Talk is cheap, but will the World Bank really step up on inequality?

Duncan Green - October 4, 2016

Max Lawson, Oxfam’s Head of Development Finance and Public Services raises the curtain this week’s World Bank and IMF Annual Meetings before hopping on the plane to Washington I have been going to the Annual Meetings of the World Bank and IMF longer than I care to remember, certainly since most Oxfam policy wonks were still at school. Every time I go to the office …

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The 2016 Multidimensional Poverty Index was launched yesterday. What does it say?

Duncan Green - June 3, 2016

This is at the geeky, number-crunching end of my spectrum, but I think it’s worth a look (and anyway, they asked nicely). The 2016 Multi-Dimensional Poverty Index was published yesterday. It now covers 102 countries in total, including 75 per cent of the world’s population, or 5.2 billion people. Of this proportion, 30 per cent of people (1.6 billion) are identified as multidimensionally poor. The …

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Book Review: The Economics of Poverty by Martin Ravallion

Duncan Green - May 5, 2016

Oxfam inequality number cruncher Deborah Hardoon reviews The Economics of Poverty by Martin Ravallion.  It’s hard to think of a better placed individual than Martin Ravallion to have written this book. Not only has he spent over 30 years working on poverty, including 24 years at the World Bank, but in 1990 it was Martin Ravallion who, during dinner with his wife had an ‘epiphany …

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The income of the world’s poor is going up, but they’re $1 trillion poorer. What’s going on?

Duncan Green - April 28, 2016

Oxfam number cruncher Deborah Hardoon tries to get her head round something weird – according to the stats, the poorest half of the people are getting poorer even though their incomes are rising. It has become something of a tradition that in January every year we take a look at the Forbes list of billionaires and the Credit Suisse Global Wealth databook and calculate how …

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Who is the richest man in history? The answer (ICYMI) might surprise you

Duncan Green - September 25, 2015

3rd in this series of re-posts of the most read FP2P pieces over the summer comes from Ricardo Fuentes, who has since gone off to be big boss at Oxfam Mexico. Here he introduces Oxfam Mexico’s new report on one of Mexico’s many claims to fame – the richest man in history. In his 2011 book, The Haves and The Have Nots,  Branko Milanovic asked a simple …

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Is doing something about inequality a choice between bash the rich v tackling poverty? Some thoughts for Blog Action Day

Duncan Green - October 16, 2014

Today is Blog Action Day, and we’re all supposed to blog about inequality. Ricardo Fuentes (Oxfam Head of Research) & his team are even marking the day by kicking off a new inequality-themed blog, Mind the Gap – check it out. I’ve already done my more general call to arms for BAD, so here’s something more in keeping with this blog’s usual tone of navel-gazing uncertainty: I’m …

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Are we measuring the right things? The latest multidimensional poverty index is launched today – what do you think?

Duncan Green - June 16, 2014

I’m definitely not a stats geek, but every now and then, I get caught up in some of the nerdy excitement generated by measuring the state of the world. Take today’s launch (in London, but webstreamed) of a new ‘Global Multidimensional Poverty Index 2014’ for example – it’s fascinating. This is the fourth MPI (the first came out in 2010), and is again produced by …

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20 million food parcels (and counting): what explains rising food poverty in the UK?

Duncan Green - June 9, 2014

Oxfam works on poverty in the UK as well as elsewhere, and is pretty alarmed at what it is facing there. Here Krisnah Poinasamy, Economic Justice Policy Adviser for our UK programme, introduces a new report on hunger in the UK. Today, Oxfam and its partners released Below The Breadline, a shocking report, which estimates that 20 million meals were given out by three main …

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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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Should India be sending a rocket to Mars when 40% of children are malnourished? Vote now.

admin - November 5, 2013

We interrupt complexity week with a quick question – what do you think about India’s Mars space  project? The Indian Space Research Organisation today launches a rocket which it hopes will get to Mars before the Chinese space programme – BRICS in space. Cue lots of outrage – in a country where 40% of children are malnourished and half the population have no toilets, wouldn’t the mission’s …

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