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  • Author: Malcolm Sayers
  • Publication Date: 03-2015
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Oxfam Publishing
  • Abstract: The world faces twin challenges: delivering a decent standard of living for everyone, while living within our environmental limits. These two concerns are brought together in Oxfam's Doughnut model, which visualizes a space between planetary boundaries and a social floor where it is environmentally safe and socially just for humanity to exist. Here, The UK Doughnut: A framework for environmental sustainability and social justice suggests areas of life that might constitute a social floor below which no-one in the UK should fall, and begins the process of identifying which environmental boundaries might be useful for incorporation into a national UK analysis. The report provides a snapshot of the UK's status by assessing its current position against the suggested set of domains and indicators.
  • Political Geography: United Kingdom
  • Author: Deborah Hardoon
  • Publication Date: 01-2015
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Oxfam Publishing
  • Abstract: Global wealth is increasingly concentrated in the hands of a small wealthy elite. These wealthy individuals have generated and sustained their vast riches through their interests and activities in a few important economic sectors, including finance and insurance, and pharmaceuticals and healthcare. Companies from these sectors spend millions of dollars every year on lobbying to create a policy environment that protects and enhances their interests further. The most prolific lobbying activities in the US are on budget and tax issues; public resources that should be directed to benefit the whole population, rather than reflect the interests of powerful lobbyists.
  • Political Geography: United States
  • Author: Thea Gelbspan
  • Publication Date: 10-2015
  • Content Type: Book
  • Institution: Oxfam Publishing
  • Abstract: There are times where most organizations dedicated to advancing human rights and sustainable development must face the question: What does positive change look like? How does it happen? And, what do we need to understand in order to support these processes effectively? The case of the indigenous movements of the Andean region provides a compelling response to these questions. This book presents a retrospective overview of the social and political movements of indigenous peoples in Ecuador, Peru, and Bolivia between 1980 and 2010. It describes key developments that set the context for the strategies employed by indigenous organizations in the Andean highlands and the western Amazon in order to have a say in decisions that affect their lands and their lives. It also details the ways in which Oxfam America accompanied these movements in the struggle to claim their rights and identifies some key achievements and lessons learned in the course of their long partnership.
  • Topic: Development, International Organization, Political Economy, History
  • Political Geography: Latin America
  • Author: Marijke Deleu
  • Publication Date: 03-2015
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: Oxfam Publishing
  • Abstract: The Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) used to make international headlines for the conflict that has flared up repeatedly over the past 20 years. When the M23 rebel group was defeated in November 2013, there seemed to be a shift away from these repeated cycles of violence. The country appeared to be turning a corner into a post-conflict phase. However, new research presented in this briefing paper shows that citizens continue to experience widespread exploitation. In many areas they are still vulnerable to brutal violence from armed groups and in some cases from government, including the police, army and local officials. The challenge - how to consolidate the authority of the state, in a way that serves its people and ensures a lasting peace - remains a huge but vital priority.
  • Author: Ben Murphy, Scott Paul, Anne-Marie Schryer-Roy, Ed Pomfret
  • Publication Date: 02-2015
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: Oxfam Publishing
  • Abstract: Every year, the Somali diaspora sends home approximately $1.3bn. Remittances account for 25–45 percent of Somalia's economy and exceed the amount it receives in humanitarian aid, development aid and foreign direct investment combined. As Somali money transfer operators lose their bank accounts, Somali families are losing their only formal or transparent channel through which to send money. Somalia needs long-term support to build sustainable financial institutions, and urgent help to maintain its current remittance flows. This briefing reviews international efforts to facilitate remittances to Somalia and focuses on the US and the UK, where the threat to the Somali remittance system is most acute. It also looks at the uncertain future viability of the Somali remittance industry in Australia.
  • Political Geography: Somalia
  • Author: Jessica Hamer, Maria Dolores Bernabe, Mark Fried
  • Publication Date: 01-2015
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: Oxfam Publishing
  • Abstract: Asia is at a Crossroads. Rising inequality poses a dire threat to continued prosperity in Asia, where an estimated 500 million people remain trapped in extreme poverty, most of them women and girls. The huge gap between rich and poor hinders economic growth, undermines democratic institutions and can trigger conflict. If Asia's policymakers hold tight to yesterday's truths, hoping against hope that growth and prosperity will trickle down to all, they will put everyone's welfare at risk. But if there are courageous leaders, willing to tackle inequality head-on, they can ensure inclusive and sustainable development for all of Asia's people. Oxfam is calling on Asia's governments to make a determined effort to combat discrimination and improve policies on taxation and social spending. This is needed now if the region is to secure a stable and prosperous future.
  • Political Geography: Asia
  • Author: Ellen T. Hoen
  • Publication Date: 02-2015
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: Oxfam Publishing
  • Abstract: According to the World Health Organization, cancer is one of the leading causes of death around the world, with 8.2 million deaths in 2012. More than 60 percent of the world's new cases of cancer occur in Africa, Asia, and Central and South America and these regions account for 70 percent of the world's cancer deaths. In low- and middle-income countries, expensive treatments for cancer are not widely available. Unsustainable cancer medication pricing has increasingly become a global issue, creating access challenges in low-and middle-income but also high-income countries. This report describes recent developments within the pricing of medicines for the treatment of cancer, discusses what lessons can be drawn from HIV/AIDS treatment scale-up and makes recommendations to help increase access to treatment for people with cancer.
  • Political Geography: Africa, America, Asia
  • Author: Liesbeth Goossens, Soazic Dupuy, Baptiste Chapuis
  • Publication Date: 04-2015
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: Oxfam Publishing
  • Abstract: Sahrawi refugees are forced to live in very insecure humanitarian conditions. This situation in and of itself is a source of serious concern. It is, however, the exceptionally long duration of this crisis and the total lack of any prospects which is making this situation all the more unbearable for the men and women living in the Sahrawi refugee camps. The Sahrawi refugees – especially the young – are desperate to take control of their own lives. Even if they are particularly well informed and well educated, their options are severely limited. The frustration which stems from this is exacerbated by the sheer uncertainty of what their future holds. The words of young Sahrawis are growing sharper, and their views more critical, faced with an international community they consider incapable of ensuring that their rights will be respected. The majority we have spoken to are openly questioning whether their cause would not make more progress if they took up arms once again. Much of the responsibility for reaching a just and lasting resolution lies with the parties of the conflict, the Kingdom of Morocco and the Polisario Front. However, in view of the two parties‟ inability to find such a solution, the cards are now in the hands of the international community, in particular the United Nations (UN) and the member states of the UN Security Council. Today, these bodies must demonstrate to the Sahrawi refugees that they are fully engaged in defending their rights. This report calls attention to the responsibility of the international community. The Security Council and members of the Group of Friends must do more to foster conditions conducive to bringing the decolonization process to an end and finding a solution to the conflict, in accordance with international law. They must also persuade the parties in the conflict to make changes to their positions, which are currently irreconcilable. Only a solution such as this can put an end to the refugee crisis and strengthen stability in the region.
  • Author: Lani Frerichs, Grazia Careccia, Laura Grant, Kirsten Hagon, Willow Heske
  • Publication Date: 04-2015
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: Oxfam Publishing
  • Abstract: Operation Protective Edge – the codename used by Israel for the 51 day military operation and the associated conflict between Israel, Hamas and other Palestinian armed groups – has inflicted unprecedented destruction and human suffering in Gaza. This was the third such major military operation in six years, further complicating recovery for a civilian population sealed off by a blockade and separated economically, socially and politically from Palestinians in the West Bank. Shortly after Israel and Palestinian armed groups agreed to a temporary ceasefire, donors from around the world gathered in Cairo to pledge $3.5bn for the reconstruction of Gaza. Six months later, there has been no accountability to address violations of international law, only 26.8 percent of the money has been released, reconstruction and recovery have barely begun, and people in Gaza remain in dire straits. This paper outlines an achievable course of action that, if implemented, could make significant progress in addressing the root causes of the recurrent conflict and towards the realization of a just, durable peace that would benefit Israelis and Palestinians alike. By directly addressing the different actors that have distinct responsibilities towards Gaza – from Israel and the international community to the Palestinian Authority and Hamas – the signatories to this report outline what each party can and must do to end the conflict and ensure Palestinians in Gaza can realize their rights. It is time for these actors to work together effectively to change the course for Gaza before it is too late.
  • Political Geography: Israel, Palestine, Gaza
  • Author: Kate Geary
  • Publication Date: 04-2015
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: Oxfam Publishing
  • Abstract: Increasingly, development money is being channelled through third parties such as banks or private equity funds. The world's leading proponent of this financing model, the International Finance Corporation, spent $36bn this way in just the four years leading up to June 2013. But what does this 'hands-off' form of development financing mean for people? Are the risks to communities and their livelihoods just too high given the weaker social and environmental protections entailed? This report tells the human story behind the high finance and statistics, and asks whether reforms to this model of lending have gone far enough to protect communities.
  • Author: Abigael Baldoumas, Daniel Gorevan, Joelle Bassoul, Camilla Jelbart Mosse
  • Publication Date: 03-2015
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: Oxfam Publishing
  • Abstract: The numbers of people in need as a result of the conflict in Syria continues to rise, but the international humanitarian response has not kept pace. The donor conference in Kuwait on 31 March 2015 is an opportunity to reverse that trend and put Syrian civilians first. Oxfam has developed indicators to help guide the fair level of commitment that each wealthy country should make in 2015 to alleviate the suffering of those affected by the Syria crisis: The level of funding each country makes available for the humanitarian response, relative to the size of their economy (based on gross national income); The number of Syrian refugees each country has helped to find safety through offers of resettlement or other forms of humanitarian protection, again based on the size of the economy.
  • Topic: Civil War, Humanitarian Aid
  • Political Geography: Kuwait, Syria
  • Author: Himanshu Upadhyaya
  • Publication Date: 03-2015
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: Oxfam Publishing
  • Abstract: For over five years now, the central government has been in the process of framing and enacting a new legislation to develop and regulate India's mines and minerals. However, in a short span of less than two months, the NDA government promulgated an Ordinance, introduced and passed a new version of a Bill in both the houses of Parliament. The Bill provides a legal framework to regulate the mining sector. A host of unaddressed concerns in the Bill question the government's intent of protecting the interests of the indigenous populations.
  • Political Geography: India
  • Publication Date: 03-2015
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: Oxfam Publishing
  • Abstract: Tax dodging is receiving increasing political attention in Europe. From corporate transparency legislation to early reflections on a European wealth tax, European institutions are promoting tax reforms that have the potential to reduce economic inequality in Europe and beyond - if they are well designed and implemented. The need to find financial resources to restore European growth, combined with recent media scandals, have opened up opportunities for progressive reforms to fight tax evasion and tax avoidance which costs the European Union around €1 trillion a year. The European and global political context has never been so favourable, with new European institutions having to deliver on fighting tax havens, harmonizing corporate taxation, improving tax transparency and ensuring greater tax cooperation. This briefing explores some of the solutions for fighting corporate tax avoidance that the European Union shoultad present in 2015, and explains why it is important to adopt them as soon as possible.
  • Political Geography: Europe
  • Author: Daniel Gorevan, Martin Hartberg, Dominic Bowen
  • Publication Date: 03-2015
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: Oxfam Publishing
  • Abstract: The unanimous adoption of UN Security Council Resolution 2139 (UNSCR 2139) at the end of February 2014 brought with it much needed hope for people in Syria and across the Middle East. In the resolution, the UN Security Council (UNSC) – the body responsible for international peace and security – called for an urgent increase in access to humanitarian aid in Syria and demanded that all parties immediately cease attacks against civilians, end arbitrary detention, kidnapping and torture, and lift sieges of populated areas.
  • Political Geography: Middle East, Syria
  • Author: Oommen C Kurian, Pooja Parvati
  • Publication Date: 03-2015
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: Oxfam Publishing
  • Abstract: A conscious neglect of school education in the initial decades of independent India is termed by Dreze and Sen (2013) as a 'home-grown folly'. Public services like education are key to nurture participatory growth as well as to ensure that growth improves peoples' living conditions. However, India's highly privatised and compartmentalised education system - largely unaccountable to the public-offers very different opportunities for various social groups and perpetuates social inequalities, instead of reducing them. Three out of four children currently out of school in India are either Dalit (32.4%), Muslim (25.7%) or Adivasi (16.6%). Enactment of the landmark RTE legislation has triggered significant improvements, but evidence shows that quality has often been neglected. While concerns regarding privatisation of education remain, RTE Act offers a first step towards an educational system in India that offers access, equity, and inclusion of all children.
  • Author: Sally Rangecroft
  • Publication Date: 04-2015
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: Oxfam Publishing
  • Abstract: Reduced water security is projected for the Bolivian Andes due to both an expected increase in demand and a decline in the supply of water. This will result in negative impacts on water availability, and therefore on food security, power generation and livelihoods. Rising temperatures due to climate change are associated with glacier retreat across the Andes, which is one factor affecting the supply of water. Therefore it is important to gather information about other sources of high altitude water in the Bolivian Andes and other similarly arid high mountain regions facing similar stresses. Rock glaciers are masses of ice that are covered by a thick layer of rock. Because of their ice content, they are potentially important water sources, especially in arid regions. However, little is known about their spatial distribution and nature. They are smaller, occur at lower altitudes and are less obvious than regular ice glaciers. With the purpose of better informing future water management in Bolivia, this research, which was conducted with the assistance of Oxfam and Agua Sustentable, has created the first rock glacier inventory for the country (15–22°S) and has established the number, size and distribution of these rock glaciers. In total, 94 rock glaciers were discovered in the Bolivian Andes, of which 54 are estimated to contain ice and are therefore active sources of water. It was possible to make an estimation of their importance as water stores for local communities, in comparison with regular glaciers. Climate change impacts on glaciers and other water resources are occurring at a rapid rate in the Bolivian Andes and Bolivia can be used as an early warning indicator of problems in arid regions worldwide. The rock cover on rock glaciers will insulate them to some extent and as temperatures rise, will make them more resilient to melting than ice glaciers. In highlighting the presence of rock glaciers and in setting out methods for identifying them, this research seeks to contribute to improving the knowledge of water resources in the Bolivian Andes and to make a contribution to similar studies elsewhere. It also highlights the need to prioritize the preservation of areas where rock glaciers are located in the interests of water security for vulnerable populations. The rock glacier inventory resulting from this research is held by Agua Sustentable, see http://www.aguasustentable.org
  • Political Geography: Bolivia
  • Author: Imane El Rhomri
  • Publication Date: 04-2015
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: Oxfam Publishing
  • Abstract: Malgré l‟abondance de la production alimentaire mondiale, les populations du Sahel et de l‟Afrique de l‟Ouest souffrent fréquemment de faim et de malnutrition. En 2012, tous les pays de la région ont été de nouveau exposés à une insécurité alimentaire massive, en raison de la sécheresse, des pluies rares, des piètres récoltes, de la flambée des prix des aliments et des déplacements intensifs de populations. Selon les estimations des Nations Unies, cette crise avait condamné plus de 18 millions de personnes à l‟insécurité alimentaire et nutritionnelle (FAO, 2012 : 9). Comprendre pourquoi les populations souffrent d‟insécurité alimentaire et analyser les causes sous-jacentes est fondamental pour planifier des interventions appropriées. Dans la pratique, la mesure et l‟analyse de la sécurité alimentaire présente un défi technique en raison de la complexité et de la multi-dimensionnalité de ce concept. Actuellement, l‟analyse de la sécurité alimentaire en situations d‟urgence repose sur trois piliers: i) les disponibilités alimentaires, ii) l‟accès à l‟alimentation et iii) l‟utilisation des aliments (PAM, 2009). L‟Approche de l‟Economie des Ménages (AEM/HEA), développée dans les années 90 par l‟ONG internationale Save the Children-UK, est actuellement l‟un des outils les plus utilisés par le système d‟alerte précoce dans la région du Sahel1 pour appréhender le pilier d‟accès. En partant du principe que les ménages ont un accès plus ou moins difficile aux aliments en fonction de leur niveau de pauvreté, cet outil cherche à comprendre leur économie alimentaire et à mesurer l‟impact des chocs sur celle-ci, en vue d‟orienter l‟aide vers ceux qui seraient les plus vulnérables. Seulement, le HEA, ne s‟intéresse pas à la situation spécifique de chaque individu à l‟intérieur du ménage, étant donc incapable d'analyser la manière dont les chocs touchent les femmes et les hommes et comment chacun d'entre eux essaie d‟y faire face. Cette lacune représente l‟une des grandes faiblesses de ce système puisqu‟il néglige une dimension clé dans la compréhension de « qui, aujourd‟hui, risque le plus d‟être exposé à l‟insécurité alimentaire et à la malnutrition au Sahel et pourquoi » -pour reprendre les termes de la brochure du projet HEA-SAHEL-. Ce rapport, structuré en trois parties, est le résultat d‟une étude lancée par Oxfam Intermón, dans le cadre du projet de recherche SARAO (Sécurité Alimentaire et Résilience en Afrique de l‟Ouest), qui cherche à apporter des réflexions critiques et des pistes d‟action pour perfectionner le cadre d‟analyse HEA grâce à une démarche qui tient compte des Inégalités de Genre. La première partie du rapport est consacrée à l‟approche méthodologique adoptée et aux techniques employées pour la collecte et l‟analyse de l‟information. D‟un côté, l‟analyse Genre a été au cœur de la démarche suivie et a consisté à examiner de nouvelles dimensions telles que la répartition et l'organisation des rôles, des responsabilités et des ressources entre les femmes et les hommes afin de mettre en lumière leur importance dans l‟analyse de la sécurité alimentaire. De l‟autre côté, la collecte des informations sur le terrain s‟est faite au Burkina Faso, à travers des entretiens semi-dirigés et des questionnaires auprès de profils différents, en fonction de l‟objectif recherché dans chaque étape de l‟étude. La deuxième partie du rapport entre dans le vif du sujet. Elle examine avec une approche Genre le cadre théorique et analytique du HEA pour montrer ses limites. Tout d‟abord, sur le plan théorique, trois limites sont signalées : L‟analyse de l‟insécurité alimentaire à l‟échelle du ménage n‟est pas suffisante pour cerner toutes ses causes, principalement parce qu‟il n‟est pas possible de dévoiler le fonctionnement interne des familles (les statuts, rôles, contribution et capacités des personnes y appartenant), ni les relations de pouvoir et les inégalités entre ses membres, en particulier entre les femmes et les hommes, les filles et les garçons. a) En l‟absence de la moindre analyse de Genre au niveau des ménages, notamment ceux dirigés par des hommes, l‟approche HEA rend invisible le rôle des femmes qui assument de plus en plus de responsabilités dans la gestion de la sécurité alimentaire alors que, paradoxalement, elles ont un accès précaire aux ressources et sont exclues du contrôle de quasiment toutes, en particulier des ressources productives. A titre d‟exemple, cette étude confirme qu‟au-delà d‟assumer tout le travail domestique, les femmes participent très activement à l‟agriculture familiale, cependant, elles sont exclues de la propriété de la terre, de la prise de décisions concernant la production et la gestion des stocks, ainsi que du travail rémunéré en tant que main d‟œuvre salariée. b) La richesse et la multi-dimensionnalité des concepts de Moyens d‟Existence Durables (MED), de Pauvreté et de Vulnérabilité se retrouvent fortement réduites dans l‟approche HEA. D‟une part, les apports de la théorie des MED, notamment, les concepts de capacités et de biens intangibles ne sont pas du tout exploités par l‟approche HEA. D‟autre part, cette dernière appréhende le niveau de pauvreté et de vulnérabilité d‟une manière très superficielle parce qu'elle ne va pas au-delà des aspects productifs et monétaires et ne prête aucune attention aux dimensions spécifiques qui expliquent la pauvreté et la vulnérabilité féminine, pas seulement en termes de revenu, mais aussi en termes de temps, de liberté ou de pouvoir décisionnel. c) Ensuite, sur le plan méthodologique, l‟étude révèle que les informations et données produites dans chaque étape du cadre d‟analyse HEA, servant à rétro-alimenter le système, sont complètement aveugles au Genre. Cette lacune est due, d‟une part, à la non-désagrégation par sexe des informations collectées par les méthodes et outils HEA et, d‟autre part, à la sous-représentation des femmes en tant qu‟objet et sujet d'étude. Ces limites techniques perpétuent une image incomplète de la réalité et relèguent les femmes et leurs apports à une zone d'ombre. La troisième et dernière partie représente la plus grande valeur ajoutée de cette étude dans la mesure où elle expose des propositions concrètes pour enrichir progressivement le système HEA. Le premier pas suggère principalement la désagrégation par sexe des informations actuellement collectées et analysées par le HEA ainsi que l‟introduction de nouvelles variables et indicateurs sensibles au Genre. Le deuxième pas, plus audacieux, invite à l‟adoption d‟un nouveau cadre d‟analyse pour caractériser la vulnérabilité alimentaire de manière intégrale. Ce nouveau cadre propose essentiellement trois critères à évaluer, en fonction du contexte spatio- temporel d‟exposition au risque d‟insécurité alimentaire. Ces critères sont : i) les besoins alimentaires spécifiques (dépendent du sexe, âge, état de santé, efforts physiques…) ; ii) l‟accès aux différents MED (dépend de la disponibilité et la qualité du capital naturel, humain, physique, financier et social) et iii) les capacités individuelles d‟exploiter les différents MED (dépendent du statut social, des conditions d‟utilisation, des modes d‟accès et du pouvoir décisionnel). Enfin, le troisième pas requiert logiquement l‟adaptation des méthodes de collecte et de traitement des informations à ce nouveau cadre d‟analyse.
  • Author: Abid A. Burki, Rashid Memon, Khalid Mir
  • Publication Date: 04-2015
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: Oxfam Publishing
  • Abstract: The growth–inequality nexus has long been debated by researchers, social commentators and politicians. Despite being controversial, there is growing evidence of multi-dimensional inequality in developing countries, including Pakistan. Economic growth seems to have benefitted only a few people while majority of them have remained deprived. Numerous manifestations of inequality can be pointed out, including inequalities of income, assets, public services, rural vs. urban and between regions. These inequalities lead to huge economic and social costs for society. This report focuses on multi-dimensional inequality in Pakistan with the aim to (1) highlight the nature and dimensions of inequality; (2) identify the inequality traps that tend to exacerbate multi-dimensional inequality; (3) examine strategies for mitigating multi-dimensional inequality; and (4) discuss the policy implications.
  • Political Geography: Pakistan
  • Author: Marc J. Cohen, Bhawan Singh
  • Publication Date: 03-2014
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Oxfam Publishing
  • Abstract: Haiti's climate has changed over the past four decades. Annual mean temperatures have risen, and the rainy season now begins up to three months later than usual. Projections of future climate change indicate that annual mean temperatures will continue to rise over the course of the 21st century. Rainfall variability is also expected to increase, meaning more extreme droughts in the dry season and more intense rainfall in the wet season. Sea-level rise and increased storm surges are also expected. The coastal plains are increasingly subject to the influx of saltwater, and as ocean surges lead to saltier soils, farmers can no longer cultivate them. These factors will exacerbate current serious problems of flooding and erosion in coastal areas that lie in the direct path of tropical storms and hurricanes. In the absence of significant adaptation efforts, these dynamics will in turn have severe impacts on water resources, land, agriculture, and forests. Annual population growth of 1.5 per cent means over 11 million mouths to feed by 2020 and additional pressure on agricultural resources.
  • Topic: Climate Change, Development, Poverty, Natural Disasters, Infrastructure
  • Political Geography: Caribbean, Haiti
  • Author: Marília Leão, Renato S. Maluf
  • Publication Date: 02-2014
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Oxfam Publishing
  • Abstract: Brazil has achieved promising results in the fight against hunger and poverty. This paper describes the path toward building a new governance framework for the provision of public policies that initiated a virtuous cycle for the progressive elimination of hunger and poverty. However, it is important to emphasize that the country continues to be characterized by dynamics that generate inequalities and threaten social and environmental justice.
  • Topic: Agriculture, Economics, Poverty, Food, Governance
  • Political Geography: Brazil, Latin America
  • Author: Adele Peers
  • Publication Date: 02-2014
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Oxfam Publishing
  • Abstract: This research reviews Myanmar's Disaster Management Law from the angle of inclusivity. It aims to make Myanmar's disaster management cycle more inclusive of women, children, persons with disabilities and aged persons. It offers recommendations aimed at government and members of the Disaster Risk Reduction Working Group (DRRWG) as to how to address inclusivity gaps identified through an analysis of the Disaster Management Law, and beyond. It suggests that many of the gaps can be addressed by construction of robust and inclusive Rules and Regulations to accompany the Law. While this research is focused predominantly on inclusion within Myanmar's Disaster Management Law, it also discusses disaster management processes more broadly. In this way, this research offers useful insights with regards to current and future challenges for comprehensive disaster management in Myanmar.
  • Topic: Humanitarian Aid, Poverty, Natural Disasters, Governance
  • Political Geography: Southeast Asia, Myanmar
  • Author: Jennifer Leavy, Naomi Hossain
  • Publication Date: 03-2014
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Oxfam Publishing
  • Abstract: Who wants to farm? In an era of land grabs and environmental uncertainty, improving smallholder productivity has become a higher priority on the poverty and food security agenda in development, focusing attention on the next generation of farmers. Yet emerging evidence about the material realities and social norms and desires of young people in developing countries indicates a reasonably widespread withdrawal from work on the land as an emerging norm. While de-agrarianisation is not new, policymakers are correct to be concerned about a withdrawal from the sector: smallholder productivity growth, and agricultural transformation more broadly, depend in part on the extent to which capable, skilled young people can be retained or attracted to farming, and on policies that support that retention. So who wants to farm, and under what conditions? Where are economic, environmental and social conditions favourable to active recruitment by educated young people into farming? What policy and programmatic conditions are creating attractive opportunities in farming or agro-food industry livelihoods?
  • Topic: Agriculture, Economics, Food
  • Political Geography: Africa, Latin America
  • Author: Katherine Trebeck, Malcolm Sayers
  • Publication Date: 07-2014
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Oxfam Publishing
  • Abstract: We live on a fragile planet which is under increased human stress, to the extent that we are transgressing several of the planetary boundaries as mapped out by the Stockholm Resilience Centre (SRC). We share this planet with over seven billion fellow human beings, too many of whom face extraordinary challenges in building a life free of poverty, indignity, powerlessness and fear. While a small number of people are using the most resources, simultaneously too many are unable to lead lives in which they can flourish and live with dignity.
  • Topic: Economics, Environment, Human Welfare
  • Political Geography: United Kingdom, Europe
  • Author: Alexandra Wanjiku Kelbert
  • Publication Date: 07-2014
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Oxfam Publishing
  • Abstract: How are rapid recent food price changes linked to climate and environmental change? How do people who are vulnerable to these changes view these links? This note explores the views of people living on low and precarious incomes on these connections, based on research designed to explore experiences of food price volatility in 2012, through qualitative research in 23 research sites in 10 countries. The research was not specifically designed to study perceptions of climate and environmental change; these views are collected here because they offer interesting, relatively unmediated insights into how people perceive the causal connections between their food security and environment across varied social and ecological settings.
  • Topic: Security, Agriculture, Climate Change, Economics, Food
  • Author: Nicola Deghaye, Tamlyn McKenzie, Petronella Chirawu
  • Publication Date: 07-2014
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Oxfam Publishing
  • Abstract: Recognising inequality is at the heart of the South African 'development problem', Oxfam commissioned the Health Economics and HIV and AIDS Research Division (HEARD) to produce this report, which is divided into two parts, to enable an understanding of the dimensions of inequality in South Africa and to provide Oxfam with a set of basic measures against which it could measure its success in dealing with inequality.
  • Topic: Security, Gender Issues, Health, Food
  • Political Geography: Africa, South Africa
  • Author: Batchelor Simon, Scott Nigel, Valverde Alvaro, Manfre Cristina, Edwards David
  • Publication Date: 07-2014
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Oxfam Publishing
  • Abstract: This paper from the Proceedings of the 2nd International Conference on ICTs for Sustainability (ICT4S 2014) reviews findings from detailed consultation with 50 global experts in Agriculture and Information Communication Technologies (ICTs). The study explores how ICTs (particularly mobile phones) could be used to accelerate the uptake of sustainable agriculture in sub-Saharan Africa. The paper develops a detailed conceptual model, built around the smallholder farmer, for understanding the flow of information through the agriculture sector.
  • Topic: Agriculture, Human Rights, Human Welfare, Science and Technology
  • Political Geography: Africa
  • Author: Dornan Paul, Ogando Portela, Maria Jose, Pells Kirrily
  • Publication Date: 09-2014
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Oxfam Publishing
  • Abstract: Drawing on survey data from Young Lives, an international study of childhood poverty involving 12,000 children in four countries, this paper examines the effects of environmental shocks on food insecurity and children‟s development. The data, from children and their families living in rural and urban locations in Ethiopia, the Indian state of Andhra Pradesh, Peru , and Vietnam , provide information on the same individuals over time, allowing consideration of how earlier incidences of food insecurity and exposures to environmental shocks shape later outcomes. Regression analysis is used to estimate the relationships between these and other relevant factors.
  • Topic: Security, Climate Change, Human Welfare, Food
  • Political Geography: India, Vietnam, Ethiopia, Andhra Pradesh, Peru
  • Author: Hanks Kiri
  • Publication Date: 09-2014
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Oxfam Publishing
  • Abstract: UN Secretary - General Ban Ki - moon invited business leaders to bring to the Climate Summit the bold actions they are undertaking to address climate change. These public – private initiatives are touted to be a key outcome of the summit – especially given that few governments will be in a position to make major new commitments. The hope is that they will inject some positive momentum into the global talks by showing that business is already ' getting on with it ' and leading the way.
  • Topic: Climate Change, International Cooperation, International Political Economy
  • Political Geography: United Nations
  • Author: Coghlan Christopher, Muzammil Maliha, Ingram John, Vervoort Joost, Otto Friederike, James Rachel
  • Publication Date: 09-2014
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Oxfam Publishing
  • Abstract: From 2010 to 2013 the world experienced a number of extreme weather events, several of which were notable for their intensity, duration, and impacts on livelihoods and food security. This report focuses on four case studies – a heat wave in Russia, flooding in Pakistan, drought in East Africa, and a typhoon in the Philippines – that represent a range of extreme weather. It analyses the impact of these extreme weather events on food security, by considering when and why threats emerge. This involves characterization of the weather events, examination of the vulnerable groups affected, and analysis of livelihoods and the role of governance and capital.
  • Topic: Security, Climate Change, Environment, Food
  • Political Geography: Pakistan, Africa, Russia, Philippines
  • Author: Nick Chisholm
  • Publication Date: 08-2014
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Oxfam Publishing
  • Abstract: On food prices: The case studies on food prices and how people are eating in Bangladesh, Kenya, and Pakistan confirm that price changes, and the impacts of such changes on households, are far more varied in space and time than national average data reveal. In turn, national price movements can clearly diverge from global prices due to a variety of country - specific factors. The case studies also demonstrate that politics and policies have a significant impact on prices: governments can directly (for good or ill) influence the wellbeing of the poor thro ugh decisions on policy instruments such as taxation and levels of subsidies. Finally, there is some evidence that prices in rural agricultural areas are more influenced by seasonal supply and demand factors than are prices in urban areas. In principle, rural producers may benefit from higher prices, but that is not usually the case for small producers, who are still net consumers of basic food commodities.
  • Topic: Food
  • Political Geography: Pakistan, Bangladesh, Kenya, Vietnam
  • Author: Bowman Kimberly
  • Publication Date: 09-2014
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Oxfam Publishing
  • Abstract: This report summarizes an internal review of Women‟s Economic Leadership (WEL) programming in Asia. Conducted by an internal MEL advisor in 2013–2014, the review draws upon project documentation, evaluation reports, site visits and staff and partner interviews to try and reflect how WEL programming is being implemented by Oxfam and partners in Asia. Part of a formative evaluation activity, the report aims to help gather and consolidate good practice, based on what Oxfam project teams and partners have learned through recent experience and evaluation. There are at least four distinct topics covered in this report that may be of specific interest to readers.
  • Topic: Economics, Gender Issues, Sociology
  • Political Geography: Asia
  • Author: Emma Seery, Ana Arendar
  • Publication Date: 10-2014
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Oxfam Publishing
  • Abstract: Nthabiseng was born to a poor black family in Limpopo, a rural area in South Africa. On the same day, Pieter was born nearby in a rich suburb of Cape Town. Nthabiseng's mother had no formal schooling and her father is unemployed, whereas Pieter's parents both completed university education at Stellenbosch University and have well-paid jobs.
  • Topic: Corruption, Economics, Gender Issues, Social Stratification
  • Political Geography: South Africa
  • Author: Yared Teka Tsegay, Masiiwa Rusare, Rashmi Mistry
  • Publication Date: 10-2014
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Oxfam Publishing
  • Abstract: South Africa is considered a 'food-secure' nation, producing enough calories to adequately feed every one of its 53 million people. However, the reality is that, despite some progress since the birth of democracy in 1994, one in four people currently suffers hunger on a regular basis and more than half of the population live in such precarious circumstances that they are at risk of going hungry.
  • Topic: Security, Agriculture, Poverty, Food
  • Political Geography: South Africa
  • Author: Jo Rowlands
  • Publication Date: 10-2014
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Oxfam Publishing
  • Abstract: Oxfam works in many countries that are considered fragile – where governance is weak or authoritarian, where people face significant poverty and marginalization, and where the challenges of doing 'aid' work are huge.
  • Topic: Civil Society, Development, Humanitarian Aid, Fragile/Failed State, Governance
  • Author: Kate Bowen
  • Publication Date: 10-2014
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Oxfam Publishing
  • Abstract: The Occupied Palestinian Territory and Israel (OPTI) is one of four Oxfam country projects delivering the Within and Without the State (WWS) programme, funded by the Department for International Development (DFID) from 2011 to 2016 under the Conflict, Humanitarian and Security Programme Partnership Arrangement (CHASE PPA). WWS is piloting innovative approaches to working with civil society to promote more accountable governance in conflict - affected and fragile contexts.
  • Topic: Conflict Resolution, Civil Society, Humanitarian Aid
  • Political Geography: Middle East, Israel, Arabia
  • Author: Louie Fooks
  • Publication Date: 10-2014
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Oxfam Publishing
  • Abstract: The Occupied Palestinian Territory and Israel (OPTI) is one of four Oxfam country programmes delivering the Within and Without the State (WWS) programme, funded by DFID from 2011 to 20 16 under the Conflict, Humanitarian and Security Programme Partnership Arrangement (CHASE PPA). WWS is piloting innovative approaches to working with civil society to promote more accountable governance in conflict-affected and fragile contexts.
  • Topic: Conflict Resolution, Civil Society, Political Economy, Governance, Reform
  • Political Geography: Middle East, Israel, Arabia
  • Author: Babrak Osman
  • Publication Date: 10-2014
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Oxfam Publishing
  • Abstract: Afghanistan is one of four Oxfam country programmes delivering the Within and Without the State (WWS) programme, funded by DFID from 2011 to 2016 under the Conflict, Humanitarian and Security Programme Partnership Arrangement (CHASE PPA). WWS is piloting innovative approaches to working with civil society to promote more accountable governance in conflict-affected and fragile contexts.
  • Topic: Conflict Resolution, Civil Society, Gender Issues, Peace Studies, War, Youth Culture
  • Political Geography: Afghanistan, Central Asia
  • Author: Rama Anthony
  • Publication Date: 10-2014
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Oxfam Publishing
  • Abstract: South Sudan is one of four Oxfam country projects delivering the Within and Without the State (WWS) programme, funded by DFID from 2011 to 2016 under the Conflict, Humanitarian and Security Programme Partnership Arrangement (CHASE PPA). WWS is piloting innovative approaches to working with civil society to promote more accountable governance in conflict - affected and fragile contexts – and is sharing the experience and learning within Oxfam and with the wider development world.
  • Topic: Conflict Resolution, Civil Society, Fragile/Failed State, Governance
  • Political Geography: Africa, South Sudan
  • Author: Adam S. Posen, David G. Blanchflower
  • Publication Date: 09-2014
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Oxfam Publishing
  • Abstract: In this paper we examine the impact of rises in inactivity on wages in the US economy and find evidence of a statistically significant negative effect. These nonparticipants exert additional downward pressure on wages over and above the impact of the unemployment rate itself. This pattern holds across recent decades in the US data, and the relationship strengthens in recent years when variation in participation increases. We also examine the impact of long-term unemployment on wages and find it has no different effect from that of short-term unemployment. Our analysis provides strong empirical support, we argue, for the assessment that continuing labor market slack is a key reason for the persistent shortfall in inflation relative to the Federal Open Market Committee's (FOMC) 2 percent inflation goal. Further, we suggest our results point towards using wage inflation as an additional intermediate target for monetary policy by the FOMC.
  • Topic: Economics, Markets, Labor Issues
  • Political Geography: United States, Middle East
  • Publication Date: 12-2014
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Oxfam Publishing
  • Abstract: On 9 December 2014 UNHCR will convene a ministerial level pledging conference in Geneva on resettlement and other forms of humanitarian admission for refugees from Syria.
  • Topic: Human Rights, Humanitarian Aid
  • Political Geography: Middle East, Syria
  • Publication Date: 12-2014
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Oxfam Publishing
  • Abstract: The current Ebola outbreak in West Africa is unprecedented. The increasing number of cases, the poor health infrastructure, the shortage of skills, knowledge and personnel, and the fear surrounding the disease are proving a huge challenge to affected governments and to the international community as they battle to bring the epidemic under control.
  • Topic: Disaster Relief, Health, Human Welfare, Infectious Diseases
  • Political Geography: Africa, West Africa
  • Author: Sophia Ayele
  • Publication Date: 12-2014
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Oxfam Publishing
  • Abstract: The 2004 Indian Ocean tsunami was a pivotal moment for the humanitarian sector; many lessons were learned and the humanitarian system was strengthened as a result. However, ten years on, significant challenges remain. Using the case of the tsunami – a rare example of a well-funded humanitarian emergency – The Indian Ocean Tsunami, 10 Years On looks at key lessons from the response and examines why some emergencies receive rapid, generous funding while others remain virtually ignored by the international community. As humanitarian need increases, it is imperative that the global community continue to work towards adequate, needs-based funding, and strives to reduce the costs and human impacts of future humanitarian emergencies.
  • Author: Howard Reed
  • Publication Date: 12-2014
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Oxfam Publishing
  • Abstract: This report looks at the application of sanctions in the UK social security system. Sanctions are defined as the reduction or withdrawal of benefits from claimants on the grounds that they have failed to observe the conditions attached to their benefit claim. Whilst successive Governments have increased use of sanctions in the system, the current Government has expanded conditionality criteria and increased the length of sanctions since October 2012. This was to align non-compliance of conditionality more to changes under Universal Credit, and to make conditions for receipt of benefit clearer. This report finds that there is no evidence that increased use of sanctions in Jobcentre Plus districts between October 2012 and June 2014 led to decreased unemployment or increased employment. It therefore seems that sanctions are not achieving the desired goal to increase employment for claimants.
  • Author: Andy Featherstone, Carino Antequisa
  • Publication Date: 12-2014
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Oxfam Publishing
  • Abstract: Humanitarian partnerships between national and international organisations are a long-established means of responding to humanitarian need. As long ago as 1994 the NGO/Red Cross Code of Conduct emphasised the importance of working collaboratively with national organisations, and in 2007 the Principles of Partnership outlined best practice in humanitarian partnership working. Given the considerable support that exists for humanitarian partnership it is disappointing that as recently as 2012, in her preface to ALNAP's State of the Humanitarian System report, the UN Under-Secretary General for Humanitarian Affairs lamented the 'lack of inclusion of non-traditional actors such as National Disaster Management Authorities and southern NGOs... which undermined the effectiveness of many operations'
  • Author: Rosalba Landa, Beatriz Olivera
  • Publication Date: 12-2014
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Oxfam Publishing
  • Abstract: Climate change will strongly affect the production of food and the life conditions of the farming and indigenous families in Central America. The increase in temperatures and the modification of the rainfall cycles will impact the availability of water for the food production and for the populations. In Latin America and the Caribbean, in the past decade, more than 15 million people were affected by floods while more than 3 million were affected by extreme droughts and almost 5 million by extreme temperatures. Furthermore, according to the previsions of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), the increase in the number of people at risk from suffering from famine could concern 5 million people by the year 2020, and reach up to 26 million by the year 2050.
  • Political Geography: Latin America, Central America, Caribbean
  • Author: Moussa Haddad, Jane Perry, Martin Williams, Tom Sefton
  • Publication Date: 11-2014
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Oxfam Publishing
  • Abstract: Use of emergency food aid in the UK, particularly in the form of food banks, has dramatically increased over the last decade. This research, jointly conducted by Oxfam, Child Poverty Action Group (CPAG), the Church of England and The Trussell Trust, examines why people are turning to food banks, how food bank use fits with their wider coping strategies, and what might be done to reduce the need that leads to food bank use. Our research used a combination of methodological approaches. We conducted 40 in-depth interviews with clients at 7 food banks in a diverse range of areas across the UK, collected additional administrative data from more than 900 clients at 3 of those food banks regarding the reasons for their referral, and analysed a caseload of 178 clients accessing an advice service at one food bank.
  • Political Geography: England
  • Author: David Bright, Caroline Green, Thalia Kidder
  • Publication Date: 10-2014
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Oxfam Publishing
  • Abstract: The growing focus on creating employment for women is welcome, but for women to be economically empowered, it must be decent work with safeguards, alongside integrated interventions to address the structural barriers faced by women. Without this dual approach, evidence shows that apart from a few exceptional women leaders, the majority of women may not be able to access jobs or benefit fully from them. Working women continue to face heavy and unequal responsibilities for household work and care, remaining in low-paid and precarious work, and vulnerable to abuse. Successful experiences have stemmed from integrated investments in social infrastructure, such as women's organisations, social protection, essential services and positive social norms, with transparent governance supporting good employment practices such as written contracts and a living wage.
  • Author: Yared Teka Tsegay, Masiiwa Rusare, Rashmi Mistry
  • Publication Date: 10-2014
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Oxfam Publishing
  • Abstract: South Africa is supposedly a food-secure nation, producing enough calories to feed every one of its 53 million citizens. But despite some progress, one in four people currently suffers hunger on a regular basis and more than half of the population live in such precarious circumstances that they are at risk of going hungry.
  • Political Geography: South Africa
  • Author: Coghlan Christopher, Muzammil Maliha, Ingram John, Vervoort Joost, Otto Friederike, James Rachel
  • Publication Date: 09-2014
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Oxfam Publishing
  • Abstract: This report analyses impacts of four extreme weather events (a heat wave in Russia, flooding in Pakistan, drought in East Africa, and a typhoon in the Philippines) on food security. For each case, the nature of the extreme weather is characterized, and its impact on vulnerable people is assessed by considering when and why threats emerge, and the role of governance in the state and non - state responses to the emergency. Scenarios of the plausible impacts of increased extreme weather severity on food security and other socioeconomic parameters are presented for each case.
  • Political Geography: Pakistan, Russia, Philippines, East Africa
  • Author: Hanks Kiri
  • Publication Date: 09-2014
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Oxfam Publishing
  • Abstract: UN Secretary - General Ban Ki - moon invited business leaders to bring to the Climate Summit the bold actions they are undertaking to address climate change. These public – private initiatives are touted to be a key outcome of the summit – especially given that few governments will be in a position to make major new commitments. The hope is that they will inject some positive momentum into the global talks by showing that business is already 'getting on with it' and leading the way.