Ideas to Action:

Independent research for global prosperity

Working Groups

The Advocates for the Reform of International Finance (ARIF) is an informal group of persons who are calling for reform of the international financial architecture with the aim of better supporting sustainable and equitable growth in the world economy. Growing out of the 2018 G20 Eminent Persons Group, the ARIF includes academics, policymakers, researchers, and other thought leaders.
CGD recently launched a working group to consider how the next generation of investments in impact evaluations—as part of the broader evidence and data ecosystem—can enhance their usefulness, responsiveness, and relevance for public policy decision-making. A renewed agenda is needed to help increase the efficiency of investments in impact evaluations so that they have the greatest chance of increasing the social and economic returns of public policies and programs.
Led by co-chairs Andrew Powell and Liliana Rojas-Suarez, this working group was the result of a collaboration between CGD and the Inter-American Development Bank. The group was formed by international finance experts and Latin-American and the Caribbean policymakers and prepared a report to be launched on September 16, 2020.
Related Experts: Liliana Rojas-Suarez
Governments that can successfully harness the world’s ongoing digital transformation and the resulting proliferation of new datasets, data types, and data ecosystems can make better informed policy decisions and target their resources more efficiently and effectively. To achieve this goal, they must establish clear rules about how data is collected, analyzed, used, and shared in a way that protects citizens from abuse while supporting innovation, development, and inclusive growth.
Related Experts: Benno Ndulu, Michael Pisa
The goal of the Connecting International Labor Markets Working Group is to ensure workers can access more and better opportunities abroad. The Working Group identifies barriers and opportunities to enhanced labor mobility, in order to inform the design of a new organization Labor Mobility Partnerships (LaMP) which is currently incubating at the Center for Global Development.
Learning outcomes are low and instruction is poor in many countries in the Global South. Improving learning outcomes has proven to be difficult, although the number of successful programs is growing. The effective examples have seldom been implemented at large scale, however; and the large-scale successful programs have had limited research into their characteristics that can be used to inform other programs.
Advances in artificial intelligence, robotics, and information and communications technology have the potential to transform a range of industries and services around the world. While the effects of these changes in OECD countries have been broadly researched, their potential impacts in the developing world have received less attention.
By 2030, 60 percent of the world’s poor will be concentrated in fragile states, a shift that has prompted the United States to rethink how to confront the particular challenges of these environments and support a path to greater country resilience. Fragile states are where extreme poverty is increasingly concentrated, humanitarian relief is often most needed, and threats to US national security are most pressing.
International organizations influence national-level health sector priorities by affecting how much funding is available for healthcare delivery within countries and setting limits on how that funding is used. They exert particular influence in setting disease-specific targets, developing clinical guidelines, and using investment cases. But for the most part, the processes they follow in undertaking these activities do not account for limited country resources or the other uses those resources could be put to.
A new CGD Working Group is assessing the relevance, advantages and challenges for EMDEs’ growth and development and for the stability of their financial systems derived from the implementation of Basel III. Moreover, the Group is advancing specific recommendations regarding components of Basel III that merit adoption or adaptation by financial authorities in EMDEs.
Related Experts: Liliana Rojas-Suarez


The Center for Global Development and Refugees International’s advisory group is composed of leaders and experts on refugee and forced migrant economic inclusion and labor market access. They will play a key role in guiding and amplifying our initiative’s three pillars:
Related Experts: Cindy Huang, Helen Dempster
As more money is made available for the development and purchase of products that are needed to diagnose, prevent and treat leading causes of death and disability in developing countries, the need to improve demand forecasting comes into sharp relief. Shortcomings in demand forecasting increase the risks for suppliers, resulting in higher costs, supply shortages and concerns about the long-term viability of investing in R&D for health products that would benefit the developing world.
In 2011, the Center for Global Development launched the Future of IDA Working Group, an effort to bring together serious scholars, practitioners, and policymakers to think through specific options for World Bank management and shareholders to consider as the demand for IDA assistance was changing. Many countries, including some of IDA’s largest and best-performing clients, were and are preparing to graduate from needing IDA assistance.
The working group was convened to produce recommendations for the fourth executive director of the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA).
The report of the Working Group on Clinical Trials and Regulatory Pathways provides practical policy recommendations to help deliver better, safer, and cheaper medicine and treatment to the 1 billion people suffering from neglected diseases.
The central objective of the What Works Working Group was to document a series of programs in international health that were judged to be successful using a high standard of evidence.
The Commission on Weak States and U.S. National Security recognized that weak and failed states matter to U.S. national security, American values, and the prospects for global economic growth. The commission outlined a framework for action that seeks to mobilize key actors and instruments in U.S. foreign policy to the task of meeting the threat of weak states.
The Group assessed whether a mechanism to increase market-based incentives to purchase a future vaccine product could be designed, and how it might work in practice. The final report, Making Markets for Vaccines: Ideas into Action, laid the groundwork for a $1.5 billion pilot for a vaccine to prevent pneumococcal disease, which annually kills some 3 million children in developing countries.  
The African Development Bank Working Group prepared recommendations to help put the AfDB back on the road to success, at a moment of leadership transition. Recommendations included advising the president to identify and focus on a few key priorities on which the bank has a strong comparative advantage, such as regional infrastructure. Final report: Building Africa's Development Bank: Six Recommendations for the AfDB and its Shareholders.
The Global Health Indicators Working Group assessed the utility of a range of available data to construct indicators of health policies; the primary purpose was to inform decisions about eligibility criteria by the U.S. Millennium Challenge Corporation. Final report: Measuring Commitment to Health (PDF).