Controversy over transparency: why non-profits need to disclose their “real” overhead ratio

“The fact is an average of 91 cents of every dollar the Red Cross spends is invested in our humanitarian services and programs.”[1] This is Read More


The State and global health delivery

It was a rainy afternoon. I arrived at the district social affairs office for their monthly evaluation meeting just in time for Baried, the state Read More


Research Training in Limited-Resource Settings: A Call for Equitable Partnerships

Dr. Jim Kim, the president of the World Bank and one of the founders of Partners in Health, recently gave a talk about changing the Read More


Global Financing Facility Helping Ensure Healthy Mothers, Proper Newborn, Infant Nutrition

Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation’s “Impatient Optimists”: Ministers of Finance champion investment in Early Years — through the Global Finance Facility Shawn K. Baker, director of nutrition at the Gates Foundation; Mariam Claeson, director of the Global Financing Facility; and Julie McLaughlin, adviser to the vice president for human development at the World Bank Group,…More

Aligning blended finance to Busan principles

This paper examines existing development effectiveness principles using the principles established in the 2011 Busan Partnership Agreement (country ownership; transparency and accountability; a focus on results; and inclusive partnerships). We’ve analysed these principles against what is known about policies, strategies and principles for blended finance. Key learnings All development effectiveness principles are conceptually reflected to some degree in blended finance approaches. However, three key barriers to delivering on the principles may exist: Lack of agreement between all stakeholders (or appropriate dialogue platforms for reaching agreement) on the role of blended finance in delivering sustainable development objectives and therefore on what ‘effectiveness’ means. Recognition that the principles are important, but lack of consensus between stakeholders on how they should be operationalised in blended finance

Powerful panel weighs progress on financial inclusion

Event Replay Government leaders and advocates came together during the Annual Meetings to discuss a major development goal – ensuring everyone has access to affordable financial services such as a bank or mobile money account. While a lot of progress has been made on “financial inclusion,” new rules affecting the flow of funds threatens to slow or even reverse some gains.Financial Inclusion not Exclusion: Managing De-Risking brought together Queen Máxima of the Netherlands, US Treasury Secretary Jack Lew, Zhou Xiaochuan, Governor of the People’s Bank of China, Sri Mulyani Indrawati, Indonesia’s Minister of Finance. Arun Jaitley, India’s Minister of Finance, World Bank Group President Jim Yong Kim, and Juan Manuel Vega-Serrano, the president of the Financial Action Tax Force (FATF), which sets international standards for  combating money laundering, terrorist financing and other related threats. Some 700 million people were brought into the formal financial system between 2011 and 2014 – a major success – but 2 billion people remain cut off, said Queen Máxima, who is the United Nations Secretary-General’s special advocate for inclusive finance for development.

Promoting healthier diets in rural and remote communities: rethinking science and policy

While urbanisation levels are increasing worldwide, 46% of people still live in rural settings according to World Bank data from 2015. Catherine L. Mah MD PhD discusses the unique issue  faced by these rural communities in the 21st century with regards to access to a high-quality and varied diet despite geographical difficulties, and challenges the traditional self-sufficient rural stereotype by analysing the socially and economically heterogenous group that rural populations often can be.  At the port of North Sydney last October, waiting in my car for the midnight sailing of the Marine Atlantic ferry to Newfoundland and Labrador, the easternmost province in Canada, I observed two readily distinguishable features about the local and global food system. First, people go hunting here. Pickup trucks are kitted out with blue tarps and chest freezers, ready to haul moose carcasses.

U.N. Launches New Platform To Scale Up Innovative Financing To Achieve SDGs

U.N. News Centre: Ban announces launch of new partnership platform to support financing for Sustainable Development Goals “Announcing the launch [Monday] of a new platform for scaling up innovative finance solutions to support the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) by 2030, United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon said the initiative can help in identifying…More

The Busan principles and blended finance: time to bridge the divide

“Our partnership is founded on a common set of principles that underpin all forms of development co-operation. At the same time, we recognise that the ways in which these principles are applied differ … among the different types of public and private stakeholders involved.” [para 8] In fact, a number of non-governmental actors have signed up to support the Busan agreement, reflecting the shift from the ‘aid effectiveness’ agenda to the ‘development effectiveness’ agenda. This list of ‘adherents’ even includes a number of institutions (such as the European Investment Bank) that are currently partners for donors, delivering blended finance. Blended finance, meaning using public inputs (often money, sometimes technical support) to attract or mobilise private investments through various different setups, has been on the rise; proposed by key donors as a way of turning ‘billions to trillions’. Of course, in practice, the Busan principles (and corresponding indicator framework) have mainly been used to assess traditional development cooperation partnerships, involving official development assistance (ODA)

From billions to trillions: converting billions of official assistance to trillions in total…

Urgent action is needed to mobilize, redirect and unlock trillions of dollars of private resources to ensure global growth and shared prosperity. Since 1956, the International Finance Corporation (IFC), the World Bank Group’s member focused exclusively on the private sector, leveraged $2.5 billion in paid-in capital from its shareholders to invest over a trillion dollars for private sector development. IFC’s 60 years of experience has demonstrated the private sector’s ability to create innovative, commercially viable solutions that deliver development impact. “A year ago, we all signed up to the Sustainable Development Goals. The only way to achieve these goals is if private capital funds them and private business implements them,” said Gavin Wilson, CEO of IFC’s Asset Management Company (AMC) during a World Bank Group/IMF Annual Meetings 2016.

Angry about Trump avoiding taxes? Don’t hate the player, hate the game

Americans are expressing anger at the revelation that Donald Trump, the billionaire businessman running for president, may not be paying federal taxes. When Hilary Clinton brought it up in last week’s debate, Trump responded it “makes me smart.” And he was right. The world’s wealthiest people use tax laws and legal loopholes to shift around

Lending loopholes expose World Bank to indirectly financing ‘coal boom’ in Asia

The lending arm of the World Bank is providing loans to institutions that finance the development of coal-based power projects, according to a new report. The projects not only pose an environmental risk to the planet, locally they destroy homes and displace communities. The loans subvert strong warnings from the head of the World Bank

Controversy over transparency: why non-profits need to disclose their “real” overhead ratio


“The fact is an average of 91 cents of every dollar the Red Cross spends is invested in our humanitarian services and programs.”[1] This is Read More

Private Sector Companies Must Lead, Adapt To Help International Community Achieve SDGs

Devex: One year in, how the SDGs are taking shape Paloma Duran, director of the Sustainable Development Goals Fund “…Measuring and financing the 230 indicators and 169 targets behind the [Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs)] may be daunting, but at the same time the goals seem to offer something for everyone. By breaking down the 17…More

AidData publishes geocoded dataset on Chinese financing in ecological hotspots

For the past 18 months, we have been working to answer the question: what are the land cover impacts of Chinese development finance activities in ecologically sensitive areas? AidData has teamed up with the MacArthur Foundation to evaluate the impact of Chinese-funded infrastructure projects on conservation outcomes in three ecological h

Global Community Should Renew Commitment To End AIDS, TB, Malaria

Huffington Post: Launching Renewed Determination to End the Major Infectious Disease Killers Chris Collins, president of Friends of the Global Fight “…The success of [the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria’s Fifth] Replenishment is particularly welcome given the Kaiser Family Foundation (KFF) report this summer showing a decrease in donor financing of the…More

Field of Dreams: Mapping the Landscape for Investing in Emerging Market Infrastructure

Estimates of the financing gap for emerging market infrastructure range from nearly half a trillion USD to more than US$1 trillion a year over the next decade. The range reflects the difference between the estimated level of infrastructure needed to sustain growth across emerging markets and the actual level of such investment.   The challenges are immense, and resources are scarce. Of the financing that does exist, more than 70% comes from national government budgets; the second largest source (roughly 20%) is the private sector; and remaining resources come from overseas development assistance or aid from developed economies1. Given the overstretched demands of public sector budgets in developed and developing countries alike, any increase is likely to come through more partnership and co-financing from the private sector. 

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