COVID-19 has raised the profile of violence against women and children (VAW/C) within the global discourse. Nine months after the emergence of COVID-19, global stakeholders continue to advocate for increased funding and action to mitigate against the risk of violence on vulnerable populations and support survivors. How much have we learned from research since the beginning of the crisis?
Sound Banks for Healthy Economies: Challenges for Policymakers in Latin America and the Caribbean in Times of Coronavirus
The purpose of this report is twofold: to identify and discuss a set of challenges, and to develop key recommendations. The overarching goal is to provide support to policymakers in the region who may face difficult decisions to ensure that banks play a constructive role and support families and firms through and beyond the current crisis.
We convened a virtual roundtable to discuss how public and private sector actors can better understand and work together to narrow gender gaps in pay. To operationalize recommendations raised during the discussion, here we present 6 actions for governments that draw on principles of openness and 6 actions for businesses to champion.
How can we accurately measure the global distribution of skills when people in different countries take different tests? We develop a new methodology to non-parametrically link scores from distinct populations. By administering an exam combining items from different assessments to 2,300 primary students in India, we estimate conversion functions among four of the world’s largest standardized tests spanning 80 countries.
In this note, I discuss a new approach to how national administrative education data—records of school census, public exams, school inspection, teacher payroll, and other operational matters, collected on routine basis—are integrated, shared, and used to generate knowledge.
The Impact of COVID-19 on Small and Medium-sized Enterprises: Evidence from Two-wave Phone Surveys in China
This paper examines both the short-term and mid-term impact of COVID-19 restrictions on small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs), based on two waves of phone interviews with a previously surveyed large SME sample in China.
Oil and gas discoveries in developing countries are often associated with short-sighted economic policies and, in response, calls to insulate resource management from populist impulses.
The Impact of Taxes and Transfers on Income Inequality, Poverty, and the Urban-Rural and Regional Income Gaps in China
China is characterized by high prefiscal overall, urban-rural and regional inequality. Applying standard fiscal incidence analysis, we estimate the redistributive effect of taxes and social spending on income distribution and poverty.
By surveying DFIs, we aim to start building a baseline of their gender policies and practices, analyze the data, and make recommendations where stronger policies and practices are needed. The survey’s findings give DFIs an important opportunity to learn from one another and work towards standards for how they can best promote gender equity.
Climate investments in the emerging markets and developing economies (EMDEs) have so far fallen well short of what is required to meet targets set in the 2015 Paris Agreement. National commitments ahead of the 2021 UN climate summit will further underline the discrepancy.
The types of workers recruited into teaching and their allocation across classrooms can greatly influence a country’s stock of human capital. This paper considers how markets and non-market institutions determine the quantity, wages, skills, and spatial distribution of teachers in developing countries.
Many countries have launched unprecedented relief packages to cushion the economic and social impact of the COVID-19 pandemic. This short review considers some initial lessons emerging from selected countries around the use of digital technology to implement these government-to-people (G2P) social transfer programs.
In recent years, a growing literature has measured the impact of education interventions in low- and middle-income countries on both access and learning outcomes. But interpretation of those effect sizes as large or small tends to rely on benchmarks developed by a psychologist in the United States in the 1960s. In this paper, we demonstrate the distribution of standardized effect sizes on learning and access from hundreds of studies from low- and middle-income countries.
Public support for global development in rich countries is critical for sustaining effective government and individual action. But the causes of public support are not well understood. Does spending time living in a developing country play a role in generating individual commitment to development? Addressing this question is fraught with selection bias, as individuals are rarely exogenously assigned to spend time in different countries. In this paper I address this question using a natural experiment—the quasi-random assignment of missionaries from the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints to two-year missions in different world regions. I provide the first causal estimates of the effect of travel to a developing country on attitudes to global development.
The global public health response to COVID-19 is pivoting from high-income European countries to MICs predominantly in Asia and South America. Effective test, trace, and isolate systems may be particularly valuable in MICs, where social and economic circumstances do not support large and long-term lockdowns. But investing in such systems in MICs comes with a number of limitations and opportunity costs.
Today, 1.4 million refugees urgently await resettlement. Unlike the rest of the world’s 26 million refugees, they have been designated by the United Nations (UN) as having vulnerabilities that cannot be addressed in their host countries. They are therefore waiting to be moved from the country hosting them to a third country willing to grant them permanent settlement. But less than a tenth of these people will be resettled this year; people are joining the queue faster than they leave it. The global community is failing in its duty to ensure their safety.
This essay lays out the story of how the UNDP team with its development partners achieved universal ID registration in Malawi, the challenges we faced, the roadblocks, how UNDP coordinated with other stakeholders and community development partners, and highlights the synergies that helped us achieve success.
Countries across Africa continue to face major challenges in education. In this review, we examine 142 recent empirical studies (from 2014 onward) on how to increase access to and improve the quality of education across the continent, specifically examining how these studies update previous research findings.