Month: November 2011

Europe's technodreamers; seeing like a statistician; Bill Easterly luvs aid; tax havens explained; slapping the CAP; water grabs; the last lonely dictator: links I liked

Paul Krugman explains why Europe’s ‘technocrats’  (like technocrats everywhere) are actually dangerous dreamers, not seekers after truth. This worries me – I am increasingly thinking like a statistician (see right)……. [h/t Grandiloquent Bloviator] Bill Easterly defends aid; man bites dog etc. Excellent new website on tax havens – definitions, killer facts, policy solutions and a…

By admin November 30, 2011 1

Soccer, mobile workshops and struggle: how change happens in Bolivia

I’ ve been locked away all week with Oxfam’s big cheeses, who meet twice a year for a week’s deep thought, collective therapy and an avalanche of management-speak. The theme this time was ‘how change happens’ (HCH): everyone arrived with a programme story + analysis of the change process. They were fascinating, and I’ll probably…

By admin November 25, 2011 3

The future of aid – what's at stake in Busan

The next couple of weeks see big international conferences on aid effectiveness (Busan) and climate change (Durban), providing a chance to take the temperature of the multilateral system. Here Gideon Rabinowitz of the UK Aid Network assesses the prospects for Busan. From 29 Nov-1 Dec over 2,000 aid policy-makers and practitioners – including over 100 Ministers,…

By admin November 24, 2011 2

Water fights; creative Diasporas; untranslatable relationships; magic mobiles; Bangladesh land grabbers; online data on doing evil/good; cash transfers and pregnancy; sympathy for the vulture: links I liked

Two useful briefings in this week’s Economist. On the gloomy side, a survey of rising water conflicts in South Asia. More positive, a look at how international diaspora networks of migrants are some of the most creative, dynamic players in the global economy, which these days are more likely to link host and home country…

By admin November 23, 2011 4

The Spider Trees of Sindh

An unexpected side-effect of the flooding in parts of Pakistan has been that millions of spiders have climbed up into the trees to escape the rising flood waters. Because of the scale of the flooding and the fact that the water has taken so long to recede, many trees have become cocooned in spiders webs.…

By admin November 21, 2011 3

Why don't more NGOs work on water? Guest post from Dan Yeo, WaterAid

Daniel Yeo, Senior Policy Analyst at WaterAid (twitter handle @yukinosaru), indulges in some outrageously blatant lobbying about why Oxfam should do more on water. A few weeks ago, Duncan posted his reflections on Oxfam’s discussions on water. As pleased as I am about Oxfam’s interest, it begs the question, why haven’t more development NGOs dived into water…

By admin November 18, 2011 9

So how many of the world's people are hungry? Dunno. Work in progress…….

Richard King, my highly numerate colleague, grapples with the confusion surrounding the FAO’s hunger numbers. Global hunger numbers must be among the most widely quoted and over-interpreted of all the indicators at development wonks’ and campaigners’ disposal. ‘One billion people (one in seven of the world’s population) go to bed hungry’ is a compelling headline…

By admin November 17, 2011 4