More to do on measuring hunger

Joachim De Weerdt, Kathleen Beegle, Jed Friedman, John Gibson, 18 February 2014

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One of the first Millennium Development Goals is to reduce hunger by half between 1990 and 2015. To date, the global hunger count has fallen slightly, from 1 billion in 1990–1992 to 870 million in 2010–2012 (Food and Agriculture Organization 2013). As a proportion of the world’s population, this is just a one-third fall in the hunger rate, from 19% to 13%.

Topics: Poverty and income inequality
Tags: Africa, development, food, hunger, measurement error, Millennium Development Goals, Poverty, surveys, Tanzania

Why don’t African firms create more jobs?

Leonardo Iacovone, Vijaya Ramachandran, 7 February 2014

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There is an urgent need for job creation in Africa. Many economies on the continent suffer high rates of under-employment and/or low-productivity employment. In addition, because of demographic factors, many countries anticipate that large numbers of youth will enter the workforce in the near future.

Topics: Development, Labour markets
Tags: Africa, firms, jobs

The value of democracy in the world’s poorest region: Evidence from Kenya’s road building

Ameet Morjaria, 5 February 2014

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An enormous literature points to a diverse set of factors behind Africa’s growth tragedy, ranging from bad policies, poor education, and poor infrastructure, to aging leaders, the historic slave trade, and political instability.

Topics: Development, Institutions and economics, Politics and economics
Tags: Africa, autocracy, democracy, ethnic inequality, public finance

With a little help from my friends – FDI in Africa

Holger Görg, Christiane Krieger-Boden, Adnan Seric, 10 December 2013

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Foreign direct investment (FDI) and the emergence of multinational firms (MNEs) have proven successful strategies for the growth performance of host countries. In recent years, developing economies have gained substantial shares of such worldwide FDI flows. Now, a “new wave of FDI” has even swept sub-Saharan Africa, one of the poorest regions of the world (Figure 1).

Topics: Development, International trade
Tags: Africa, FDI

AGOA rules: The intended and unintended consequences of special fabric provisions

Lawrence Edwards, Robert Z. Lawrence, 20 November 2013

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The US and EU often claim credit for granting duty-free quota-free access to products from the least developed countries. Such preferential treatment is of interest not only because it might provide one-time benefits in the form of higher incomes and increased employment, but also because trade is often associated with dynamic benefits that lead to faster growth and development.

Topics: Development, International trade
Tags: Africa, development, quotas, tariffs

Managing bureaucrats

Imran Rasul, Daniel Rogger, 19 November 2013

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Since its inception in the 1850s, the British Civil Service has become a cornerstone of the executive branch of the UK government, translating the policy programme of the government into practice.

Topics: Development, Institutions and economics, Politics and economics
Tags: Africa, bureaucracy, civil service, incentives, Management, monitoring, Nigeria

Democracy in Africa

Thorvaldur Gylfason, 17 November 2013

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A man’s admiration for absolute government is proportionate to the contempt he feels for those around him.
Alexis de Tocqueville

Until the second half of the 19th century, there were so few democratic states around the world that they could be counted on the fingers of one hand.

Topics: Development, Economic history, Politics and economics
Tags: Africa, anocracy, autocracy, Corruption, democracy, education, fertility, growth, life expectancy

African polygamy: Past and present

James Fenske, 9 November 2013

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Polygamy and poverty are both widespread in sub-Saharan Africa.1 Several arguments have been made suggesting this correlation is causal.

Topics: Development, Economic history, Poverty and income inequality
Tags: Africa, fertility, growth, polygamy, Poverty, slave trade

National institutions and subnational development in Africa

Stelios Michalopoulos, Elias Papaioannou, 11 October 2013

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Few issues have received more inquiry in the social sciences than "what are the fundamental determinants of comparative development?" The institutional view asserts that the ultimate causes of underdevelopment are poorly performing institutional structures, such as lack of constraints on the executive, poor property-rights protection, as well as inefficient legal and court systems (s

Topics: Development, Economic history, Institutions and economics
Tags: Africa, Culture, institutions, politics and economics

Who benefits from aid for trade?

Philipp Hühne, Birgit Meyer, Peter Nunnenkamp, 31 July 2013

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Donors are widely believed to use aid as a means to foster their own commercial interest (e.g., Berthélemy 2006, Hoeffler and Outram 2011).

Topics: Development, International trade
Tags: Africa, aid, East Asia, Latin America

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