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July 2009

Video: Outlook for Remittances

Dilip Ratha's picture

As mentioned in my earlier post, our Brief outlining the revised outlook for remittances has drawn a lot of interest, from market players, analysts, policy wonks, and the media. The Financial Times wrote a great editorial on this matter. Even a small decline of 7.3% in remittance flows, as we predict, can make a great deal of difference to countries facing external financing gaps. Now we know that the resilience of remittances going forward was an important factor behind the successful launching of the $750 million mega-bond from the Philippines.
 
This week, I have decided to post a video highlighting some regional trends. Let's continue this discussion. Please send in your thoughts and comments.

Dilip Ratha from World Bank on Vimeo.

Giving conservationists and nature lovers (some) reason to hope for the future

Tony Whitten's picture

It’s high time I write something which doesn’t seem to be the work of a manic-depressive. Many of my blogs have majored on the negatives, but I honestly wouldn’t be in this business if I didn’t have within me a deep-rooted hope for the future. As I have remarked before, conservationists are a wonderful band, but put a group of ebullient conservation friends together, and within half an hour the conversation has quieted down, turned grumpy, and you need to watch out in case any of them looks as though they are contemplating jumping from the office balcony or a handy cliff. We don’t celebrate the successes, or even the potential ones, enough. It’s a cliché to say that the war is being lost while battles are being won, but we should at least encourage each other with battle victory parties.

Pluralism and Diversity for An Informed Citizenry

Fumiko Nagano's picture

Many of us become more convinced in our views on any given topic by bouncing them off of our sounding boards, whose worldview often mirrors our own. Feeling validated through these interactions, we march on with our perspectives unaltered. Troublingly, if we allow ourselves to interact only with our like-minded peers, these interactions can and do lead to viewpoints that are fixed, sometimes to the dismissal of all other alternative perspectives. This is the topic of Cass Sunstein’s article, “To Become An Extremist, Hang Around With People You Agree With.”

Comment: A Public Good Approach to Media Development

Johanna Martinsson's picture

A reader's comment to the blog post The Culture of Media Development on Both Sides of the Atlantic:

Thank you Ann-Katrin.  It was a pleasure to host the meeting in London to 
discuss the media development toolkit.

I wanted to comment on your analyis that Europeans are more comfortable than 
Americans with the notion of long term subsidy of the media.  I largely 
agree, although I think the dynamics of why this is are changing.

Bouncing Babies and Safe Motherhood in Sri Lanka

Chulie De Silva's picture
Photo Credit: (c) Chulie De Silva

Reading the story today of Sri Lanka’s emergence as a success story in safer childbirth with a remarkable decline in maternal deaths, I mused about how I took for granted that childbirth would be safe when I had my children way back in the early 70’s. It was joy unlimited as I breezed through pregnancies always under the stern but very caring eye of my GP, Dr. Navaratnam. The news today that Sri Lanka should be held as an example for other South Asian countries makes me very grateful for the high quality of medical care that was available to us.

Presenting a paper at the Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists, UK, South Asia Day, Dr Hemantha Senanayake, from the University of Colombo, said the “mortality ratio of Sri Lanka has declined dramatically as a direct result of the availability of midwives and trained assistance. “In 1960, the child mortality was 340 per 100,000; however, it was lowered to 43 per 100,000 live births in 2005.”

Breathing Life into a First Generation Right

Darshana Patel's picture

The RTI truck makes a stop in Hiware Bazar, a town in Ahmednagar District.The Right to Information (RTI) truck leaves the city of Pune, India and makes it way through all the neighboring towns and villages at a slow but steady pace.   The main features of this truck are the placards hanging outside of it.  Written in the local language, Marathi; they explain what the Indian RTI Act is and what it can do for citizens.  The truck makes stops in local meeting places such as markets and town centers to educate citizens about RTI through videos and written materials. 

RTI is considered to be widely used in the state of Maharashtra where this truck operates.  On a recent trip, I understood just how prolific RTI in Maharashtra is.

Crime, security and corruption in Africa

Mohammad Amin's picture

In previous posts, I discussed the crime and security situation for firms in Latin America and the Eastern Europe and Central Asia (ECA) region. I have begun rolling data from the Enterprise Surveys for 21 countries in Africa, and the initial results suggest that crime imposes  as heavy a burden on firms in Africa as in Latin America. On average, losses due to crime and security expenses average about 2.7% of the annual sales of a firm in Africa.

Philippines offers insight into future of mobile banking and the poor

James I Davison's picture

It’s now evident that people in developing countries have access to the internet and mobile phones like never before, which (as I recently wrote about) may lead to increased economic growth, job creation and good governance. A huge piece of this broad puzzle is mobile banking, and utilizing mobile phones to bring financial services to people who wouldn't otherwise have access to banks ("unbanked").

A new study, released last month by the Consultative Group to Assist the Poor (CGAP) and GSMA, estimates that there are more than one billion people worldwide who are unbanked, yet have access to mobile phones. And by 2012, that number is expected to grow to 1.7 billion people.

Quote of the Week

Sina Odugbemi's picture

"When you fight corruption, it fights back. It will likely have greater resources than you, and it is led by those who operate outside the law and view the fight as life and death for their survival."

- Nuhu Ribadu's Testimony before the US House Financial Services Committee, May 19, 2009.

Visiting Fellow at St. Anthony’s College, University of Oxford; Visiting Fellow at the Center for Global Development; and former Executive Chairman, Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) of Nigeria.


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