Global Policy Forum

Archived Articles on General Analysis on Poverty and Development





Human Development Report (2005)

The United Nations for Development Programme's Human Development Report for 2005 focuses on “aid, trade and security in an unequal world." The report mainly addresses rich countries’ obligations to bring about a change in an increasingly polarized world. At the start of the ten-year countdown to 2015, this issue raises doubts about the achievement of the Millennium Development Goal. (United Nations for Development Programme)


Human Development Report (2004)

By dismantling the myth of "Clash of Cultures", the Human Development Report of 2004 emphasizes the need of multicultural policies that recognize differences, champion diversity and promote cultural freedom in order to create greater empowerment and participation for all people. (United Nations Development Program)

“Good Governance” and the MDGs: Contradictory or Complementary? (October 12, 2004)

Multilateral agencies view “good governance” as crucial to achieving the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs). This article asserts that good governance wrongly portrays economic growth as the primary source of development. The article further calls for a critical review of obstacles, such as global neo-liberal orthodoxy, that confront the MDGs. (Focus on the Global South)

Poverty, the Next Frontier in the Struggle for Human Rights (December 9, 2004)

In recognition of World Human Rights Day on December 10, UNESCO's Assistant Director General for Social and Human Sciences Pierre Sane calls for the abolishment of poverty, which “is at once the cause and the effect of the total or partial denial of human rights.” While three billion people receive only about 1.2% of world income, one billion people in the rich countries receive 80%. (Pambazuka)

One Billion “Denied Childhood” (December 9, 2004)

The UNICEF report on the State of the World’s Children highlights that the number of children dying from poverty is not decreasing as much as in the 1980s and 1990s. As a result, over a billion children currently face a brutal existence because of poverty, war and AIDS. The report criticizes countries for failing to effectively fight the AIDS pandemic and preventing armed conflicts, and urges governments to view children’s poverty as a lack of basic rights. (BBC)

Reduce Poverty - Get a Safer World (November 18, 2004)

The US should demonstrate “good leadership” by addressing global poverty and embracing the Millennium Development Goals instead of pursuing a security agenda based solely on self-interest, says the Christian Science Monitor. This article concludes that the US should take the lead in the fight on poverty by reviewing its subsidy and aid policies making the world safer for a majority, not for a minority.

Poverty Reduction Strategy Papers in Africa: Are They Really Making a Difference to Policies? (November 1, 2004)

This book review looks at a study on Poverty Reduction Strategy Papers (PRSPs), which UK's Overseas Development Institute conducted in seven African countries. The text argues that PRSPs make aid more effective by reinforcing national “ownership” of development strategies, but warns of failure if donors don’t commit on a long term basis and include more local organizations. (ID21)

“Guns or Growth? Assessing the Impact of Arms Sales on Sustainable Development” – A Summary (June 2004)

Oxfam warns that arms trade threatens poor countries’ achievement of the Millennium Development Goals. While rich countries annually allocate $60 billion on aid, worldwide expenditure on arms amounts to $900 billion. Oxfam proposes an Arms Trade Treaty, which would permit arms trade for “legitimate security needs” but restrain trade if it jeopardizes sustainable development.

Global Warming Threatens Work of Top Aid and Environment Charities Says New Report (October 20, 2004)

Development and environment agencies warn in a new report that global climate change hits primarily poor communities and hinders them from achieving the Millennium Development Goals. The report concludes that governments must face the inseparable challenges of poverty and a rapidly warming global climate. (New Economics Foundation)

Now, Dangers of a Population Implosion (October 7, 2004)

While population continues to rise in poor countries, rich countries introduce financial rewards to pump up birth rates. Affluent governments worry increasingly over demographics, arguing that increased national birth rates will secure future economic vitality and ability to fund pension programs. (Christian Science Monitor)

G-77: No Development Without Science and Technology (October 4, 2004)

The Group of 77, the largest coalition of poor countries at the UN, warns about the widening digital gap between poor and rich countries. The group identifies scientific research as the key to progress and states that poor countries must catch up in the global information economy in order to overcome poverty and achieve development. (TerraViva)

One Goal Is to Tell Talk from Action (September 24, 2004)

It seems fashionable for governments of rich countries to discuss debt cancellation and poverty reduction strategies. This article pointins out that “announcements are one thing, action another.” While heads of states talk strategies, they overlook the most effective poverty reduction tools: decrease in agricultural subsidies and increase in Official Development Assistance. (Inter Press Service)

EU Promises Action Over MDGs (September 22, 2004)

Inter Press Service informs that the European Union development commissioner Luis Michel has promised to make the Millennium Development Goals "central to all of the European Commission's policies." The question remains whether the promise will result in active pro-poor development policies, such as fairer trade rules, increased Official Development Assistance and less subsidies.

Malnutrition a Major Barrier to Economic Success in Asia, Top Ten WFP Officials Says (September 15, 2004)

The World Food Program (WFP) has urged Asian governments, gathered at a recent nutrition conference in India, to address the issue of vast malnutrition. The organization warns that undernourishment, passed on from generation to generation, endangers the economic potential of the Asian region. (One World)

UN Warns of Population Explosion (September 15, 2004)

The State of the World Population 2004, a report issued by the UN Population Fund, stresses that donor governments have failed in fulfilling the funding pledges given at the population conference in Cairo in 1994. Unless donors live up to their promises, the lack of reproductive health care programmes may lead to a population boom in poor countries. (BBC)

Battling Poverty or Fighting Wars? (September 10, 2004)

Global military spending will likely approach the one-trillion-dollar mark by the end of 2004. Paradoxically, the world spends only 50 billion dollars on development aid annually. These figures reveal a lack of commitment among governments of rich countries to the UN Millennium Development Goal of reducing poverty. (Inter Press Service)

UK Leads a $4 Billion Vaccination Drive (August 9, 2004)

France, the UK and Bill Gates backed an initiative to vaccinate children for preventable diseases, such as polio and yellow fever. The program will strengthen healthcare systems and begin long-term vaccine buying policies, aiming to save over 2 million children per year by 2015. (Guardian)

World's Poorest Nations on Slippery Slope (July 2, 2004)

Leaders of poor countries cite "rising debts, declining development aid, poor commodity prices and increased Western tariff barriers on third world products" for the increasing levels of poverty within their countries. They unequivocally concluded that domestic resources alone could not adequately build sustainable development, and that foreign assistance and the private sector were needed as well. (Inter Press Service)

Financial Liberalization and Poverty: Channels of Influence (July 2004)

This paper argues that governments must ensure that financial liberalization is designed with poverty reduction as its thrust or else it will not benefit the poor. This failure stems from the market's nature, which primarily gives advantage to those who already have access to economic resources and information. (Social Science Research Network)

Companies with More Females at the Top Perform Much Better (June 24, 2004)

"High hopes are pinned on the power of women" in development initiatives around the world. Female borrowers tend to repay loans and spend profits on family needs more consistently than men. For these reasons, the World Bank, the African Development Bank, UNESCO, and many NGOs are focusing on women's education and empowerment as central to development work. (World Bank Press Review)

World Bank: Poor Countries Need Institutional Reform for Water Projects to Work (June 18, 2004)

Lasting institutional reform is critical to development. Some past reform methods, created by experts and policy makers, have been ineffective because they failed to elicit the population-based, behavioral changes needed for successful projects. To create such change, effective programs require significant funding and years of planning.(World Bank Press Review)

Gordon Brown: We Need Irreversible Progress in Tackling World Poverty (June 1, 2004)

At the current rate of progress, the world will not meet the Millennium Development Goals in Africa, set for 2015, for another 100 years. The UK Chancellor of the Exchequer urges rich countries to live up to their promises and promote fair trade, aid and debt relief. (Independent)

'EU Failing to Fight Poverty' (April 28, 2004)

Aid agencies argue that the European Union (EU) must redouble its anti-poverty commitments to meet the Millennium Development Goals. Hans Zomer from the Irish national network of development charities criticizes the EU for spending just 0.35 percent of its GNP in 2003 on overseas aid, while 600 million children live in poverty. (Inter Press Service)

World 'Failing Poverty Pledges' (April 23, 2004)

In a joint study on tackling poverty, the World Bank and IMF call on rich countries to “take the lead” in addressing the root causes of poverty. James Wolfensohn, president of the World Bank, argues that governments must “change their priorities and spend more on aid.” Yet, Wolfensohn mentions nothing about the World Bank changing its neoliberal agenda. (BBC)

Putin Launches War on Poverty (March 22, 2004)

Russian President, Vladimir Putin, has “demanded” a reduction in the number of Russians living below the poverty line by half over the next three years. Putin argues that for the economy to grow faster, the government must increase the taxes on the oil industry and reduce the tax burden on other sectors. (Moscow Times)

Data Show Basic Education Underlies Economic Development, Political Stability, Healthy Populations (February 17, 2004)

The Basic Education Coalition argues that education is crucial for poverty reduction and democracy. A report by this umbrella group of 19 NGOs contends that basic education fosters higher life expectancies, lower infant mortality rates and greater political stability.

State of the World 2004: Richer, Fatter, and Not Much Happier (January 8, 2004)

The Worldwatch Institute argues that the unsustainable consumption rates by more than a quarter of humanity degrades the natural environment and makes it harder for the world’s poor to break the cycle of poverty.

Brazil Pays Parents to Help Poor Be Pupils, Not Wage Earners (January 3, 2004)

To break the cycle of poverty, more and more Latin American countries create incentives for parents to invest in their children’s future. In Brazil for example, the program “Family Grant” guarantees the poor small monthly cash payments on the condition that they keep their children in school. By 2006, the program will reach one quarter of the Brazilian population. (New York Times)


Human Development Report (2003)

The United Nations Development Program’s annual Human Development Index ranks 175 countries based on income per person, life expectancy, literacy and school enrollment. The report is a tool for evaluating progress toward the Millennium Development Goal.

Why Eyes Are on Brazil (December 24, 2003)

Two World Bank officials admit that the Bank’s “Washington Consensus” did not succeed in pulling Latin Americans out of poverty. It forced Latin America to endure financial austerity before seeking to improve the basic living conditions. Yet, the officials still express skepticism about Brazilian President Lula da Silva’s strategy of giving social progress the priority over economic growth. (International Herald Tribune)

Reducing Poverty or Repeating Mistakes? (December 18, 2003)

In 1999, the World Bank invented the Poverty Reduction Strategy Papers (PRSPs) to replace its increasingly criticized Structural Adjustment Programs. Yet, this report argues that both mechanisms generate the same neo-liberal policy contents, such as privatization and liberalization, instead of focusing on equity issues and poverty reduction. (People Participating in Poverty Reduction)

Getting Girls into Schools is First Step to Reaching MDGs (December 11, 2003)

UNICEF’s “State of the World’s Children” contends that promoting basic education for girls will jump-start the progress needed to reach the Millennium Development Goals. Currently, school enrollment and literacy rates are still far higher among boys than among girls, perpetuating the vast waste of human potential.

The First UN Millennium Development Goal (November 6, 2003)

What is poverty? How is it measured and by who? Mainstream media and UN institutions generally rely on the World Bank for data on poverty and poverty reduction. This article criticizes the World Bank's arbitrary way of developing these data, thereby critically assessing the fundaments of the Millennium Development Goals. (Carnegie Council on Ethics and International Affairs)

The Importance of Basic Education (October 28, 2003)

Economist Amartya Sen argues that the example of Japan proves that real social and economic progress has to build on universal access to basic education. He insists on the importance of closing educational gaps, as basic education can have a “powerfully preventive role in reducing human insecurity of nearly every kind.” (Guardian)

Bleak Arab Progress Report (October 21, 2003)

The second Arab Human Development Report highlights poor education and the absence of political freedoms as underlying causes of lagging development in the Arab world. Moreover, outside trends work against an open Arab society. For example, US laws make it difficult for Arab students and academics to obtain visas. (Christian Science Monitor)

The Bilgaon Model (October 11-24, 2003)

This article presents a development initiative in the Indian Narmada Valley. The project illustrates that sustainable ideas building up on equitable sharing and common control of resources can have great impact. It provides electricity and school education to twelve villages where the government failed to do so. (Frontline, India)

Angola: School Feeding an Incentive for Pupils and Parents (October 9, 2003)

Only 50 percent of Angolan children have access to formal education. To increase children’s attendance at primary schools, the World Food Program started a program that allows schools to offer children two meals a day. (Integrated Regional Information Network)

Can We Abolish Poverty? (October 9, 2003)

This article from the Daily Trust (Nigeria) argues that the ongoing poverty alleviation strategies in Nigeria do not sufficiently take into consideration the particular way of thinking of the people.

Slums Are the Heartbeat of Cities (October 6, 2003)

UN Habitat projects that within thirty years, one-third of the world’s population will live in slums. The organization blames the proliferation of slums on World Bank and IMF policies in the 1980s, and urges governments to show political will to improve the intolerable living conditions of slum dwellers. (East African)

Debt and the Millennium Development Goals (September 2003)

CAFOD, Christian Aid and Eurodad urge multilateral and bilateral donors to undertake policy actions to help achieve the Millennium Development Goals. The joint paper argues that without the requisite finance, low-income countries cannot meet the goals. It furthermore proposes specific aid and debt policy reforms.

World Development Report 2004: Making Services Work for Poor People (September 2003)

The World Bank generally advocates the privatization of services, contributing to the corrosion of universal access to education, health care and water. Yet, in its World Development Report 2004, the Bank states that the access to basic services represents a necessary condition to help poor people acquire the means to escape poverty.

The IMF and the Millennium Development Goals (September 2003)

This Oxfam paper criticizes the IMF for spreading pessimism toward increasing aid flows to poor countries. It urges the Fund to use its authority in a dynamic way, and to help establish the financial framework necessary to achieve the Millennium Development Goals.

Drugs Are Just the Start (August 28, 2003)

UK finance minister Gordon Brown asks rich countries to demonstrate their sincere commitment to achieving the Millennium Development Goals at the summits of the WTO, the IMF and the World Bank. Brown calls for a phasing out of agricultural protectionism, and announces British plans to double development assistance. (Guardian)

Latin America’s Poverty Indices Stagnate (August 25, 2003)

The Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean (ECLAC) found that 43 percent of the Latin American population lives in poverty. ECLAC further estimates that, due mainly to the lack of growth in per capita GDP, living conditions will not significantly change in most countries in 2003.

The Tanzanian Poverty Puzzle: Arusha or Washington? (August 21, 2003)

Tanzania is caught between the conflicting priorities of the World Bank Poverty Reduction Strategy Paper and the home-grown National Poverty Eradication Strategy. Although the plans should complement each other to eliminate poverty, funding addresses mainly the less ambitious PRSP targets. (Panos)

A Path to Helping the Poor, and His Investors (August 10, 2003)

UN Secretary General Kofi Annan has announced the possibility to include the private sector in the fight against world poverty, further encouraging microfinancing initiatives. This New York Times article highlights the risks of private sector involvement, as microfinancing ventures primarily seek profits rather than poverty reduction.

Brain Drain Strangling Economic Development (July 14, 2003)

Professionals of poor countries cripple their nations’ socio-economic development when they leave for rich countries, often only to find work doing menial jobs. (Herald)

The Lost Decade (July 9, 2003)

According to the 2003 Human Development Report, overall human development fell in 21 countries during the 1990s. By contrast, only four countries suffered falling human development in the 1980s. Neo-liberal policies and the spread of AIDS caused increasing disparity in wealth and living standards. (Guardian)

The Spoils of the War on Poverty (July 2, 2003)

The G-8 and inter-governmental financial organizations use the rhetoric “fighting poverty” to appear to be helping the world’s poor. Realistically, their liberalizing economic policies and one-size-fits-all development plans create greater global inequality. (Guardian)

Brazil Pays Its Poor to Send Kids to School (July 1, 2003)

Poor Brazilian children often spend their day trying to earn enough money to eat, rather than attending school. A government program offers families a stipend for their child’s school attendance. (Washington Post)

Is 'Wi-Fi' Good for Developing Nations? (July 1, 2003)

Closing the digital divide between rich and poor nations is important, but the basics--clean water, health, food--must come first. (Yale Global)

An International Decent Work Strategy (June 4, 2003)

Global unemployment represents a serious problem in an increasingly wage-dependent world, but governments and international financial institutions have largely treated unemployment as a secondary concern. John Langmore of the International Labour Organisation discusses how governments, corporations, and communities can act to create “decent work” and boost income for millions of poor people. (Evatt Foundation)

Ranking the Rich (June 2003)

Foreign Policy teamed up with Center for Global Development to create the first annual CGD/FP Commitment to Development Index, which grades 21 rich nations on whether their aid, trade, migration, investment, peacekeeping, and environmental policies help or hurt poor nations.”

Breaking the Conflict Trap: Civil War and Development Policy (May 2003)

This World Bank report finds that ethnic tensions and ancient political feuds are rarely the primary cause of civil wars. Instead economic forces such as entrenched poverty and heavy dependence on natural resource exports are usually to blame.

US, Japan Flunk Global Poverty-Reduction Test (April 28, 2003)

A new index that evaluates the poverty reduction policies of the world’s 21 wealthiest developed countries concludes that smaller donor countries pursue more successful policies than the G7 countries. (OneWorld)

How These People Are Doing More for the Third World Than Western Governments (April 20, 2003)

World Bank reports demonstrate that relatively poor migrant workers in rich countries provide more financial flows to developing countries than the combined total of government aid, private bank lending, and IMF/World Bank assistance. In many smaller developing countries, remittances are playing a significant developmental role. (Observer)

World Bank, IMF Say Third World Development Lags (April 14, 2003)

Senior officials of the World Bank and IMF criticize rich countries for failing to live up to their pledge to support the UN Millennium Development Goals. The officials particularly targeted these countries’ refusal to reduce trade barriers and their failure to grant additional aid to help poor countries. (Los Angeles Times)

Poor Countries Overlooked at World Bank, Say NGOs (April 10, 2003)

The Iraq crisis will likely overshadow poverty, AIDS, education, and debt relief for poor countries at the World Bank and IMF's annual spring meetings in Washington, highlighting rich countries' gross over-representation at the two institutions. A Bank report says, "bluntly speaking," poor countries will not meet UN goals to halve poverty rates by 2015. (Reuters)

War on Iraq Threatens UN Poverty Goals (April 4, 2003)

Eveline Herfkens, the UN's executive coordinator for the Millennium Development Goals, warns that the US-led war on Iraq may jeopardize UN goals to reduce poverty by 2015. Funds that could have been used to fight poverty and AIDS will be diverted to military and post-war construction projects. (Inter Press Service)

Brazil’s War on Hunger off to a Slow Start (March 30, 2003)

Brazil’s Zero Hunger program has generated more controversy than results, mired in internal debate within the new government. President Lula da Silva adopted IMF prescribed austerity measures that reduced the scope of aid provisions to hungry families, provoking widespread resentment. (New York Times)

Poverty Pushes Cuban Women into Sex Tourism (March 26, 2003)

Since the fall of the Soviet Union halted the flow of aid and investment to Cuba, the relentless US embargo has had an even more devastating effect on Cuba's economy. Many men choose to find work abroad, leaving women with few options to support their families outside the booming sex tourism industry. (Digital Freedom Network)

Hungry in a Wealthy Nation (March 26, 2003)

As the Bush administration spends billions of dollars to invade Iraq, 12 million children in the United States do not have enough to eat. Anuradha Mittal of the California-based Institute for Food and Development Policy argues that the US government fails to guarantee the fundamental human rights of food, shelter, and education for its own people. (Inter Press Service)

Bolivian Coca Growers Fight Eradication (March 25, 2003)

The Washington Times reports that the US-sponsored Bolivian ‘anti-narcotics’ war has devastated the livelihood of the local indigenous population and left them with no alternative means to survive. Bolivia is heavily dependent on US and IMF financial aid.

Helping Hand for Bangladesh’s Poor (March 25, 2003)

The Bangladesh Rural Advancement Committee (BRAC), a non-governmental development organization, manages 34,000 schools, provides health care and microcredit, runs an internet service provider, several agricultural factories, a plant-tissue laboratory, and more. In short, BRAC has taken over where the Bangladeshi government and the private sector have failed. (New York Times)

As Bolivian Miners Die, Boys Are Left to Toil (March 24, 2003)

In Potosí, Bolivia, boys as young as 10 risk their lives and ruin their health in the same mines that bankrolled Spanish military expansion centuries ago, but now poverty, not outright imperialism, drives child labor. (New York Times)

Activists Rage against Global 'Water Wars' (March 23, 2003)

While delegates gathered at the World Water Conference in Kyoto, activists protested in Florence against a trend by governments and corporations to treat water as a commodity, not a right, at the expense of the world’s poor. (Independent)

Trees in Haiti Fall Victim to Poverty of the People (March 22, 2003)

Once blanketing the country with rich vegetation, 90 percent of Haiti's forests are gone, damaging topsoil quality and altering weather patterns. Haiti’s government recognizes the severity of the problem, but doesn’t have the resources to enforce anti-logging laws or provide people with alternate means of livelihood. (Associated Press)

Fishing for a Future (March 19, 2003)

In the Ghanaian fishing village of Elmina, the entire community is suffering the economic consequences of the ocean’s rapidly declining fish stocks. The government of Ghana imposes strict regulations on large commercial trawlers, which are largely responsible for depleting fish stocks, but it lacks the resources to enforce those regulations. (BBC)

With Little Loans, Mexican Women Overcome (March 19, 2003)

In Mexico, two microcredit organizations have discovered that small loans to women, and only women, produce dramatic results for helping families lift themselves out of poverty. (New York Times)

The Water Crisis Is Taking A Toll Worse Than Any War (March 18, 2003)

“More people are likely to suffer and die this decade from lack of clean water than from all armed conflicts combined,” writes a managing director of the World Bank in the International Herald Tribune. He argues that the world’s failure to address the water crisis has only to do with political will and focus, not ideological conflict.

Lula's Brazil (March 10, 2003)

The neo-liberal free market policies of the previous Brazilian government together with a skyrocketing debt threaten to undermine President Luis Inacio Lula da Silva’s new set of economic and social policies aiming to decrease poverty. (Alternatives)

Facing a Financial Time Bomb and the War (March 10, 2003)

According to Reinaldo Gonzalves of the Economic Institute of the Federal University of Rio de Janeiro, the Lula government will face a major fiscal crisis if it continues to adopt traditional measures to deal with its debt problem. This Brazilian economist calls for alternative strategies to challenge the strangle hold of domestic and the international elites on the Brazilian economy. (Alternatives)

Wrong Policy Guides Poverty Alleviation Drive, Says Expert (March 6, 2003)

Noted Indonesian poverty expert Mubyarto criticizes Indonesia’s current policy that focuses on macro economic growth, but neglects the country’s rural poor. According to Mubyarto, the government should aim for an equal distribution of wealth. (Jakarta Post)

Once Secure, Argentines Now Lack Food and Hope (March 2, 2003)

This report illustrates how the recent financial crisis has hurt Argentina's public, including widespread hunger, malnutrition and a public health crisis. (New York Times)

Banned Pesticides Poisoning Millions (February 27, 2003)

The Environmental Justice Foundation discloses the wide use of pesticides in poor countries, which can potentially cause severe health hazard for poor farmers. The foundation calls for more government effort to reduce reliance on pesticides. (Independent)

World Bank Launches Initiative To Help Rural Poor With Increased Lending, Lobbying (February 20, 2003)

A new World Bank initiative aims to protect poor farmers from the negative impact of rich countries’ agricultural subsidies. The Bank says it is answering the UN’s call to pay special attention to the plight of the rural poor because “the industrial world is still not doing anything significant about it." (Associated Press)

Rural Hunger (February, 2003)

Hunger is a problem not confined to the so-called Third World. Even in the wealthiest country on earth, many mothers struggle to keep their children fed. Second Harvest paints a portrait of decaying rural communities in the US plagued by unemployment, economic stagnation, poverty, and hunger.

An Assault on Poverty Is Vital Too (February 13, 2003)

While terrorism and weapons proliferation must be dealt with, British Chancellor of the Exchequer Gordon Brown argues, “a world where some live in plenty while half the human race lives on less than two dollars a day cannot, in the long run, be either just or stable.” Brown underscores his appeal for a new international finance facility to double aid to poor countries. (Guardian)

US, Dumping of Farm Goods Hurts Poor, Says Think-Tank (February 11, 2003)

A new study by a US-based think tank criticizes the US practice of dumping agricultural products into developing countries’ markets, destroying poor farmers’ livelihood. This study puts forward various proposals to end unfair dumping of farm commodities.(Inter Press Service)

Women as the Key to a Shift in Priorities (February 11, 2003)

A potential war on Iraq and fears of economic recession must not turn attention away from the environment and poverty in the developing world, write the authors of “Linking Population, Women and Biodiversity” from the State of the World 2003. To address poverty and biodiversity loss, world leaders must address the crucial problem of gender inequality and reproductive health. (International Herald Tribune)

Liberalisation Makes Rajasthan's Drought Lethal (February 5, 2003)

The monsoon hasn’t come to northeastern India since 1998, but development workers say India’s economic liberalization, not drought alone, is responsible for the current famine. Relief organization Christian Aid has seen an increase in rural poverty and acute hunger since India began liberalizing its economy and dismantling agricultural subsidies. (Guardian)

Balancing Trade Rules, the Environment and Sustainable Development (February 1, 2003)

From the WTO’s Doha “development” trade round to public-private “partnerships” for development, members of the world business community have begun to promote themselves as purveyors of poverty alleviation. But this interview with the General Manager of the Environmental Protection Authority of Ethiopia reveals the wariness with which poor countries receive such rhetoric. (allAfrica)

Lula Launches War on Hunger - Both Causes and Effects (January 30, 2003)

Brazilian President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva’s “Zero Hunger” plan takes a multifaceted approach to addressing the causes, not just the symptoms, of hunger. The plan aims to create jobs, improve access to education, and expand land reform in addition to providing immediate hunger relief. (Inter Press Service)

Palestinians 'Sink Into Extreme Poverty' (January 29, 2003)

A report by the charity organization Christian Aid says Palestinians in the West Bank and Gaza Strip are living in extreme poverty, as Israeli soldiers bulldoze over olive and citrus groves and curfews prohibit trade between villages. The report blames the Israeli military occupation for the crisis, as well as decades of unjust treatment of Palestinians. (BBC)

Argentina, US Searching for New Policy Guidelines (January 29, 2003)

A senior Argentinean official announced that the US and Argentina will work together to rethink the “Washington Consensus” development model of free trade, deregulation, and privatization in response to the Latin American economic crises. The economist who first coined the term will work with Latin American economists to create a new development model. (Reuters)

Can Small Still be Beautiful? (January 28, 2003)

India and China are both pursuing development strategies made in the West based on growth, efficiency, and consumption of natural resources. This article warns that “the result is likely to be a highly degraded environment and serious depletion of resources, rather than the elimination of poverty.” (Christian Science Monitor)

Namibian Development Policies Failing to Assist Most Marginalized Minorities (January 27, 2003)

A Minority Rights Group International report censures Namibia for failing to consider the impact of development policies on indigenous and minority groups. The report represents one of many instances in which policy developers neglect to consult marginalized communities.

Poverty is the War of Wars We Have to Win (January 26, 2003)

Eveline Herfkens, UN Special Advisor on the Millennium Development Goals, argues that a potential US war on Iraq cannot halt the global war on poverty. Herfkens contends that EU members have taken a strong stand on aid and development, arguing that “we can do things even if it does not involve the US.” (Inter Press Service)

Brown Plan for Extra $50 Billion in War on Poverty (January 23, 2003)

British Chancellor of the Exchequer Gordon Brown proposes that rich countries double aid spending over the next fifteen years to help meet the 2015 Millennium Development Goals of cutting world poverty levels in half. Brown argues the global war on terrorism must include a war on poverty. (Guardian)

Nestlé 'Breaking Code on Baby Milk for Third World' (January 17, 2003)

Despite a twenty-year, internationally recognized campaign against promoting baby formula over breast milk in poor countries, Nestle and Danone corporations continue to provide samples of baby formula to new mothers in third world hospitals. Unsafe bottle feeding contributes to the death of thousands of infants every year. (Independent)

Report Urges New Strategy to Aid Europe's Poverty-Stricken Roma (January 16, 2003)

A United Nations Development Programme report shows that programs to lift minority Roma communities in Eastern Europe out of poverty have failed miserably. One in six Roma people in the region are “constantly starving,” and only a third of Roma children attend primary school.

Chaos and Constitution (January/February, 2003)

President Hugo Chávez of Venezuela rose to power on a pro-poor, pro-democracy platform, drafting a constitution after taking office that extends political and property rights to Venezuela’s poorest citizens. However, his failure to promote economic growth has mobilized the upper classes in a violent effort to oust him. (Mother Jones)

Viva Brazil! (January, 2003)

The rise of Brazilian President Luiz Inacio "Lula" da Silva marks the beginning of a new historical cycle of resistance to the neoliberal economic paradigm in Latin America, this article argues. All across the continent, people are rebelling against structural adjustment policies that have had disastrous social consequences. (Le Monde diplomatique)

The Bush Plan: A Global-Scale Disappointment (January 10, 2003)

This author argues that President Bush’s economic plan not only disproportionately benefits the US rich, but also reflects an unwise approach to the global economy. Instead, promoting fair trade with the developing world, and investment in poor countries’ social development, would generate wealth both in the US and around the world. (Asia Times)

Study Looks at Squatters and Land Titles in Peru (January 9, 2003)

In Peru, the largest property title reform project in the world allows squatters to obtain legal title to the space they inhabit. A Princeton University study shows that communities that have undergone title reform have higher employment and a lower rate of child labor than communities without title reform. (New York Times)

The Millennium Development Goals and Local Processes – Hitting the Target or Missing the Point? (2003)

The UN Millennium Development Goals (MDG) is a great commitment to global poverty reduction, but the initiative has also several flaws: the MDGs embody issues that the international community has failed to address successfully through the last 40 years of aid work. This document argues that the MDG represent a positive step but one that risks complete undermining unless governments and aid agencies include a bottom-up perspective in addressing the global problems. It emphasizes also the need of fairer international trade policies and debt relief. (International Institute for Environment and Development)



Human Development Report 2002: Deepening Democracy in a Fragmented World

The UN’s most widely read report states that human development, freedom, and dignity are positively linked to democratic governments and institutions. The Report finds that despite the growing number of democratic countries many democracies are at risk of faltering. (United Nations Development Programme)

The UNCTAD Least Developed Countries Report 2002 (June 18, 2002)

Argentina: Exclusion Claims Its Destined Victims (December 31, 2002)

Every day in Argentina children die of starvation and poverty related diseases, and many public schools have become little more than “public canteens.” While the government has pledged to bring food relief to the poorest, this article argues Argentina must address its prevailing economic model responsible for massive poverty and inequality. (Latin American Information Agency)

Uprooted by Poverty (December 18, 2002)

The large numbers of “economic refugees” and migrant workers who flee crippling and degrading poverty are symptomatic of worsening global inequality. This article argues that rich nations, rather than building fortresses to keep migrants out, should address the root systemic causes of inequality and poverty. (ATTAC)

Reproductive Health Key to Eradication of Poverty (December 17, 2002)

Speakers at the UN-sponsored Fifth Asian and Pacific Population Conference in Bangkok argued that lack of access to reproductive health services and information perpetuates poverty and gender inequality in Asia. The focus on reproductive health and poverty comes in response to US efforts to undermine global commitments to family planning. (Bangkok Post)

Stop Passing the Buck to Business (December 15, 2002)

Despite broad consensus on the urgent need for sustainable development, the current UK government seems to shrink from the idea of corporate regulation more than any previous administration. However, without regulation, corporations have little incentive not to externalize costs onto the environment. (Observer)

Slow Growth Seen Hurting Poverty Fight (December 12, 2002)

The World Bank warns in its economic forecast for 2003 that a decline in foreign direct investment due to slow worldwide growth will hinder efforts to fight global poverty. Additionally, the Bank argues that a drawn out war in Iraq would exacerbate the situation even further, creating a potential world recession. (Boston Globe)

Argentina's New Social Protagonists (December, 2002)

In Argentina, homeless people are organizing a new, powerful social network to confront poverty and unemployment. The “piquetero” movement (directly translated as “picketers”) fights for social justice by setting up entire neighborhoods with gardens and community soup kitchens, and protesting with roadblocks and bonfires. (World Press Review/Clarin)

Growing Poverty Is Shrinking Mexico's Rain Forest (December 8, 2002)

In Mexico’s southeastern Chiapas State, some people’s only means to avoid starvation involves cutting down patches of rainforest to plant food. Ecologists want to preserve the Chiapas forest, but for the desperately poor people who live there, “the issue is turning from saving the trees to saving the people.” (New York Times)

Kazakhstan: Oil Money Threatens to Make Killing Fields (December 4, 2002)

The government of Kazakhstan is developing what will be the second largest oil field in the world, despite growing opposition from local people. To the Kazakh government, the prospect of immense oil profits outweighs the project’s enormous human and environmental risks. (The Guardian)

A Program Intended to Offer Health Insurance to the Poor (December 4, 2002)

An experimental program sponsored by the World Bank and the International Labor Organization provides health insurance to poor people in developing countries by allowing small, regional insurers to pool risk over a large area, making them less vulnerable to large epidemics. (New York Times)

Ensuring Reproductive Health and Rights Would Go a Long Way in Overcoming Poverty, New Report Says (December 3, 2002)

A United Nations Population Fund report strongly links access to contraception, family planning, and health care with poverty reduction and economic growth. The report argues that “universal access to reproductive health care, universal education, and women’s empowerment” are conditions for “creating a global society that is both stable and just.”

Poor, Disabled and Shut Out (December 3, 2002)

In a Washington Post article, World Bank President James Wolfensohn underscores the importance of integrating the needs of people with disabilities into development strategies. “Addressing disability is a significant part of reducing poverty,” he argues.

Azerbaijan Looks Beyond Oil In Efforts To Reduce Poverty (December 2, 2002)

The United Nations Development Programme is working with oil-rich Azerbaijan to lessen its dependence on oil production by developing non-oil sectors of its economy such as agriculture and tourism.

Saved, or Ruined, by 'White Gold' (November 27, 2002)

The expensive, corruption-ridden Lesotho Highlands Water Project has already caused massive environmental damage and human displacement in Lesotho, but it represents a crucial source of money and jobs for the small landlocked country. “Dams bring progress,” argues one Lesotho farmer, “and we want progress.” (Washington Post)

Nation's Countryside Struggling From Bad Policies, Lack Of Support (November 26, 2002)

Poverty in Mexico’s rural agricultural areas has soared in the last ten years to almost seventy four percent, primarily concentrated in indigenous communities. Mexico will likely concede to removing tariffs on US agricultural goods during upcoming high level trade talks, putting Mexican farmers at an even steeper disadvantage. (The News Mexico)

Ecuadorians Elect Former Coup Leader As President (November 26, 2002)

The people of Ecuador elected Lucio Edwin Gutierrez, who ran against the country’s richest banana baron, on the basis of his pro-poor, anti-corruption, indigenous people-oriented platform. Recently, though, Gutierrez has been bowing to “jittery” investors by shifting his statements back to the center. (New York Times)

Environmental Cost Of Asia's Development (November 26, 2002)

The Asian Development Bank warns that environmental degradation caused by economic growth in Asia is “pervasive, accelerating and largely unabated,” endangering resources necessary for long-term economic development. (Asia Times)

Nearly 700,000 Cambodians Short of Food (November 24, 2002)

A combination of drought followed by floods has destroyed rice crops and left hundreds of thousands of people vulnerable to a food crisis in Cambodia. The World Food Programme calls for more attention to climatic abnormalities, stating that, “To ignore the threat of climate change is to gamble with people's lives.'' (Reuters)

UN Plans Largest Ever Food Aid Programme For Palestinians (November 18, 2002)

The United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees (UNRWA) reports that “the failure of the peace process and the destruction of the Palestinian economy by Israel's closures policy have had the effect of a terrible natural disaster.” The UNRWA has increased its food aid to address worsening malnutrition among Palestinian children.

Big Development Projects Need Cultural Impact Assessments (November 18, 2002)

Klaus Toepfer, the executive director of the United Nations Environment Programme, argues that development projects should undergo strict evaluations for their impact on indigenous peoples. The UNEP finds a strong link between the loss of language and cultural diversity in indigenous communities and the loss of biodiversity.

When Societies Fail, Terrorism Steps In (November 13, 2002)

Indonesia’s foreign minister argues that the poverty, ignorance, alienation, and desperation that lead to terrorism can be “exorcized by education” and “redressed with social justice.” He argues that the fight against terrorism should be intimately linked to a movement for political, social, and economic development. (International Herald Tribune)

Security and Democracy in a Free Market (November 13, 2002)

The editor of The Nation, Bangkok, suggests that Amartya Sen’s ideas of “welfare economics” could have saved Thailand from its disastrous economic crisis in the late 1990s. Sen disagrees with the “Chicago school’s” faith in free markets and growth, and argues for social safety nets and democratic decision making.

India: Politics of Starvation (November 12, 2002)

When the Indian People’s Union for Civil Liberties discovered that indigenous people in Rajasthan had died of starvation while subsidized grain rotted in storage, the Indian government hurried to absolve itself of responsibility. However, investigators blame both India’s “anti-poor” policies and World Bank liberalization programs for the crisis. (Asia Times)

Social Panorama of Latin America, 2001-2002

If Latin America’s economy progresses as predicted, poverty will rise by 40 percent over the next year. The Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean’s annual report argues that income distribution, among the most unequal in the world, represents a crucial problem in the fight against poverty in Latin America.

Nobel Winner: Free Press Can Help Third World Development (November 7, 2002)

Former World Bank chief economist Joseph Stiglitz argues that freedom of the press “is at the heart of equitable development.” Free media could help fight poverty and promote development by giving voice to the poor and encouraging government accountability. (Reuters)

Playing Politics With World Population (November 6, 2002)

The Bush administration threatens to sabotage the UN International Conference on Population and Development action plan, which promotes basic health, education, and reproductive rights for women around the world. The Dutch minister for development cooperation argues, "Poverty reduction will not be successful . . . without women being able to make their own choices." (New York Times)

The Human Face of Climate Change (November 4, 2002)

Outside the UN Conference on Climate Change in Delhi, Indian people hardest hit by environmental degradation and natural disasters including fish workers, indigenous peoples, rickshaw pullers and street children convened to discuss climate change “from a human rights, social justice and labor perspective.” (Corpwatch)

US in Denial as Poverty Rises (November 2, 2002)

In New Haven, Connecticut, elite and privileged students walk by desperately poor and homeless people on their way to class. The city reflects a sharp contrast between the obscene wealth and growing poverty in the United States, now exacerbated by the AIDS crisis. (Guardian)

The Social Wars (November, 2002)

With poverty on the rise and inequality at “outrageous” proportions, many cities around the world have witnessed a sharp increase in robbery and violent crimes that arguably constitute a “social war.” This article argues, “The great lesson of the history of humanity is that in the long term people will always revolt against worsening inequality.” (Le Monde Diplomatique)

Chile: No Future Without a Past (November, 2002)

Chile emerged from three decades of extreme socio-cultural change, marked by a brutal dictatorship and a series of coups, to its current status as the economic “tiger” of Latin America. Now, vulnerable to fluctuations in the global economy, the people of Chile are reeling from their “sudden transformation from social actors to consumers.” (Le Monde Diplomatique)

Providing Insight Into Life's Injustices (October 31, 2002)

Buddhist teachings of compassion and non-exploitation ought to make the Thai government more serious about pro-poor development policies, reflects the assistant editor of the Bangkok Post. Instead, “the story of Thailand's economic growth is one of ruthless exploitation of rural people's resources to feed the urban rich.”

The World’s Other Food Crisis: Central America (October 30, 2002)

The World Food Programme hopes to dispel the misperception in the international community that hunger in Central America is not as severe as in Africa or Asia. In fact, thousands of children are dying from malnutrition in Guatemala, Honduras, and El Salvador, where a food crisis is in its second year. (Christian Science Monitor)

APEC: A Fruitless Exercise, Again (October 30, 2002)

Developing countries at the Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) annual summit accuse US President Bush of “hijacking” the trade negotiations to promote his war bid in Iraq. Philippine President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo argues that shifting the focus from development to “security” fosters terrorism “by promoting hunger, disease and ignorance.” (Asia Times)

Lula Promises Poverty Relief and Stability (October 29, 2002)

In his first speech as president of Brazil, Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva vowed to address poverty as the most important issue facing the country, claiming, "If every citizen is able to eat three times a day, I will have fulfilled my life's mission." (Guardian)

Annan Says Economic Growth Alone Will Not Resolve World's Ills, Urges Broader Efforts (October 28, 2002)

In a speech delivered at the Dubai Strategy Forum in the United Arab Emirates, UN Secretary General Kofi Annan pressed for increased attention to balanced social development in addition to economic growth. (United Nations)

Lack of Funds Forces World Food Programme to Cut Assistance to Hungry North Koreans (October 28, 2002)

A decrease in donations to the UN World Food Programme (WFP) will force the Program to cut its cereal distributions to three million people in North Korea. The director of the WFP warns that “such across-the-board cutbacks would cause acute suffering on a massive scale.”

A Richer World Keeps Failing to End Hunger, Says UN (October 28, 2002)

Rich nations produce enough food to feed the entire world, but global famine has reached an unprecedented scale. Special Rapporteur of the UN Commission on Human Rights Jean Siegler argues that wealthy countries, by failing to alleviate hunger, violate the international human right to food for millions of people. (Inter Press Service)

Forget Pretence, Poverty's Just Over the Fence (October 26, 2002)

The bombings in Bali should prompt Australia to care more about Indonesia’s failing economy and widespread poverty. This article discusses Indonesia’s troubled path to development and democracy, from Suharto to the Asian crisis and failed IMF adjustment policies. (Sydney Morning Herald)

Brazil on Threshold of New Era With Lula Victory (October 24, 2002)

Luis Inacio da Silva, or “Lula,” won the Brazilian election partly as a result of the “resounding collapse” of his predecessor’s neoliberal economic policies. Now, Lula has the chance to redirect Brazil’s economic strategies so that “the poor, the marginalized, the workers become the driving force in the rebuilding of the nation.” (OneWorld)

Brazil on Threshold of New Era With Lula Victory (October 24, 2002)

Luis Inacio da Silva, or “Lula,” won the Brazilian election partly as a result of the “resounding collapse” of his predecessor’s neoliberal economic policies. Now, Lula has the chance to redirect Brazil’s economic strategies so that “the poor, the marginalized, the workers become the driving force in the rebuilding of the nation.” (OneWorld)

Mountain Cultures in Grave Danger Says UN (October 24, 2002)

A UN report warns that poor people in mountainous areas are particularly vulnerable to climate change and “insensitive” approaches to economic development. (Guardian)

An IMF Critic Sets Up Project to Rethink Development Policy (October 22, 2002)

Joseph Stiglitz hopes the Initiative for Policy Dialogue will bring the debate on alternative development strategies “beyond the usual elite of government officials and business executives to include civic leaders, activists, academics and journalists.” (New York Times)

Poverty: An Analysis From the Gender Perspective (October 17, 2002)

Poverty assessment indicators used by the World Bank and other development organizations are “incapable of reflecting the gender based inequalities that govern access to and control over resources.” This article proposes rethinking women’s roles in poverty alleviation. (Catholic Institute for International Relations)

UN Secretary General’s Statement on the International Day for the Eradication of Poverty (October 17, 2002)

Secretary General Kofi Annan reminds the international community it is far behind on its pledge to meet the Millennium Development Goals by 2015. Annan encourages each country, including those in the developed world, to devise its own poverty eradication strategies based on local problems and needs. (United Nations)

Looming Water Crisis Threatens Food Supplies (October 16, 2002)

A report released on World Food Day 2002 warns that increased competition for irrigation water, if unchecked, will lead to a food crisis. The lead author of the report calls for changes in water policy, warning, “Water is not like oil. There is no substitute.” (Environment News Service)

Progress in Reducing Hunger Has Virtually Halted (October 15, 2002)

The UN Food and Agriculture Organization’s (FAO) annual report "The State of Food Insecurity in the World 2002" says that in the last ten years, “the number of undernourished people decreased by barely 2.5 million per year and in most regions the number of undernourished people may be actually growing.”

Diversification in Coffee Growing: A Viable and Sustainable Alternative to Ensure Self-Sufficiency in Food Production (October 8, 2002)

The Union of Agricultural and Cattle Ranchers in Nicaragua calls on farmers not to use all arable land for cash crops such as coffee, instead leaving some land for food production. The recent starvation of eighteen children on Nicaraguan coffee plantations prompted the union’s statement. (Catholic Institute for International Relations)

The Fallacy of Foreign Aid as Engine of Economic Development (October 4, 2002)

Economic assistance and aid to Ethiopia have done nothing to alleviate poverty, and accepting more aid only increases the country’s debt burden. Instead, this author argues for an approach that relies on domestic resources and promotes Ethiopia’s private sector as an engine of growth. (Addis Tribune)

Sustainability in the Fishing Industry (October 3, 2002)

Large foreign trawlers have seriously depleted fish stocks and left environmental damage off the coast of Pakistan, threatening the survival of small-scale Pakistani fishermen. The government of Pakistan lifted the ban on deep-sea trawlers this year due to financial pressures. (UN Integrated Regional Integration Networks)

DNA Decoding Might Aid in Malaria Fight (October 3, 2002)

Sub-Saharan Africans constitute ninety percent of the world’s malaria victims, imposing a huge social and economic burden on the continent. New genetic information about malaria could lead to advanced prevention and treatment. (Washington Post)

Middle-Class Barely Weathering the Storm (October 1, 2002)

Experts warn that the economic collapse in Argentina, which pushed many of the middle class into poverty, may result in an irreversible gap between rich and poor. (Inter Press Service)

New UN Millennium Campaign Aims to Spark Global Movement (October 1, 2002)

UN Secretary General Kofi Annan’s new campaign presses governments to act on the Millennium Development Goals. Annan’s advisor on the campaign says, "the best news for the poor in centuries would be if we actually would implement these goals." (United Nations)

Need of Absence (October 1, 2002)

A report from Volunteer Services Overseas (VSO) reveals that public education systems in Zambia, Malawi and Papua New Guinea face overwhelming obstacles, including teacher absenteeism and inaccessible schools. (Guardian)

Abandon Neo-liberalism (October 1, 2002)

‘One-size-fits-all’ neo-liberal development policies have failed to lift developing countries out of poverty. Instead, this author argues that countries should tailor mainstream economic strategies, including investment strategies and institution-building, toward their specific strengths and needs. (Jakarta Post)

Tackling Poverty in Asia (September, 2002)

This report from British Overseas NGOs for Development (BOND) argues for increased European Community aid to Asia for community development and poverty eradication, rather than geopolitical strategy. The report specifically addresses the interests of indigenous and other marginalized peoples and the effects of resource privatization.

8.6 Million Central Americans Face Hunger (September 30, 2002)

The World Food Program reports that a series of droughts alternating with floods has left millions of people in Central America vulnerable to food shortages. (Tierramérica)

Making the Case For Bangladesh (September 30, 2002)

Developing countries know that the World Bank and IMF prescribe policies that hurt poor people and the environment. Still, the finance minister of Bangladesh reluctantly implements the institutions’ reforms, suggesting that it may be “better to try to use the system to our advantage from within . . . than to fight it from outside. (Washington Post)

Economic Development in Africa: From Adjustment to Poverty Reduction - What is New? (2002)

The United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD) criticizes the World Bank and the IMF for continuing to implement structural adjustment and economic stabilization policies in Africa, despite evidence that those policies have failed.

Not Just Aid, But Stronger International Coordination Needed to Defeat Poverty (September 28, 2002)

The UN asks the World Bank and the IMF to follow up on goals set at the Conference on Financing for Development in Monterrey, calling for an international framework “to mediate a stable, effective and adequate transfer of real resources to developing countries.” (United Nations)

Global Progress in Slashing Poverty (September 26, 2002)

A report from the Institute of International Economics shows that global poverty diminished significantly in the last half of the twentieth century. However, a World Bank report warns that poverty levels remain “disturbingly high,” particularly in Africa and Latin America. (Christian Science Monitor)

Number of People Living in Poverty Increases in US (September 25, 2002)

The United States Census Bureau reports that US poverty increased “significantly” last year, and income inequality continued to grow. (New York Times)

Digging to Development? A Historical Look at Mining and Economic Development (September, 2002)

This report from Oxfam America shows that mining did not contribute significantly to industrialized countries’ development, and argues that current World Bank mining projects in developing countries cause serious social and environmental problems.

IMF Presses World to Scrap Farm Subsidies (September 19, 2002)

The IMF’s World Economic Outlook criticizes industrialized countries’ large agricultural subsidies. The report says that subsidies depress world product prices and increase input costs, hurting poor small farmers in developing countries. (Agence France-Presse)

Broken Promises? Why It Is Time for Donors to Deliver on the EFA Action Plan (September 23, 2002)

The Global Campaign for Education calls on world Development and Finance Ministers to move forward with the Education For All (EFA) action plan. Rich donor countries say they support the plan, which would provide education to all children by 2015, but they have failed to take concrete action. (Oxfam)

Poverty Responsible for Alarming School Dropouts (September 9, 2002)

Malawi launched an initiative to provide free primary education, but extreme poverty and hunger prevent many children from going to school. Instead, some children work during school hours in tobacco fields to supplement family incomes. (African Church Information Service)

WSSD Both Attacks and Abets "Global Apartheid" (September 9, 2002)

This article claims that the “chains of global apartheid:” the WTO, the IMF, the World Bank, and multinational corporations, wielded too much power at the Johannesburg Summit to permit any real progress. Global elites, under the guise of fighting poverty and protecting the environment, did more harm than good. (Foreign Policy in Focus)

Will NEPAD Work in the Presence of the Structural Adjustment Programmes? (September 9, 2002)

This article argues that New Partnership for African Development (NEPAD) economic policies must not mirror neoliberal structural adjustment programs. Instead, NEPAD policies should take advantage of domestic resources and respond to local conditions. (Independent (The Gambia))

Sustainable Development: R.I.P. (September 4, 2002)

This article from (CorpWatch) argues that the “disease” of neoliberalism and corporate partnerships have fatally marred efforts for sustainable development within the UN, inevitably producing a weak final Summit document.

A New Development Paradigm: Domestic Demand-Led Growth (September, 2002)

Foreign Policy in Focus proposes a new paradigm based on domestic demand-led development. The report argues that neo-liberal export-led development policies have slowed growth in developing countries and increased income inequality.

Death On the Doorstep of the Summit (August, 2002)

This Oxfam report argues that the International Monetary Fund and the World Bank contribute to poverty and food insecurity. It stresses the need for reform in agriculture policy with the help of parliaments, small farmers' representatives and civil society groups.

We Can Do This Good Work Together (August 28, 2002)

President Mbeki of South Africa, President Cardoso of Brazil and Prime Minister Persson of Sweden call for a change in paradigm. They argue that globalization must become a positive force for all and measures to protect the environment must go hand in hand with fighting poverty and enhancing human welfare. (International Herald Tribune)

The Great EU Sugar Scam (August, 2002)

This report by Oxfam criticizes the EU’s generous sugar subsidies as an example of the West’s double standards in trade policy. In this way, rich producers in Europe can depress world prices and receive vast surpluses, while poor farmers suffer the consequences.

Arms Spending Instead of Basic Aid (August 22, 2002)

Former assistant secretary of defense in the Reagan administration, Lawrence Korb, stresses the need for redirecting budget priorities. While defense budgets are increasing, development aid continues to shrink. Existing financial resources should instead be used to meet basic human needs. (International Herald Tribune)

Cows Are Better Off Than Half the World (August 22, 2002)

The average European cow receives more money a day in subsidies than 2.8 billion people live on during the same time. Meanwhile, the expected cost for reaching the Millennium goals, on top of current aid spending, arrives at one sixth of the West’s subsidies to its farmers. (Guardian)

The Third World Versus the West (August 21, 2002)

Former military officer, John Downey, argues that poverty and global inequality breed terrorism. Reforming the global order should be a priority for the West rather than relying on force. (Open Democracy)

World Agriculture: Towards 2015/2030 (August, 2002)

UN Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) warns that hunger will still be a big problem in 2030. Despite slower population growth and lower demand for food, environmental problems and food insecurity need urgent attention.(FAO)

Children are Victims of Privatization, Warns Charity (August 21, 2002)

A report from Save the Children raises concerns over the World Summit and the participation of the private sector. The report shows that involvement of the private sector in supplying basic services often contributes to increased poverty and inequality. (Independent)

Beyond Philanthropy (2002)

This report points out companies’ reluctance to address the health crisis in the developing world. It argues that prices could be lowered substantially with little effects on revenues, and that responsible companies should have policies on access to treatment for developing countries. (Oxfam, Save the Children, and VSO)

Despair in Once-Proud Argentina After Economic Collapse, Deep Poverty Makes Dignity a Casualty (August 6, 2002)

Since January's default and devaluation, more than half of Argentina’s population is living below the poverty line. The Washington Post reports, on the pitiful conditions Argentines are living under in what is “in statistical and human terms” the worst conditions the nation has ever faced.

Human Development Report Georgia 2001/2002

UNDP reports that in Georgia “poverty has overtaken all other concerns, even long-standing problems such as separatist conflicts.” Over half of the country’s population lives in poverty.

Globalization Cures Poverty: Study (July 9, 2002)

A debatable report by Centre for Economic Policy Research claims that “globalization is responsible for dramatically reducing the number of abjectly poor people.” Economic Policy Institute contests the argument stating that “exceptional cases of China and India” have skewed the numbers. (National Post)

Extreme Poverty, Human Rights and Roma (Winter 2002)

Human rights organizations have always seen poverty as a social rather than legal issue. The European Roma Rights Center has come to realize that poverty undermines political and legal rights, and has expanded its advocacy efforts to social and economic rights. Roma Rights devoted its winter issue to poverty among the Roma.

A Hopeful Way Out of Poverty (July 5, 2002)

Information inequality and access to technologies is one of the largest obstacles to development and prosperity in developing nations. Barriers to information produce an oppressive political climate, which furthers underdevelopment. (International Herald Tribune)

Farm Subsidies That Kill (July 5, 2002)

This article draws attention to the negative effects that Western agricultural subsidies have on poverty in the developing world. The author writes, “the US, Europe and Japan spend $350 billion each year on agricultural subsidies” creating “gluts that lower commodity prices and erode the living standard of the world's poorest people.” (New York Times)

The Alchemy of Water (July 1, 2002)

This article fervently opposes the growing trend of water privatization in poor nations. The author states, “privatization reverses the seemingly irreversible flow of water -- from life-giving to life-taking. Water, long-viewed as a common property resource available to all, and basic human right, is transformed into a commodity.” (Common Dreams)

Aid Is Fine - But Trade is What Poor Countries Need Most (June 25, 2002)

The International Chamber of Commerce, a bastion of transnational business, claims that aid and debt relief pale in comparison to the need for trade. This article argues that “without the ability to sell their products, the African countries will never achieve the economic growth they need. Trade barriers will cancel the benefits of aid programs.”

The Real Reasons For Hunger (June 23, 2002)

“Leading Indian ecological activist Vandana Shiva disagrees with Amartya Sen’s analysis of global hunger and democracy.” She argues that trade liberalization and globalization are primary causes for hunger today and, in fact, undermine the democratic process. (Guardian)

Corporate Secrecy Oils the Wheels of Poverty (June 20, 2002)

The links between poverty and the exploitation of natural resources have become widespread knowledge. Multinational oil companies working in developing countries refuse to publish what they pay, thus adding to a vicious cycle of corruption which harms the civilian population. (International Herald Tribune)

100m More Must Survive on $1 a Day (June 19, 2002)

The Guardian reports on UNCTAD 2002 "Least Developed Countries Report." Focusing on the world’s 49 least developed countries, the report “rejects the claims that globalization is good for the poor, arguing it […] is tightening rather than loosening the international poverty trap.”

Why Half the Planet Is Hungry (June 16, 2002)

The world's leading expert on the causes of famine, Nobel prize-winning economist Amartya Sen, answers crucial questions on why people starve when democracy falters. (Observer of London)

Harvard Economist Challenges O'Neill on Poverty (June 19, 2002)

US Secretary of Treasury Paul O'Neill, on return from Africa, commented that private-sector growth and elimination of corruption would reduce poverty in Africa. Economist Jeffrey Sachs sharply disagreed with this view by pointing to health and education projects as the ways out of poverty.(Reuters)

Oxfam’s Response to Walden Bello’s Article on Make Trade Fair (May 3, 2002)

In this note, Oxfam defends its position that international trade rules must be made fair against Bello’s charge that the report promotes neo-liberal, export-led growth in its focus on greater market access for developing countries. (Oxfam)

Genetic Gains Unlikely to Help World's Poor, Report Predicts (May 1, 2002)

As genetic researchers develop vaccines to treat major diseases, the World Health Organization fears people in poor countries, who constitute the majority of AIDS, malaria and tuberculosis victims, will not have access to new medical treatments. (Washington Post)

What's Wrong With the Oxfam Trade Campaign (April 26, 2002)

While renewing his respect for Oxfam, Walden Bello disagrees with the focus of its recent report that promotes developing countries' access to northern markets. Instead, Bello believes the WTO’s haphazard and unfair liberalization policies constitute the root of global trade problems. (Focus on the Global South)

Squeezing the Poor (April 22, 2002)

The governing elites of market democracies and the western mass media are perpetuating the myth that "poverty alleviation" can best be achieved by opening markets and liberalizing trade, despite the social and economic evidence that points to the contrary. (Toronto Star)

The Challenge of World Poverty (April 22, 2002)

Rich nations’ recent pledges to increase foreign aid will force the IMF and World Bank to make difficult decisions on institutional changes, the debt crisis and trade issues in order to make foreign aid effective. (Economist Global Agenda)

Rigged Rules and Double Standards (2002)

In a controversial new report, Oxfam argues that free trade’s potential to reduce poverty is not realized because the rules governing international trade have been “rigged” in favor of the rich. Oxfam suggests institutional and policy reforms that would allow the benefits of trade to be shared more equally.

UN Summit Links Poverty to Terrorism (March 22, 2002)

World leaders have recognized the inextricable link between poverty and terrorism. Pursuing peace and security requires an increase in aid to developing countries, as poor countries often constitute areas particularly susceptible to violence and conflict. (ITV)

Price of Free Trade: Famine (March 22, 2002)

The impact of trade liberalization in Central America has already led to skyrocketing interest rates and bankrupt farms. The author argues that the proposed Central American Free Trade Agreement will exacerbate these problems, deepening an already widespread famine in the region. (Los Angeles Times)

How Does Foreign Economic Aid Under the Bush Budget Compare With Historic Levels? (March 20, 2002)

This analysis shows that, despite the Millennium Challenge Account spending increases, the level of aid as a share of the US economy continues to fall below historic levels. (Center on Budget and Policy Priorities and Center for Global Development)

War on Hunger More Smoke Than Roast (March, 2002)

Though significant progress has been made in halving the number of hungry people in the world, numbers are declining at too slow a rate to meet the World Food Summit target. The basic technical tools to achieve the Summit objective are in place, says Jacques Diouf, director-general of Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations, but political will and resources have so far been lacking. (Inter Press Service)

New Oslo Center Focuses on Democratic Governance as Key to Ending Poverty (March 8, 2002)

The United Nations has recognized democratic governance as one of the most critical factors in eradicating poverty, and a new UNDP-supported center in Oslo, Norway, will promote the sharing of governance experience and knowledge among developing countries and further democratic reforms. (UNDP)

Poor-Mouthing Aid (March 4, 2002)

In a strong commentary on the effectiveness of aid for development, editorial writer Sebastian Mallaby argues that aid could accomplish more if only there were more of it. He urges the United States to join the UN and the World Bank in a push to double aid when President Bush attends the summit in Monterrey. (Washington Post)

The Voice of the Majority (March 2002)

Despite the fact that poor people constitute the majority of the world population, their voices remain unheard. Rather, the rich make decisions on behalf of the poor to avoid any opinions about development that counter the western agenda. (New Internationalist)

Wide Disparities Persist in Nepal Despite Steady Growth (February 27, 2002)

Nepal, one of the world’s poorest nations, is facing tough challenges from a growing insurgency and increasing inequality, despite poverty reduction efforts. Discrimination, lack of accountability and harvests fraught with uncertainty are among the chief challenges. (UNDP)

Less Than $1 Means Family of 6 Can Eat (February 19, 2002)

In Zambia, the advent of liberal market economics following the end of the Cold War under a new president have brought utter poverty into the homes of eight out of ten Zambians who live on less than $1 a day. Rose, an educated widow with five children never knows whether selling tomatoes will earn her enough to feed her children. (Washington Post)

North Korea: Hunger Grinds in Wheels of Evil Axis (February 14, 2002)

While most North Koreans continue to rely on food aid, even those with access to foreign currency face an economically desperate country. Will Pyongyang use economic aid to revive contact with the West or make a show of "military bravado"? (Far East Economic Review)

Focus on Women's Access to Finance (February 8, 2002)

United Nations Capital Development Fund (UNCDF): "Much attention has been given to increasing women's access to financial services, but there is a huge gap between rhetoric and reality when it comes to ensuring that women, especially those in poor communities, can get loans, set up bank accounts and carry out financial transactions." Three reports outline new strategies for success. (UNDP)

The Mirage of Progress (January 14, 2002)

National interests of developing and transition countries have become secondary to powerful foreign interest. This have resulted in economic failures and the prevention of potentially successful development strategies during the past 20 years. (American Prospect)

Calls for World Leaders to Close Global Equality Gap (January 11, 2002)

WorldWatch Institute reports on environmental pressure and growing disparities between rich and poor as threats to global stability. The report calls for global action in fighting inequality and suggests some "sustainability goals" for the Johannesburg Development Summit.

Poverty Could Breed More bin Ladens (January 9, 2002)

Globalization and economic liberalization, without special efforts concentrated on the developing world, benefit rich countries on behalf of poor. The developed world creates a system with poverty and inequality, which in turn breeds violence and crime. (Transnational Foundation for Peace and Future Research)

Governments Urged to Set Up Debt Management Offices (January 2, 2002)

UN agency for Trade and Development (UNTAD) urges developing countries to set up offices for handling debt crisis as well as decentralization of investment decisions. The directives come in times of increasing debts, despite debt relief programs. (TOMRIC News Agency)


Chronic Poverty and Older People in the Developing World (January 2002)

Poverty-reduction strategies must take into account the fact that populations are aging, particularly in developing countries. Chronic Poverty Research Centre discusses chronic poverty in old age in terms of health, economics, social exclusion and gender implications.

Investing in Health for Economic Development (January, 2002)

Faced with the challenge of epidemic disease in the world’s poorest countries, the Commission on Macroeconomics and Health found that the disease burden in the poorest countries is a barrier to economic advance, but one that could be overcome if rich countries would help poor countries obtain existing technologies. (Project Syndicate)



The Violence of Development (August 9, 2001)

Professor Rajagopal argues that the vast majority of cases resulting in “ethnic cleansing” occur because of “everyday evictions to make way for development projects,” and not because of armed conflict or genocide. It is common knowledge that the World Bank and IMF both support large development projects across the globe. (Washington Post)

Programme of Action for the Least Developed Countries for the Decade 2001-2010 (May 20, 2001)

This Programme of Action outlines the policies and measures that both the Least Developed Countries (LDCs) and development partners must adopt to help improve the human conditions of more than 600 million people in 49 LDCs before 2010. (United Nations)

Can World Economy Help Poor? (December 22, 2001)

This article contends that the solution to poverty is not stopping globalization but increasing the ability of the world's poor to exploit opportunities in trade and investment. (Business Recorder).

Britain Urges US to Expand Worldwide Antipoverty Programs (December 18, 2001)

The link between poverty and terrorism creates an interest in worldwide poverty reduction programs. Although the US wants to fight terrorism and poverty, it still seems reluctant to increase its development aid. (New York Times)

Towards Johannesburg (Number 4, 2001)

The World Summit on Sustainable Development will take place in September 2002. During this summit, world leaders should promote policies that combine environmental concerns with poverty eradication. Measures must be taken to “protect the natural base of economic and social development.”(UN Chronicle)

Marshall Plan For the Next 50 Years (December 17, 2001)

Britain's Chancellor of the Exchequer Gordon Brown argues for a “Marshall Plan” directed to long-term investments in the developing world. Gordon gives his view on what the developing world needs and how poverty reduction strategies can be improved. But where are the developing countries in this plan? (Washington Post)

Boost US Foreign Aid, Big-Time. (December 13, 2001)

The United States spends only 0.1 percent of its GNP on foreign aid. To be able to fight terrorism and work for peace and development the US must make a U-turn on aid. (Christian Science Monitor)

EU-Leaders Gathering at Laeken Must Seize Development Agenda for Peace (December, 2001)

An appeal of 45 NGOs to the EU Summit of Heads of State in Belgium in December 2001. The NGOs want the EU to give a strong signal of support for the FfD conference in Monterrey, and give core questions that should be addressed during the summit. (NGO Caucus for Financing for Development)

Women Key To Effective Development, Bank Says (December 7, 2001)

According to the World Bank, countries which promote women's rights enjoy lower poverty rates, faster economic growth and less corruption than countries that do not. "The evidence shows that education, health, productivity, credit and governance work better when women involved."

Amartya Sen and the Thousand Faces of Poverty (December 5, 2001)

Nobel Prize winner Amartya Sen criticizes the traditional way of measuring poverty, by income level. Sen argues that multifaceted problems like poverty and inequality should instead be seen in relation to individual’s potential to function in their respective societies. (Inter-American Development Bank)

An Unseen World: How the Media Portrays the Poor (November, 2001)

Western media focus on disasters and conflicts in the developing world without explaining social and political causes. They also disregard the involvement of the developed world in these disasters, resulting in ignorance on the part of the Western public. (UNESCO Courier)

Intellectual Property and the Knowledge Gap (December, 2001)

This Oxfam paper discusses the problems with intellectual property rules, which contribute to poverty and underdevelopment in developing countries. It also suggest possible campaign strategies to change the rules, so that they will serve people in need rather than big corporations.

The Well Fed Have Many Problems, The Hungry Only One (2001)

The international community must provide stronger support and co-operation to meet the goal of the World Food Summit. The results depend primarily on the people and governments of the developing countries but lack of coordination among donors and aid organizations can result in wastage of resources. (UN Chronicle)

Economic Theory, Freedom and Human Rights: The Work of Amartya Sen (November, 2001)

Nobel Prize winning economist Amartya Sen emphasizes the importance of human freedoms and human rights for development theory. This briefing paper analyzes the ways in which Sen’s research contributes to the shift from a focus on GDP and growth, to valuable human ends.(Overseas Development Institute)

Child Poverty Has Grown in Eastern Europe Since 1989 (November 30, 2001)

A report by UNICEF shows that child poverty has risen sharply since the countries left Communism and in some parts the majority of children are poor. The agency calls for a focus on child poverty in national policy debate and to develop humane and democratic societies in the region. (Independent)

Tinkering With Poverty (November 20, 2001)

The Bretton Woods system does not work for the poor, instead it enhances the power of the creditors. This article argues that the system is destined to fail and should be replaced with institutions or an “international clearing union” of the kind that Keynes envisaged. (Guardian)

Doha Spells Disaster for Development (November 18, 2001)

This article argues that more than one international economic system is possible. The author tries to promote alternatives in the interest of wider equity, security and raise living standards for everyone. (Observer)

New Thinking About How to Help the Poorest Help Themselves (November 17, 2001)

Three vice presidents of the World Bank argue the importance of equity, growth, participation, and clean governance to fight poverty. The world needs a new approach to development, where quality should be in the forefront, not growth. (International Herald Tribune)

Brown Urges New Deal for Poor (November 16, 2001)

Taking into account the Zedillo report and emphasizing the need for the West to increase finance for development, Chancellor Gordon Brown states the need for an international tax on foreign exchange transactions during his speech at the New York Federal Reserve. (Guardian)

GATS, Trade Liberalisation and Children's Right to Health (November 5 , 2001)

This Save the Children's report suggests that liberalization of trade in health services give economic interests priority over public health. Trade liberalization can result in impoverishment of families and increase health problems among children.

We're Tricking The Poorer Nations Out Of Their Money (November 4, 2001)

According to the Sunday Times, free trade does not worsen poverty. The problem lies in the way developed countries practice free trade. Trade barriers in these countries cost the developing world about $100 billion a year, twice as much as they receive in aid.

The Policy Roots of Economic Crisis and Poverty (November, 2001)

This paper presents the results of a joint World Bank and civil society review of the impact of Structural Adjustment Programs (SAPs) on poverty. The findings show how SAPs result in destruction of national productive capacity and intensification of poverty. (SAPRIN)

Rich Nations Have Been Too Insensitive to Poverty (November 1, 2001)

The New York Times criticizes the World Bank, the International Monetary Fund, and their neo-liberal policies. This article argues that these policies lead to more income inequality and that the rich world should “cough up some serious money for the poor”.

The Global Governance of Trade As If Development Really Mattered (October, 2001)

This report presents an alternative approach to economic development. It criticizes the focus on trade as a mean for development. Instead the report emphasizes the role of domestic institutional innovations and argues that a focus on poverty reduction can enhance growth. (UNDP)

Earth Matters (October 31, 2001)

The World Summit on Sustainable Development (WSSD) will take place in September, 2002. The meeting aims to review the progress on sustainable development, a concept that remains ill-defined. As preparations begin through a series of meetings, contentious issues come to the fore. (Down to Earth)

Multilateral Debt: The Unbearable Burden (October 31, 2001)

This article analyses the concept of “Multilateral Debt”. It provides background information, discusses problems with US domination within international financial institutions and gives key recommendations for the future of poverty reduction. (Foreign Policy in Focus)

Food for All – Can Hunger be Halved? (2001)

This report studies the obstacles preventing every person in the world from getting enough food. The report argues that prevailing trade agreements undermine poor countries ability to develop their agricultural sectors and reduce poverty and starvation. (Panos)

Global Public Goods: The Missing Component (October, 2001)

George Soros argues that globalization brings new opportunities for financing and provision of Global Public Goods. Financial support exists, but provision must be improved. A process which requires both international and non-governmental assistance. (Project Syndicate)

Forget the War Against Poverty (October 24, 2001)

As western countries divert their attention towards Pakistan and other allies in the war against terrorism, they neglect the war against poverty in Africa. (Guardian )

The Unremarkable Record of Liberalized Trade (October, 2001)

Policy-makers around the world promote trade liberalization and economic deregulation as means to combat poverty. Yet empirical evidence does not support this view. On the contrary, the reforms probably have a weakening effect on poverty reduction.(Economic Policy Institute)

Annan Urges Central America to Eradicate Poverty, Strengthen Democracy (October 23, 2001)

UN Secretary General Kofi Annan reports on progress in Central America. He calls for strengthening judicial systems, eradicating poverty and, wealth inequality in order to maintain peace and stability. (Associated Press)

Obasanjo Urges Support for African "Marshall Plan" (October 23, 2001)

Africa can develop with the help of richer countries but Africans should devise plans of development. The "African Marshall Plan”, an initiative by the presidents of South Africa, Nigeria and Algeria, includes ambitious aid and investment proposals. (Reuters)

Silent Terror - The Shadow War on Poverty (October 23, 2001)

This editorial from South Centre discusses how to reduce poverty. Instead of creating new goals, interdependence should lead to an increase in multilateral co-operation. The basic needs of billions of people must take priority over economic interests. (Dawn)

Aid: Using it Prudently (October 23, 2001)

Pakistan illustrates how aid distribution finances security instead of improving economic fundamentals. Rather than once again pump money into Pakistan, past debts could be converted into development assistance. (Dawn)

With Us or Against Us (October 23, 2001)

The World Trade Organization’s trade strategy reduces the ability of poor countries to make their own decisions. They must have the right to choose their own path to development. The rules of the game must therefore be with them, not against them. (Christian Aid)

'New Development Agenda' in Doha? (October 15, 2001)

The forthcoming WTO meeting can result in a “new development agenda” instead of a “new trade round”. However, a new title is not enough, “there has to be a change in substance”. (Inter Press Service)

Ectractive Sectors (October 10, 2001)

This Oxfam report contests conventional economic wisdom. Oil and minerals do not necessarily lead to prosperity. These results should therefore encourage the World Bank “to re-think their approach to oil extraction and mining as poverty reduction tools."(Oxfam)

Clean Text for WTO Ministerial; Dirty Slap in Face of Africans (October 9, 2001)

The WTO has nearly ignored all demands by the Zanzibar declaration. The author argues that the WTO draft is a trap for developing countries to give up their primary issues for illusory short term gains.(Attac)

Let's Use This Great Coalition to Fight World Poverty (October 6, 2001)

The terrorist attacks of September 11 has created unprecedented world unity. This offers an opportunity for international solidarity and action for peace and security. It also should promote a new agenda to overcome world poverty and debt. (Independent/UK )

Wake Up to the Perilous Cost of the Wealth Gap (October 3, 2001)

Development aid is losing public support and is slipping down on the political agenda. At the same time, the West is preparing for a war on terrorism. But this war will not combat the root causes of terrorism such as poverty and a widening gap between rich and poor nations. (International Herald Tribune)

Death of 27,000 Children Barely Noticed (October 1, 2001)

The US has so far dedicated $40 billion in the campaign to avenge the deaths of those who died in the WTC attacks. That same day, 27’000 children under the age of 5 died from preventable causes. Regrettably, as the US is preparing for war, the UN Special Session on Children has been postponed. (Toronto Star)

Trade, Gender and Poverty (October 2001)

Commissioned by UNDP, this paper analyzes the relationship between trade and gender inequality, as the discourse on development shifts to human well-being instead of income or consumption.

General Assembly Opens High-Level Dialogue on Cooperation for Development (September 20, 2001)

The General Assembly stresses the importance of including developing countries, as well as “academia, civil society and the private sector,” for more open and deliberative economic cooperation. (UN News)

Economic Development in Africa: Performances, Prospects and Policy Issues (September 11, 2001)

This UNCTAD report sketches the main policy measures required to reverse the economic situation in Africa. The report suggests, among other things, a doubling of aid flows and a critical review of current poverty reduction policies.

Road Map Towards the Implementation of UN’s Millennium Declaration (September 6, 2001)

UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan urges countries to take concrete steps, and gives recommendations in order to reach the goals set at the 2000 Millennium Summit on reducing poverty. (UN)

Simputer Could Revolutionize IT in Developing Nations (March 13, 2001)

In an attempt to reduce the “digital divide”, Simputer, or Simple Inexpensive Multilingual People’s Computer, will have the potential to help even non-literate users surf the Net and e-mail. (Bytesforall)

Road Map Towards the Implementation of UN’s Millennium Declaration (September 6, 2001)

UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan urges countries to take concrete steps, and gives recommendations in order to reach the goals set at the 2000 Millennium Summit on reducing poverty. (UN)

Australia's Virtual Colombia Plan (August 8, 2001)

Australia and the World Bank announced the launching of a joint distance education initiative. While adopting advanced technology remains crucial to development process, it is problematic to neglect the issue of meeting the basic needs. (Conference News)

Lost and Found (August 7, 2001)

Around 100,000 babies are abandoned every year in China. Though more than half of them were adopted last year, many babies, especially ones with disability, are likely to be left at orphanage for their life-time. (Guardian)

Globalization Boosts Economic Growth. Or Not (August 7, 2001)

While the article first criticizes the mainstream approach to development, being too economic-centered rather than people-centered, it praises the conventional view of free market system as a key to boost economic growth, therefore, eradicating poverty. (Guardian)

The Future's Bright, the Future's Grey (August 2, 2001)

Scientists predict world population to fall at last, marking the beginning of a period of human history with more elderly than young, and possibly leaving the elderly to hold sway over the young. (Guardian)

Opposition Grows to U.S.-Funded Fumigation in Colombia (July 31, 2001)

US-funded fumigation of illicit coca and poppy crops in Columbia is killing livestock, polluting the environment, and harming rural communities and the local food supply. Columbian politicians are calling on the US to instead focus on agrarian reform and development in order to eradicate absolute poverty that poor farmers live in. (Inter Press Service)

Sandbag Homes Seen as Ideal in Disaster Relief (July 25, 2001)

The Emergency Response Division at the UN Development Program is testing a building method using sandbags and barbed wire that the division says could revolutionize the way the UN provide emergency housing after natural disasters. (Reuters)

Rich Countries Should Help Poor Nations in Digital Era (July 25, 2001)

As a new leader of ICT (Information and Communications Technology), Malaysian Deputy Prime Minister calls for solidarity among developing nations to work together to help the poor and the disadvantaged in this digital and knowledge-centric era. (Irna)

Epidemic Fears in Flood-Hit Indian State (July 23, 2001)

Swollen rivers left more than 500,000 people marooned in the flood-hit Indian state of Orissa. Drinking wells in thousands of villages have been contaminated and doctors fear an epidemic of water-born diseases. (Independent)

UN Agency Backs GM Food Crops (July 11, 2001)

A conclusion of the UNDP Human Development Report 2001 that developing countries will benefit from genetically modified foods angered grassroots groups and environmentalists. The groups criticized the report as “simplistic, pandering to the GM industry and failing to take into account the views of the poor.” (Guardian)

Poverty Maintains Grip on Russia's 'New Poor' (July 11, 2001)

There is no doubt that Russia has been suffering widespread poverty after the fall of the Soviet Union. However, many articles do not mention the IMF’s severe structural adjustment policies that critically left Russia so vulnerable in this highly globalized capitalist economy. (Agence France-Presse)

UN's Human Development Report Spotlights Technology's Role in Cutting Poverty (July 10, 2001)

UNDP’s annual Human Development Report claims that information and communications technology, as well as biotechnology, can potentially contribute to the alleviation of poverty. (UN News Service)

UN Says Green Groups Blocking Help for Poor Nations (July 9, 2001)

Sakiko Fukuda-Parr, the lead author of a UNDP report, claims that Western green parties are hindering the alleviation of hunger in the poorest countries by suppressing the development of genetically modified foods. The Greens contend that GM crops will contaminate traditional crops and change the face of the countryside by killing off other flora and fauna. (Reuters)

British Aid Policy 'Driving Indians to Lives of Hardship' (July 7, 2001)

Indian farmers are forced to leave their land and work in miserable conditions in the urban sector due to the British government’s “efforts” to eliminate poverty. (Independent)

Poverty Linked to Environmental Issue (June 21, 2001)

Omar Asghar Khan, Pakistan’s federal minister for environment, local government and rural development, announced that the country is undergoing severe environmental degradation, which is causing $2bn annual loss. Khan warns that environmental issue is no longer a western-sponsored agenda and that environmental mismanagement contribute to Pakistan’s fragile economy in many ways. (Dawn)

African Governments Urged to Give Universities Money for Research (June 13, 2001)

African governments shifted their development policy approach to encourage universities to play the role of “vehicles for socio-economic development.” The implementation of this policy is likely to enable youth and future leaders to find better solutions to the socio-economic challenges the continent faces. (All Africa)

Calls for Poverty Reduction: Is Anybody Listening? (May 27, 2001)

The Bangladeshi Ambassador to the UN asks whether developed countries will once again fail to follow through on their promises given at the UN conference on the Least Developed Countries. (Daily Star)

UN Conference in 10-year Rescue Plan for World's Poorest (May 20, 2001)

Will the new action plan adopted at the UN Conference on the LDCs decrease poverty? Since the last conference in 1990, the poorest countries have become even poorer. (Agence France Presse)

World's Poorest under UN Spotlight (May 16, 2001)

In real per capita terms, aid to the least developed countries has dropped by 45% since 1990 and is now back to the levels of the early 1970s. (BBC)

Action Not Promises; That Is What Developing Countries Need (May 16, 2001)

This Guardian article states that since the last UN Conference on the LDCs in 1990, virtually every commitment has been broken. By every measure, the poorest countries are worse off now than ten years ago.

Trading in Illusions (March, 2001)

Without 'downsizing' the importance of the "globalization above all" viewpoint, Dani Rodrik argues that protectionism, state control and locality are as much a part of the development package as the 'biblical' passages employed by strict 'integrationist' neo-liberal orthodoxy. (Foreign Policy)

Fox, Inc. Takes Over Mexico (March, 2001)

Fox promises development to propel a 'new' Mexican dream. It remains to be seen whether the 'neo-liberal logo' on his boots will blur the radical distribution of wealth 'his people' need. (Multinational Monitor)

Richest Nations Rank High in Child Poverty League (February 23, 2001)

This study indicates that some of the richest nations in the world, including the United Kingdom, Italy, and the United States, also have very high child poverty rates. (The Independent).

The Foundations of Economic Development? (February, 2001)

Robert Samuelson asks whether any developmental perspective could override the eternal cultural question. His answer, not only levitates culture from the ashes of objectivity, but also equates it to the pivotal sphere of local development. (Foreign Affairs)

Latin America: Globalization doesn't correct inequalities (January 18, 2001)

Gustavo Gonzalez discusses the International Labor Organization's finding that economic liberalization and globalization have not delivered benefits promised for developing nations. (Third World Network).

Millions Suffer from Hunger Despite Massive Relief Efforts (January 9, 2001)

Although conflict, civil strife, and natural disasters are contributory factors, poverty remains the main cause of under-nourishment among the world’s 830 million people, a UN report indicates. (Earth Times)

Much Ado… (2001)

In this introduction to the Social Watch booklet, Roberto Bissio argues that poverty eradication must be connected to a state’s ability to provide education and health services to its citizens.

The UNDP Human Development Report 2001: Making New Technologies Work For Human Development (2001)




The United Nations Millennium Declaration (September 2000)

The General Assembly adopted this resolution in 2000 as a result of the Millennium Summit. It sets out the Millennium Development Goals under such headings as “Development and Poverty Eradication” and “Strengthening the United Nations.”

World Bank Criticizes Itself Over Chinese Project Near Tibet (June 27, 2000)

The World Bank finally realizes that it cannot ignore the political and social consequences of its projects. The unpublished World Bank report, provided to the New York Times by sources hostile to the project, reveals that the bank violated its rules and bent "to the wishes of a major customer".

UN Special Session Seeks Resources to Fight Poverty (June 23, 2000)

The Social Summit in Geneva is expected to be another “battle ground” for the rich and the poor nations. Records show that aid from the OECD countries is declining. Also, the US expressed strong reservations in the creation of a World Solidarity Fund to eradicate poverty and promote social development (Inter Press Service)

Growth is Good for the Poor (March, 2000)

Despite criticisms of globalization leading to global income inequality, a research conducted by David Dollar and Aart Kraay from the World Bank’s Research Group concludes that growth directly benefits the poor as much as the rich.

The UNDP Human Development Report 2000 online

Can World Economy Help the Poor? (December 22, 2000)

A Business Recordercommentary argues that the solution to poverty is not stopping globalization but how to increase the ability of the world's poor to exploit opportunities in trade and investment.

Wider Gaps Between Haves and Have-Nots By Year 2015, Says US Intelligence (December 18, 2000)

Global Trends 2015 report predicts that poor regions, countries, and groups will face “deepening economic stagnation, political instability, and cultural alienation, which would result in political, ethnic, ideological, and religious extremism”. (Associated Press)

Poorest Countries Left Behind by Trade Boom (December 6, 2000)

The World Bank indicates that despite the expansion in global trade, barriers against exports of developing countries are causing poorer nations to lag further behind industrialized countries. (Inter Press Service)

UN Seeks Support for Urgent Action on Major Development Issues Confronting International Community (December 4, 2000)

In an address to a Washington DC Group, the UN Deputy Secretary General looks at how globalization, conflict, AIDS and environmental degradation are a challenge to development. (UN Press Release)

Developing Countries and the New Financial Architecture (November 30, 2000)

This report evaluates the international financial system from the perspective of developing countries. It discusses measures for prevention of international financial crises and makes proposals for improving the financial architecture. (Institute for Development Studies)

What It Will Take to Reduce Poverty (November 23, 2000)

This article proposes strategies for poverty reduction, including economic stability and "pro-poor" growth, basic social services, and open access to trade and technology. (OECD Observer).

Rural Poverty on the Rise (November 28, 2000)

A report released by the International Fund for Agricultural Development indicates that despite positive macroeconomic trends reported in Latin America, rural poverty has risen between 10 and 20 percent . (Inter Press)

Sugar Multinationals Blamed for Blocking Help to Poorest Nations (November 27, 2000)

The European Union plans to reduce barriers to imports from the poorest developing countries, but big European sugar companies want to stop competition from cheaper imports. (UK Guardian)

What It Will Take to Reduce Poverty (November 23, 2000)

This article examines how “stronger voices” and choices for the poor; economic stability and growth that favors the poor; basic social services for all; open access to trade and technology among others, can help reduce extreme poverty. (OECD Observer)

China Says Absolute Poverty is Eliminated, But Millions Are Still Grindingly Poor(November 17, 2000)

Although the Chinese government spent about 3 billion dollars on poverty alleviation in 1999 it still has a long way to eliminate poverty within its territory due to lack of a cohesive central government program aimed at alleviating urban poverty.( Agence France Presse )

Put Poor Nations Online to Crack Poverty, Pleads World Bank Chief (November 11, 2000)

Is the power of information technology enough to help the world's poor to develop? (Sydney Morning Herald)

World Bank Says Structural Adjustments Hurt Poor (November 9, 2000)

This article discusses a paper by William Easterly finding that structural adjustment lending by the World Bank and IMF hurt the poor during recessions. (Inter-Press Service).

Tax Competition and Tax Havens (November 7, 2000)

This paper presented by OXFAM at UN Financing for Development NGO Hearings, examines how tax havens impede the development efforts of the world’s poor countries. It explains that tax havens have contributed to annual revenue losses which are equivalent to annual aid flows to developing countries.

Thinking About Development in New Ways (October 29, 2000)

This article from the Earth Timesexplains how an enabling institutional framework can promote development.

World Bank to Stop Pushing Poor to Pay for Health Care, School (October 25, 2000)

The bank, under pressure from the US government and anti-poverty groups, has indicated that it is making its policies more “sensitive to the poor.” (

No Gains in Fight Against Hunger (October 16, 2000)

Extra efforts are needed to ensure that the goal of reducing the number of undernourished people to 400 million by 2030 (the original goal being 2015) is met, as currently some 826 million people still do not get enough to eat. (UN News)

Two Thirds of UNs Designated LDC Lost Ground to Others in the 1990s (October 12, 2000)

A great number of LDCs are caught in a downward spiral in which economic regression, social stress and violent conflict mutually reinforce each other. Improvements are therefore needed in international development cooperation or these countries remain Pockets of Poverty. (UNCTAD Report)

Lunch for All Schoolchildren is a Big Thing We Can Do (October 3, 2000)

School lunches are an important part of a development policy, says George McGovern in the International Herald Tribune. And that’s why the World Food Program should devote much more energy to it.

New IMF Vision to Focus on Poverty Reduction, Globalization (October, 2000)

Can the IMF enhance real ownership of programs and concentrate more on crisis prevention while still maintaining its conditionality on lending? (Business Recorder).

Stepping into the Literacy Divide (September 29, 2000)

Do not overstate the urgency of the ‘digital divide’, says Arthur Goldstuck in the Daily Mail & Guardian. Internet access is meaningless to people who cannot read and have never even made a phonecall.

UN Points to Agriculture as Escape from ‘Poverty Trap’ (September 28, 2000)

At the UN’s release of the second part of the World Economic and Social Survey, it was noted that the primary sector is often overlooked in development debates, even though it encompasses 70-95% of the workforce in poor nations. (UN Press Release)

Globalization & Governance (September 27, 2000)

Globalization, says Jorge Braga de Macedo, president of the OECD Development Center, can be beneficial for everyone, if good governance is practiced. Only democracy and accountability can ensure a more equitable distribution of the gains of economic growth. (Economic Times)

Debt Relief Only Part of the Answer (September 26, 2000)

Debt relief might be a welcome gesture, but not much more, argues Richard Segal, as it concerns dues with no hope of ever being repaid. There are other, more important problems that keep the Third World down, such as low commodity prices or uneven trade liberalization. (

IMF is Peddling Misery to the Poor (September 24, 2000)

Ever wonder what kind of policy the IMF would prescribe to the US, a country setting record after record in its economic performance? (Dawn).

New Tack in Global Poverty War (September 22, 2000)

The development debate has expanded in recent times to look beyond economic growth as a panacea. Instead, it is starting to include questions of governance – how can poverty be effectively fought without any kind of legitimate authority? (Los Angeles Times)

Helping the Poorest to Get Poorer (September 21, 2000)

George Monbiot contends the IMF and the World Bank are responsible for keeping poor countries shackled in debt and despair and should be dismantled. (The Guardian).

Halving World's Poor is Realistic Goal (September 21, 2000)

The goals agreed to at the Millennium Summit are not empty rhetoric, but substantive and achievable aims, argues Mark Malloch Brown, administrator of UNDP. They should be embraced pragmatically and not dismissed as idealistic fantasies. (International Herald Tribune)

Persistent Poverty (September 20, 2000)

Why do countries profit so unevenly from globalization? Even within growth regions development remains a bumpy process. Why is that? Culture, says Robert Samuelson. (Washington Post)

Amid Healthy Signs, Large Imbalances Remain in Global Economy (September 19, 2000)

The UNCTAD’s annual Trade and Development Report shows an uneven performance of the world economy, with the US and Asia profiting the most. Future growth prospects for developing countries remain under threat. Includes links to UNCTAD resources. (UN Newservice)

Collective Efforts can Resolve Underdevelopment (September 18, 2000)

What can the Least Developed Countries do to get ahead on the road to development? A speech given by UN Secretary General Kofi Annan to the Tenth Annual Ministerial Meeting of the LLDCs. (UN Press Release)

FAO’s Annual Report Draws Lessons from the Past 50 Years (September 15, 2000)

While worldwide food insecurity has decreased there are still 800 million people without access to adequate nutrition, says the UN’s Food and Agriculture Organization. It further highlights that man-made emergencies (in contrast to natural disasters) are increasingly to blame for famine situations. (FAO Press Release)

Plea to Allow Debt Repayments through Government Expenditures (September 15, 2000)

Evaluating the World Bank’s new World Development Report 2000/01, Pakistan’s Finance Minister Shaukat Aziz proposed that domestic anti-poverty measures should be counted as repayment of debt. (Business Recorder)

The Link between Trade and Development (September 12, 2000)

EU Commissioner Pascal Lamy outlines the European Union’s policy on trade and development. He also defends the Union’s own questionable record on market liberalization when it comes to imports from developing nations.

Foreign Ministers Voice Support for UNDP (September 12, 2000)

After deserting the UNDP in the mid-nineties, effectively cutting its core budget by 40%, many developed countries now praise the reforms undertaken at the development body. Some pledge to increase their future donations. (Earth Times News Service)

Allow More Tigers out of their Cages (September 11, 2000)

The Asian ‘Tiger states’ are often touted as models of successful economic development. But, with today’s hard-line free-trade agenda, can other poor countries still follow their examples? (Guardian)

Millennium Summit Promises to Highlight Development and Poverty Issues (September 1, 2000)

The Millennium Summit will put development issues “back on the front burner”, UN Deputy Secretary General Louise Fréchette said. She stressed the need for a holistic approach that could only be successfully set up through the UN. (Earth Times News Service)

Ministerial Conference on Environment and Development in Asia and the Pacific 2000 (August 31 – September 5, 2000)

This conference is organized by UNESCAPand held in Kitakyushu City, Japan. It will review the progress of a sustainable development program which was adopted at the last conference in 1995.

For Latin America, Globalization Has Not Been Paying Off (August 31, 2000)

Globalization and liberalization have made Latin American and Carribean economies more vulnerable without producing many benefits, a UNECLAC director suggests. Development policy was far too often export-oriented, she concludes. (International Herald Tribune)

Institutional Development Should Supersede the Conventional Project Approach! (August 24, 2000)

Development policy is slowly shifting its focus from individual programs for poverty alleviation to the creation of domestic structures to this end. Institutional reform – not to be confused with structural adjustment – is the key to a sustainable road out of mass poverty, say Gudrun Kochendörfer-Lucius and Klemens van de Sand. (Earth Times News Service)

Many Nations Can't Nurture High-Tech Businesses, Study Says (August 22, 2000)

Many countries – even world leaders like Russia and China – are missing out on high-tech development because of missing infrastructure, ‘brain drain’ and legal insecurity, Associated Pressreports.

UNDP Recommends More Investments in Agriculture, Rural Roads (August 22, 2000)

The greatest problem for developing nations might be poverty – but what policies can be adequately considered to alleviate it? The UNDP has a few suggestions for this conundrum. (AllAfrica)

A UN Millennium Project: Eliminating Global Poverty (August 22, 2000)

Dharam Ghai, a former high-ranking UN official, calls for a bold initiative to eradicate global poverty by 2020. It should be discussed at the upcoming Millenium Assembly and coordinated through the UN framework. (Earth Times News Service)

Social Development Summit Goals Tough But Achievable (August 16, 2000)

The Philippine government considers the Social Summit’s goal of halving the incidence of poverty by 2015 achievable if the developing countries are committed to it. To this end, cooperation with civil society will be strengthened. (BusinessWorld)

Poor Countries Have to Build the Fundamentals for Growth (August 11, 2000)

In this editorial for the International Herald Tribune, IMF President Horst Koehler outlines his personal vision for economic development. He calls for debt relief, good governance, structural adjustment and the removal of trade barriers against goods from developing countries.

Finding Fault with Govt.'s Micro-credit Scheme (August 10, 2000)

Pakistan is beginning to implement a ‘micro-credit’ scheme to alleviate poverty, but critics say that this measure cannot offset the effects of bad governance and structural inequality. (Inter Press Service)

Growth May Be Good for the Poor--But are IMF and World Bank Policies Good for Growth? (August 7, 2000)

These economists argue both that the relationship between growth and poverty reduction is tenuous and that World Bank and IMF policies have actually impeded growth.

How Did the World's Poorest Fare in the 1990s? (August 2000)

A World Bankreport concludes that overall global poverty went down during the 90's, though only slightly. Inequality and lack of economic growth are said to prevent a large-scale poverty reduction.

More Is Less: UNCTAD Shows The Way (July 27, 2000)

A doubling of today's development aid could trigger a virtuous circle of rising investment and increased consumption in underdeveloped countries in Sub-Saharan Africa, an UNCTAD study says. These countries' aid dependence could be ended within a decade.(UNCTAD Press Release)

Combating Poverty With The Participation Of The Poor (July 27, 2000)

The poor should have an active and empowered role in alleviating poverty, says the government, UN and civil society organization officials at the Expo 2000 in Hanover.(Inter Press Service)

Human Discord: Need To Build Happiness Index (July 17, 2000)

The Human Development Report ranks countries by income, health, and education. But you miss the whole picture if you leave out the "happiness" index. (Asia Intelligence Wire /The Statesman)

Eliminating Poverty the Key to Correct the 'Digital Divide' (July 12, 2000)

As access to information technology continues to grow, so does inequality. The southern states cannot be left behind in the race for knowledge. (Asahi News Service)

Misery Index of UN Panel Finds Africa is Worst Off (July 5, 2000)

The most recent issue of the Human Development Report focuses on the integration between development and human rights, showing that neither one can stand alone. In the HDR, 30 of the bottom 35 countries listed on the index are in sub-Saharan Africa, where civil conflicts continue to rage. (The New York Times)

The Development Numbers Say Economic Globalism Has Failed (July 4, 2000)

Paraphrasing the findings of the UN’s Social Summit, William Pfaff says that globalism has failed as an economic theory. The neoliberal doctrine, he claims, is only a passing fad among economic theories that has had its day. (International Herald Tribune)

WTO Protects the Rights of the Developing World (July 3, 2000)

Mike Moore, Director-General of the WTO explains how developing nations can protect their trading rights through the WTO dispute settlement system. Yet what he has evaded to address, is the lack of resources and manpower in these countries to make full use of the system. (Newslink Africa)

Veiled Protectionism: First World Conditions Used to Block Third World Aspirations (June 30, 2000)

The world's most impoverished nations want trade, not aid, as it is the only way to bring them lasting prosperity. (Calgary Herald)

Learning Network Dissolves North-South Barriers (June 22, 2000)

The Global Development Learning Network (GDLN) was officially launched by the World Bank as part of a worldwide exchange of learning activities. The use of interactive video, satellite communications and internet facilities enable an exchange of views on globalization and international economy. (World Bank Development News)

Development: Economic Growth or Democracy? (June 13, 2000)

Is the developing world poor because it is not democratic or is it undemocratic because it is impoverished? This question was posed at the International Institute for Democracy and Electoral Assistance (IDEA)'s Fifth Democracy Forum. (Inter Press Service)

Free trade helps reduce poverty, says new WTO secretariat study (June 13, 2000)

WTO report contends that trade liberalization promotes economic growth and therefore is essential to poverty reduction in developing nations.

End to Privatization of Global Water Resources Sought (June 12, 2000)

In an annual "summit" by the European Parliament's green group, the world's poorest nations teamed up with European environmental parties to call for a halt in privatization of water resources. Of main concern was the water shortage allegedly exacerbated by this privatization. (Reuters)

Poorest Countries Call for Right to Water (June 12, 2000)

Treating water as a commodity like petroleum and trading it according to market principles would lead to disastrous environmental degradation. As access to water is a basic human right, a market mentality towards its use will definitely be undesirable. (Inter Press Service)

UN Plans to Promote Net to World Poor, Rural (June 7, 2000)

It is argued that the worldwide escalation of information technology offers developing countries an opportunity to bridge the gap with developed countries.(China Daily)

Clinton Joins World Leaders in Summit to Address Growing Gap in Prosperity (June 4, 2000)

World leaders gathered in Florence last year in an attempt to “balance pure capitalism with pure socialism” and to “improve citizens' lives” by focusing collectively on issues such as global poverty and the growing gap in prosperity. (Associated Press)

Globalization Should Not Be a Scapegoat for the Existence of Poverty (June, 2000)

Human miseries are not brought about by globalization, contends Ms. Cattaui, the Secretary-General of the International Chamber of Commerce. She warns that government should not blame poverty on globalization when its causes lie elsewhere.

Growth with Equity is Good for the Poor (June, 2000)

This Oxfam paper contends that standard "pro-growth" macroeconomic policies are actually ineffective in reducing poverty and, for that reason, are ineffective in promoting growth as well.

Tax Havens: Releasing the Hidden Billions for Poverty Eradication (June 2000)

A detailed Oxfamreport highlights the human development cost of tax havens, saying that the US$50 billion lost in tax revenue each year would go a long way towards reducing world poverty.

Unsustainable Non Development (May 30, 2000)

Noam Chomsky with tales to dethrone present patterns of 'manufactured consent' in development policy. (ZMag)

NGOs, Governments Are Not Rivals, says Poverty Meet (May 30, 2000)

The Pune meeting in India asks for greater cooperation between NGOs and national governments in order to effectively eradicate rural poverty.(Inter Press Service)

Connecting Rural India to the World (May 28, 2000)

Computer technology can help to reduce poverty in India if only the concerns of money and language barriers are overcome. Spreading into the rural areas, the internet is an essential tool for understanding latest market trends and communications with the government.(New York Times)

Region Needs Deeper-Rooted Growth, Says Report (May 22, 2000)

The economic development in the Asian-Pacific region is a leading example for other developing countries to escape from poverty. The latest report issued by the UN Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (ESCAP) welcomes their recent economic recoveries, yet it also observes that further economic diversification, social safety net provision and agriculture productivity improvement are needed.(Inter Press Service)

UN's Kofi Annan Chides US for 'Shameful' Level of Aid to Poor (May 22, 2000)

Kofi Annan singles out the US for its lack of foreign aid to many of the world's poorest nations. The US contributes only one-tenth of a percent of its GNP, putting it in last place compared to all Western European countries, Canada and Japan. (Reuters)

Secretary-General, Receiving Doctorate of Laws, Gives Commencement Address at Notre Dame (May 19, 2000)

Discussing the widening gap between the developed and undeveloped world, Kofi Annan proposes trade, debt relief, and official development aid, as three areas where rich nations can assist poor ones. He also notes that the most prosperous country in the world, the US, is also one of the least generous in terms of foreign aid.

Oxfam Report Reveals Brutal Inequality of Aid (May 17, 2000)

"The aid lottery is one of the most brutal inequalities in the world," said the report’s author, Oxfam policy adviser Nicola Reindorp. (Oxfam GB News Releases)

UNDP Report 2000 Launched: Minister Stresses Holistic Approach Towards Global Poverty (May 17, 2000)

The Pakistanian minister points out that the current aids programmes are largely insufficient to alleviate poverty. In Pakistan, decentralization of poverty-reduction projects are currently under way to include more voices of the disadvantaged.(Business Recorder)

US Jews Try to Block $200m. in Aid to Iran (May 16, 2000)

The Conference of Presidents of Major American Jewish Organizations in USA is working on postponing the $200 million aid transfer to Iran on the grounds that there are 13 Jews on trial in the country.(Jerusalem Post)

EU Overhauls Aid System (May 16, 2000)

An investigation of the European Union's aid program of over 9 billion euro by Chris Patten, the new External Affairs Commissioner, has uncovered a catalogue of "shambles, scandal and incompetence." (BBC News Online)

Press Statement by the DAC Chairman, DAC High Level Meeting, 11-12 May 2000 (May 12, 2000)

High-level officials from the 23 OECD Development Assistance Committee members considered a draft proposal to untie aid to assist least developed countries in a meeting last week. The proposal to discontinue tied aid was blocked by several countries, which were not identified.(OECD News Release)

Will It Be Business As Usual at the World Bank? (May 9, 2000)

The World Bank will soon decide whether to finance a controversial oil and pipeline project in Cameroon and Chad. Human rights groups, environmentalists and corruption-monitor groups are equally concerned about the effect of the project.(Los Angeles Times)

Asian Development Bank Relief Initiative Stalls, US Wants Project Selection Improved (May 9, 2000)

Without US opposition, the Asian Development Bank would have carried out a relief program for the 900 million poor in the region more promptly. (Bangkok Post)

Reforming the IMF (April 2000)

A media briefing from Oxfamnotes that many of the proposed IMF reforms fail to address flawed policies that have led to failures in poverty reduction. They reflect a growing disenchantment with multilateralism among the major financial powers.

Denmark Announces $19 Million Contribution to the HIPC Trust Fund (April 28, 2000)

Denmark presents itself again as a strong supporter to pull the Heavily Indebted Poor Countries (HIPCs) out of debts.

New Global Consensus on Helping the Poorest of the Poor (April 18, 2000)

Poverty alleviation policies by the Bretton Woods institutions are "profoundly under-funded and consequently half-baked." In addition to reforming these institutions, Prof. Jeffrey D. Sachs suggests a four-pillar approach to escape poverty around the world. (jubilee2000)

New Global Consensus on Helping the Poorest of the Poor (April 18, 2000)

Poverty alleviation policies by the Bretton Woods institutions are "profoundly under-funded and consequently half-baked." In addition to reforming these institutions, Prof. Jeffrey D. Sachs suggests a four-pillar approach to escape poverty around the world. (Jubilee 2000)

Refreshing Candor from the UN (April 7, 2000)

This week's "Poverty Report 2000" from the United Nations Development Program directly held bad governance accountable for the persistance of poverty in many countries where various private and public aid agencies have been at work for years. (Business Recorder)

Goal of Halving Poverty by 2015 Attainable but Difficult, Progress Uneven (April 13, 2000)

According to a new World Bank report, there has been a pattern of uneven progression in poverty reduction; while the poverty rate is falling in some large countries, especially China, in many other countries, especially in Africa, the proportion of people living in extreme poverty is rising.

A Call to Action in a Global Economy (April 13, 2000)

James D. Wolfensohn, president of the World Bank Group expresses respect for civil society and emphasizes the need for strong coalitions of governments, official institutions, NGOs, along with civil society and the private sector to eradicate global poverty. (Yomiuri Shimbun)

G77 Urge UN to Play Greater Role in Overseeing Development Institutions (April 11, 2000)

At the first summit of the G77, leaders of developing countries worked on a plan to urge rich countries to forgive debts, increase aid and trade, share new technologies and shift more decision-making to the United Nations away from institutions such as the International Monetary Fund and the World Bank. (Associated Press)

Refreshing Candor from the UN ( April 7, 2000 )

This week's "Poverty Report 2000" from the United Nations Development Program directly held bad governance accountable for the persistance of poverty in many countries where various private and public aid agencies have been at work for years. (Business Recorder)

UN Says Bad Governance, Not Lack of Cash, Hurting Poverty Reduction (April 4, 2000)

A UN Development Program report calls for governments to develop national anti-poverty programs that address a wide range of related development issues, not just how to increase incomes. The report also calls for the world's wealthy countries to provide debt relief to the developing world. (Associated Press)

Globalization and the South: Some Critical Issues (April 2000)

In this UNCTAD discussion paper, Martin Khor contends that developing countries must be given more input in the international forums where global economic decisions are made.

Development - India: People Control Development Challenge in Kerala (March 29, 2000)

Community-based development groups have grown to successfully undertake a large part of the development work in this Communist-ruled Indian state. (Inter Press Service)

Developing Nations Should Not be Left Out of 'New Economy' (March 29, 2000)

Two articles in Associated Press of Pakistandiscuss the integration of developing nations in the global economy. One makes the case that economic problems are often the result of external factors, as opposed to domestic policy, while the other details an UNCTAD report advocating increased involvement in e-commerce.

New IMF Chief Sees Broad Role in Lending to Developing Economies (March 29, 2000)

New managing director of the IMF, Horst Köhler, lays out his vision for the future of the organization by suggesting that the fund expand its role as "a crucial cornerstone" of globalization. (New York Times)

Despite Economic Reforms, China's Living Standards Decline (March 24, 2000)

An article from the Agediscusses the increase in poverty among the rural Chinese population, which may be an exacerbated effect of globalization.

"A New Framework for Multilateral Development Policy" (March 20, 2000)

Speech given by Treasury Secretary Lawrence H. Summers to the Council on Foreign Relations in New York. (Office of Public Affairs)

World Bank Chief Urges Nations to Embrace IT (March 8, 2000)

James Wolfensohn warns that countries that do not embrace information technology will fall back in their development programmes, since knowledge properly transferred from developed to developing countries presents the "greatest opportunity" for people in their fight against poverty. (Kuala Lumpur Star)

Geneva Must Deliver What Copenhagen Promised (March 2000)

The International Council on Social Welfare makes three recommendations to the Geneva Social Summit for monitoring implementations of the 1995 Copenhagen Social Summit. Main Messages of UNDP Poverty Report 2000 (March 2000)
A very concise account of how national governments can combat poverty by linking poverty to national policies, focusing resources on the poor, integrating poverty programs and monitoring progress against poverty.(United Nations Development Program)

Brazil Collides with IMF over a Plan to Aid the Poor (February 21, 2000)

The IMF and the Brazilian government are at odds over a proposed plan to spend more than $22 billion to reduce poverty. Despite Brazil's jarring income gap, the IMF says the money should be used towards Brazil's foreign debts. (New York Times)

'GeekCorps' Being Assembled to Aid Developing Nations (February 2, 2000)

Are you a burned-out computer geek, looking for something meaningful in life? Join the GeekCorps and help small businesses in the developing world set up shop in the internet! (Berkshire Eagle)

Over Paid, Over Sexed, Over There (January 2000)

Can tourism really help relieve poverty in the countries where people live under $1 a day? The Developmentsquarterly gives a fresh new look at the issue.

The Myth Of 'Catch-Up Development' (January 1, 2000)

An in depth analysis and critique of the past fifty years of capitalist economic development and what lessons can be drawn from its successes and failures. (Panos)

The Effect of IMF and World Bank Programs on Poverty (2000)

William Easterly concludes that during recessions structural adjustment tends to make the poor worse off than they otherwise would be, and that structural adjustment does not correlate with economic growth.

Linking Countries' International Policies to Poverty (Chapter 4 of the UNDP Poverty Report 2000)

The UNDP discusses how the numbers of the poor have increased concurrently with spectacular growth in global trade and investment, and encourages greater debt relief and financial assistance.

Linking Poverty to National Policies (Chapter 3 of the UNDP Poverty Report 2000)

This part of the UNDP's Poverty Report discusses how poverty reduction has to be better incorporated into the overall macroeconomic policies of developing nations.

Growth, Inequality, and Poverty (Ch. 3 of the World Bank's World Development Report 2000/2001)

The World Bank takes a notably different approach to poverty reduction from the UNDP, placing economic growth and market participation at center stage.

The End of Imagination: The World Bank, the IMF and Poverty Reduction (2000)

Shalmali Guttal critiques the poverty reduction efforts of the World Bank and IMF (including their new Poverty Reduction Strategy Papers) and calls for democratic reforms. (Focus on the Global South).

Poverty and Globalization (2000)

In this lecture transcript Vandana Shiva contends that the globalization of industrial agriculture is actually driving farmers and other rural inhabitants in developing nations deeper into poverty.



UN Agency Is Bringing Timor Online (December 27, 1999)

UNDP sees establishing a national data network as a vital step to economic development.(New York Times)

The Death of Development? (November 1999)

An article from the Bank Information Center discussing the converging policy agendas of the World Bank and the WTO, and whether or not this trend bodes well for development.

Definitions of Distress: Who Are You Calling Poor? (September 1999)

Godfeied Engbersen, Professor of sociology at Erasmus University in the Netherlands, discusses the "ongoing controversy about the nature of poverty" and how the issue of poverty is a "political football". (Le Monde Diplomatique)

Helping the World's Poorest (August 13, 1999)

Jeffrey Sachs argues that rich countries must mobilise global science and technology to address the specific problems which help to keep poor countries poor.

G-8 Summit: The Cologne Debt Initiative (June 18, 1999)

This press release from 1999 states that new initiatives were endorsed in the Cologne Summit to review the HIPC Initiative of 1996 to provide faster cash flow to relieve poverty. In the meeting, President Clinton pledged "to work to find the resources so we can do our part and contribute our share toward an expanded trust fund for debt relief." (The White House, Office of the Press Secretary)

China-Western Poverty Reduction Project (June 1, 1999)

In June 1999, the World Bank approved of a $160 million project designed to benefit 1.7 million of the poorest people in China. Yet, this project is still pending in June 2000, and it is likely to face another 15-month delay. (World Bank)

Look What a Fraction of This Arms Money Could Do (February 16, 1999)

Op-ed piece printed in theWashington Postpresents the case for increasing investments in Basic Human Needs while limiting trade and investments in arms.

Least Developed Countries Increasingly Marginalized in Globalized Economy (February 13, 1999)

UNCTAD reports that the 1990's "has become the decade of increasing marginalization for the Least Developed Countries. Representing 12% of the world's population, these countries participation in world exports and imports has declined by 40% since 1980.

UNICEF's Report: State of the World’s Children 1999

Exposes that basic education in the Global South has been declining. Many other indicators of human well-being are also on the downswing world-wide.

World Hunger: Avoidable, Curable? (1998)

The authors destroy myths about the benevolence of aid, particularly food aid and grants, and their impact on poverty eradication. Following Nobel laureate Sen, they emphasize that democracy is the best defense against hunger. (FoodFirst)

If Poverty is the Question (April 14, 1997)

The late US Senator Paul Wellstone wrote in 1997 before he launched his national “poverty tour” that he intended to start a “national conversation” about the unacceptable level inequality and poverty in the United States. Paul Wellstone believed that as a country, “We can do better” for poor people. (The Nation)

Globalization and Development: A Critical Appraisal of the UN Human Development Report (December 1997)

Summary of a conference held in Bonn in October 1997, including HDR editor Richard Jolly and some friendly critics. (Development and Peace Foundation)

Declaration on International Economic Co-operation (May 1, 1990)

Declaration of 1 May 1990 issued by the United Nations reaffirming its strong commitment to a global consensus to promote urgently international economic co-operation for sustained growth of the world economy and, in particular, to the revitalization of economic growth and development of the developing countries. (United Nations)



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