Thailand is Drowning in Waste! – Part 1: The Challenge

I participated in an interesting summit of academics and government officials towards the end of the summer. The event, “Revitalizing Rural Development for Poverty Eradication in Asia,” featured three tracks of discussions about (1) natural resources and the environment, (2) rights and democratization, & (3) livelihood and wellbeing. I joined the track around natural resources and […]

India’s drought foretells of greater struggles as climate warms | New Scientist

India is in the grip of a severe drought as a result of two successive weak monsoons and a searing heatwave. Its reservoirs dipped to less than a fifth of their total capacity in May, and a quarter of the country’s 1.1 billion people are estimated to be affected in some way. Reports of parched, cracked soils, farmers’ […]

The Melting Away of North Atlantic Social Democracy

Plutocrats and their ideologues like to claim that too equal an income distribution destroys incentives to work and turns us into a “nation of takers.” But a return to the inequality levels of the 1960s would not turn us into Maoist China. In the relevant range of levels of inequality, it is much more likely […]

Power, Poverty, Gender and Injustice: The local impact of inequality | ActionAid

Much of the recent debate on inequality has focused on the big picture of how a few individuals (62, in Oxfam’s January paper) have the same wealth as half the world’s population. As usefully provocative as these findings are, ActionAid wants to be sure that we also focus on the lived experience of inequality at the […]

Leaving it behind | The Economist

BRAC came up with a scheme to help the ultra-poor. It gives them a small stipend for food, followed by an asset such as a cow or a few goats, which they are expected to manage. Field workers visit weekly for the next two years, teaching recipients, for example, how to tell when a cow […]

It’s time to move beyond growth for growth’s sake

There are two problems with economic growth as a measure of wellbeing. First, the correlation between economic growth and poverty reduction is weak. It’s a reminder that intuition and ‘common sense’ do not always correspond to evidence. Globally, the trends are clear. Since 1990, global gross domestic product (GDP) has increased 271 per cent, and […]