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Why don't we know who is giving the best aid?

It would be hard to disagree with the objectives of the international aid industry. But how much are donors contributing to their achievement? Despite recent progress, we still know surprisingly little... We are still in the dark about which donors, or which projects, are achieving the best results.

Targetting aid

Soutik Biswas of the BBC reports on the informal earthquake relief effort in India:

As is the case with most Indian relief operations, there are a lot of hit-and-run gigs where 'volunteers' throw old clothes, food and plastic to screaming hungry and shivering throngs and depart. It is a very Darwinian way of relief distribution - the old, sick and women practically get nothing.

A responsible profit from malaria

Following up on Tim's Milton Friedman post:

“Business is for profit, and profit is for a purpose,” [Frandsen] says. “This makes business sustainable and profit responsible.” …The crucial thing to remember, he adds, is that profit is a key tool but not the ultimate goal. “We are business people, but this is not capitalism in its purest form. The profit is for a purpose.”

How will blogs change development thinking?

Tim and I have written a short editorial at id21 venturing some guesses as to what the impact of blogs on development might be. We are optimists. What do you think? Can blogs inform and energise the development debate, or is this blog part of a passing fad? Are there creative ways in which blogging can be used to maximize the results of development dialogues and efforts? Do you know of a blog that is having an impact on development?

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