Tag: Aid

What's New in Development and 'Why I don't have a girlfriend': talks from the Warwick Economics Summit

I spoke at the ‘Warwick Economics Summit’ at the weekend – an annual event meticulously organized by students. The corridor talk was all about jobs and internships – the banks are apparently back and hiring en masse. Well organized? Thinking about jobs? Students have changed since my day… My talk was on ‘What’s New in […]

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Newton v Complexity: Robert Chambers on competing aid paradigms

This is taken from a longer two part piece by Robert Chambers on the excellent ‘Aid on the Edge of Chaos’ blog. Worth spending some time studying the diagrams. “Today we can see two broad paradigms at work in international development. On the one side are Neo-Newtonian practices – those processes, procedures, roles and behaviour which […]

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What difference do accountability and transparency initiatives really make?

The advice to ‘beware the common sense of the time’ is just as true of today’s developmental buzzwords as it is of the discredited versions of yesteryear. And what could be more commonsensical than ‘transparency and accountability are a Good Thing’? But does supporting them with aid money actually make a difference? Researchers at the […]

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Does India need aid and if so, what kind?

Thought provoking piece on India and aid from Andy Sumner, whose paper showing that 72% of the world’s poor now live in middle income countries (MICs) caused a big stir last year. Andy has now become a contributor to the Global Dashboard blog. The UK is currently tying itself in knots over whether to give […]

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Delivery, but where's the cash? Update on the Global Fund

Even though I’m back from my blogbreak, a few guest posts continued to come in from Oxfam policy wonks over the Christmas break. Here’s one from Mohga Kamal-Yanni  (see pic) Oxfam’s senior health & HIV policy advisor It has been a long journey for me from delivering babies on mud floors in a village in […]

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What does the end of North-South mean for the development sector?

I spoke last night at an event in the House of Commons. It was held at Portcullis House, an architectural monstrosity next to Big Ben which despite its name is a new bit, so no-one’s been executed there. Yet. The subject was a BS (blue skies) session on ‘Beyond the MDG Summit: What next for […]

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What should aid focus on, poor people or poor countries?

Finally got round to reading the paper that’s been making waves in wonk-land, ‘Global poverty and the new bottom billion: Three-quarters of the World’s poor live in middle-income countries’, by Andy Sumner from the UK’s Institute of Development Studies. In a classic bit of number crunching, Andy takes a fresh look at where poor people now […]

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Low income countries have a $65bn hangover from the global crisis -will it destroy the MDGs?

I wrote this for the Guardian Comment is Free site (went up last Friday), summarizing the findings of a new Oxfam research paper. Take note, anyone involved in next months’ big UN MDG summit. “Sometimes the things we don’t know about what is happening in the world take your breath away. A global economic crisis strikes […]

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Social protection – have aid agencies got it wrong?

‘Has social protection in sub-Saharan Africa lost its way?’ asks a brilliant new paper from a consortium of thinktanks, including IDS and ODI. Their overall finding is that donors’ preference for evidence and pilots, and lack of engagement with national political realities, have undermined their impact. Hard to summarize – it’s a treasure trove – […]

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What is the point of conferences?

Last week I sat dazed through an EU conference on aid, grappling with presentations in Spanish, English and Portuguese and fending off powerpoint poisoning (the acute version produced by academics putting up page after page crammed with tiny text and saying ‘you probably can’t read it, but what the table says is…..’). During brief periods […]

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What can we learn from Chinese aid?

I’m at a two day EU conference ‘Development in times of crisis and Achieving the MDGs’ (snappy eh?). It’s in Madrid, but you wouldn’t know it. We’re in an airless, windowless room in an aircraft hangar of a conference centre miles out from the city. I was on a panel on the impact of the […]

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What is the future of UK development policy?

Consensus on size But tensions on coherence And definition This run of posts on aid is starting to seem endless (you probably agree….). But this one, on the outlook for UK aid, is the last of the series, at least for now. From tomorrow, I’ll be getting back to the usual random scattergun stuff, but […]

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