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  • Author: John H. Makin
  • Publication Date: 10-2009
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: American Enterprise Institute for Public Policy Research
  • Abstract: Wall Street is dancing again to the music of a sharp rise in stock prices. The question that remains is whether Main Street, currently languishing in a sad world of job losses, unavailable credit, and weakened balance sheets, will get to join the party. To put the question more precisely, will the “adverse feedback loop” that saw a financial collapse last fall that crushed the real economy work in reverse, so that a financial bounce boosts the real economy in coming quarters? The jury is still out on this important question.
  • Topic: Economics, Markets, Financial Crisis
  • Political Geography: United States
  • Author: Augustus Vogel
  • Publication Date: 12-2009
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: Africa Center for Strategic Studies
  • Abstract: Maritime security challenges in Africa are growing rapidly and represent an increasingly central component of the threat matrix facing the continent. African states struggle to meet these threats because their maritime security structures are misaligned with the challenges posed. Redressing this misalignment will require valuing the coast guard capacity demanded by these threats and constructing the array of intragovernmental partnerships needed to be effective in combating these threats.
  • Topic: International Cooperation, International Affairs, Military Affairs
  • Political Geography: Africa
  • Author: William M. Bellamy
  • Publication Date: 06-2009
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: Africa Center for Strategic Studies
  • Abstract: Despite significant recent gains, Africa's security environment remains fragile with a wide array of ongoing and emerging threats placing great strains on already overburdened governments. United Nations peacekeeping operations in Africa have realized some success in recent years, especially when they have involved direct support from members of the Security Council. Much more cohesive interagency coordination under strong White House direction is required if the United States is to contribute to Africa's sustained stability given the region's persistent conditions of poverty, inequality, and weak governance.
  • Topic: Conflict Prevention, Security, International Security, International Affairs, Military Strategy
  • Political Geography: Africa, United Nations
  • Author: Vijaya Ramachandran, Manju Kedia Shah, Alan Gelb
  • Publication Date: 03-2009
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: Center for Global Development
  • Abstract: Why has the private sector failed to thrive in much of sub-Saharan Africa? Drawing on a unique set of enterprise surveys, we identify inadequate infrastructure (especially unreliable electricity and poor quality roads) and burdensome regulations as the biggest obstacles to doing business. We find as well that the private sector in many countries is dominated by ethnic minorities, which inhibits competition and lowers demand for a better business environment. Solutions include investing in infrastructure, providing risk guarantees, and reforming regulations to lower the cost of doing business, as well as increasing access to education for would-be entrepreneurs.
  • Topic: Development, Economics, Emerging Markets, Globalization, International Trade and Finance
  • Political Geography: Africa
  • Author: David Wendt, Nandini Oomman, Christina Droggitis
  • Publication Date: 08-2009
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: Center for Global Development
  • Abstract: Few people doubt that gender inequality influences the spread of HIV/AIDS. Yet public health efforts tend to focus on changing individual behavior rather than addressing structural factors—social, economic, physical and political—that influence the spread and effects of HIV and AIDS.
  • Topic: Gender Issues, Health, Social Stratification
  • Publication Date: 10-2009
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: Center for Global Development
  • Abstract: The Commitment to Development Index (CDI) ranks 22 of the world's richest countries on their dedication to policies that benefit the five billion people living in poorer nations. Moving beyond standard comparisons of foreign aid volumes, the CDI quantifies a range of rich-country policies that affect poor people in developing countries: Quantity and quality of foreign aid Openness to developing-country exports Policies that encourage investment Migration policies Environmental policies Security policies Support for creation and dissemination of new technologies Scores on each component are scaled so that an average score in 2008, the reference year, equals 5.0. A country's final score is the average of those for each component. The CDI adjusts for size in order to compare how well countries are living up to their potential to help.
  • Topic: Development, International Cooperation, Poverty, Third World, International Affairs, Foreign Aid
  • Author: Rena Eichler, Ruth Levine
  • Publication Date: 05-2009
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: Center for Global Development
  • Abstract: Global health donors, like national governments, have traditionally paid for inputs such as doctors' salaries or medical equipment in the hope that they would lead to better health. Performance incentives offered to health workers, facility managers, or patients turn the equation on its head: they start with the performance targets and let those most directly affected decide how to achieve them. Funders pay (in money or in kind) when health providers or patients reach specified goals. Evidence shows that such incentives can work in a variety of settings. But making them effective requires careful planning, implementation, and monitoring and evaluation.
  • Topic: Health, Humanitarian Aid, Third World, Foreign Aid
  • Author: Liliana Rojas-Suarez
  • Publication Date: 09-2009
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: Center for Global Development
  • Abstract: Before the global economic crisis began in 2008, all countries in Latin America, long known as the world's most economically and financially volatile region, had experienced five consecutive years of economic growth, a feat that had not been achieved since the 1970s. Yet despite this growth, Latin America's incomeper-capita gap relative to high-income countries and other emerging-market economies widened, and poverty remained stubbornly high. Latin America, in short, suffered from growing pains even when things were going reasonably well.
  • Topic: Economics, Emerging Markets
  • Political Geography: Brazil, Colombia, Latin America, Mexico, Costa Rica, Peru
  • Author: John Whalley, Sean Walsh
  • Publication Date: 12-2009
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: Centre for International Governance Innovation
  • Abstract: The United Nations climate change negotiations currently underway and now seemingly likely to conclude only six to 12 months after the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) hosted meeting at Copenhagen in December 2009, are beset by a series of obstacles, the most fundamental of which reflect the North-South divide, largely between the Organisation of Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) and non-OECD economies. In this brief we argue that movement across this divide is the single most important element in a successful conclusion to the negotiation. Current obstacles reflect asymmetries between developing and developed countries both in terms of growth in carbon emissions — and hence the costs of reducing emissions proportionately relative to some base date level, but also in terms of historical emissions as a source of damage. These are compounded by the imprecision of the negotiating mandate — a lack of a clear definition of the basic principles involved, particularly in the case of the original UNFCCC principle of common yet differentiated responsibilities, which accepts but does not clearly delineate differentiated responsibilities for developing and developed countries on climate change. Significant movement in the negotiating position of either side (or both) is likely a necessity for a climate deal to be reached even in post-Copenhagen negotiations. However, the recent unilateral commitment by China to reduce emissions by 40-45 percent per unit of GDP from a 2005 base year by 2020 is a positive first step.
  • Topic: Climate Change, Development, Environment, Treaties and Agreements, Third World
  • Political Geography: China, United Nations
  • Author: John Whalley, Simon J. Evenett
  • Publication Date: 04-2009
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: Centre for International Governance Innovation
  • Abstract: This year was supposed to see breakthroughs in global environmental policy making, and that may still come to pass. However, the severity of the global economic downturn is intensifying protectionist pressures and fears of green protectionism.
  • Topic: Climate Change, International Cooperation, International Trade and Finance, Financial Crisis