Ideas to Action:

Independent research for global prosperity





Cover of the transition brief on debt
December 3, 2020

A Plan to Address the COVID-19 Debt Crises in Poor Countries and Build a Better Sovereign Debt System

Swift and orderly action on international debt is a moral, political, economic, and security imperative for the United States. A series of disorderly and protracted debt crises would be catastrophic for the world’s poorest countries. A Biden administration can raise the G20’s ambition level to avert a global debt crisis and strive to forge a consensus around a COVID-19 debt framework.

The cover of the report
December 2, 2020

Measuring Women’s Economic Empowerment: A Compendium of Selected Tools

A main objective of the compendium is practical: helping readers locate and choose different tools (and indicators) for different purposes. This includes providing a better understanding of the factors that affect country rankings produced by different tools and selecting among tools and indicators for monitoring a particular project. It also identifies gaps in WEE measurement that need to be filled and aims to promote harmonization among WEE stakeholders through a shared understanding of existing tools and what they measure.

Abstract image of connections across the globe.
November 30, 2020

Technology and Empathy in the COVID-19 Era

In a recent CGD note, “Empathy and Client Relationships in Development Finance,” we emphasised the importance of development finance institutions (DFIs) investing in face-to-face contact and dialogue with their clients to build the empathetic relationships needed to deliver development outcomes. But, in the era of COVID-19, did we overstate our case?

Cover of policy paper 194
November 30, 2020

Accelerating Progress of Low-Income Countries Towards the SDGs: Balancing Realism and Ambition in a Post-COVID-19 World

The world is in the throes of a health, economic, and social crisis due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Slower global growth has significantly worsened the economic prospects for all countries, including the poorest ones. Low-income countries (LICs) are also finding it more difficult to service their external debt as well as to access private capital—concessional and non-concessional

A cover image of the policy paper on institutional and political determinants of statutory tax rates
November 18, 2020

Institutional and Political Determinants of Statutory Tax Rates: Empirical Evidence from Sub-Saharan Africa

This paper investigates the extent to which institutional and political factors explain statutory tax rates in sub-Saharan Africa (SSA). In particular, it examines the effect of regulatory quality, political accountability, political fragmentation, the electoral cycle, and ideological orientation on corporate income tax (CIT) rates as well as top marginal personal income tax (PIT) rates during 1990-2017

A shot of the front of the Great Hall of the People in Beijing. Adobe Stock
November 18, 2020

Bargaining with Beijing: A Tale of Two Borrowers

We examine the behavior of Chinese government lenders in two debt rescheduling episodes: a “low stakes” case involving Seychelles and a “high stakes” case involving the Republic of Congo. The fact that the Republic of Congo was worse off after rescheduling its debts with Beijing underscores the importance of exposing these deals to public scrutiny before they are finalized and building borrower country capacity to negotiate more favorable deals.

Cover of policy paper 190
November 12, 2020

Governing Data for Development: Trends, Challenges, and Opportunities

To better understand how governments can use data to support economic development and inclusive growth while protecting citizens and communities against harm, we interviewed over 40 data policy experts from government, civil society, the private sector, development organizations, and the data privacy community over summer 2020. This paper synthesizes the views we heard into key themes and explores some of the questions and challenges that a policy and research agenda aimed at supporting effective government data use should consider.

The cover of the case study
October 28, 2020

From Displacement to Development: How Colombia Can Transform Venezuelan Displacement into Shared Growth

This case study is part of the “Let Them Work” initiative by Refugees International (RI) and the Center for Global Development (CGD). It outlines the barriers Venezuelans face in Colombia to economic inclusion, the impacts of these barriers, and the steps that the Government of Colombia, international organizations, donors, and the private sector could take to overcome them.