Has Covid been a tipping point for Universal Social Protection? Here’s what we know

January 7, 2021
Crises act as tipping points. Local crises and conflicts can galvanize a social movement or discredit a leader in a given location. Global crises change far more than that – the 2008 financial crisis has been credited with everything from sparking the rise of right-wing populism (hopefully now heading for a historical dustbin near you) to transforming norms around inequality

#PowerShifts Resources: Care in a Time of Corona

April 2, 2020
I’m on my 16th day of official Coronavirus lockdown. Since day 1, I’ve been seeing a welcome revival of all sorts of virtual conversations, resources and inspiring quotes about care. But here’s the thing: most of them focus on self-care rituals, yoga, mindfulness, and exercise regimes –  the ‘well-being complex’ and ‘wellness industry’ at our rescue. Before you leave thinking

This is a love story: thinking globally during COVID19

April 1, 2020
Today’s post is a must-read on internationalist communications strategies during the Coronavirus crisis. Kirsty McNeill is Chair of the Campaign to Defend Aid and Development and Richard Darlington is Campaign Director. It was originally published on Global Dashboard. Over the last few years, bringing international NGOs together to make the case for aid and development, we’ve been digging deeply into how people think

Why Debt Relief should be part of the Covid Response

March 26, 2020
This blog was launched slap bang in the middle of the 2008 global financial crisis. Its early months were dominated by discussions of its impact on poor countries and communities. So yesterday I had a plus ca change moment when I read a cluster of excellent pieces discussing the need for urgent debt relief for poor countries struggling to cope

Multinational Companies in retreat? Fascinating Economist briefing

February 2, 2017
Now we’re all looking for ways to break out of filter bubble, I guess I can feel less guilty about loving The Economist. Beautifully written, it covers places and issues other papers ignore, and every so often has a big standback piece that makes you rethink. This week’s cover story, ‘the retreat of the global company’, is a fine example.

Davos & Inequality Continued: What does an alternative economic vision for the future look like?

January 17, 2017
Deborah Hardoon, who really ought to be resting on her laurels after her report for Davos went viral yesterday, springs to the defence of (the right kind of) economics. Nerd Alert. As a student of economics, I always found the technical aspects of the subject deeply satisfying. Getting to the ‘right’ answer using algebra and statistics, solving ‘proofs’ and finding

Are we heading for another debt crisis? If so, what should we be doing?

December 1, 2016
Just when you thought life couldn’t get more retro (Leonard Cohen on the radio, post-Brexit trade negotiations, impending nuclear war), here comes another debt crisis. Probably. Had a good briefing from some key wonks in Development Finance International and the Jubilee Debt Campaign, two small but vital watchdogs that play a vital role in maintaining capacity on important issues when

What does ‘How Change Happens’ thinking tell us about Brexit?

June 28, 2016
I was in Lisbon running a ‘How Change Happens’ summer school when the Brexit news came in, so I thought I’d apply an HCH analysis to a seismic event. I’m not an expert on UK politics, so this is bound to be pretty uninformed compared to the avalanche of post mortems in the press, but let’s see where it goes. First

Do people identify as global or national citizens? New report suggests a tipping point, but North and South heading in opposite directions

May 19, 2016
This is interesting, and feels like it could be part of a big normative shift. According to a new report from Globescan (a polling company), across 20,000 people in 18 countries ‘more than half (51%) see themselves more as global citizens than citizens of their country, against 43 per cent who identify nationally. This is the first time since tracking

Four roles for the Multilateral System – how well will it perform any of them?

March 20, 2015
Along with a bunch of Oxfam’s specialist policy wonks, I recently helped Francoise Vanni, our new Director of Policy and Campaigns, put together a presentation on the multilateral system. Writing a new powerpoint is also a pretty good way to generate a blog post – key messages, simply transmitted (assuming you obey the ‘less than 20 words per slide’ rule,

What should Europe do about Illicit Financial Flows? Five take-aways from the African Union’s High-Level report

February 6, 2015
This post by tax campaigner Christian Hallum (@ChrHallum) also appeared on the Eurodad blog.  Last Saturday a landmark decision was taken when the African Union, made up of 54 African Heads of State, adopted the report of the High Level Panel on Illicit Financial Flows (IFF). This report documents the scale and impact of IFF from the continent and gives a

Are developing countries heading for another debt crisis? And if so, what is anyone doing about it?

February 5, 2015
Skating on thin ice is an occupational hazard in my job, but it was really cracking underfoot at a recent Chatham House Rules roundtable on ‘debt crisis prevention in developing countries’. The only way to survive is to stay quiet, nod and look thoughtful when people refer to completely unintelligible things like ‘the clarification of pari passu, which created difficulties