The macroeconomics of development financing

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Mean years of schooling in countries employing relaxed macroeconomic policies are 1.5 years higher than those which adopted more restrictive policies.

During the summit on Financing for Development in Addis Ababa, the world community will agree to strengthen domestic resource mobilization capacity, increase the availability of external funds, reduce the cost of sending remittances and tackle illicit financial flows.

However, all of these measures could be futile if countries adopt macroeconomic policies that are not developmental.

In this blog series, our experts share their thoughts on key financing for development issues... Read more

Unlocking the potential of Mali’s youth

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Youth in Mali. Credit: Harandane Dicko / UNDP in Mali

With its youthful population and track record of civil crises, Mali is the perfect case study on the relationship between youth and stability.

Mali’s fertility rate is second only to Niger’s. Yet in a country that doesn’t provide jobs, opportunities for decision-making and a sense of purpose, this youth bulge is more likely to be a powerful demographic time bomb rather than a driver of economic growth.... Read more

A look behind the protective gear reveals the faces of Ebola

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Photo posters of Ebola workers from the Inside Out project are showcased on the UNDP Common House in Conakry, Guinea. Photo: Anthony Headley/UNDP Guinea

Forécariah is a grueling 3.5 hour drive out of Guinea’s capital, Conakry. Although the road is only 100 kilometers, it is bustling with life. Between the potholes, the markets take over the two-lane highway’s flat surface. You could furnish your apartment just sitting in one of these notorious traffic jams in Guinea!

The excitement of the road mirrored what I was feeling about my mission once I arrived in Forécariah. Sitting in the traffic, I thought about my destination, not knowing what to expect and anticipating their reactions.

I had chosen to take the portraits of the people who work in Ebola treatment centers. To show the faces of those everyone has seen, but who have mostly appeared in their astronaut-looking suits, under their personal protective equipment.... Read more

The paradox of development financing in Caribbean small islands

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Small island developing states in the Caribbean continue to experience social development challenges related to citizen security, public health, climate change and natural disasters. Hurricane Sandy's impact in Jamaica, 2013.

Small island developing states in the Caribbean are, for the most part, middle income countries and rank relatively high on the Human Development Index.

In spite of this, they continue to experience social development challenges related to citizen security, public health, widening income gaps, retention of highly trained nationals, climate change and natural disasters.

In this blog series, our experts share their thoughts on key financing for development issues.... Read more

In adaptation, understanding economics is priceless

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In Ou Village, Siem Reap Province villagers are trained in planting techniques and drip irrigation installation as part of a climate-proofing agricultural practices adaptation project in Cambodia. Photo: Narith Mao/UNDP Cambodia

What is the right policy or incentive to encourage climate change adaptation?

One could simply pick the one that is politically expedient and implement it. If it doesn’t work, make adjustments and try again. In many instances, this is exactly how public policy is defined, despite what is in textbooks or what best practice would suggest.

Clearly, this kind of reactive approach has its limits. It doesn’t necessarily result in the most economically efficient choices being made.

Understanding the economics of climate change adaptation is critical. In a world with competing demands for limited resources, governments can ask critical questions to form the most efficient policy. ... Read more

Sustainable agriculture key to green growth and reducing poverty

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Indonesia’s palm oil smallholders, who produce about 40% of the country’s palm oil, are plagued by bad production techniques. Photo: UNDP in Indonesia

The production of agricultural commodities, such as palm oil, beef, soy, coffee, and cocoa, plays a pivotal role in global efforts to improve livelihoods across the globe. Sadly, agriculture is also the main driver of deforestation today, and is threatening to devastate the very environment upon which we depend to survive.

In this blog series, our experts share their thoughts on key financing for development issues... Read more

Wading through the facts: Lessons from the Georgia flood

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Flood recovery operations brought together the government, civil society, international organizations and volunteers. But with the sense of solidarity comes an understanding that disaster management systems must be strengthened. Photo: David Khizanishvili/UNDP

It’s still hard to believe what happened. In just four days, the death toll has reached 19 with a handful still missing, hundreds left homeless, an entire zoo simply washed away.

In those first hours, I, like so many others, marvelled at the torrential rain coming down with surprising fury. Driving home through streets already beginning to flood, how could I know the devastation was already underway?... Read more

Nepal’s road to recovery is paved with collaboration

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In a park located in a central urban area in Kathmandu, Nepal, citizens who lost their houses are living in tents provided by international assistance. Photo: Naoki Nihei/UNDP

Looking down from a plane above Kathmandu, I was not able to clearly assess the degree of damage from the 25th April earthquake. In rural areas, most of the houses were destroyed. In Kathmandu, many whose houses were affected are living in tents outside of their homes.

In late May, I travelled to Kathmandu to support Japan-UNDP cooperation to help the Government of Nepal in the reconstruction planning after the devastating earthquakes. I could see the colorful tents everywhere in the city, as we flew over it.... Read more

Next time could be different – Towards risk-informed development finance

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State-contingent financing can help countries manage risk and deal with shocks more effectively. Photo: UNDP in Sierra Leone

History provides a stark reminder that sovereign debt crises have been and are a regular feature of international development and finance. But is this the inevitable reality of international finance? Or can we think of new forms of risk-informed development finance?

In this blog series, our experts share their thoughts on key financing for development issues... Read more

There is no honour in barring women from voting

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Pakistani women exercise their right to vote on the Cantonment board elections in Lahore. Photo: UNDP Pakistan

On 30 May, the people of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, Pakistan went to the polls to exercise their hard-earned democratic right to choose their local leaders.

But newspaper reports emerged of candidates, community elders, and religious leaders conspiring to bar women from voting. In an earlier by-election, local media reported that out of 47,280 registered women voters, not a single woman cast her vote, following a decision by local leaders to ban women from voting.... Read more