killer facts

Is it time to move on from Stats and Numbers to Metaphor and Narrative?

Duncan Green - November 23, 2016

Post Brexit and US elections, I’ve been doing some thinking about how we talk to people. It seems to me that, along with much of the aid and development sector, and quite a few other social change movements, we have been in thrall to the power of numbers and evidence. Everyone is a policy wonk these days. The trouble is, as this year’s political events …

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Please steal these killer facts: a crib sheet for advocacy on aid, development, inequality etc

Duncan Green - July 1, 2014

Regular FP2P readers will be heartily sick of used to me banging on about the importance of ‘killer facts‘ in NGO advocacy and general communications. Recently, I was asked to work with some of our finest policy wonks to put together some crib sheets for Oxfam’s big cheeses, who are more than happy for me to spread the love to you lot. So here are some …

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Killer factcheck: ‘Women own 2% of land’ = not true. What do we really know about women and land?

Duncan Green - March 21, 2014

Cheryl Doss, a feminist economist at Yale University argues that (as with ‘70% of the world’s poor are women‘ ) we need to stop using the unfounded ‘women own 2% of the world’s farmland’ stat, and start using some of the real numbers that are emerging (while also demanding much better gender data). For advocates, nothing is better than having a powerful statistic at your …

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Anatomy of a killer fact: the world’s 85 richest people own as much as the poorest 3.5 billion

Duncan Green - January 31, 2014

Ricardo Fuentes (@rivefuentes) reflects on a killer fact (85 individuals own as much wealth as half the world’s population) that made a big splash last week, and I add a few thoughts at the end. Last week we released a report on the relationship between the growing concentration of income and biases in political decision making. “Working for the  Few” got a lot of attention, …

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How to write Killer Facts and Graphics – what are your best examples?

admin - June 21, 2012

Time for a spot of crowd sourcing. We’ve had research guidelines on our intranet for ages, covering everything from survey design to writing for impact. Now we’re updating them and, more importantly, making some of them public on Oxfam’s Policy and Practice website. I’ve been lumbered with revising the ‘Killer Fact’ two pager, so naturally thought I would try and use the blog to get …

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Bailouts v aid v climate change – $ reveals priorities

admin - December 28, 2008

The most popular post ever on this blog was ‘How much is $700bn‘ – a set of ‘killer facts‘ on the initial US bailout. These days $700bn feels like small change, so it’s time for an update in the run up to Saturday’s Financing for Development meeting in Doha and Monday’s start to this year’s big climate change ‘conference of the parties’ in Poznan. ‘Skewed Priorities’, …

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US elections: killer facts, what happens now? And Palin the poet

admin - December 26, 2008

The December issue of my favourite current affairs magazine, Prospect, has some great analysis (laced with whimsy) of the election and transition. Top billing goes to an insightful assessment of Obama’s likely direction by Michael Lind. Lind cautions against euphoria, drawing on the already over-used comparison with FDR in predicting that Obama’s first term will mostly have to be devoted to dealing with the economic crisis. Sorting …

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Killer facts: a user's guide

admin - December 7, 2008

‘Killer Facts’, are those punchy, memorable, headline-grabbing statistics that are picked up by the media and politicians and have immediate impact. In influencing terms, the right killer fact can be more effective than dozens of well-researched reports.

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