To what extent is eliminating Malaria in Uganda using sprays and nets cost effective?

[This is a cross-post on a comparative study conducted by Economic Policy Research Centre (EPRC) as part of the Global Development Network’s project ‘Strengthening Institutions to Improve Public Expenditure Accountability‘]

Despite all the efforts deployed in the fight against it, Malaria still represents a major burden in Uganda as it is one of the main diseases responsible for illness and death throughout the country. According to the Malaria Control Programme of Uganda (MCP), pregnant women, children under five years and HIV-positive people represent the most vulnerable segment of the society due to their low immunity.

In an attempt to add to the tremendous efforts directed at improving health system performance and increasing public awareness about the disease, a new nationwide indoor residual spraying program was announced by the Ministry of Health on September 2nd, 2013. Such program would cost the Government of Uganda around US$ 75 million. As part of the Global Development Network’s project Strengthening Institutions to Improve Public Expenditure Accountability, aiming to help governments utilize their budgets more efficiently, the Economic Policy Research Centre (EPRC) recently conducted a comparative study on the cost-effectiveness of indoor residual spraying and insecticide treated nets.

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USP Hosts Oceania Development Network’s 4th Biennial Conference

At its fourth biennial conference held on September 10-12, 2013 at the University of the South Pacific’s (USP) Laucala Campus, the Oceania Development Network (ODN) focused this year on ‘Addressing Inequality and Promoting Inclusive and Sustainable Development‘. Opening remarks were made by ODN’s present Chair, Professor Biman Prasad ODN-Conf-2013a_0e2(University of the South Pacific’s School of Economics), who introduced the conference theme and its relevance to the Pacific’s development challenges and the key objective of ODN in line with broader objectives of the Global Development Network (GDN) in building “research capacity amongst the young and emerging researchers on issues of policy relevant to the Oceania Region.”
ODN is one of 11 regional networks affiliated with the Global Development Network.

The GDN Community shares its views on the post-MDG development agenda

By Sherine Ghoneim and Cheryl Brown

On March 19th, 2013, Global Development Network (GDN) is hosting a High Level Panel Seminar on the post-2015 Millennium Development Goals, in New Delhi. A survey was conducted to give the GDN Community the chance to contribute to this and other forums by sharing its views on five key issues facing the panellists.

Over 160 development professionals working in academia, government, civil society and aid organisations around the world took up the opportunity to share their advice and experience on issues such as the implications of combining the environmental and anti-poverty agendas, and the challenges facing poverty eradication. The survey participants responded with a variety of examples of successful interventions and lessons learned about development policy planning and implementation.

A synthesis of the survey responses is available online. Despite the diversity of answers and contexts, the synthesis highlights some common themes cutting across the topics, such as the importance of empowering individuals and communities to develop their own livelihoods and giving them a greater say in how programs are designed and implemented. In the coming weeks we will be using this blog to look in-depth at some of the ideas and lessons that emerged from the survey and hope you will share your reactions and insights.

More about the Post MDGs Consultation

Join live webcast of ‘High Level Policy Dialogue’ event from 2.30-6.30 pm IST

Philippines: Making social protection more inclusive

By Felipe F. Salvosa II, Publications Division Chief, Philippine Institute for Development Studies

Josef T. Yap, Philippine Institute for Development Studies (PIDS)

Josef T. Yap attending session during the GDN 14th Annual Development Conference in MAnila, Philippines

How does 7.8% GDP growth feel?
For big players in the Philippines, there is a lot of reason to celebrate, the domestic economy being the fastest-growing in Asia in the first quarter of 2013. Josef T. Yap, President of the think-tank Philippine Institute for Development Studies (PIDS), explains that the Philippines has leap-frogged into a service economy without going through extensive industrialisation  He argues that positive developments, are only at the macro level, and “relatively high poverty incidence and persistent inequality remain important concerns.”

To address this concern, the Aquino administration has prioritized the conditional cash transfer program- known locally as Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program or 4Ps (“Bridge for Filipino Families”)- and PIDS researchers led by Senior Research Fellow Celia M. Reyes are providing research support to make it more effective and remove “leakages” to non-poor beneficiaries.

At the Joint Parallel Session co-sponsored by the East Asian Development Network, PIDS, and GDN Japan during the GDN 14th Annual Development Conference , Reyes called for a “deepening” of the 4Ps scheme, already the biggest social protection program ever conceived by the Philippines with a budget of 39.5 billion pesos and three million beneficiary-families in 2012.  The objective is two-fold: social assistance through cash assistance and social development through investments in human capital, particularly in health and education.

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Growth, inequality and social protection: The missing links

Issues related to social protection are becoming very crucial in the aftermath of the global financial crises, but also in the growing inequality in the developing world. Indeed there is a growing consciousness of the importance of social benefits as a measure to protect people from becoming trapped in poverty, to empower them to seize opportunities, to help workers adjust to changes, to deal with unemployment. The importance of social policies and social protection systems that address inequality for long term sustainability and inclusive growth should be taken into consideration when thinking about development policy.

The 14th Global Development Network’s Annual Conference on ‘Inequality, social protection, and inclusive growth’ is taking place in Manila, the Philippines from June19-22nd 2013 in partnership with Asian Development Bank (ADB), East Asian Development Network (EADN) and The Philippines Institute fro Development Studies (PIDS). The opening plenary session, a policy roundtable discussion, set the tone for what will be discussed over the next three days of the conference regarding the overall nexus between inequality, social protection and inclusive growth.

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Changing mindsets and policy priorities: Can growth and inequality reduction go hand in hand?

“This is a cross post based on GDN’s President Pierre Jacquet’s Op-Ed on the GDN 14th annual Conference, taking place in Manila, Philippines. The conference theme is “Inequality, Social Protection and Inclusive Growth”, with a focus on promoting research capacity building to inspire better policies.”

Pierre Jacquet

Pierre Jacquet, GDN President during the GDN 13th Annual Conference.

As concerns of the spread of poverty and social inequality across the world, and in developing countries in particular; research to impact policy decision must thus be driven by those who live among it, rather than international experts and aid agencies. GDN’s vision to bridge social science research and policy takes up an approach that ensures maximum effective as well as efficient communication. This year’s annual conference aims not only to raise the voice of developing country researchers, but also to provide them with a unique chance to debate their views and their research against comments, insights and advice of the experts. Also on the debate whether a policy focus on inequality reduction weakens or strengthens the growth objectives of a country, GDN advocates, through this conference, that the frustration with insufficient results does justify more research and more debate, which also entails value-for-money in learning about how to better meet challenges and influence effective policies and priorities.

Both the rise of poverty and inequalities in industrial countries, and their persistence in developing countries amidst a diversity of experiences, suggest that the empirical design of social protection schemes and of “inclusive growth” policies is still a mostly unchartered agenda. In a context in which policy priorities are largely the results of local political economy considerations rather than general discussions on what “should be” done, it is crucial to expose facts and document policy results, because this is what can powerfully change domestic agendas. This is what GDN’s research experience confirms, for instance through the recently completed research program “Supporting Policy Research to Inform Agricultural Policy in Sub-Saharan Africa and South Asia“. This is also what all participants in the GDN Conference in Manila will help do.

Fighting Human Trafficking: GDN funds Innovative Development Projects

This is a cross-post based on GDN’s Feature Story, “Fighting Human Trafficking: GDN funds Innovative Development Projects”. The post is based on the GDN 13th Annual Conference Awards and Medals Competition 2nd place winner, Hasina Kharbhih, for the work of ‘Impulse NGO Network‘.

Hasina Kharbhih, Team Leader, Impulse NGO Network receiving GDN Award

Hasina Kharbhih, Team Leader, Impulse NGO Network receiving GDN Award

Researcher capacity building is clearly driven by the importance of communication in bridging research and policy. Our Research Communication Training Workshops are thus an integral pre-conference activity, conducted by GDNet  Research Communication Training facilitation team in collaboration with CommsConsult, that helps researchers better present their research to create a bigger impact with their ideas.  Last year’s GDN awarded winner Hasina Kharbhih sets an example for effective  engagement of policymakers in  creating an impact with research. Her research team utilized a range of communications tools to support the research and help ensure wider impact. This included publishing a formal research report that presents the research findings, in addition to conducting a press release to involve the media and engage Indian government stakeholders in discussions of the findings.

To provide a long lasting, holistic solution to the rampant human trafficking problem, Impulse has created the Meghalaya Model which not only rescues, rehabilitates and reintegrates victims of human trafficking, but also oversees prosecution of the traffickers and raises awareness to prevent human trafficking. What makes the Model special is its ability to get various stakeholders involved. “We understand that the issue of human trafficking is too big to be handled only by a few NGOs. The government agencies and other stakeholders have to be involved,” says Hasina Kharbhih, the Team Leader of Impulse. The Model brings together civil society, NGOs, media, educational institutions, government departments, judiciary, law enforcement, and Border Security Forces (BSF) to collectively fight against the problem.

Interested to learn more about the Meghalaya Model and the experience of Impulse NGO Network? Watch our interview with Hasina.

As part of GDNet’s Monitoring and Evaluation Framework, a panel was held prior to the GDN Conference where a few rigorous, robust and representative cases of knowledge into use in the policy process were selected. Hasina’s case was chosen as one of the Most Significant Cases where a number of interesting policy influencing factors arise.

This year, the GDN 14th Annual Global Development Conference on Inequality, Social Protection and Inclusive Growth will be held on June 19-21, 2013 at the Asian Development Bank Headquarters in Manila, Philippines.

Don’t miss any discussions and stay up to date with conference proceedings and messages through social media:

  • Read the daily blog on GDNet to catch up on plenaries and parallels discussions and listen to interviews from speakers and participants
  • Ask questions and share your ideas and relevant research by commenting on conference blogs, tweets, photos, video and more
  • Follow @Connect2GDNet and #GDN2013 for live updates and comments on discussion.

Download full Conference Note here!

Promoting the importance of social policies and social protection systems

Inequality, Social Protection and Inclusive Growth”

GDN 14th Annual Conference – "Inequality, Social Protection and Inclusive Growth"

GDN 14th Annual Conference –
“Inequality, Social Protection and Inclusive Growth”

The GDN 14th Annual Global Development Conference on Inequality, Social Protection and Inclusive Growth will be held on June 19-21, 2013 at the Asian Development Bank Headquarters in Manila, Philippines. In partnership with Asian Development Bank (ADB), East Asian Development Network (EADN) and Philippine Institute for Development Studies (PIDS), the conference is expected to host 400 participants from all over the world including the East Asia region and the Philippines.

In the aftermath of the global financial crisis, there is now a growing consciousness of the benefits of social protection in fighting poverty and inequality, and empowering people to adjust and seize opportunities to deal with unemployment and increase productivity. The main focus of the conference is thus to promote the importance of social policies and social protection systems that address and reduce inequality and social exclusion for long-term sustainable and inclusive growth.

Topics to be covered at the conference include (but are not limited to):

  • Global perspectives on inequality
  • Gender, inequality and social protection
  • Regional perspectives on inequality and inclusive growth
  • Mechanisms to promote social protection for inclusive growth
  • Key challenges for social protection policies
  • Inequality, social protection and inclusive growth in the context of the post-2015 development agenda

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GDN launches a High Level Panel Seminar and open consultation on the post-2015 development agenda

By Sherine Ghoneim, Director, GDN Cairo

The Millennium Development Goals reach their deadline in 2015, but what should the next set of global development priorities be? The UN Secretary General has appointed a High Level Panel to provide guidance and recommendations on the post-2015 development agenda and a number of open, inclusive consultations are taking place during the year to increase understanding of the challenges and opportunities facing development after 2015.

The Global Development Network (GDN) is keen to enable researchers from the South to contribute to the debate and is beginning this process with a seminar involving senior researchers and key stakeholders from Asia and around the globe. The seminar, which takes place in New Delhi later this month, will connect members of the UN High Level Panel with the academic community of economists and other social scientists from developing countries.

In parallel, we are running an open consultation online (survey) to enable you to share your opinions on the future of development with the participants of the GDN seminar and other forums where the post-2015 development agenda is being discussed. The survey runs until March 11th, 2013 and gives you the opportunity to share your views on five of the most pressing questions facing the panellists:

  1. What do you think are the hardest challenges facing poverty eradication at the regional or country level?
  2. Can you give any examples of instruments or interventions that have been proven to be particularly effective at reducing poverty at the local, country or region levels?
  3. What are the advantages and disadvantages of combining the environmental and anti-poverty agendas?
  4. Are there new policies that should be tried to respond to rising global inequality?
  5. What are the lessons for economic development from the global financial crisis and its impacts?

The survey can be accessed here and the responses will be synthesised and shared with the panellists at the seminar. The synthesis document will also be published online and we will look for opportunities to feed the findings into other related online and face-to-face discussions.

What do you think the post-2015 Millennium Development Goals should be focusing on? Don’t miss your chance to have your voice heard. Follow the discussion here.

City as catalyst: The city as both a mean and an end

The first plenary session of GDN’s 13th Annual Conference took a closer look at the nexus between urbanization and development, to more clearly understand the interplay between the two. Saskia Sassen, Professor of Sociology at Columbia University, who authored Cities: New Frontier Zones in Development Processes was the keynote speaker.

The city: Delving deeper into its intricacies

The role of the city as catalyst in the developmental process was cited; where cities are seen as places of many good things and many bad things. They overwhelmingly get a bad rap, however, where the real challenge today becomes how to change these negative articulations into positive ones; for a more sustainable, equitable development process.

The role of finance as an engine that provides security, and stability, was brought up, in addition to its role in ultimately leading to growth. The city, in this scenario, becomes the space for the making of the social, political and economic; a lens to understand larger processes, according to Sassen.

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