 billion cans were collected in Brazil in 2006. This saves the …

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