Topic: Health and Education

Nothing to Learn from East Asia?

This post by Jomo Kwame Sundaram was first posted on the IPS website Covid-19 infection and death rates in the Western world and many developing countries in Asia and Latin America have long overtaken East Asia since the second quarter of 2020. Perhaps unsurprisingly, considering prevailing Western accounts of the Asian financial crises, there have […]

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Can Financial Diaries help us understand life in fragile and conflict-affected settings?

Regular readers will know I’m a big fan of diaries as a research tool into issues such as governance and finance. Here Sandrine N’simire, Ishara Tchumisi and Patricia Stys, of LSE’s Centre for Public Authority in International Development, discuss their experiences conducting research using ‘financial diaries’ as part of LSE’s Water Governance project in Goma, DRC. This […]

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Has Covid been a tipping point for Universal Social Protection? Here’s what we know

Crises act as tipping points. Local crises and conflicts can galvanize a social movement or discredit a leader in a given location. Global crises change far more than that – the 2008 financial crisis has been credited with everything from sparking the rise of right-wing populism (hopefully now heading for a historical dustbin near you) […]

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Gender, Power and Progress: How Norms Change

A very good paper on a fascinating and important topic, by Caroline Harper, Rachel Marcus, Rachel George, Sophia M. D’Angelo, Emma Samman, published by ODI and ALIGN. The research questions are ambitious: how gender norms have changed over the past quarter-century, what has supported and blocked changes to gender norms in a number of sectors, and how to ensure […]

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Philanthropy: a History. Kevin Watkins reviews a big new book

Guest post from Kevin Watkins Have you ever wondered what links Bono and Bill Gates to Moses, Socrates, Basil the Great, a 4th Century AD bishop in Asia Minor, and the ‘gilded age’ industrialist Andrew Carnegie? Me neither. But Paul Vallely’s magisterial book Philanthropyprovides the answer. Tracing the ties that bind contemporary philanthropists to the […]

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Coronavirus as a Catalyst for Global Civil Society: new report

The Carnegie Endowment for International Peace is doing some great research on civil society responses to Covid. It’s latest, published yesterday, is Coronavirus as a Catalyst for Global Civil Society. Its a bit more distanced and neutral than the Civicus work I highlighted recently, and the two approaches complement each other nicely. The Carnegie report’s […]

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Social Protection in a Time of Covid – 4 takeaways and 4 big gaps from a recent global discussion

Larissa Pelham, Oxfam’s Social Protection Adviser, reports back on a 4 day Zoomathon Covid-19 has catapulted social protection into the spotlight.  From furloughing to school feeding programmes delivered to homes, 212 states and territories across the world have planned or delivered 1179 social protection interventions in response to the pandemic.  It is the backbone support […]

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Initial Findings on Emergent Agency in a time of Covid – launch webinar and briefing

In September we kicked off a really interesting project on ‘Emergent Agency in a Time of Covid’, asking people if they wanted to be part of a collective effort to share and discuss the grassroots responses to the pandemic and start to explore their longer-term legacy. The response was encouraging (even a bit overwhelming!), and […]

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Malawi is the only place where democracy has improved under Covid. 80 countries have got worse.

Blimey. You never know when a tweet is going to hit the spot and get a lot of retweets and likes. That’s what happened this week with a map I tweeted from The Economist, taken from an article entitled ‘The pandemic has eroded democracy and respect for human rights’ (gated). Quite a lot of questions […]

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Voices from the pandemic frontlines: Health worker protests and proposals from 84 countries

Guest post by Jennifer Johnson for the Accountability Research Center The COVID-19 pandemic has put unprecedented strain on health care systems around the world. Frontline health workers have faced great risks, from lack of personal protective equipment (PPE) to discrimination and harassment. Some face repercussions for whistleblowing or walkouts. This evolving situation has given rise […]

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Civic Freedoms and The Covid-19 Pandemic: A Snapshot of Restrictions and Attacks

Civicus, the international network of Civil Society Organizations, has just put out a brief on the impact of the pandemic on protest and activism around the world. Some highlights (my summary in square brackets) [Civic activism hasn’t entirely stopped, but it has moved from mass mobilization to a greater emphasis on symbolism and imagination] ‘2019 […]

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Power and the Pandemic: Observing COVID-19 in Africa through a Public Authorities Lens

This post went up yesterday on the LSE Africa Centre blog, plugging a new paper I co-edited with Tom Kirk Most discussion of Africa’s response to COVID-19 takes place at the national level, focussing on the role of formal state authorities. However, less is known about the role of ‘public authorities’: traditional chiefs, self-help groups, […]

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