Ideas to Action:

Independent research for global prosperity

Publications

Topic

 

March 29, 2011

TrAid+ Channeling Development Assistance to Results - Working Paper 247

Traditional donor financing mechanisms tend to track inputs instead of results, lack transparency, accountability, and country ownership. These inefficiencies waste resources, erode the trust of aid constituencies, and fail to improve the lives of the poor. TrAid+ is a new mechanism that aims to address these problems by acting as a third-party stamp of approval that all parties involved can trust to know that aid is being used effectively and is contributing to the development objectives of the recipient country. This paper describes the trAid+ concept in detail and proposes practical steps to establish the traAid+ platform.

Alex Ergo and Ingo Puhl
March 18, 2011

The New Bottom Billion: What If Most of the World's Poor Live in Middle-Income Countries?

Most of the world’s poor no longer live in low-income countries. An estimated 960 million poor people—a new bottom billion—live in middle-income countries, a result of the graduation of several populous countries from low-income status. That is good news, but it has repercussions. Donors will have to change the way they think about poverty alleviation. They should design development aid to benefit poor people, not just poor countries, keep supporting middle-income countries, think beyond traditional aid to craft coherent development policies, and work to help create space for more inclusive policy processes in new and old MICs.

March 14, 2011

COD Aid: Transfers for Transformation (Presentation)

In a presentation delivered at the UK Department for International Development on March 9, 2011, CGD president Nancy Birdsall spoke about opportunities and challenges for the implementation of Cash on Delivery Aid, an approach that allows aid agencies to address both short-term and long-term objectives of aid.

March 10, 2011

A Green Venture Fund to Finance Clean Technology for Developing Countries - Working Paper 245

Developed countries have promised to mobilize $100 billion per year to help developing countries combat climate change, a commitment that will require substantial capital from private investors. The authors of this working paper propose a public-private green venture fund (GVF) to promote the development and deployment of low-carbon technologies for poor countries.

March 3, 2011

The Post-Washington Consensus: Development after the Crisis - Working Paper 244

The last time a global depression originated in the United States, the impact was devastating not only for the world economy but for world politics as well. The Great Depression set the stage for a shift away from strict monetarism and laissez-faire policies toward Keynesian demand management. More important, for many it delegitimized the capitalist system itself, paving the way for the rise of radical and antiliberal movements around the world.

March 2, 2011

Failed States, Vicious Cycles, and a Proposal - Working Paper 243

Failed states often suffer the repeated return to power of former warlords who weaken institutions and make people poorer. In this working paper, Rajan argues that the only way to break the cycle of dictators is to empower the citizenry through economic growth. In the case of failed states, he proposes a unique solution to allow the electorate to choose an impartial foreigner to govern the country and lay the foundations for good governance and sustainable economic progress.

Raghuram G. Rajan
March 2, 2011

Aid for a Purpose: Show Me the Goal, Then Show Me the Money

In this paper, Connie Veillette presents the problems that beset the existing process for budgeting and resource allocation, and argue that the process is backwards. Instead of using baseline budgets and existing resources to dictate objectives, policymakers should clearly define and articulate the purposes of aid up front; then a process for matching resources to objectives can begin.

February 27, 2011

Solow’s Return: Inventions, Ideas, and the Quality of Life

In his latest essay, Charles Kenny seeks to revive Solow's model of exogenous growth; growth driven by the global diffusion of new technologies and ideas. He suggests that when it comes to quality of life improvements, institutions may be less important than exogenous factors, like new vaccines, oral re-hydration therapies, or improvements in hygiene and education practices.

February 25, 2011

Getting Better in Pictures

Charles Kenny attempts to dispel development pessimists' fears in this essay summarizing his latest book Getting Better: Why Global Development Is Succeeding - And How We can Improve the World Even More (Basic Books). According to Charles, better health, education, greater access to civil and political rights, infrastructure and even beer, are all signs historic progress being made in the developing world.

February 11, 2011

Getting Real on Trade with Pakistan: Duty-Free Market Access as Development Policy - Working Paper 241

Lifting American trade barriers to Pakistani goods could serve as a useful tool of U.S. foreign policy. Unfortunately, recent proposals to extend duty-free market access for Pakistani exports are extremly limited due to concerns about job loss in the U.S. textile industry. However, this study shows that concerns are exaggerated and that market barriers for all Pakistani goods should be droped.

Kimberly Ann Elliott , assisted and Caroline Decker
February 1, 2011

Getting to a “Grand Bargain” for Aid Reform: The Basic Framework for U.S. Foreign Assistance

Arkedis focuses on understanding why long-term development is often subjugated to other objectives in the day-to-day planning processes of the U.S. government. She proposes one way to ensure that funding choices are made more rationally and systematically: by aligning the differing goals of aid more explicitly with redefined foreign assistance budget accounts.

Jean Arkedis
January 24, 2011

Dataset: Vulnerability to Climate Change

Senior fellow David Wheeler quantifies and makes available in this dataset the vulnerability of 233 countries to three major effects of climate change (weather-related disasters, sea-level rise, and reduced agricultural productivity).

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