IHP news 470: Miscellaneous

By on May 18, 2018

Sweden stands up for open access – cancels agreement with Elsevier


Large science publisher Elsevier does not meet the requirements of Swedish universities and research institutes.” “In order to take steps towards the goal of immediate open access by 2026 set by the Swedish Government, the Bibsam Consortium has after 20 years decided not to renew the agreement with the scientific publisher Elsevier….”  Starts as of 30 June.

For the bigger picture, see NatureEurope’s open-access drive escalates as university stand-offs spread.

New Economics Foundation – Measuring Wellbeing Inequality


From the UK: “This working paper presents research commissioned by the Office for National Statistics (ONS) and carried out by the New Economics Foundation (NEF) in collaboration with the What Works Centre for Well-being. NEF was tasked with exploring the strengths and weaknesses of different measures of wellbeing inequality and to make a recommendation of a measure which could be reported by the ONS alongside mean wellbeing.”

Guardian – Two-thirds of world population will live in cities by 2050, says UN


Two-thirds of people in the world will be living in cities by 2050 and the boom will be concentrated in India, China and Nigeria, according to United Nations estimates released on Wednesday. The world’s rural population will peak in a few years then decline by 2050, according to the report by the UN’s population division.  … … Delhi will overtake Tokyo in top spot by around 2028, the report said.”

See also UN News.

Oxfam (blog) –  Which is better: a guaranteed job or a guaranteed income?


E Chowns comments on a new working paper by Martin Ravaillon (now at CGD) – Guaranteed Employment or Guaranteed Income?  “The paper critically reviews the arguments for and against both employment guarantees and income guarantees when viewed as rights-based policy instruments for poverty reduction in a developing economy, with special reference to India….”

Guardian (Long read) –  How #MeToo revealed the central rift within feminism today feminism today


Recommended. “It’s not a generational divide, but rather a split between two competing visions of feminism – social and individualist.”

“…  closer look at the arguments being made by these two camps reveals a deeper, more serious intellectual rift. What’s really at play is that feminism has come to contain two distinct understandings of sexism, and two wildly different, often incompatible ideas of how that problem should be solved. One approach is individualist, hard-headed, grounded in ideals of pragmatism, realism and self-sufficiency. The other is expansive, communal, idealistic and premised on the ideals of mutual interest and solidarity. The clash between these two kinds of feminism has been starkly exposed by #MeToo, but the crisis is the result of shifts in feminist thought that have been decades in the making….”

BBC news – Gordon Brown launches global funding plan for schools


Gordon Brown is launching a $10bn (£7.4bn) scheme to widen access to education in some of the world’s poorest countries.”

“…The UN global education envoy and ex-UK prime minister wants donor countries to act as guarantors on low-cost lending for projects. The fund aims to tackle the problem of 260 million children without schools. … … Mr Brown warned the UN in New York that such gaps would have “catastrophic consequences”. … … The International Finance Facility for Education, backed by the UN and World Bank, aims to provide $10bn worth of loans and grants to allow poorer countries to build schools and hire teachers.”

For more, see DevexPlans for the International Finance Facility for Education take shape   (including on some of the controversy around it).

Devex – Development finance bill moves forward in legislative process


News from last week already. “The BUILD Act, the bill that would create a new United States development finance corporation, moved closer to passage this week, with the House Foreign Affairs Committee approving the bill with some changes, and the Senate Committee on Foreign Relations holding a hearing to discuss the legislation….

Guardian –  IMF to launch global public and private borrowing database


With global debt currently at a record high, the International Monetary Fund is launching a database of public and private borrowing across 190 countries – virtually the entire world – dating back to the 1950s. In April the fund said the global economy was more indebted than before the financial crisis and immediate action needed to be taken before the next downturn. It said worldwide debt now stood at $164tn, equal to 225% of global GDP and up from a previous record of 213% in 2009….”

Economist – Many countries suffer from shrinking working-age populations


“…Forty countries now have shrinking working-age populations, defined as 15- to 64-year-olds, up from nine in the late 1980s. China, Russia and Spain joined recently; Thailand and Sri Lanka soon will….”

Nature (News) – Journals invite too few women to referee


Jory Lerback and Brooks Hanson present an analysis that reveals evidence of gender bias in peer review for scholarly publications.”

IISD – UN Member States Start Fourth Round of Negotiations on Migration Compact


The global compact on migration is being discussed through six rounds of negotiations between February and July 2018. During the fourth round of negotiations, from 14-18 May 2018, delegates should finalize discussions on the first revised draft of the global compact, as well as: international cooperation and capacity-building; pathways for regular migration and regularization; natural disasters, climate change and migration; fundamental human rights and services; the concept of firewalls; integration and contributions of irregular migrants; and effective and efficient cooperation on return. The compact is being prepared for adoption at an intergovernmental conference from 10-11 December 2018, in Morocco.”

FT – Harvard and MIT launch gene editing company



Devex –  “Ghana and Kenya became the first two countries to officially sign on to the African Continental Free Trade Area, an agreement that, if ratified, would create the world’s largest duty-free trade market. Ghana and Kenya delivered their ratification documents to the African Union last week, the first of 44 signatory countries to do so. Advocates hope that all 55 countries African Union members countries will sign on eventually; notably the continent’s largest economy, Nigeria, has yet to do so.”

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