Devex – A vision of UN development reform takes form, amidst funding concerns
“The United Nations is moving toward implementing a development reform strategy that will revamp in-country coordination, but experts and former U.N. officials say financing is still an issue ahead of the January 2019 reform launch.”
Devex – German aid minister slams proposed cuts as ‘completely incomprehensible’
“The budget for Germany’s Ministry of Economic Cooperation and Development, also known as BMZ, will be increased by just €284 million ($333 million) in 2019 to an overall amount of €9.7 billion, politicians finally agreed last week, up from €8.4 billion in 2017 and €9.4 billion in 2018….”
“…However, according to a draft medium-term financial plan, which has not yet been approved but was released at the same time, the budget for BMZ — which is usually responsible for up to 50 percent of Germany’s official development assistance — will be reduced significantly from 2020 onward, dropping back to around 2017 levels by 2021. German Federal Development Minister Gerd Müller described the plan as “completely incomprehensible.”…”
Washington Post – India is no longer home to the largest number of poor people in the world; Nigeria is
Well worth a read. And not only if you’re Nigerian.
Nature (Comment) – Grand challenges in humanitarian aid
“Fund and study these priorities for natural and social sciences to meet a gaping need, urge Abdallah S. Daar, Trillium Chang, Angela Salomon and Peter A. Singer.”
“The gap between the magnitude of humanitarian need and the global capacity to respond is massive and growing. Here we describe an attempt to map ways in which that gap might be closed (see ‘Top 10 Humanitarian Grand Challenges’).”
Devex – Can IFC rise to its next challenge?
“Having pulled off a surprise victory to secure a large chunk of the World Bank Group’s capital increase earlier this year, the International Finance Corporation is now gearing up to tackle the “huge challenges” involved in meeting the terms of the deal, especially around upping its investments in fragile and conflict-affected countries….”
The World Bank’s private sector lending arm just received its biggest budget boost in years — but it comes with strings attached. …”
Stat News – Brett Kavanaugh, Trump’s pick for court, has left trail of opinions on health care and pharma issues
“Brett Kavanaugh, President Trump’s nominee for the Supreme Court, has left a trail of rulings and opinions concerning the Food and Drug Administration, pharmaceutical companies, and medical device manufacturers in his dozen years on the District of Columbia circuit court….”
Also worth knowing: he’s quite close to George W Bush. That used to be not much of a distinction, nowadays though (with the GOP hijacked by Trump & even worse sujets) it might not be the worst thing. Anyway, hope the Democrats can put up a fight on his nomination, at least till the parliamentary elections.
T20 (Argentina) – Policy brief: Advancing the G20’s Commitment to the 2030 agenda
“This policy brief proposes an approach for the G20 to commit meaningfully to the implementation of the 2030 Agenda. It documents substantial shortcomings in G20 member countries’ approaches to agenda setting, implementation, and monitoring. This applies both to domestic goals as well as to those that relate to collective action. The policy brief recommends a number of key actions G20 members could take to strengthen their strategies for (1) domestic implementation of the 2030 Agenda, and (2) collective action regarding management of the global commons.”
IP-Watch – UN Launches High-Level Panel On Digital Cooperation, Led By Melinda Gates And Jack Ma
Also news from New York, this week. “The United Nations [today] announced it has launched a high-level panel on digital cooperation, co-chaired by Melinda Gates (wife of Bill Gates of software titan Microsoft), and Jack Ma, head of China’s e-commerce titan Alibaba Group. The 20-member panel will “identify policy, research and information gaps, and make proposals to strengthen international cooperation in the digital space,” according to a release.”
Apolitical – How to value unpaid care work: the $10 trillion question
Another fundamental question for the 21st century. “… “The ground is starting to shift, as aging populations, plummeting birth rates, and stalled or declining female labor force participation have forced societies to examine the care burden that falls overwhelmingly on women. Japan, Hawaii and, at the international level, the UN, are all experimenting with ways to better value unpaid work, or alleviate the burden of it. But how should governments approach the problem? Diane Elson, former chair of the U.K.’s Women’s Budget Group (WBG), a network of researchers and advocates, has advocated a three-pronged strategy. For Elson, the goals are: “recognise, reduce, redistribute”….”
Lancet (Editorial) – Is digital medicine different?
“…Without a clear framework to differentiate efficacious digital products from commercial opportunism, companies, clinicians, and policy makers will struggle to provide the required level of evidence to realise the potential of digital medicine. The risks of digital medicine, particularly use of AI in health interventions, are concerning. Continuing to argue for digital exceptionalism and failing to robustly evaluate digital health interventions presents the greatest risk for patients and health systems.”