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Linking up with Enlaces (Chile)

Michael Trucano's picture

Enlaces logoWith apologies in advance to initiatives in a handful of other countries considered world leaders in this area (including Costa Rica, Namibia, Thailand, Mexico and Brazil):

Of all the programs in middle income and developing countries that have sought to introduce ICTs systematically into the education, the Chilean experience is perhaps the most lauded.  Enlaces has been the subject of much scholarly and policy attention since its inception almost two decades ago (including a publication from the World Bank back in 2004 [pdf]).

The fact that Chile and Enlaces is considered by many to be a global model of good practice presents policymakers in Chile with a(n enviable) challenge:

Where should Chile look for inspiration as it continues to evolve its programs exploring the effective use of ICTs in education?

Diaspora Latina, remesas y crisis económica

Sonia Plaza's picture

Acabo de realizar una podcast entrevista con Ximena Gutiérrez (coordinadora del sitio web del Banco Mundial en español sobre cómo la crisis financiera mundial esta impactando a la “diaspora latina”, a la demanda laboral de los trabajadores migrantes y a los flujos de remesas a América Latina.

"This Will Solve All Our Problems!"

Antonio Lambino's picture

I was recently in an informal discussion with development colleagues regarding the governance of extractive industries in a fragile state, which shall remain unnamed for various reasons.  One of them had been working in development for more than three decades and in country X for five years.  In terms of governance, he didn't think any of the usual solutions to the widespread and deeply embedded culture of rampant corruption and excessive rent-seeking would work in the country.  Things are just that bad.  He intimated that the only thing he could think of was to build the capacity of the country’s fractious civil society so that they could become credible interlocutors to government actors, and demand accountability from their elected and appointed leaders.  It was quite distressing when he said, “I don’t know what else to do.”

Online mapping tool gives view of forests in developing countries

James I Davison's picture

In July, biodiversity specialist and blogger Tony Whitten wrote a post about not abandoning old-fashioned conservation techniques as an important method of taking positive action on climate change. One of the important old-school mitigation methods, he wrote, lies in protecting the world’s forests through reforestation and avoiding further deforestation.

Accordingly, a big part of the ongoing climate change discussion includes reducing emissions through deforestation and degradation (known as REDD). And the UN’s Food and Agriculture Organization now offers a tool to help monitor forests in developing countries. Using satellite imagery and other data, the Global Forest Resources Assessment Portal displays the information on an interactive map.

South Asia Advances on Visual Tool Comparing Development over Time

Joe Qian's picture

The World Bank released its Data Visualizer tool last week, which compares 209 countries through the lens of 49 development indicators utilizing data ranging from 1960 to 2007. Using three dimensional bubbles whose sizes are proportional to populations and are color coded to the different regions (purple represents South Asia), they move horizontally or vertically based on their achievements on a number of indicators that range from GDP per capita to the percentage of children that are inoculated against measles.

Users will find similarities with the groundbreaking Gapminder World tool that Swedish Health Professor Hans Rosling first presented to the TED Conference in 2006. He concluded that the world is converging and that old notions of contrasting developed country (generally small families and long lives) with developing country (large families and short lives) to be grossly out of date.

Easterly discovers the power law of international trade

Ryan Hahn's picture

Not too long ago, Bill Easterly and Justin Lin squared off at an event at the World Bank over the wisdom of industrial policy in developing countries. While I am sympathetic to Bill's position, judging by the mood of the crowd in the room, I would have to call the debate a tie.

Institutions for Imperfect, Unpredictable People

Darshana Patel's picture

Since time immemorial, human beings have been defined by the theory of the state of nature.  The theory goes that - without an external, governing hand - humans enter a state of anarchy. Decades of work by Professor Elinor Ostrom, however, have gone into proving the limitations of this theory. In Crowding Out Citizenship, Ostrom describes the many assumptions behind the way policy textbooks and planners view human behavior:

“Centrally designed and externally implemented rules-based incentives – both positive and negative – are seen as universally needed to overcome all types of social dilemmas….The state is viewed as a substitute for the short-comings of individual behavior and the presumed failure of community. The universal need for externally implemented incentives is based, however, on a single model of rational behavior which presumes short-term, self-interested pursuit of material outcomes as the only mode of behavior adopted by individuals.”

“Leviathan is alive and well in our policy textbooks,” Ostrom says.