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Technology, infrastructure, governance and anticorruption, human development, subjective wellbeing/happiness
Charles Kenny is a senior fellow and the director of technology and development at the Center for Global Development. His current work focuses on gender and development, the role of technology in development, governance and anticorruption and the post-2015 development agenda. He has published articles, chapters and books on issues including what we know about the causes of economic growth, the link between economic growth and broader development, the causes of improvements in global health, the link between economic growth and happiness, the end of the Malthusian trap, the role of communications technologies in development, the ‘digital divide,’ corruption, and progress towards the Millennium Development Goals. He is the author of the book "Getting Better: Why Global Development is Succeeding, and How We Can Improve the World Even More" and “The Upside of Down: Why the Rise of the Rest is Great for the West.” He has been a contributing editor at Foreign Policy magazine and a regular contributor to Business Week magazine. Kenny was previously at the World Bank, where his assignments included working with the VP for the Middle East and North Africa Region, coordinating work on governance and anticorruption in infrastructure and natural resources, and managing a number of investment and technical assistance projects covering telecommunications and the Internet.
On Tuesday, January 24, President Obama will deliver his third State of the Union address to Congress, the American public, and global audiences seeking to better understand the domestic and foreign policy priorities for the United States in 2012. With a presidential election year in full swing and a still-uncertain U.S. economic recovery, it’s unlikely global development will get much mention in the president’s address. But that won’t stop us at CGD from tuning in to assess the president’s remarks using our state-of-the art policy proclamation evaluation instrument: CGD State of the Union Bingo.
Download CGD’s SOTU Bingo cards
Play Online with Interactive Bingo Cards
RSVP for the D.C. Event
Together with CGD friends and colleagues, we’ll track in real-time how the president measures up to his commitment to development by listening for the key development-relevant words listed on our bingo cards. Will he mention his new pledge to increase access to HIV/AIDS treatment? Pakistan? Climate? Trade?
The Broadband Commission for Digital Development is an ITU (UN International Telecommunications Union) and UNESCO–backed body set up to advocate for greater broadband access worldwide. The commission’s Declaration of Broadband Inclusion for All and other reports call for governments
to support ubiquitous fixed broadband access as a vital tool for economic growth and to reach the Millennium Development Goals. Examining the evidence, however, shows that the benefits of broadband are being oversold. Several points stand out: (i) the evidence for a large positive economic impact of
broadband is limited; (ii) the impact of broadband rollout on achieving the MDGs would be marginal;(iii) there is little evidence ubiquitous broadband is needed for ‘national competitiveness’ or to benefit from opportunities like business process outsourcing; (iv) the costs of fixed universal broadband rollout dwarf available resources in developing countries; (and so) (v) the case for government subsidy of fixed broadband rollout is very weak. There are, however, some worthwhile policy reforms that could speed broadband rollout without demanding significant government expenditure.
Transparency in government contracting has gained increasing international support over the past years. Some countries, including the Slovak Republic, Colombia and the United Kingdom, have begun publishing online the complete text of government contracts.
In a blog post on the World Bank’s website, Marcos Siqueira lays out the case for total public contract transparency, including disclosure of unredacted contracts, associated financial deals, unredacted bids, unredacted amendments, performance reports, financial data of the project company, and fiscal commitments and risks.
Let There Be Light
A Center for Global Development brownbag seminar
Wednesday, February 22, 2012
**Please bring your lunch--beverages provided**
Co-Founder and CEO
Truman National Security Project
Hosted byCharles Kenny
Center for Global Development
Providing electricity to unlit and unstable parts of the globe is crucial to jump-starting development, improving the environment, and assisting fragile states that ferment many of today's security threats. Rachel Kleinfeld and Drew Sloan's new book, Let There Be Light, shows the failures of centralized electricity to meet these challenges---and describes how distributed, renewable energy such as solar and wind power can work. But, Kleinfeld and Sloan argue, it is not enough to harness the power of the elements. To scale, distributed energy must harness the power of the market. Kleinfeld will present the major challenges that have impeded distributed energy's success, and describe the roles development donors, social entrepreneurs, venture capitalists, the military, and the business world can play to make lighting the developing world a reality.
Update: On March 29, the U.S. Senate confirmed Pamela White to be Ambassador of the United States of America to the Republic of Haiti.
Assuming she is confirmed by the Senate, Pamela White is set to become the next U.S. ambassador to Haiti. In her March 14 confirmation hearing, White and the senators agreed on one message: Haiti’s unstable government is impeding post-earthquake recovery, including U.S. aid efforts. But White could consider alternative approaches—from migration policy to mobile money—that might do more to help Haitians right now.