With rigorous economic research and practical policy solutions, we focus on the issues and institutions that are critical to global development. Explore our core themes and topics to learn more about our work.
In timely and incisive analysis, our experts parse the latest development news and devise practical solutions to new and emerging challenges. Our events convene the top thinkers and doers in global development.
Nandan Nilekani, Co-founder and Non-Executive Chairman, Infosys Technologies and first Chairman, Unique Identification Authority of India (UIDAI)
Amani Abou-Zeid, African Union Commission, Commissioner of Infrastructure and Energy Christian Wulff Søndergaard, Senior Vice President and Head of Group Public and Regulatory Affairs, Telenor Group
Caroline Atkinson, Board Member, Center for Global Development and Former Head of Global Policy, Google
India has been a leading country in the development of digital technology, including in the areas of identification, mobile connectivity and payments, and its application to reform governance and the delivery of programs and services, and to increase financial inclusion. Its experience is being closely watched by many other countries and the development community. What have been its achievements and where are the future challenges? How to ensure that the increasing volume of data empowers people rather than eroding their privacy? What can India’s experience tell us about the future of other countries and societies? At the forefront of “Digital India”, Nandan Nilekani is uniquely placed to offer a perspective on these questions.
Nandan Nilekani is co-founder of Infosys and its non-executive chairman. He was the first chairman of the Unique Identification Authority of India (UIDAI) which implemented the Aadhaar program, now covering almost 1.3 billion people. He has headed the Government of India's technology committee, and the recent high-level committee constituted by the Reserve Bank of India to increase financial inclusion and create a robust digital payments ecosystem. He is also a co-founder of EkStep, a not-for-profit initiative to develop a universal digital learning platform and the author of two books: Imagining India: the Idea of a Renewed Nation, and (with Viral Shah) Rebooting India: Realizing a Billion Aspirations.
For several years, Africa has gained a reputation as the next frontier for tech and social enterprises. In reality, the startup economy is growing with more and more venture capital firms making greater investments on the continent. According to Partech, more than $1 billion was raised by African tech startups in 2018. Increasing investment in startups and small businesses bodes well for countries as it often means increasing employment opportunities through job creation. For the African diaspora, participating in Africa's growth through investment in business is a critical opportunity. When Africans in the diaspora invest in their continent, they contribute to improving prosperity and empowering fellow Africans to fulfill their potential and achieve economic and social progress. At this Dialogue, Chinedu Enekwe addresses the role venture capital, and the African diaspora, can play in growing the African economy. He offers his experience and wisdom in launching your startup in Africa and securing venture capital funds.
Governments and donors are increasingly focused on the use of evidence in evaluating human development programs and setting policy priorities. This master class will provide early career researchers with cutting-edge methodological tools for experimental and quasi-experimental evaluation of early childhood development interventions. The course is intended for current PhD students and recent graduates whose doctoral work is focused on early childhood development, education, development economics, or public policy.
Every year, the Birdsall House Conference on Women brings together leading academics and policymakers to discuss cutting-edge research focused on improving outcomes for women in low- and middle-income countries.
Global development is increasingly intertwined with state fragility. Poverty is becoming concentrated in fragile states, and conflict, violent extremism, and environmental stresses can emerge from and be exacerbated by fragility. As a result, many donors, including the United States, are reflecting on lessons of the past to rethink how they can better help fragile states address the underlying causes of fragility, build peace and stability, and cope with complex risks.
Please join us for the launch of a new CGD working group report, Focusing on Fragility: The Future of US Assistance to Fragile States, featuring a conversation with Michèle Flournoy, a preeminent thinker on US engagement in fragile states. Her leadership at the US Department of Defense from 2009 to 2012, along with her work advancing pragmatic and principled national security policies, have been critical in reshaping the US approach to fragile states in a pivotal era.
Following the conversation, a panel will discuss the findings and recommendations of the report which identifies several key constraints to executing a more effective US development policy in fragile states and offers specific ideas for how the US government can more effectively use its development assistance—in conjunction with diplomatic and security assistance tools—in these contexts.
The Center for Global Development is pleased to host Millennium Challenge Corporation Chief Executive Officer, Sean Cairncross, for his first major Washington policy speech since being confirmed in June. Cairncross takes the helm of MCC at a unique time. As the agency strives to remain grounded in its economic growth-focused, results-oriented model, it faces a number of new and exciting opportunities, including the authority to pursue regional investments, the potential for coordination and partnership with the US Development Finance Corporation, and the increased profile afforded by a White House initiative focused on women’s economic empowerment, W-GDP. Following his remarks, Cairncross will sit down with Tony Fratto, former White House deputy press secretary (2006-2009), to discuss these opportunities further as well as the challenges that lie ahead for the agency.