Ideas to Action:

Independent research for global prosperity

Views from the Center

CGD experts offer ideas and analysis to improve international development policy. Also check out our Global Health blog and US Development Policy blog.

 

A Malala Day for Learning

Malala Yousafzai’s story of overcoming the Taliban’s attempt to silence her is inspirational.  Her speech at the UN Malala Day celebration, which I had the pleasure to attend, was impressive in every respect, including her commitment to her faith and the kindness she could show to her attackers.  It moved the crowd to tears, and to its feet.  When I compare what I was doing on my 16th birthday to what she is doing, well, it is pretty humbling.

Aid to Egypt by the Numbers

Since the overthrow of Egypt’s democratically elected president Mohammed Morsi earlier this month, US government officials have made painstaking efforts to avoid calling the ouster a military coup d’état.  Why the semantic sensitivity?  Because according to the FY2012 Consolidated Appropriations Act (PL 112-74), all US foreign assistance to the Egyptian government must be terminated if the military’s actions did, in fact, constitute a coup.

Aid and the MDGs

CGD has just posted a policy paper by Sarah Dykstra and me on Millennium Development Goal 8 (that would be the one on a “global partnership for development”) and lessons for post-2015. It is an updated version of a paper we submitted to the High-Level Panel on post-2015 (available here) focused on what we thought should go into their Goal 12 (“Create a Global Enabling Environment and Catalyze Long-Term Finance”). It won’t take more than a cursory comparison of our paper and the HLP report to see we were less than completely persuasive!

Economic Cycles, Deforestation, and REDD+

The latest news from FORMA demonstrates the power of global and regional economic cycles as drivers of deforestation.  My previous post highlighted the rapid growth and spread of forest clearing during the first phase of the global economic recovery.  Fortunately, new clearing has declined sharply since then, as the chart of FORMA's global indicator shows below.  The effectiveness of forest protection may vary somewhat from quarter to quarter, but not nearly enough to explain such pronounced swings. 

Bragging by the President

The CGD authors (Clark and Roodman) of this paper use five quantitative measures to rank the public profile of think tanks: social media fans, incoming links, web traffic, media mentions, and scholarly citations.  They are careful and modest about the profile of CGD that emerges compared to other US-based think tanks and compared to other development think tanks.  T

Coal or No Coal? A Burning Question for the World Bank

Over the past few months, quite a bit of high-level rhetoric has surrounded World Bank funding of coal projects in developing countries. On one side, Christiana Figueres, the executive secretary of the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change, stated that “it is no longer necessary [for the World Bank to invest in coal projects] because we have many other technologies that can come forward.” On the other side, World Bank president Jim Kim stated that “we will look for everything we can possibly do to avoid [coal projects] but look, poor people should not pay the price with their lives of mistakes that people have been making in the developed world for a very long time.”

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