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.

 

How Should Donors Work with the Private Sector?

We are enthusiastic about the growing interest in supporting private investment in developing countries, but it matters a lot how this is done. The sorry history of failed and distortionary partnerships should tell us something about how donor countries can do a better job of working with the private sector.

How Can We Make Illicit Finance Less Illicit?

The truth is: we don’t know much about illicit finance. We don’t have exact figures on the volume of transactions which could fall within this category, and we also don’t know whether these transactions have any significant impact in developing countries and elsewhere. Adding up estimates of different types of illicit flows provides lurid headline figures (one trillion dollars a year) but more specific analysis is needed to determine whether, and how much, better policies might improve development.

The Can and Can’t of Cat Bonds

The emerging consensus is that the response to Ebola is a test that most rich countries failed. Given that the next public health challenge is a ‘when’, not an ‘if’, what can we do to be more prepared for the next emergency?

A Development Policy for the 21st Century

It drives me crazy that so many people equate development policy with foreign aid.

That’s why I welcome this week’s landmark report from the British parliament’s Select Committee on International Development. As the UK nears the end of a five-year parliament, this well-respected cross-party committee has delivered its legacy report, which argues that development is about much more than aid.

In Defence of Britain’s Foreign Aid

Britain's Department for International Development has for decades been a leader within the British government on ensuring value for taxpayer money. Over the years it has pioneered cost-benefit analysis; rigorous impact evaluations; and transparency of spending—innovations that were subsequently taken up by the rest of government.  In the 1990s, the most senior civil servant in the department, Sir Tim Lankester, blew the whistle on a project to finance a dam in Malaysia because it was not a good use of development aid.

Migration and Development: Small Tweaks for Big Benefits

Britain’s highly charged debate about immigration means that migration systems and policies are potentially in flux—a chance, perhaps, for innovation. We believe there are opportunities to tweak these policies so that they deliver big benefits for poor people, avoid the most harmful unintended consequences, and make British people better-off.

Finding a Cure for Ebola

The priority for policymakers concerned about the Ebola epidemic in West Africa should be to respond to the existing outbreak, treat the victims, and contain its spread. But the longer term lesson is that we need to be willing to spend more on global health.

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