Davos & Inequality Continued: What does an alternative economic vision for the future look like?

Duncan Green - January 17, 2017

Deborah Hardoon, who really ought to be resting on her laurels after her report for Davos went viral yesterday, springs to the defence of (the right kind of) economics. Nerd Alert. As a student of economics, I always found the technical aspects of the subject deeply satisfying. Getting to the ‘right’ answer using algebra and statistics, solving ‘proofs’ and finding that stable equilibrium. Bliss. But …

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How does Change Happen in global commodities markets? The case of Palm Oil

Duncan Green - August 4, 2015

This week’s Economist had an interesting discussion of the change process in the global palm oil industry. I assume all its claims are highly contested, but still, allow me to walk you through it and what it says about how change happens in one bit of the private sector. The basics: a boom industry with a dire track record of deforestation, labour rights abuses on the …

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What kind of sustainable development goals should emerge from Rio?

admin - June 15, 2012

This post was also published today on the Guardian’s Poverty Matters blog I attended an ‘expert panel’ discussion recently on the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). Originating in a proposal by the Colombian government for what comes after 2015, when most of the Millennium Development Goals expire, some initial progress on the SDGs is being increasingly seen as one of the few wins from a rather …

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The doughnut is on a roll: where next for doughnut economics?

admin - June 14, 2012

Kate Raworth, Oxfam research colleague and host of the new ‘doughnut economics’ blog, updates us on her big idea, prior to Rio+20 My Oxfam discussion paper on social and planetary boundaries – aka the Doughnut – has gained a striking degree of traction in the debates running up to Rio+20. It’s been picked up by commentators such as George Monbiot, Grist and by the UN …

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How good/bad are different countries at turning carbon emissions into development?

admin - February 28, 2012

One result of the doughnut economics discussion is that we need to think much more about the carbon efficiency of development. So which countries are getting the best return on rising carbon emissions, in terms of life expectancy and per capita income? Here are two animated graphics of 13 country trajectories. The thirteen major countries comprise more than half of the world’s population and carbon …

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'The doughnut ‘compass’ is a powerful idea': Earth scientists respond to the doughnut…….

admin - February 14, 2012

Some initial thoughts on yesterday’s post on doughnut economics from Mark Stafford Smith and Will Steffen. Mark (left) is Science Director of the Climate Adaptation Flagship at CSIRO, Australia’s national science agency, and is Co-chair of the upcoming Planet Under Pressure: New Knowledge towards Solutions conference in London, March 2012. Will Steffen (right) is Executive Director of the Climate Change Institute at the Australian National …

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Can we live inside the doughnut? Why the world needs planetary and social boundaries

admin - February 13, 2012

This post (and commentaries over the next few days) presents some important new thinking by my research team colleague, Kate Raworth. It summarises her new Discussion Paper, published by Oxfam today.  When crossing unknown territory, a compass can be pretty handy. Achieving sustainable development for nine billion people has to be high on the list of humanity’s great uncharted journeys. So here’s an idea, in …

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What's the state of the world's water and land? New FAO report.

admin - December 5, 2011

This is encouraging. Alex Evans has been banging on for a while about the need for a ‘World Resources Report’ that charts the state of planetary resource stocks (not flows, like all the other reports). Now the UN’s Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) has done exactly that. The State of Land and Water Resources (SOLAW) is FAO’s first flagship publication on the global status of …

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From planetary ceilings to social floors: can we live inside the doughnut?

admin - October 24, 2011

This is a guest post and a request for comments and suggestions by Kate Raworth, Oxfam’s Senior Researcher, who is doing some really interesting thinking on new economics and the ‘post 2015 agenda’ – i.e. what comes after the MDGs. In 2009, 29 of the world’s leading Earth-system scientists drew up a set of nine ‘planetary boundaries’: critical natural processes that we must not breach …

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GROW: Oxfam’s new Global Campaign

admin - June 1, 2011

As promised, here’s the outline of the new 4 year Oxfam mega-campaign, GROW. The website is here, with the launch report ‘Growing a Better Future’ and lots of background papers and case studies. The point of departure for Grow is that the survival and flourishing of humanity in this century will be determined by its success in rising to two historic challenges: ending hunger and …

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