At the World Bank’s Annual Universal Health Coverage (UHC) Financing Forum this year, I took part in a mock competition to help determine the topic of next year’s forum. I was up against Larry Gostin, who argued that the 2017 forum should focus on equity and human rights, and Sara Bennett, who made the case for it to be the political economy. My pitch was for the forum to focus on efficiency—or value for money—in UHC reforms, and here’s why.
CGD Policy Blogs
The recent Ebola outbreak in Liberia underscored the need to focus on health systems strengthening and local resiliency. But who should take the lead? As the case of Liberia shows, even in a country still reeling from a health crisis and with perpetually low capacity, there are opportunities for donors to take a more ambitious approach to country ownership and institution strengthening.
What should you read first if you’re a new policy advisor in a Ministry of Education? I’ve had two emails with this question in the last week alone. So, here is a quick (RISE-heavy) Top Ten.
Does broadening financial access to large segments of the population pose risks to financial stability? Not necessarily, according to recent remarks by IMF managing director Christine Lagarde. Increasing access to basic financial transactions such as payments does not threaten financial stability, especially when appropriate supervisory and regulatory frameworks are in place. In fact, with the right regulatory supervision, increased access to financial services can result in both micro and macro benefits. Recognizing the macroeconomic and regulatory dimensions of financial inclusion, CGD and the IMF joined forces for a seminar to kick off the IMF Spring Meetings 2016.
Even among policymakers, there is plenty of misunderstanding around how the US government’s premier agency charged with advancing a private sector-based development agenda, the Overseas Private Investment Corporation (OPIC), actually operates. When we searched for a database with key OPIC project-level information, we couldn’t find one. So we spent months manually entering all of the publicly available information on OPIC projects into a single location, the OPIC Scraped Portfolio dataset.
It has operations in more than 30 countries worth around $9 billion. And now the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development is searching for its next leader. Current president Sir Suma Chakrabarti is seeking a second four-year term as EBRD president, and he faces the challenge of Marek Belka, a former Prime Minister and Finance Minister of Poland and currently president of the country’s National Bank. Recently both candidates recorded interviews with me, which we have edited together into this edition of the CGD Podcast.
Here is a draft of my (hopefully) forthcoming book for CGD Results Not Receipts: Counting the Right Things in Aid and Corruption [working title]. I’d love comments and reactions from the vast, knowledgeable network of development thinkers and doers that read Views From the Center –they’ll surely make the final version far better. The elevator pitch: donors frequently suggest corruption is the biggest obstacle to development and aid effectiveness, and that they can accurately measure corruption risk while protecting their projects from it at a reasonable cost. It isn’t and they can’t.
This Earth Day, more than sixty heads of state will gather in New York to sign the Paris Agreement on climate change. The agreement declared in December the unanimous aim of 196 governments to work toward the near-elimination of greenhouse gas emissions by the second half of this century. Although the New York ceremony represents another high-profile sign of political support for stabilizing Earth’s climate, significant challenges remain.
Are genetically modified organisms (GMOs) likely to play a significant role in tackling malnutrition and reducing poverty in Africa? Our short answer is "it depends." In a new CGD policy paper and brief, we examine the evidence and conclude that currently available GMOs are of limited relevance for most developing countries, especially in Africa.