Topic: Global Financial and Economic Crisis

Is effective global governance now impossible? If so, what comes next?

As negotiations on a global Arms Trade Treaty kicked the can down the road last week, adding to a litany of stalemates that includes talks on climate change (UNFCCC), trade (WTO) or sustainability (Rio+20), it’s worth reading a thought-provoking new paper from CGD’s William Savedoff (right) on the reasons for this collapse of effective global governance. […]

Read More »

Why is migration a Cinderella issue in Development?

Last week I had to speak on ‘Why is migration not a bigger development issue?’ at an IPPR/CGD seminar. The seminar (and the question) really got me thinking. The main speaker was Michael Clemens, CGD’s migration guru (as well as part-time bête noire of the Millennium Villages Project). He was brilliant – going well beyond […]

Read More »

What kind of sustainable development goals should emerge from Rio?

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 […]

Read More »

"Be Outraged!" Some big names in development take on the Austerians

This week Oxfam supported the publication of ‘Be Outraged’, an angry and eloquent broadside from some big names in the development scene, including Richard Jolly, Carlos Fortin, Giovanni Andrea Cornia, Diane Elson, Ruth Pearson, Frances Stewart and Stephany Griffith Jones. Many of them led the fightback in the late 1980s against the excesses of the […]

Read More »

‘As serious as a heart attack’: Robin Hood Tax Global Week of Action Kicks Off

Update on substantial progress (and the risk the money raised won’t go to development and climate change) from Oxfam head of advocacy (and generally merry man) Max Lawson This week sees a Global Week of Action for the campaign for the Robin Hood Tax (aka the Financial Transactions Tax, or FTT). The FTT rose to prominence […]

Read More »

'It’s the share of the rich, stupid': brilliant inequality stats + politics from Gabriel Palma

A while back I reposted Andy Sumner’s blog on new research on inequality from the Chilean economist Gabriel Palma (right). But I’ve now read the paper, catchily titled ‘Homogeneous middles vs. heterogeneous tails, and the end of the ‘Inverted-U’: the share of the rich is what it’s all about’ and am so blown away, that I […]

Read More »

How can we measure Scotland's well-being? New index from Oxfam.

Really interesting project from Katherine Trebeck and colleagues in Oxfam’s UK Poverty Programme – constructing and testing a wellbeing index for Scotland. Guardian coverage here. Here’s how it works: Oxfam consulted 3,000 people across Scotland (focus groups, community workshops – see pic, street stalls, an online survey, and a YouGov poll) to establish what aspects of […]

Read More »

How poor people get through crises: some excellent 'rapid social anthropology' from IDS and the World Bank

On Wednesday, I spoke at the launch of a new book, Living Through Crises: How the Food, Fuel and Financial Shocks Affect the Poor, by Rasmus Heltberg, Naomi Hossain and Anna Reva. It’s a joint World Bank and IDS publication, also available for free online. I think it could prove quite influential. The starting point […]

Read More »

Why are rich countries trying to silence alternative economic voices at the UN?

The UN system is normally a terribly polite sort of place, but something is seriously amiss at UNCTAD. Despite its name (The UN Conference on Trade and Development), UNCTAD is a permanent body founded in 1964, which even at the height of Washington Consensus orthodoxy, provided developing countries with an invaluable source of thinking on […]

Read More »

Are aid cuts inevitable and if so, what should aid campaigners do about it?

While I was snowed in in a holiday cottage last week (quite fun actually, especially when you’ve packed your West Wing box set just in case), the 2011 OECD aid numbers came out (see table). The numbers show total aid falling in real terms for the first time since 1997. What was also striking was […]

Read More »

Robin Hood Tax update: more campaign success on the Financial Transactions Tax

The RHT campaign continues to show the remarkable ‘how change happens’ potential of a response to shocks (in this case, financial crash + austerity = governments desperate for new sources of revenue + impending collapse of aid flows from many donors + massive public antipathy towards the banking sector = perfect time to campaign for […]

Read More »

What should a European Voice on Development actually say?

Had a slightly frustrating session (but they’re often the most productive) at ODI recently on the next-but-one (2013) European Report on Development, which will be on the post-2015 debate, aka what comes after the MDGs (ODI’s doing lots on this). My frustration sprang from the contrast between the avowed mission of the ERD – to […]

Read More »