CDI 2015: How Do Rich Countries’ Policies Affect Development? – Podcast with Owen Barder

December 07, 2015

How much do rich countries’ policies help or hinder the world’s poorest people? That’s what CGD’s Commitment to Development Index (CDI) measures.

The CDI ranks 27 of the world’s richest countries according to how development-friendly their policies are in the areas of aid, finance, technology, environment, trade, security, and migration. These rankings can help countries understand not only where they’re excelling or falling behind, but also what further steps they might take towards reaching the newly agreed-upon Sustainable Development Goals. 

CGD’s vice president and director of the Europe program, Owen Barder, led the team that compiled this year’s rankings. In this week’s podcast, Owen explains how the CDI works and why it’s so important for countries around the world to improve policies that affect development.

“This is not a long list of sacrifices that we want rich countries to make for the world’s poor,” Owen tells me. “This is a set of reforms and better policies that would make the world a better place for everybody.”


CGD blog posts reflect the views of the authors, drawing on prior research and experience in their areas of expertise. CGD is a nonpartisan, independent organization and does not take institutional positions.