Topic: how change happens

What have we learned about the care economy from 7 years’ work in 25 countries?

Oxfam has just published an interesting overview of its work on unpaid care and domestic work (UCDW) in over 25 countries since 2013, which I recommend as a good intro to an increasingly important topic in the aid and development biz. Firstly, the history: ‘Conversations on UCDW have evolved over the decades from the ‘domestic […]

Read More »

Difficult Women: A History of Feminism in 11 Fights. Book Review

How many friends and relatives can you buy the same book for as a Christmas present, without getting into trouble for your lack of imagination? Difficult Women has everything – a great and funny writer in Helen Lewis, and a fascinating and page-turning introduction to the history of northern, mainly UK, feminism. Here’s the pitch: […]

Read More »

What are we seeing so far on Emergent Agency in Covid? Top insights, plus next steps.

Spent an intense two hours last week on a webinar discussing the initial findings, hypotheses etc of our Emergent Agency in a Time of Covid project. We had some great panellists (Laurence Cox, Yogesh Ghore, and Katherine Marshall) on social movements, livelihoods and faith organizations, respectively. I cross examined, Irene Guijt chaired, and a good […]

Read More »

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 […]

Read More »

Glass half empty or half full? Debating the underlying narrative on the US election.

My colleague at Oxfam America, Paul O’Brien, has a book out on Monday (review to follow) on the agenda for a Biden-Harris administration. He must have been chewing his nails more than most on election night. Since then, we’ve had an interesting exchange on what lessons to draw for the wider progressive movement – broadly, […]

Read More »

Why don’t Faith Groups and Anti-Corruption Activists Work Together More?

Guest post by Katherine Marshall, who will be one of the panelists at tomorrow’s webinar on ‘Emergent Agency in a time of Covid 19’ (register here) Religious actors and transparency/accountability advocates ought to be natural allies, but all too often, they barely communicate, much less work actively together. That is a huge missed opportunity for […]

Read More »

An Uplifting Account of Civil Society Responses to Covid

A couple of posts to whet your appetite for our seminar on Thursday on ‘Emergent Agency in a time of Covid-19’. Last week Civicus, the global network of civil society organizations (CSOs) published an excellent report on ‘Solidarity in the Time of Covid-19’. It’s an upbeat 60 page snapshot of a vast amount of CSO […]

Read More »

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 […]

Read More »

Book Review: How to Rig an Election, by Nic Cheeseman and Brian Klaas

Thought I’d repost this book review from 2018 today. No particular reason…. A lot of the power of a successful book is in its ‘big idea’ – the overall frame that endures long after the detailed arguments have faded in the memory. On that basis, ‘How to Rig an Election’ looks set to do very […]

Read More »

Which developing countries have managed to reduce income inequality and why?

The wheels of academia grind slowly, but eventually grind out some fascinating stuff. Five years ago, I was involved in a series of conversations about the need for research on the history of redistribution in developing countries. What can we learn from low/middle income countries that have actually managed to reduce inequality (a bit like […]

Read More »

Open Access rocks – How Change Happens is four years old this week and OA has made all the difference

It’s Open Access Week this week (what, you’d missed it?), which I generally use as an excuse to do my annual round-up of stats on How Change Happens, and make the case for OA books, not just journals. Bit of background. The book was published by OUP in October 2016. We negotiated open access from […]

Read More »

5 Common Mistakes when NGOs start strategizing

I’ve been having similar conversations in several places over the last couple of weeks, which usually triggers a post. People send me a draft strategy document and say ‘what do you think?’ I take a deep breath and launch in. Half an hour later they look a bit shell-shocked, but (these are NGOs after all), […]

Read More »