Economics blogs

76 - 100 of 108 blog posts
  • Adaptation finance: Why not just give it to the poor?

    Rachel Godfrey Wood 14 October 2010

    A new book argues that the best approach to reducing poverty is the simplest: giving money to the poor. In Just Give Money to the Poor, Hanlon, Barrientos and Hulme argue that cash transfers put money directly in the hands of those that need it, and that the poor are both willing and capable of using the money to benefit themselves and their families. Given the uncertainties and pitfalls of spending money on climate change adaptation, could we do worse than simply giving money to the poor themselves?

  • Emma Blackmore's picture

    The recession and the changing face of aid

    Emma Blackmore 26 August 2010

    Traditional donors from the G8 have failed to achieve their commitments to give 0.7% of their gross national incomes, due in part to “severe constraints of public debt”. But despite the recession, new donors have emerged, and with them a shift to new patterns and ways of giving aid. Indeed the recession has demonstrated the durability of aid during hard times but has also added to its complexity. We now need to work even harder to make sense of that complexity and ensure that aid is considered as one small part of a more joined-up and transparent development agenda.

  • 'Dios mio gracias!': Can Colombia´s pyramids teach us anything?

    Rachel Godfrey Wood 22 July 2010

    For over three years pyramid and money laundering schemes brought artificial prosperity to the lives of many Colombians, allowing people to improve their quality of life beyond their wildest dreams. Then, within a few days, everything was gone, and the country was left with a social disaster on its hands. Sound familiar?

  • What would sustainability in the North mean for development in the South?

    Rachel Godfrey Wood 8 July 2010

    Everyone agrees that developed countries need to undertake a radical transformation if they are to assume their responsibilities for mitigating climate change. But what consequences would this have for the global South? Will climate change mitigation in the North undermine economic development in developing countries, or provide them with new opportunities?

  • Israel, Palestine, and the Recession

    Anais Hall 6 July 2010

    Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu heads to Washington DC on 6th July 2010 to meet with President Barack Obama. Obama will seek to bring the Israeli and Palestinian leaders into direct peace talks, again. But how will this attempt differ from past efforts?

    Can the current woes of the recession help foster peace negotiations through intensified economic restraints?

  • Emma Blackmore's picture

    Silver or grey linings?

    Emma Blackmore 21 June 2010

    Back in January, Due South commented on one silver lining of the economic crisis – a fall in CO2 emissions. With a double-dip recession predicted by some, could this be a double windfall for efforts to combat climate change?

  • Bill Vorley's picture

    Has agriculture been a winner in the economic downturn?

    Bill Vorley 14 June 2010

    While the downturn has hit many economic sectors hard, have farmers prospered?

  • Together we're better - sharing for sustainability

    Anais Hall 27 May 2010

    The spotlight was on transparency and sustainability at yesterday’s Global Reporting Initiative (GRI) meeting in Amsterdam. The organisation, which works on sustainability reporting frameworks, was holding its annual conference with a focus on this dual issue, and speakers included media representatives from the UK-based Guardian  and others from the United Nations and International Finance Corporation (IFC)

    The thrust of the GRI’s message is that ‘transparent communication changes perceptions, builds trust, and motivates action towards greater sustainability.’ And sustainability is key as we emerge bleary-eyed from years of ‘bubble’ thinking and the global economic meltdown that triggered.

  • Latin America´s Leftist Tide - Less Ebb than Flow

    Rachel Godfrey Wood 24 May 2010

    Much has been made of Latin America´s ‘leftist tide’ in the last decade. After disappointment with Washington Consensus Policies such as privatization, trade liberalization and deregulation, the last decade saw the assent of nine nominally ‘leftist’ governments in Latin America, promising to sweep away neo-liberal orthodoxies and redistribute wealth to the poor. Not only that, they promised to break with economic ‘dependency’ on the developed world and chart their own paths. But did the new leaders insulate their countries from the worst of the recession, or make them more vulnerable to it?

  • Greek bailout - a familar fate?

    Anais Hall 17 May 2010


    With French President Nicolas Sarkozy threatening to pull out of the single currency altogether last Friday, the eurozone’s bailout of Greece seems to be tinged with panic.

    But this is an extreme moment, as a member of the European Union faces up to a grim reality for many developing countries.

  • Ben Garside's picture

    Engendering change in the crisis

    Ben Garside 10 May 2010

    When recession hits the developing world, it is often women who bear the brunt of falling incomes and joblessness. But how do women in differing contexts across the South respond to these challenges? More, what about other diversity issues - such as age, or sexual orientation - within the context of financial crisis?

  • Emma Blackmore's picture

    Turning the spotlight on agriculture

    Emma Blackmore 7 May 2010

    Have we glimpsed real signs of economic recovery?

  • Banking on Coal in the Global South?

    Rachel Godfrey Wood 28 April 2010

  • Abbi Buxton's picture

    A meeting of mines

    Abbi Buxton 20 April 2010

    Bringing together small-scale miners and globalised mining operations could help to find solutions for many of the ills affecting artisanal miners worldwide

  • To Legalize or not to Legalize?

    Rachel Godfrey Wood 12 April 2010

    Did the drugs trade keep the global financial system afloat at the height of the economic crisis?

  • Emma Blackmore's picture

    A rubbish heap of issues

    Emma Blackmore 8 April 2010

    In belt-tightening times, it’s not surprising that consumption often drops. The UK is a case in point. Happily, consumers there are wasting less too.

    The Waste and Recycling Action Programme (WRAP) reported that in the UK, households throw away half a tonne of food-related waste each year (or a third of all household food purchased). This costs the UK approximately £12 billion a year in disposal costs alone – over £1000 per household.

  • The case of the coca leaf

    Anais Hall 1 April 2010

    The war on drugs in Mexico has intensified. A recent article in the Economist reports that drug-related killings have increased by almost 1000 since last year. Moreover, innocent people in Mexico are becoming victims, as drug gang shootings are no longer just targeting police and rival gangs.

    Mexico and the US are working to eradicate the problem by investing US$1.3 billion in anti-drug aid, though only US$331 million is to be invested in social intervention. Yet the lack of intervention through social welfare programmes may be the underlying cause of the rapid growth of drug gangs and related violence.

     

  • Ben Garside's picture

    Staying south – trade, aid, and the recession

    Ben Garside 30 March 2010

    In the global recession, have so called ‘emerging' economies got a toehold in the trade, aid, and investment big-league?

  • How to manage our fish and chips

    Anais Hall 23 March 2010

    ‘Mind-withering stupidity’ is how UK writer George Monbiot characterised the CITES (Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species) decision not to protect bluefin tuna.

    The ‘absence of a ban’, he went on to say, ‘ensures that, after one or two more seasons of fishing at current levels, all the jobs and the entire industry are finished forever, along with the magnificent species that supported them’.

  • Emma Blackmore's picture

    Collateral damage - and no farewell to arms

    Emma Blackmore 17 March 2010

    When arms sales jump by more than a fifth during a global economic downturn, you have to wonder who’s buying, who’s selling and what the implications are for poorer countries.

    Richard Norton-Taylor, reporting in the UK Guardian, reports that the average volume of sales of arms — including weapons such as guns, ammunition, missiles, military aircraft, military vehicles, ships and electronic systems — has increased by 22 per cent over five years compared to the previous five. Demand from South America and Southeast Asia has been particularly high.

  • The Nazca's folly: a pattern that won't go away?

    Rachel Godfrey Wood 15 March 2010

    Some might say that archaeology is all about potsherds and old bones. But digging into the past can be a way of uncovering patterns of human behaviour with real relevance for our own time. And recently a group of archaeologists did just that, by unearthing an earlier culture that is an uncomfortable echo of our own.

    A study by this University of Cambridge group claims that the Nazca — a people famed for creating the gigantic ‘Nazca Lines’, patterns on a Peruvian desert that can only be seen from a plane — precipitated their own decline through excessive deforestation.

  • Recovery “kick off”? Of football, sausages and lost opportunities

    James MacGregor 11 March 2010

    When it’s done, the global tally could be 50 million. So says the International Labour Organization (ILO) about job losses from this recession.

    In richer countries, that has meant growing pressure on central government resources, as formal jobs have been lost and draws on government benefits have increased. Estimates include 8 million jobs lost in the US and 1.3 million in the UK.

    In developing countries, people are more likely to juggle several jobs than in the developed world. This means underemployment

  • Credit Gap? Micro is beautiful

    Anais Hall 4 March 2010

    Many now fondly remember the days of cheap credit and apparent financial stability in the early 2000s. Those were the days where you would deposit your money and earn a reasonable rate of interest while businesses and individuals could receive a loan to open or expand a business, buy a home, go to university, etc..

    The past is indeed a strange place: they do things differently there.

  • Abbi Buxton's picture

    Blogging the corporate monster

    Abbi Buxton 24 February 2010

    Last week, over 100 bloggers reacted to Prem Sikka’s ‘Comment Is Free’ piece in the Guardian, which opined that ‘big business must be forced to temper its obsession with profit and align corporate practice with social justice and democracy’.

  • Emma Blackmore's picture

    Did the bankers do the Amazon a favour?

    Emma Blackmore 22 February 2010

    Deforestation rates in Brazil nearly halved recently — the largest fall in two decades. Not bad for the country that, back in the 20th century, was so often portrayed in the media as losing a chunk of rainforest ‘the size of Wales’. That’s just one example of how the impacts of recession on the environment can tell us an awful lot about the way our economy works.

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