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How to Strengthen the Role of Pan-African Institutions Within the International Financial Architecture

In a recent joint piece, African and European leaders underscored the importance of strengthening the positions and roles of pan-African institutions within a new international financial architecture, reaffirming one of the four key goals of the summit on financing African economies held last May in Paris. What is the new international financial architecture? Which pan-African institutions are targeted and why should their role and positions be strengthened within it? How should Africa and its partners proceed to achieve this goal?

Figure showing repetition rates between 2020 and 2021 for different demographics. Across the board, rates have risen, except for students in private school

What Happened to Senegalese Students after the COVID-19 School Closure?

CGD in collaboration with the Centre de recherche pour le développement économique et social (CRDES) conducted a face-to-face survey at the national level to measure the adverse effects of the pandemic in schools and among Senegalese students. The survey took place in May 2021 with 984 households and 182 schools surveyed throughout the country. This blog post summarizes some of the key findings of the household survey.

USAID COVID-19 supplies are sitting on a shelf.

The Enduring Struggle Against Aid Instrumentalism

John Norris’ fascinating new book The Enduring Struggle: The History of the US Agency for International Development, provides an authoritative history of US foreign assistance from the end of the Second World War until today. It is packed with anecdotes and quotes from people who were working on projects and working in the halls of Washington (although that many anecdotes and quotes in 300 pages was tough on those of us vainly resisting the transition to bifocals). However it is the book’s conclusion, in particular, that should be required reading for those in Washington who oversee America’s assistance programs.

Work Visas to the US: How Do We Make Sure Women from the Northern Triangle Don’t Get Left Behind?

Gender equality has been touted as a political priority by the Biden administration, as demonstrated through the establishment of the White House Gender Policy Council, as well as its commitment to unveiling a whole-of-government strategy to advance gender equity and equality later this year. Here we make the case for why US immigration policy needs a gender-intentional approach, and how the administration should apply this approach towards policy in Guatemala, El Salvador, and Honduras.

A graphic of financial markets

The Case for Liquidity Support for Frontier Markets

The puzzle for development finance experts has been that the capital flows from developed financial markets to developing countries are nowhere large enough to meet financing needs for the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), even if official assistance were to be ramped up significantly. Cyclically low investment returns in the developed world should make investment in developing countries quite attractive, yet investments in frontier markets, particularly in Africa, do not begin to meet the development needs of these countries.

Sunset at a natural gas plant. Adobe Stock

Climate Colonialism Update: More Proposed Bans on Financing of Fossil Fuels (Only for the Poor)

Earlier this year, I wrote about the ban on the international financing of fossil fuels, proposed by Special Envoy John Kerry and others. I argued that such a ban would be particularly devastating for poor countries that are reliant on institutions such as the World Bank to finance much-needed energy projects. For now, the world’s richest countries (also the largest shareholders in the World Bank) have allowed the financing of natural gas projects when no other alternative is available. But this may not last long,

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