Ideas to Action:

Independent research for global prosperity

CGD Podcast

Exploring smart policies for a better world.

 

Is Anyone Listening? US Foreign Aid (Mis)Alignment – Benjamin Leo

My guest on this week’s Global Prosperity Wonkcast is CGD senior fellow and director of the Rethinking US Development Policy program Ben Leo, here to discuss his new CGD working paper, Is Anyone Listening?  in which he examines how well US foreign assistance aligns with the priorities of people in recipient countries. Answer: not so much or, as Ben puts it more diplomatically: “the alignment is modest at best.”

Making Large-Scale Wind and Solar Power a Reality – Kevin Ummel

News from Warsaw on the just-concluded 19th round of global climate talks suggests that there has been little progress towards a binding agreement on either cutting emissions or paying the rising costs of climate change. Nonetheless, even without a global agreement requiring them to cut emissions from power plants, which account for about a third of the problem, 130 countries have set renewable energy targets.

What to Make of the Warsaw COP – Michele de Nevers

It’s that time of year again when climate negotiators from around the world head to the jamboree known as the Conference of the Parties of the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change or, in UN summit jargon, the UNFCCC COP. This year’s COP, held in Warsaw, will be the 19th annual round of global talks on averting a planetary catastrophe.

I asked CGD senior associate Michele de Nevers, formerly a senior official at the World Bank and the veteran of many previous COPs, to join me on the Wonkcast to discuss the prospects for the Warsaw COP.

The Rebirth of Education - Lant Pritchett

My guest on this week’s Global Prosperity Wonkcast is CGD senior fellow Lant Pritchett, whose new book, The Rebirth of Education: Schooling Ain’t Learning, was released last month and is now available on Kindle. The book addresses a fundamental problem in education: despite great progress to meet the 2015 Millennium Development Goal target for primary school completion, students the world over are leaving school having learned very little. “They need to be in school and learn,” Pritchett says. “If you create systems where the only measures of schooling are kids in seats, you’re going to get measures of time served rather than learning gained.”

Focusing the FAO on Global Public Goods – Vijaya Ramachandran

My guest on this week’s Global Prosperity Wonkcast is CGD senior fellow Vijaya Ramachandran, here to speak to us about the Food and Agricultural Organization (FAO) of the United Nations. The FAO is the leading global institution dedicated to raising agricultural productivity, but a new report from CGD says that the FAO, despite its respected status as the premier global food agency, risks squandering its potential when demand for food is rapidly rising and supplies are threatened.

Modeling a Chinese Carbon Tax - Cao Jing

My guest on this week’s Wonkcast is Cao Jing, one of China’s leading experts on carbon taxes. A CGD visiting fellow and associate professor of economics at Tsinghua University in Beijing, Jing was recently the subject of a Bloomberg profile. Working in collaboration with others at Harvard University, she is developing a proposal for China to tax carbon emissions. She is also involved with the "New Climate Economy Study" (also called Stern 2, to review economic costs and benefits of tackling climate change) led by former President of Mexico Felipe Calderón and Lord Nicholas Stern, author of the landmark Stern Report on the economics of climate change. Jing recently presented the plan at CGD’s Research in Progress seminar, and I’m delighted that she agreed to join me on the show to discuss it.

What Caused Those Dramatic Emerging Market Currency Dives? - Liliana Rojas-Suarez and Arvind Subramanian

Emerging market currencies have seen a lot of action over the last few months. India’s rupee has fallen 20% against the dollar, the Indonesian rupiah and the Brazilian real are floundering after falling 15%, and Turkey’s lire has slipped 10%. I invited CGD senior fellows Liliana Rojas-Suarez and Arvind Subramanian to explain what’s driving the fluctuations. Since these economies have mosty been performing pretty well—consistently growing faster than the rich countries—to the untrained eye, the currency slides seem dramatic and unexpected.

What Comes After the Millennium Development Goals? – Charles Kenny

The UN is gearing up for discussions about what international development goals should come after the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs), which expire in 2015.  My guest on this week’s Wonkcast is CGD senior fellow Charles Kenny, who recently published a working paper, written jointly with CGD visiting fellow Andy Sumner, that assesses the impact of the MDGs and offers suggestions for what should come next.

Macroprudential Regulation and Developing Countries: Liliana Rojas-Suarez

This blog was originally posted on March 7, 2011.

Regulators at the Bank for International Settlements (BIS) in Basel, Switzerland, are hard at work designing regulatory standards to avoid future financial meltdowns like the global financial crisis of 2008. Joining them for two months is Liliana Rojas Suarez, a CGD senior fellow and the founding chair of the Latin American Shadow Financial Regulatory Committee.

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