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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.

 

Aisha Mo’hd Kazaure is the prinicpal of a new midwifery school in Jigawa State in northern Nigeria. With support from UK aid and the local government, she’s set up the state’s very first midwifery programme.

Religion and Widowhood in Nigeria

In Africa, where widowhood and divorce are common and the rights of women are mostly conditional on marriage, changes in marital status are likely to influence the success of policies aimed at empowering women. 

A map of Nigerian conflict deaths in 2012 by state

Another Hidden Horror of 21st Century Conflict: Children’s Suffering

This year’s Nobel Peace Prize, awarded last week to Denis Mukwege and Nadia Murad, calls attention to sexual violence during war and civil conflicts—a horror too often unstated and wished away. There’s another largely hidden horror the world needs to reckon with: the toll that civil conflicts, some so local that they rarely make the news, takes on children.

Springtime for the Data Revolution

Overthrowing the unsatisfactory data status quo depends on more than declarations and calls to coordinate and partner. As we and others have noted (here and here), more and better funding is what’s needed to deliver on a data revolution.  

Preparing for Post-Ebola Economic Recovery

Rebuilding and strengthening Liberia’s health systems, investing in households with young children, and revitalizing the private sector must be made priorities for Liberia, according to experts gathered at CGD for an event on what the international community can do to help the country’s people and economy recover from the toll of Ebola.

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.

Africa’s Child Health Miracle: The Biggest, Best Story in Development

If you’re sick of the sad, hopeless stories coming out of Africa, here’s one that made my year. New statistics show that the rate of child death across sub-Saharan Africa is not just in decline—but that decline has massively accelerated, just in the last few years. From the middle to the end of the last decade, rates of child mortality across the continent plummeted much faster than they ever had before.

Tanzanian President Kikwete Focuses on Education & Malaria Control

This is a joint posting with former CGD special assistant Rena Pacheco-Theard

Last week, CGD was honored to host Tanzanian President Jakaya Mrisho Kikwete and senior officials in his government for a discussion with a small group of development experts on Tanzania's recent education and malaria control activities.

The importance that the government places on core social sectors is unmistakable – and continues a long Tanzanian tradition. Minister for Education and Vocational Training, Jumanne Maghembe, noted that, "Education is the highest priority, and the foundation of any social development venture." In fact, the education sector – primarily teacher salaries – accounts for a full 17% of the national budget. Over the past few years, the country has consolidated progress toward universal primary education and has increased secondary school enrollment by two and a half times (from a very low base). The Minister also reported on expansion in post-secondary education, including universities and vocational training centers. Attention is also being given to the early years. Zanzibar's Minister of Education, Haroun Ali Suleiman, stressed the importance of pre-primary education.

As the sector expands, the challenges are profound. The most obvious is the shortage of teachers. Historically, secondary schooling has been so limited that there simply aren't enough graduates to train as teachers. In response, at least for the near term, the government has implemented programs to bring in teachers with non-traditional training, and is looking at distance education technologies.

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