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

The Millennium Development Goals: what have they achieved? What next?

Last week I spent a day closeted with statisticians, UN officials and academics reviewing the MDG phenomenon. Agreed off the back of the Millennium Summit in (unsurprisingly) 2000, the MDGs, setting out 2015 global targets on everything from health to education to poverty, have become a familiar part of the aid landscape, a reference point […]

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An intelligent debate on aid; watch as the world burns; why car-swapping aint green; the best newspaper on the crisis; how green is your stimulus? and how to blog at the G20: links I liked

Dambisa Moyo and her bizarrely timed anti-aid message (aid bad, markets good) get a polite but highly effective kicking on the BBC’s aptly named Hard Talk programme, courtesy of Alison Evans, the incoming director of the Overseas Development Institute. Top quality TV, with a well briefed chair pushing both participants hard. Alarming ‘Real-time’ stats on […]

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How badly is the crisis hitting the poorest countries? Here's what the IMF thinks

The IMF has a new paper out summarizing the impact of the global crisis on 78 ‘low income countries’ (LICs) – the world’s poorest, many of them in Sub-Saharan Africa. Its findings include:

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What happens when you give people money (rather than food or blankets) after a natural disaster? Some evidence from Zambia

When disaster strikes in the shape of floods or droughts, aid agencies traditionally ship in food and blankets, often over great distances. But increasingly, people are trying out a novel alternative – give people envelopes full of cash and let them buy what they need. I’ve just been reading an evaluation of two such exercises […]

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Building a Low Carbon Economy: How much will it cost? Where do we start?

Leaders like Obama and (increasingly) Gordon Brown seem to be gravitating towards the ‘green new deal’ argument that massive international spending in response to the financial crisis must also shift economies onto a ‘low carbon recovery’ path. Looking at the science, there’s little argument – we have to massively reduce the carbon intensity of production […]

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Who do governments listen to? Some intel from the Oxfam GB media team

Oxfam GB’s media team is a class act, and has just done some useful research on ‘influencing the influentials’, interviewing senior figures in Whitehall, journalists and other ‘influentials’ (wonder what qualifies them for that?). Here are some of the headlines:

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Why Dambisa Moyo is Dead Wrong; John Wyndham on climate change; where has all the money gone? Bank bailouts for beginners and some Windows music: links I liked

The Guardian’s Madeleine Bunting has the guts to tell Dambisa Moyo that she is wrong on aid. Dead Wrong, in fact. Respect. Global Dashboard delves into the early literature of climate change and finds John ‘Kraken Wakes’ Wyndham got there first. Where’s all the money gone? The Economist shows where all the offshore finance is […]

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Oxfam license to operate in northern Sudan revoked

This entry was posted by Oxfam Media Unit on March 5th, 2009 at 12:00 pm – don’t think I’ll risk any editorializing on this one: ‘Oxfam GB has begun to temporarily relocate international staff to Khartoum and some national staff to state capitals in Darfur while it appeals the government’s decision to revoke its registration […]

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I’ll see your trillion and raise you another one: how big a bailout does the developing world need?

Talk of mere billions is for wimps these days. I’ve just read two proposals for ‘big numbers’ on bailouts to help developing countries get through the global economic crisis, one from the World Bank’s chief economist, Justin Lin, and the other from Washington thinktank CGD’s Nancy Birdsall. Nancy’s paper,  entitled ‘How to Unlock the $1 […]

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What happens if the climate change talks fail? Botswana bakes, Shanghai submerges etc

For a chilling view of what is at stake in the climate change talks that culminate at Copenhagen this December, read a new report from the UK Institution of Mechanical Engineers (thanks to Cat Pettengell for pointing it out). (A similar doomsday tone is conveyed in the latest New Scientist cover story on what the world […]

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Which big developing country economies are most likely to crash?

This week’s Economist has a go at identifying the dominos before they fall. It says ‘The drought of foreign capital is beginning to wreck many economies in central and eastern Europe. Currencies, shares and bonds are tumbling, and some economists fear that one or more of these countries could default on its foreign debts. Emerging-market […]

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Why we should buy more from developing countries and other tips on pro-poor shopping

My long-suffering research team colleague Richard King has a paper out today that will hopefully ruffle a few feathers. It argues that how we shop, what we eat, and what we throw away are becoming frontline issues in the effort to tackle climate change. In the UK, we need to change how and what we […]

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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.