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A$1.8 billion is no longer available to help populations in our neighbouring countries achieve a decent standard of health. Gates Foundation/Flickr

How cuts to foreign aid will reduce health care in the region

The federal government’s Mid-Year Economic and Fiscal Outlook announcement this week to cut the foreign aid budget by a further A$3.7 billion over three years is unprecedented. The current government has…
Gambian beaches are well away from the Ebola zone, but where are all the tourists? Marina Novelli

There’s no Ebola in the Gambia – but it’s killing tourism there

I am writing this from the Gambia and want to appeal to everyone to spread the word: this country is open for business and it is not affected by the Ebola outbreak – otherwise I would not be here. I am…
Navy workers deliver aid in the Philippines. DFID

Fixing aid: bypass corruption with military precision

The UK government’s Department for International Development has been severely criticised by the Independent Commission for Aid Impact for its apparent failure to tackle corruption in the countries that…
The densely populated cities like Sierra Leone’s capital, Freetown, have been the worst hit. EPA/str

How to plan for a post-Ebola West Africa

The Ebola outbreak continues to rage, and the immediate need is to control the spread of the disease and to help those infected. But it is time also to plan how to rebuild a post-Ebola West Africa, whose…
The country’s capacity to treat infected patients and prevent further spread is very limited. UN Women Asia & the Pacific/Flickr

How would Papua New Guinea deal with Ebola?

Contemplating how Papua New Guinea (PNG) would deal with Ebola may not be that different from asking the same of Liberia 12 months ago. While PNG’s per capita gross national income (US$2,540 in 2013) is…
Mining giant Rio Tinto, which has operated in Guinea for 50 years, has donated just US$100,000 to the UN Ebola fund. EPA/Ahmed Jallanzo

Mining companies must dig deep in the fight against Ebola

The current outbreak of Ebola virus in West Africa shows no signs of halting. More than 4,500 people have died and many thousands more are infected. Despite the creation of a new United Nations mission…
There’s little consensus on how to proceed after 2015. EPA/Yonhap

How UN managerialism is stifling the voices of the poor

Once hailed as “the world’s biggest promise”, the Millennium Development Goals, a 14-year-old series of commitments made by governments to tackle global poverty, will expire at the end of 2014. There is…
It’s trickling-down up north. BenSutherland

HS2 and the myth that wealth will trickle up from London

Over the years I’ve written a lot about global north-south issues. Yet until now, I’ve never said a word about the same divide within England, my own country of birth and residence. But the two overlap…
Microfinance can buy you a bucket, but it won’t feed you forever. DFAT

How microfinance disappointed the developing world

In 1976, a small experiment was conducted in the poverty-stricken and flood ravaged Bangladeshi village of Jobra. Professor Muhammad Yunus, a lecturer of Economics at Chittagong University visited the…
Illegal dumping in the Mzymta River from Sochi’s building frenzy. sochiwatch

Sochi Olympics have left a trail of environmental destruction

The reports from Sochi’s newly built hotels and Olympic Village have not painted their construction in the best light, with tales of doors that wouldn’t open, yellow drinking water, and collapsing fixtures…
Private sector-led growth might help. DFID - UK Department for International Development

UK is not thinking smart about growth in developing countries

Justine Greening, the international development secretary, recently made a speech on how business can contribute to development. Three quarters of it was about the importance of economic growth in developing…
Small but powerful, the BRCK brings the web to those hard to reach places. BRCK

The little black box bringing the internet to Kenya

The BRCK is, in a sense, just like the archetypal little black box. It does what you need and you don’t have to worry about its inner workings. The team developing it has a simple aim – to extend and stabilise…
Some cardboard trees made by Hugo Boss and painted by children, because: sustainability! Geoff Caddick/PA

It’s time to ban the empty word ‘sustainability’

While the idea of Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) that became all the rage some time ago initially had worthwhile aims, it is now more commonly used by corporations to out-worthy their competitors…

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