Recently, my colleague Clemence Landers argued that International Development Association (IDA), the largest source of concessional loans and grant finance for the world’s poorest countries, needs to “go big” in its next replenishment.
CGD Policy Blogs
Bitcoin has failed to live up to the hype that it would democratize finance by enabling cheap, instantaneous, and secure payments that could be conducted without having to rely on stodgy old financial institutions like banks and credit card companies. And the Bitcoin network’s spiraling energy needs are truly staggering when compared to other potential uses.
Women’s History Month came to a close last week with the first virtual convening of the Generation Equality Forum in Mexico City. Originally scheduled for 2020, the Forum commemorates the 25th anniversary of the Beijing Declaration and Platform for Action, while bringing urgent attention to global leaders falling short of their stated objectives to achieve gender equality. Over the course of the three-day session, Forum participants heard from leaders of six Action Coalitions, each of which presented a blueprint of actions that coalition members will take to achieve their stated goals by 2026. Here we examine these newly announced goals, assess their scope and scale of ambition, and propose some next steps.
The last eighteen months have shattered any pretense that global development can be taken as given. As ‘impatient optimist’ Bill Gates declared “The COVID-19 pandemic has not only stopped progress — it's pushed it backwards.” Beyond health, the COVID-19 crisis increased global poverty as well as national level inequality and cut into education.
The evidence to date suggests that the pandemic and resulting global recession have exacerbated pre-existing gender inequalities in economic standing and broader well-being in low- and middle-income countries. Now, the question is: are donors like the World Bank and other regional development banks doing enough to close the gender gaps exacerbated by the pandemic?
Last week, the UK’s Home Office released a “New Plan for Immigration.” The plan has three major objectives: to increase the fairness and efficacy of the asylum system, to deter irregular entry of asylum seekers into the UK, and to “remove more easily” those whose asylum claims were rejected.
While those lucky enough to live in the United States or Europe fret about the extra weeks before their vaccine jab is scheduled, 6 billion people in developing countries will need to wait months, if not years. COVID-19 vaccine production lags far behind demand, and one reason why developing countries find themselves at the back of the queue is that they were unable collectively to make the firm financial offers for advance purchases when these vaccines were still in the making.
As economies start opening up, the COVID Vaccine Certificate is increasingly becoming a ticket to return to normality, lifting restrictions on work, travel and leisure. Because of the formidable constraints, any US path to a CVC should start with a light touch.
The American Rescue Plan—the massive COVID-19 relief package recently signed into law—has featured in plenty of headlines. While the vast majority of the nearly $1.9 trillion package is allocated to domestic relief and response, the legislation provides nearly $11 billion in supplemental international affairs spending. We dug in to see how this new injection of funding compares to emergency foreign assistance provided under previous pandemic-related legislation and share some areas we hope to see USAID and the State Department prioritize as they work to put the new money to good use.
The House Foreign Affairs Committee recently advanced the Global Learning Loss Assessment Act. This bipartisan, bicameral legislation shines a light on the critical issue of learning loss—and the impacts of disrupted education more broadly—as schools around the world closed due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Here’s a quick overview of the evidence to date—and why it’s important that lawmakers (and USAID) are casting a watchful eye on global learning and inequality.