Ideas to Action:

Independent research for global prosperity

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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.

Cover of Working Paper 522
December 17, 2019

Identifying and Verifying Customers: When are KYC Requirements Likely to Become Constraints on Financial Inclusion?

Onerous KYC documentation requirements are widely recognized as a potential constraint to full financial inclusion. However, it is sometimes difficult to judge the extent to which this constraint is a serious or binding one, relative to others. The paper considers this question, distinguishing between different types of documentation and different financial market segments according to their KYC requirements.

Cover of Working Paper 521
December 15, 2019

Beyond Short-term Learning Gains: The Impact of Outsourcing Schools in Liberia after Three Years

After one year, outsourcing the management of ninety-three randomly-selected government primary schools in Liberia to eight private operators led to modest learning gains. In this paper, we revisit the program two years later. Despite facing similar contracts and settings, some providers produced uniformly positive results, while others present stark trade-offs between learning gains, access to education, child safety, and financial sustainability.

The cover of the report
December 13, 2019

Designing a Medium-Term Response to the Rohingya Refugee Crisis: Ideas for Bangladesh, the International Community, and the Private Sector

While Bangladesh and Myanmar have recently attempted small-scale repatriation, these efforts have failed as refugees refused to go back, fearing for their safety. Conditions in Myanmar’s Rakhine State continue to deteriorate, and UN agencies have been denied full access to areas of return. Despite this, planning so far has been short-term and focused on aid rather than medium-term economic, environmental, and human development approaches.

Cover of Private Distribution Channels for UHC paper
December 12, 2019

Harnessing the Power of Private Distribution Channels for UHC

New technology, better use of data, and entrepreneurial passion in improving distribution channels is reaching a critical mass with the potential to drive extraordinary improvements in availability, affordability, and quality of health products. Global health institutions can play a significant role in further boosting the overall innovation ecosystem for health products distribution. However, most distribution system innovators are missing from global discussions around UHC and access to medicines.

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