Ideas to Action:

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CGD Policy Blogs

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When Should Donors Respond to What People Want?

When the post-2015 process kicked off, I was regularly asked what the new MDGs should include. My response almost always raised eyebrows. I’d say “whatever ordinary people want them to be” and that decision makers should ask them (not people like me). Not highly choreographed ‘consultations’ with interest groups and stakeholder representatives. No, that’s far too old school and distortionary. Instead, those coming up with new global goals should just ask ordinary people about their priorities through open-ended, representative surveys.

Updated Look at Trade in the Commitment to Development Index

After some modest tweaks over the years, the trade component of the Commitment to Development Index got a makeover in 2013—not a new face, but a nip and tuck here and there. The latest CDI includes a more direct measure of tacit barriers to trade from the World Bank’s Doing Business indicators on the time and cost to import, exclusive of tariffs. The trade component also now recognizes the growing importance of trade in services—and barriers to it—thanks to another team of World Bank economists that developed the Services Trade Restrictiveness Index.

Hyde's Short and Sweet MCC CEO Nomination Hearing

On Tuesday, the Senate Foreign Relations Committee held a hearing on the nomination of Dana Hyde to be the new CEO of MCC, as well as Mark Lopes to be the US executive director of the Inter-American Development Bank.  The short hearing (attended by Senators Markey and Barrasso, chair and ranking of the International Development Subcommittee) was largely positive toward both MCC and Hyde.

Post-2015: A $1 Trillion Financing Package?

A $1 trillion financing partnership to support ending extreme poverty, stopping avoidable child deaths, and meeting other widely supported post-2015 development goals sounds far-fetched.  But improbable action is what will be needed if we’re going to come close to making such historically unprecedented progress.  Indeed, delivering on proposed zero goals is going to take a broad and deep global partnership that’s about far more than aid.

A New Focus for USAID: Ending Extreme Poverty

On Thursday, USAID Administrator Raj Shah is set to give a speech at Brookings on the goal of ending extreme poverty, planned to put a bit more policy oomph behind the President’s call in the State of the Union earlier this year for America to join with its allies to end $1.25 poverty in two decades.  Here’s some things it would be great to hear in the speech:

Philippines Launches Aid Transparency Hub, Encourages Donor Transparency

This is a joint post with Lawrence MacDonald.

Struggling to provide relief and reconstruction assistance in the wake of super typhoon Haiyan (a.k.a. Yolanda), the Philippines has launched a foreign aid information hub and gently encouraged donors to follow through on their own transparency pledges, with a top official reported in the Philippine press as saying that the two efforts "should go hand in hand."

How a Toilet Makes Everyone Taller

On World Toilet Day, we’d like to take a moment to celebrate the toilet for not only saving lives – by reducing the risk of deadly diarrhea – but also for helping people to grow taller, a key measure of childhood malnutrition. Indicators of overall childhood well-being, height and weight tell us about the critical period of life when bodies and brains are developing.

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