Ideas to Action:

Independent research for global prosperity

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Cover Image the sorting hat
February 6, 2020

The Subsidy Sorting Hat

In the Harry Potter novels, a magic hat decides which of four school houses new pupils should join. Development finance institutions (DFIs) need something like that when trying to decide which private firms to subsidise, although applicants only need sorting into two groups: firms that are doing something socially valuable and which genuinely require a subsidy, and firms that are merely trying their luck to get a subsidy for a project they would undertake in any case.

The cover of the brief
February 5, 2020

Managing Better: What All of Us Can Do to Encourage Aid Success

Management by way of top-down controls and targets sometimes gets in the way of aid donors’ aims, undermining project success. These unhelpful controls often stem from a need to account for performance; legislatures or executive boards induce agencies to exercise tight process controls and orient projects towards what is measurable and reportable.

Cover image for MVAC
February 5, 2020

Blueprint for a Market-Driven Value-Based Advance Commitment for Tuberculosis

The market-driven, value-based advance commitment (MVAC) builds on the advance market commitment (AMC) mechanism previously used in global health with several important innovations and improvements. Most crucially, the MVAC is driven by MIC demand rather than donor contributions; is informed by countries’ ability to pay rather than a single, “cost-plus” price; and allows pharmaceutical companies to reap higher revenues from a more effective product. In this report, we apply our new model—the MVAC—to a target product profile (TPP), published by the World Health Organization (WHO) in 2016 and endorsed by BMGF, for a pan-TB regimen.

The cover of the note
January 31, 2020

From Principles to Practice: Strengthening Accountability for Gender Equality in International Development

This policy note seeks to contribute to maximizing the impact of Beijing +25, and strengthening accountability for global gender equality more broadly, by grappling with three core questions: For what should governments be held accountable? To whom should they be accountable? And how can feminist researchers and advocates hold governments accountable? 

Cover image of CDI review
January 29, 2020

The Index Ecosystem and the Commitment to Development Index

The CDI has carved out a fairly specialized niche in the index ecosystem. For 15 years, the Center for Global Development has produced the Commitment to Development Index (CDI). This is a good time to take stock and ask how, if at all, the CDI should be modified.

January 24, 2020

Bangladesh: Impediments to Enhanced Revenue Mobilization and Equitable and Efficient Spending

Despite remarkable success in terms of growth, poverty reduction, and improvements in other socio-economic indicators, Bangladesh suffers from chronic revenue shortfalls and an extremely low tax/GDP ratio. The overall size of the government is also quite small and inadequate to meet the growing demand for public services and infrastructure, primarily due to revenue-generating limitations by the country’s tax authorities

Cover image of international taxation paper
January 22, 2020

International Taxation and Developing Countries

International tax issues are a concern for both developed and developing countries, with evidence of aggressive tax planning by multinational enterprises (MNEs). MNEs are able to exploit weaknesses in the design of the international tax framework to reduce their tax liabilities. 

Peter Mullins
Cover image for Senegal DRM case study
January 21, 2020

Senegal: Making Domestic Resource Mobilization Work to Sustain Growth and Improve Service Delivery

Senegal’s recent economic performance is impressive. For the first time, Senegal has achieved a GDP growth rate of more than 6 percent for three consecutive years (2015–2017), and per capita GDP has increased at an annual average of 4.1 percent. In parallel, progress in fiscal revenues has been recorded, with the ratio of average revenues to GDP increasing by 5.7 percentage points between 2000-2002 and 2014-2017, placing Senegal above the regional average of 15 percent.

Close-up photo of hands holding Mexican pesos. Adobe Stock.
January 14, 2020

The Puzzle of Financial Inclusion in Mexico: A Closeable Gap?

Financial inclusion is a fundamental pillar of development. But Mexico poses a conundrum. In many respects it has been successful at growing its economy and integrating with global markets. Yet among its peers in Latin America, Mexico is the worst-performing at financial inclusion relative to its income; at 36.9%, its rate of inclusion only surpasses three other countries regionally—all with much lower per capita incomes.

Cover of Policy Paper 165
January 13, 2020

A First Step to Revive the Rules-Based Trading System

Though it has been struggling with challenges for some time, current nationalist and populist tendencies around the world pose a far more serious threat to the World Trade Organization than anything previously seen. Developing countries gain most from this system and should take the lead in a new negotiation to reinforce core WTO principles, including transparency, predictability and nondiscrimination.

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