Why Al Jazeera will not say Mediterranean ‘migrants’

August 21, 2015
  The whole piece is powerfully written and well worth reading (h/t Craig Valters) “The umbrella term migrant is no longer fit for purpose when it comes to describing the horror unfolding in the Mediterranean. It has evolved from its dictionary definitions into a tool that dehumanises and distances, a blunt pejorative. It is not hundreds of people who drown

Hunger Grains: Are EU policies undermining progress on development?

November 29, 2013
An earlier version of this piece appeared in the October issue of the Government Gazette Today we fear EU ambassadors will agree a really bad deal on EU biofuel reform. In 2009 EU governments agreed that by 2020 10% of the energy used in transport would have to come from renewable sources. This target will almost exclusively be met by

Why is the EU threatening to cut investment in South Africa?

July 19, 2013
Bilateral Investment Treaties are one of those nerdy ‘important but dull’ bits of international governance that too often get ignored by NGOs and others. So thanks to Liz May at Traidcraft for drawing my attention to this week’s punch-up between South Africa and the EU. First the fisticuffs. According to South Africa’s equivalent of the FT, Business Day, ‘Karel De

What is the point of the European Report on Development 2013?

April 10, 2013
The 2013 European Report on Development was published yesterday, with the title Post 2015: Global Action for an Inclusive and Sustainable Future.I’ve been rude about previous ERDs, and I’m afraid I’m going to be rude about this one, but a conversation at last week’s OECD gabfest (more on that tomorrow) at least made me think differently about the ERD’s purpose

Calling all Euro/Aid sceptics – here's some top quality aid from the EU

December 19, 2012

The Hunger Grains: new research shows EU biofuel policies drive food prices and land grabs

September 17, 2012

What can we learn from Chinese aid?

June 10, 2010
I’m at a two day EU conference ‘Development in times of crisis and Achieving the MDGs’ (snappy eh?). It’s in Madrid, but you wouldn’t know it. We’re in an airless, windowless room in an aircraft hangar of a conference centre miles out from the city. I was on a panel on the impact of the crisis on how we think