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Thursday, October 8, 2015 - 2:30pm

Global financial resources for health have substantially increased over the period of the MDGs but are now steady or declining. Domestic resources in low- and middle-income countries may not be able to keep up with demand for treatment needs, let alone other prevention services. In this context, there is need to make better use of existing funds (or do more with less), reallocating funds to the most effective mix of programs for a given epidemiological context across the range of disease areas affecting populations. The Optima team applies a practical and sophisticated technical approach to assist national decision-makers, program managers, and funding partners achieve maximum impact with the funding available for the country’s response to disease burdens and plan for sustainability. A global perspective and country case studies will be presented particularly in the area of HIV, along with description of the Optima approach.

CGD Invited Research Forum
Thursday, October 8, 2015 - 12:30pm

Why are the wide gaps in living standards between rural and urban areas in developing countries so persistent? The presence of amenities in rural areas is one explanation for why (even more) people don't move from impoverished rural areas to urban centers. In her new paper, Martina Kirchberger links data from geo-referenced household surveys on crime and mistrust, to satellite measures of pollution and data on population density. She shows significant pollution-population density gradients for China and India. In Africa, it does not seem to be the case that urban living is accompanied by tangible disamenities from pollution or crime. Nevertheless, there appears to be a breakdown in trusting relationships in urban areas, and this is one of the few variables that would provide support for a simple spatial equilibrium.


Tuesday, October 6, 2015 - 12:30pm

Do labor-intensive public works programs (PWPs) serve as an important social protection tools to supplement the income of poor households and improve public infrastructure? In their paper, Goldberg and coauthors conduct a unique nationally-representative evaluation of the Malawi Social Action Fund, Malawi's largest social protection program, using across- and within-village randomization to estimate the effects of the program on its stated objectives: food security and use of agricultural inputs.

Despite the commitment to the program and the substantial resources devoted to it, Goldberg and coauthors find no evidence that it improves food security, but that it actually generates negative spillover effects that reduce the food security of untreated households in two of the country's three geographic regions. Moreover, variations intended to improve the design of the program by shifting earnings opportunities to the country's lean season from harvest season do not generate positive impacts on food security.

Public Event
Thursday, October 1, 2015 - 2:00pm

Against the backdrop of uncertainties in the global economy and weakening growth in many developing countries, the World Bank Group approaches its annual meetings in Lima, Peru. In a year of renewed ambition on development goals and development financing globally, reflected in major agenda setting conferences in Addis Ababa, New York, and Paris we ask how much will the World Bank lead on these agendas, and how much do the agendas themselves matter to the bank's own clients? Is the World Bank adapting quickly and effectively enough to meet client demands and global needs? What does the move to create new multilateral institutions by many of the World Bank's own shareholders mean for the bank's role as anchor and partner in the multilateral system?

At a particularly important moment for the institution, Sri Mulyani Indrawati is well placed to speak directly to all of these issues. Having served for over five years as the World Bank's managing director and chief operations officer, and prior to that as finance minister for one of the bank's major clients, Ms. Indrawati brings a unique and compelling perspective to the question of the World Bank's future.

Tuesday, September 29, 2015 - 12:30pm

The world recently reached a milestone in the fight against HIV/AIDS: 15 million people around the globe now have access to life-saving antiretroviral therapy (ART). In 2001, only 1 million people had such access. This has resulted in tremendous gains in population health and life expectancy for HIV-infected persons. Less well understood, however, are the non-health impacts of increased access to ART, such as on employment rates, and what those effects could mean for the economic benefits of HIV treatment.

In this brownbag, Zoë McLaren and Jeremy Barofsky will present their research into the effects of ART programs on labor market outcomes in South Africa and Malawi, respectively.

Public Event
Tuesday, September 29, 2015 - 11:30am

As nations sign up to the Global Goals for Sustainable Development, and look ahead to an historic agreement on climate change at COP21, a transformative process is culminating that fully integrates climate change into sustainable development. Now is the time to underline clearly the fundamental reality that without sustainability, development will falter, and to identify solutions for both. Practical mechanisms are at hand: payment-for-performance in reducing tropical deforestation, adopting sustainable energy practices, climate-proofing development planning and programming.

The distinguished panel of innovators, thought-leaders and implementers will share their experiences from the field, highlight new ways of thinking, and reveal forward-looking policy options that address the twin questions of how to minimize climate change and how to increase development outcomes at the same time. Attendees will leave with a clear understanding of proven sustainable solutions that the world can adopt immediately.

Non-CGD Event
Monday, September 28, 2015 - 12:00pm

600 million people in Africa have no access to electricity and millions more have only minimal, sporadic access. This energy poverty has deadly consequences for health outcomes and inhibits economic growth, including by discouraging American and other foreign investment. Recognizing this challenge, the U.S. government’s Power Africa initiative is one effort to increase electricity access on the continent, leveraging private sector, multilateral, and other bilateral commitments. Now, the House and Senate have introduced the Electrify Africa Act (H.R. 2847 and S. 1933, respectively) to authorize longer-term U.S. assistance for expanding energy access and boosting power generation on the continent.

Public Event
Thursday, September 17, 2015 - 5:30pm

Please join us for a reception to celebrate the release of Minute Zero, the latest thriller in the Judd Ryker series from Todd Moss about a professor inside the State Department’s Crisis Reaction Unit. In the novel, Ryker is sent to Zimbabwe where an aging dictator is stealing re-election and crushing its nascent democracy. Ryker supports a human rights lawyer who is challenging the president, but to help her win he must outsmart the plotters and overcome Washington’s indifference. Minute Zero was inspired by true-life events in 2008, Todd's experiences in government, and especially his love of a country he first visited as a student 25 years ago.

Public Event
Thursday, September 17, 2015 - 9:30am

The last few years have seen some significant progress in legal reform worldwide affecting women and girls, from compulsory free primary education and land titling reform to increased legal age of marriage and the introduction of gender violence laws. This year’s edition of the World Bank Group’s Women, Business and the Law report tracks some of those changes but also asks "does changing laws make a difference to actual outcomes?" That is the subject of ongoing research at the Center for Global Development covering early marriage, female genital mutilation, and land titling. This event will bring together the Women, Business and the Law team and CGD researchers to discuss the impact of legal reform — what we know and what it suggests for policymakers trying to improve outcomes for women and girls.

Wednesday, September 16, 2015 - 12:30pm

Mylene Lagarde
Senior Lecturer, London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine

Matthew Collin
Research Fellow, CGD Europe

Public Event
Wednesday, September 16, 2015 - 9:00am

Recent research suggests a stark mismatch between ordinary Africans’ most pressing development priorities and the agendas of US foreign aid agencies. To address this, US aid agencies have taken further steps to promote country-led approaches and foster direct engagement with and garner feedback from intended beneficiaries. Moreover, the world is pressing ahead with a new development agenda, the Sustainable Development Goals.

So, what do people in Sub-Saharan Africa think about these changes? A new Pew Research Center survey conducted in 9 African countries evaluates citizens’ most important development priorities as well as their perceptions of foreign aid agencies. The countries are: Burkina Faso, Ethiopia, Ghana, Kenya, Nigeria, Senegal, South Africa, Tanzania, and Uganda.

The Pew Research Center will present key findings from the survey. This will be followed by a panel discussion on the major policy implications for the development community.

Non-CGD Event
Tuesday, September 15, 2015 - 2:00pm

The humanitarian aid system is under severe strain. New approaches are needed to protect the lives and dignity of those affected and to ensure aid is spent as effectively as possible.

Evidence shows that unconditional cash transfers can be more efficient, more transparent, more accountable and better for recipients than in kind aid. Moving to a coordinated system of cash transfers is also an opportunity for broader reform of the humanitarian system. But cash and vouchers remain just 6% of all humanitarian aid.

Why is it taking so long to move towards a more cash-based system? What are the barriers to scaling up the use of cash transfers and how can these be overcome? What role can the private sector play?

With short talks by leading thinkers and experts, this event will seek to chart out a path for scaling up humanitarian cash transfers in the future. It launches a new ODI report by a high level panel of experts, commissioned by the UK’s Department for International Development.

Public Event
Thursday, September 10, 2015 - 4:00pm

This year, the world’s leaders will agree to a set of Sustainable Development Goals that aspire to massively improved infrastructure provision by 2030 in sectors from energy through water and sanitation to communications. The estimated price tag connected to the infrastructure targets in the SDGs is somewhere above $1 trillion a year. The scale of these financing needs suggests they cannot be met by the public sector alone, and most discussions of the SDGs and Financing for Development calls for private sector engagement and involvement. Far less advanced is discussion on the potential scope of private sector financing, the barriers, and national and international public sector tools to leverage that finance. Is there scope for considerable additional international private finance of infrastructure in poor countries or will the vast majority of financing remain public, as it has been in the past?

CGD will host a 90 minute panel discussion on how to achieve progress in private finance for infrastructure in developing countries, and what that progress would look like. The discussion will focus on the barriers to more private investment flowing into infrastructure in developing countries and what role there is for donors in overcoming those barriers. It would be grounded in realism about the deep-seated nature of those barriers and the limited resources donor countries can put on the table.

Thursday, August 27, 2015 - 10:00am

Follow #CGDchat to hear from @CGDev and @JonahBusch

Most people don’t know that chopping down one square mile of tropical forest emits as much carbon as driving your car to the sun and back – twice. On August 27, follow #CGDchat to join the Center for Global Development on Twitter for a discussion about the future of forests and climate change with environmental economist & CGD research fellow Jonah Busch, PhD.

Tuesday, July 21, 2015 - 12:30pm

Achieving rapid economic growth in terms of GDP is a limited measure of a country’s development success. Numerous groups from UNDP to OECD to national statistical offices and civil society organizations have proposed or developed broader measures of development. Boston Consulting Group's Sustainable Economic Development Assessment (SEDA) is one such measure that can be used to benchmark countries against the rest of the world and against their most relevant peers.

Public Event
Monday, July 20, 2015 - 3:00pm

Why development matters more than ever in US foreign policy and what the next administration can do about it. The panel discussion marked the launch of CGD’s 2016 presidential campaign briefing book The White House and the World: Practical Proposals on Global Development for the Next US President.

Development Matters
Thursday, July 16, 2015 - 5:30pm

In the second of our Summer Film Series, we’ll be showing the Nigerian oil documentary Big Men. After the screening Todd Moss will host a Q&A with filmmaker Rachel Boynton and George Owusu, who features in the film.

Big Men takes is a fast-paced tour through the high-powered world of African oil deals, eavesdropping on billion-dollar meetings, and watching as heavily armed militants preparing to strike. It’s a quest for money, power and influence that affects us all.

Public Event
Monday, July 13, 2015 - 6:15pm

The SDGs offer a blueprint for innovative, inclusive development. How the world finances them must be innovative and inclusive too. That means thinking beyond aid - to more and different sources of development finance. This event, held in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, was an open forum for the best ideas to finance development. 


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