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East Asia and Pacific

Education: India vs. China

In an op-ed (subscription required), Nicholas Kristof places his bet:

You see up-and-coming cities like Hyderabad or Ahmedabad, and it’s easy to believe that India will eventually surpass China. But here in rural Bihar state in northern India, there’s no economic miracle to be seen.

Gender inequality is very expensive

Gender discrimination in Asia costs the region an estimated $80 billion a year – finds a new report. India, Indonesia and Malaysia lose the most by restricting women's access to employment and education, explains Mr. Kim Hak-Su, the executive secretary of UNESCAP, in a video.

Limits to microfinance?

The microcredit movement has been built on the assumption that the poor need credit to invest in microenterprises, which will help them get out of poverty. Household survey data from Indonesia suggest otherwise, with substantial use of microcredit for consumption rather than investment purposes.

Shoes (not) optional

David Lawrence's picture

Shoes_big_2 I hadn't worn shoes in nearly a month. I'm not used to shoes anymore. This is probably the only IFC office I know of where you work barefoot. Staff and visitors alike leave their shoes at the front door before coming inside, sometimes hopping while trying to undo their laces.