Topic: Climate change

Parts of the aid system just don’t work – the dismal cycle of humanitarian response

Every now and then an email stops me in my tracks, reminding me that Oxfam is stuffed full of bright, motivated, altruistic people. Here’s one I got a few weeks ago from Debbie Hillier, one of our Humanitarian Policy Advisers, in response to my request for thoughts on the state of the aid business. Her […]

Read More »

Desertification is a dangerous Myth – A new book explains why

Oxfam researcher John Magrath reviews an explosive new book I started off life as a newspaper journalist so I appreciate the power of a good story. And that’s what the concept of desertification provides. Since the great Sahelian droughts of the 1970s and 1980s, we’ve become familiar with the idea that humans cause environmental desiccation […]

Read More »

Book Review: Eden 2.0: Climate Change and the Search for a 21st Century Myth, by Alex Evans

In his new book, Eden 2.0 (just 68 pages, published today, but currently only available on Kindle, which is bad news for technophobes and tree killers like me, or people who dislike Amazon), Alex Evans asks a question that has been uppermost in every Remainer’s mind in recent days ‘if evidence and rational arguments aren’t […]

Read More »

Michael Jacobs on how civil society and others achieved the Paris Climate Agreement

A brilliant analysis by Michael Jacobs of the success factors behind last year’s Paris Climate Agreement appeared in Juncture, IPPR’s quarterly journal  recently. Jacobs unpacks the role of civil society (broadly defined) and political leadership. Alas, it’s over 4,000 words long, so as a service to my attention deficit colleagues in aid and development, here’s […]

Read More »

Is Paris more like Kyoto or Montreal?

Celine Charveriat, (@MCcharveriat) Oxfam’s Director of Advocacy & Campaigns, looks at what happens next and when/why international agreements actually get implemented. As the ink of the new Paris agreement is not yet dry, many are wondering whether this partly-binding package, which is not a treaty, stands any chance of reaching its target of capping global […]

Read More »

How on earth can you measure resilience? A wonk Q&A

Resilience is one of today’s omnipresent development fuzzwords, applied to individuals, communities, businesses, countries, ideas and just about everything else. But how can it best be measured? To plug their new paper on the topic, Oxfam’s measurement wonks Jonathan Lain (left) and Rob Fuller (right) argue with their imaginary non-wonk friend…… So they’ve let the […]

Read More »

Why Paris must succeed – a brilliant video message from space

Heading into the final 24 hours (ahem…) of the Paris Climate Change negotiations, I wish the sleep deprived ministers and sherpas on whose decisions our collective fate rests could find 8 minutes to watch this brilliant message from the world’s astronauts And here’s Alex Evans with a bit of background

Read More »

China’s rise, Cyclone politics and extreme patronage: Impressions of Vanuatu

As part of their support for the How Change Happens book, the Aussie government is also giving me a crash course in development in the Pacific. Last year, they took me to Papua New Guinea (blogs here), then last week, I headed for Vanuatu (small island archipelago, 270,000 population, best known – at least in […]

Read More »

You’re wrong Kate. Degrowth is a compelling word

Giorgos Kallis responds to yesterday’s post on degrowth by Kate Raworth, plus you get a chance to vote My friend Kate Raworth ‘cannot bring herself to use the word’ degrowth. Here are nine reasons why I use it. 1. Clear definition. ‘Degrowth’ is as clear as it gets. Definitely no less clear than ‘equality’; or ‘economic […]

Read More »

How will the Paris attacks affect the outcome of the Climate Change talks?

When British Prime Minister Harold MacMillan was asked what he most feared in politics, he replied ‘Events, dear boy. Events’. The official sherpas and their political masters preparing for the global climate change talks in Paris, which start today, must be feeling much the same way, their already complicated task further beset by concerns over […]

Read More »

What’s changed since Copenhagen? Curtain raiser for the Paris climate talks  

Tracy Carty, Oxfam Climate Change Policy Adviser, with an excerpt from its Paris media briefing, published today The last time leaders got together to agree a global climate deal it ended in multilateral meltdown.  Copenhagen was widely condemned as a failure – a failure that still haunts the climate negotiations, and one that governments meeting […]

Read More »

Why being scooped by Piketty is no bad thing for Oxfam (but what will the government of India think?)

Guest post from Tim Gore, Oxfam’s climate change policy czar  No-one likes to be scooped, least of all researchers who have battled through Oxfam’s internal sign-off process. But when the authors who beat you to the publication punch include one of the most famous economists in the world – as we experienced last week – […]

Read More »