Welcome to From Poverty to Power

This platform explores the latest thinking and action on international development, highlighting issues of power, politics, hope and justice. It is curated by Duncan Green and Maria Faciolince.


Latest Posts

How do we get the institutions right on climate change?

Normally, I find the use of scenarios to think through policy issues pretty shallow and unhelpful. But a new paper on the institutional architecture for climate change, by Alex Evans and David Steven, has a horribly plausible and thought-provoking scenario among its three possible futures. A slightly truncated version follows in a couple of paras […]

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Should aid workers fly business class?; latest on land grabs; dodgy regressions; Chinese carbon emissions; how to set up your own tax dodge and a great climate change youtube: links I liked

Chris Blattman has kicked off a heated debate on whether aid officials should fly business class, see here for example Over on global dashboard, Mark Weston provides an overview on land grabs William Easterly applies his tests for dodgy regressions to Paul Collier’s latest book and Chris Blattman (again, when does he work or sleep?) joins in […]

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How is the recession hitting remittances from migrant workers?

Remittances sent to developing countries in 2008 from migrant workers overseas came to a massive $305bn – two and a half times greater than the (record) volume of global aid. But how are they weathering the global crisis? I’ve just been reading the World Bank’s latest (OK, end of March – I’m playing catchup as […]

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Building women's leadership – what works?

What can an NGO like Oxfam do to help build women’s grassroots leadership and participation? Just been reading a series of case studies from around the world, which throw up a strikingly similar set of conclusions. Drawing on experiences in Asia, Africa, Latin America and the UK, the study finds that progress relies on tackling […]

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What would feminist GM crops look like?

I was in a conversation on genetically modified crops with a feminist economist and a leading ecologist the other day (Chatham House rules, so no names, alas). As often happens, the unusual combination of disciplines led to some thought-provoking exchanges. After lamenting the way most new biotech and GM research is top down and biased […]

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108 countries now malaria-free. What's happening in the rest of them?

The Financial Times recently published an excellent special report on Combating Malaria (can you name any other newspaper that would do that?). It pulls together a really good overview of the disease, including the science, politics, examples of successful eradication in Mozambique and elsewhere, the role of community health workers, the debate over bed nets, […]

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What to take on a field trip; China's irresistible rise; damn lies and regressions; the latest numbers on Euro-pork and fatcats; trade v domestic markets and extreme shepherding: links I liked

Chris Blattman gives a (very long) list of essential items for ‘field work in the tropics’ Alex Evans discusses the latest on China’s new-found assertiveness William Easterly explains the selective use of regressions Eurosnouts in the trough: The New York Times shows how the largest beneficiaries of EU farm subsidies in 2008 include an Italian […]

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Why we need to limit growth and why it needn’t make us less happy

Can you have prosperity without growth? Yes and what’s more, we have no choice, argues the UK’s Sustainable Development Commission in a new report. As you would expect from the UK’s first ‘Professor of Sustainable Development’, author Tim Jackson is a bit of a heretic – particularly impressive because the SDC is an independent advisory […]

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How the economic meltdown and climate change are hitting Asia – new reports

The Asian Development Bank produces a remarkable amount of frequently high quality analysis. Here are two recent examples on climate change and the impact of the economic meltdown. On the meltdown, a recent ADB Economic Working Paper uses the latest national projections for growth and past poverty performance to refine the predicts that poverty across […]

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IMF 2.0 or same old, same old – has the Fund really changed its tune?

Has the G20 revived the neoliberal, austerity-wielding IMF of the 1980s and 90s, are has it ushered in a new IMF 2.0 (in the words of Time Magazine) that cares about countercyclical economic policies, public services and jobs? In late April, IMF Managing Director Dominique Strauss-Khan wrote to NGOs saying ‘I would like to make it […]

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Why equity matters more than growth: The Spirit Level

‘Growth with Equity’ is motherhood and apple pie in economic policy-making these days. But in a great new book, Spirit Level, authors Richard Wilkinson and Kate Pickett argue that ‘economic growth, for so long the great engine of progress, has, in the rich countries, largely finished its work.’ Above a certain average income (the authors […]

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China as the world's biggest aid donor; water grabs; how the FT overthrows governments; road safety in Kenya; why rich countries question capitalism more than poor ones and a new initiative on greening urban economies in poor countries: Links I liked

Paul Collier argues that China is the world’s biggest donor, and that it shows the case for attaching more conditions to lending. Alex Evans passes on some interesting thoughts from Nestle boss Peter Brabeck-Letmathe – the recent spate of land grabs are actually about getting access to the water that goes with the land, more […]

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Managed and curated by

Duncan Green

Duncan is strategic adviser for Oxfam GB, author of ‘How Change Happens’ and Professor in Practice at the London School of Economics.

Maria Faciolince

Maria is an anthropologist, activist - researcher and multimedia communicator working with Oxfam GB.