Featured image for “Book Review: Hypocrisy and Human Rights: Resisting Accountability for Mass Atrocities”

Book Review: Hypocrisy and Human Rights: Resisting Accountability for Mass Atrocities

January 26, 2023
What is the point of all the noise on human rights violations, all that ‘speaking truth to power’ to repressive regimes who don’t listen, if no-one is ever brought to justice? When all those lawyers, Amnesty reports, email campaigns and UN treaties simply bounce off the brute realities of national power? Kate Cronin-Furman’s intriguing new book uses a political economy
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Featured image for “Whether in Asia, Africa or North America, it’s been a profitable polycrisis for billionaires”

Whether in Asia, Africa or North America, it’s been a profitable polycrisis for billionaires

January 18, 2023
Guest post from Anthony Kamande on Oxfam’s Davos Inequality Report 2023 I’m having supper with my friend Reuben, a teacher who still hasn’t received last month’s salary (equivalent to around $167) and is struggling with the cost of living. I tell him that if the 1,890 richest Kenyans, those with wealth over Ksh600 million ($5 million), paid as little as
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Featured image for “Ending Fossil Fuel Subsidies: the politics of saving the planet”

Ending Fossil Fuel Subsidies: the politics of saving the planet

January 17, 2023
Neil McCulloch introduces his new book Hands up if you would like petrol prices to go up?  I’m guessing not too many hands.  The cripplingly high costs of energy (whether petrol, diesel, gas or coal as well as electricity) have posed a huge challenge for households and firms all around the world.  Massive increases in these costs, driven by the
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Featured image for “Taxation of the World’s Super-Rich has collapsed: as 1 in 8 people go to bed hungry, that has to change”

Taxation of the World’s Super-Rich has collapsed: as 1 in 8 people go to bed hungry, that has to change

January 16, 2023
Max Lawson introduces Oxfam’s 2023 Davos report, ‘Survival of the Richest: How we must tax the super-rich now to fight inequality’ Walter is the father of my son’s best friend at school. He works nights as a security guard at a bank in the City of London. He has three kids. They are really struggling, as the prices of everything
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Featured image for “What do LSE Activism Students do after they leave?”

What do LSE Activism Students do after they leave?

January 13, 2023
Teaching is weird. You engage on quite an intense level with each year’s cohort of students, and then they fly the nest, and you hear very little about what happens next. Still less whether their studies actually helped (I’m still trying to work out whether my Physics degree has been a help or hindrance in grappling with the complexities of
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Featured image for “How well does the IMF engage with civil society?”

How well does the IMF engage with civil society?

January 12, 2023
Oxfam has a new paper out this week on how the IMF engages with civil society around the world. A bit process-y, I know, but this is good – based on a lot of serious case studies and coming up with the odd surprise (notably Ghana, highlighted below). My summary of the summary: ‘The International Monetary Fund (IMF or ‘the
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Featured image for “Is Extinction Rebellion really quitting? Analysis of their New Year’s Day statement”

Is Extinction Rebellion really quitting? Analysis of their New Year’s Day statement

January 4, 2023
As well as the headlines, First Edition, the Guardian’s excellent daily news summary (free subscription here), includes an in-depth conversation between the editor and one of its specialist journalists. Yesterday’s, with environment correspondent Damien Gayle, was on ‘Extinction Rebellion’s New Year’s Day statement, which led with the headline-grabbing phrase “we quit”’. Not true, apparently. Here’s the Guardian’s analysis: ‘This is
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Featured image for “How can Behavioral Science help build Democracy, Human Rights, and Good Governance?”

How can Behavioral Science help build Democracy, Human Rights, and Good Governance?

December 6, 2022
Guest post from Laura Adams, Director of Monitoring, Evaluation, Research and Learning at CSM-STAND, a USAID-funded global civil society and media program, led by Pact. When international development programs want people to get vaccinated, the behavior they are targeting is clear, even if the complex set of things that influence that behavior take time and effort to address. Social and
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Featured image for “Talking to Tory backbenchers about Aid”

Talking to Tory backbenchers about Aid

November 22, 2022
Spoke about the future of aid to an enquiry by Foreign Affairs Policy Committee of the Conservative Party 1922 Committee last week (apologies for too many committees in one sentence – that’s parliament for you). I was intrigued because I didn’t know the 1922 did this sort of thing – all you ever see of them on the news is
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Featured image for “Aid v Global Public Goods; the fear in the system and multi-dimensional poverty: A conversation with Norway’s Development Agency”

Aid v Global Public Goods; the fear in the system and multi-dimensional poverty: A conversation with Norway’s Development Agency

November 11, 2022
Spent a fascinating hour this week shooting the breeze with Nikolai Hegertun and Petter Skjæveland from Norad, the Norwegian aid agency. They’d got in touch to discuss some of the obstacles and challenges they face, look for ideas from elsewhere that might work for them etc etc – I love this kind of conversation. Some highlights: Aid v Global Public
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Featured image for “Words v Deeds: Rishi Sunak at the Egypt Climate Summit”

Words v Deeds: Rishi Sunak at the Egypt Climate Summit

November 9, 2022
Oxfam GB’s Danny Sriskandarajah  assesses words v deeds in Rishi Sunak’s performance on the climate crisis After initially dithering on whether to attend the COP27 climate summit this week, Prime Minister Sunak seems to have packed his Climate Superhero costume for his trip to Sharm-El-Sheikh. His speech was not short of promises – to turn the UK into a ‘clean energy
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Featured image for “Adaptive Management in large programmes: Great new Practical Guide”

Adaptive Management in large programmes: Great new Practical Guide

November 8, 2022
I’m off to Papua New Guinea in a couple of weeks in the role of ‘critical friend’ (more on that weird job description in due course) to a big Aussie-funded aid program (the A$87m Building Community Engagement in PNG Program) run by DT Global (as Cardno is now called). They’ve just published an excellent guidance note on Adaptive Management, written
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