“Sometimes we have to go to extremes in our effort to end poverty and that includes traveling to places where security is nearly non-existent, and risks are high”, says Shruti Vijayakumar,…

Shruti Vijayakumar |

Innovative programs can respond to gender disparities in youth employment. Photo: Dominic Chavez/ World Bank.  The disadvantages young women face in the labor market and in entrepreneurship in…

Jose Manuel Romero, Drew Gardiner, Delores McLaughlin, Ana Maria Martinez |

Although employment is usually seen as a resource for women’s empowerment, it does not automatically translate into better status and lower rates of violence for women. In fact, in some settings,…

Laila El-Zeini, Ramadan Hamed |

© Dominic Chavez/World Bank India’s state of Chhattisgarh faced a daunting challenge in the mid-2000s. About half of its public food distribution was leaked, meaning that it never reached the…

Ugo Gentilini, Harold Alderman, Ruslan Yemtsov |

While addressing gender gaps in labor force participation rates remains a key concern in several countries, it is even more critical to focus on the quality of the jobs to which women have access…

Namita Datta |

It was December 8, 2010, when I boarded a plane after a routine trip to Tunisia.  There was nothing out of the ordinary that would have provided a clue as to the dramatic upheaval to come.   The…

Heba Elgazzar |

In many countries in the Middle East and North Africa, and in fact around the world, teachers—who play a pivotal role in any effort to improve education quality—have not been officially…

Kamel Braham |

A former hotel owner in one of the region’s major cities, who wants to remain anonymous, tells a story that should have had a happy ending. Her 40-room hotel was doing well. It had built a…

Marc Schiffbauer |

After dropping for many years, there has been a recent resurgence of fertility rates in Egypt. A woman born in the 1960s gave birth to an average of 1.4 children by the time she turned 25. Then…

Jacob Goldston |

What makes smart politicians?  Jeffrey Frankel has an idea.   His recent blog examines the allure, and trap, of universal subsidies.   For one thing, they know that pulling the plug on bad…

Heba Elgazzar |