Aaron Swartz, who died on January 11th, worked and fought for key freedoms of our time: the right to information, to share knowledge and ideas, and to speak freely. This blog post considers the importance of these issues for development, and what we might do to continue his fight.
Christmas came early yesterday for campaigners for more effective and accountable aid, with an announcement from DFID which has raised the bar for aid transparency.
This blog post first appeared on the Center for Global Development Views from the Center on March 30, 2012.
The World Bank has responded to concerns about its recent agreement with Google with a welcome announcement that it will… Continue reading
A concern about a World Bank deal with Google: once any data goes in to Google Map Maker, it all becomes the property of Google.
There is a growing trend towards publication of data, rather than or as well as information and analysis. Aid agencies need to move in this direction; and they need to do so in a way that enables the data to be analysed from the perspective of a user - such as a citizen in a developing country. To make this task tractable requires some cooperation among donors to standardize the way the data are published. Continue reading
Obviously I don’t use Internet Explorer because it is (a) not compliant with standards; (b) not safe; (c) Microsoft. And I don’t use Safari because Steve Jobs is a control freak and I don’t wish to be… Continue reading
Peter Mandelson has not thought this through:
First, taking something for nothing, without permission, and with no compensation for the person who created and owns it, is wrong. Simple as that.
With respect, it is not as simple as… Continue reading
Installed the latest Ubuntu Linux (9.04 Jaunty) - overcoming a problem with the installation programme by removing RAM from my computer. Continue reading
I have a Speedtouch 780 router. Inside my network is a computer that acts as a media server within the house, and as a mail server (which I use for my personal email) for outside the house. Until now, I… Continue reading
I said in June that the national identity register should be a federation of connected computer systems, not a single database.
Very sensibly, that is what the Home Office has now announced in the Strategic Action Plan for the National… Continue reading
Sebastian Mallaby writes in the Washington Post highlighting the possible gains to developing countries of a relaxation in the migration policies of rich countries.
In ” Let Their People Come ,” a new book published by the Center for Global… Continue reading
Alex Singleton at the Globalisation Institute writes:
Over the past couple of years there has been a growing consensus that conditionality does not work. … It has failed because imposing good policies on countries that don’t want to do… Continue reading
Jackie Ashley is good in the Guardian today:
To be a liberal does not mean shrugging your shoulders at those who loathe you and hoping that somehow everyone will get on. A world divided between Christian bible-belt fundamentalists, powered by… Continue reading
Fascinating article by Alan Beattie (registration required) on what he says are five common myths of world trade:
1. "Ghana is allowed to sell raw cocoa beans to the European Union, but if it exports finished chocolate it gets hit by big tariffs."
2. "Each European Union cow gets $2.40 a day in subsidies, more than what 1bn people each have to live on."
3. "The World Trade Organisation is undemocratic and secretive.
4. "No economy ever got rich without using tariffs to industrialise."
5. "Cutting rich countries' farm subsidies and tariffs will be a big boost for the world's poorest."
According to BBC news the government’s clamp-down on junk food in schools has led to a black market in the playground:
Ring leaders are buying bars of chocolate and packets of crisps in bulk, and making small profits by surreptitiously… Continue reading
I’ve got a piece up on the CGD blog about a new evaluation of budget support, which finds that budget support helps to improve capacity for financial management and accountability in developing countries.
I’ve been a long-time advocate of budget… Continue reading
This caught my eye in the Number 10 morning press briefing from 4 May 2006
Asked if the Prime Minister had sanctioned a peerage to Peter Law, the PMOS said that it was not only a party matter, but also,… Continue reading
Please tell me that the following are not controversial:
- courts, not civil servants or politicians, should determine what punishment a criminal deserves, based on the individual circumstances of the crime;
- foreigners should be punished no more harshly, and no less,… Continue reading
I am not one of those who believe the World Bank should be shut down. Indeed, if anything, I would prefer to see the multiplicity of bilateral aid agencies and NGOs shut down, and all the money put through a… Continue reading