Ideas to Action:

Independent research for global prosperity

Working Groups

Increased financial inclusion—greater access by the poor to the use of payments, deposits, credits, insurance and risk-management services—can improve the opportunities and welfare of people living in poverty. 
Related Experts: Alan Gelb, , Liliana Rojas-Suarez
In many large federal or decentralized countries, the majority of public spending on health is executed by state and district governments (see graph below). Improving health in these countries—and globally—depends on improving the sufficiency, efficiency, and effectiveness of health spending at the subnational level. The Intergovernmental Fiscal Transfers for Health Working Group, a partnership of CGD and the Accountability Initiative in India, is tasked with identifying practices that improve health and increase the efficiency of subnational allocations.
Transparency in government contracting has gained increasing international support over the past years. Some countries, including the Slovak Republic, Colombia and the United Kingdom, have begun publishing online the complete text of government contracts. Publishing government contracts can bring many benefits: companies, especially new bidders, have a clearer idea of the goods and services they will bid to provide; governments benefit from increased competition among contractors and product quality; and civil society would have the opportunity to keep track on the value for the money invested and the service delivery.
Related Experts: Charles Kenny, William Savedoff
If you have $200 to spend on health in a developing country, would you vaccinate 10 children against deadly childhood diseases or provide AIDS treatment to one woman to prevent transmission of HIV to her unborn child? Policy makers routinely face such tough budgetary dilemmas with little expert guidance. The Priority-Setting Institutions for Global Health working group report provides practical means to assist priority-setting efforts in low- and middle-income countries.
The quality, availability, timeliness and use of basic economic and demographic data to inform policy remain significant challenges across Africa. These challenges stem in part from limitations in technical know-how and qualified human resources, but also from the barriers created by misaligned political and institutional incentives within governments and persistent difficulties in aid coordination from donors. As a result there is a huge need for better examination of the political economy challenges faced by donors and countries.
The Center for Global Development has convened the Hospitals for Health working group to find ways to improve the performance of hospitals as contributors to health in developing countries while strengthening their integration in the broader health delivery system.


CGD convened the Global Trade Preference Reform Working Group in 2009 to examine existing programs and identify areas for improvement. The group launched its final report, Open Markets for the Poorest Countries: Trade Preferences That Work, in April 2010.
Related Experts: Kimberly Ann Elliott
The Advancing Africa’s Private Sector Series is an effort to bring together serious scholars, practitioners, and policymakers to propose practical new ways of encouraging business growth on the continent.  Africa’s future prosperity depends in large part on growing private businesses and unleashing the continent’s vast but still untapped entrepreneurial energy.  The success of democracy also requires an independent business and middle class free from dependence on government largesse and patronage.  There is a critical role for both foreign investors and public policymakers in helping to en
The Rome-based agencies--the World Food Programme (WFP), the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO), and the International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD)--play a central role addressing global hunger and food security. These agencies must deal with the problems of tight budgets, increasing politicization of hunger statistics, and worsening food insecurity in many parts of the world.
DIBs bring together private investors, non-profit and private sector service delivery organizations, governments and donors to deliver results that society values. They provide upfront funding for development programs by private investors, who are remunerated by donors or host-country governments—and earn a return—if evidence shows that programs achieve pre-agreed outcomes. If interventions fail, investors lose some or all of their investment.
The Beyond the Fence Study Group generates rigorous new research to explore how policy decisions on one side of the US-Mexico border ripple to the other side through illicit markets and to inform a policy debate on more bilateral approaches to innovative regulation.