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.

 

Zoellick Annual Meeting Speech on Research!

The most important thing about Robert Zoellick’s speech at Georgetown yesterday is that the president of the World Bank gave a speech about research – development economics research, that is --  in the run-up to the Bank’s annual meeting.

President Bush’s Enduring Legacy

Bipartisanship made a reappearance in a most unlikely place last Wednesday – at the podium of the United Nations.  In his address to the United National Millennium Development Goals Summit, President Obama unveiled his “new” approach to development, emphasizing a focus on results, investing in countries committed to their own development through sound governance and democracy, tapping the forces of the economic growth through entrepreneurship and trade, and the need for mutual accountability between developed and developing countries.  In doing so, he followed precisely in the footsteps of

Farewell Heather Haines! Welcome Allysun Jackson!

Among the many things that make CGD a great place to work is a steady flow of people in and out who are both kind and smart. We don’t usually use the CGD policy blogs to say farewell to those who are moving on, but in this case I’m declaring an exception.

Can the UN Development Summit Handle Success?

Plenty in the blogosphere today (here and here) about the opening of the UN summit on the Millennium Development Goals. With just five years to go, there is a lot of worrying about which countries can make it. Of course it’s probably too late to do much at this stage, no matter how much new money is spent.

Introducing CGD’s New Rethinking U.S. Foreign Assistance Director: Connie Veillette

Starting Monday, CGD will have a new director of the Rethinking U.S. Foreign Assistance Initiative: Connie Veillette. Connie is well-known to many of our readers from her previous role on the Senate Foreign Relations Committee where she worked alongside Senator Lugar and his colleagues as the principal minority committee staff for foreign assistance, aid reform and food security issues.

Sudan – Southern Secession, Oil, and Debt Relief

This post also appeared on the Huffington Post.

Next week, President Obama, UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon, and other global leaders will meet with Sudanese leadership to discuss the upcoming referendum. The stakes are huge. In January, southern Sudanese will vote on whether to secede and launch a new, independent country. It’s hard to imagine them not supporting the breakaway vote given their decades’ long fight for independence. Roughly 2 million people died in that struggle. The multi-million dollar question is – what will Khartoum do? Will they let the referendum happen? Will it be fair and transparent? If so, will they respect the results? The meeting next week will grapple with these critical issues.

Clearly, Khartoum has a lot of lose.

Three Early Moves for Michelle Bachelet’s UN “Start-Up” for Women

This post also appeared on the Huffington Post.

UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon yesterday named former Chilean president Michelle Bachelet to head UN Women (full name: UN Entity for Gender Equality and the Empowerment of Women), a new UN entity. Congratulations to Dr. Bachelet!

While the selection process was criticized for lacking openness and transparency, I hope that those of us, like me, who have been awaiting this appointment will put that concern behind us and let her get on with the job. In many ways, Michelle Bachelet is the ideal candidate, with the right credentials to make this important new entity function effectively:

At the United Nations MDG Summit: Don't Forget MDG 8 and Trade!

This is a joint post with Kaci Farrell.

Later this month, world leaders will meet at the UN in New York City to discuss accomplishments and challenges to meeting the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) by the 2015 target. While their discussions will cover a range of topics and strategies, summit participants should remember the importance of trade as a development tool.

Trade preference programs can encourage investment, promote prosperity and ultimately reduce poverty in the world’s least developed countries.

The Mozambican Riots: Food for Thought

This is a joint posting with Rebecca Schutte.

Last week’s deadly unrest in Mozambique became a global news story, as clashes between security forces and people protesting rising food prices in the capital, Maputo, left at least ten people dead and more than 400 people injured. CGD Non-Resident Fellow Chris Blattman explained his skepticism about such riots, questioning why many were blaming climate change and higher international grain prices for domestic unrest. Rather, he pointed to poor domestic policies and alarmist journalism and “yearned for real information” about the root causes of the riots this weeks. Having recently returned from Mozambique, here are some additional insights on the food riots.

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