Friday, November 25, 2011

surprise, surprise.........

professor doctor was re-elected in The Gambia!!

Political fiction: CIA interventionism and development

In occasion of the upcoming elections in DRC, I am wondering how would this country be if Patrice Lumumba had not been assesinated 50 years ago, in a plot that involved secret intelligence services from USA and Belgium. 

Taking the political fiction exercise further, what if the CIA would have not helped to kill Omar Torrijos and Jaime Roldos?... and if they would have not participated in the military coup in Chile and Cambodia

Given the counterfactual does not exist, we can just speculate with the effects. E.g. here there is very powerful empirical evidence of how increased political influence arising from CIA interventions during the Cold War was used to create a larger foreign market for American products.

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

The earnest search for a mirage

Finally!! my maestro of development, Jean-Louis Arcand, has a blog!!

I had to struggle to understand the meaning of the intricate title, and here I got the answer.

grande maestro!

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

German aid transparency

While Germany is one of the few countries in the world, and of course in Europe, that have not cut much development aid funds, I have been surprised for the few external accountability of the aid agencies based in Frankfurt.

While the projects of KfW and GIZ are very ambitious, interesting and potentially very beneficial, I have struggled to find any proper impact evaluation. Even more, it is not just that there is no institutional policy for external expert evaluation, but in general they do not know what this is about.

Another, seemly relate, problem comes to transparency in terms of reporting how the money is spent. Publish What You Fund (PWYF) released the 2011 report with the index of transparency for 58 aid agencies. The World Bank has the highest ranking (more transparent) while China-MOFCOM is at the bottom. The Germans are ranked very badly: KfW is 23th and GIZ is 41th! (besides USAID)

Monday, November 14, 2011

Father, Italy has sinned!

It is not just Silvio the sinner, now Italy as a nation is considered to be condemned by the original sin.

I am not sure that Ugo ever considered that the idea he developed for Latin-America could be used for his own country!

So now seems to be clear, not just developing countries or emerging markets suffer from the course of public debt in foreign currency, but also former developed countries (Italy, Spain, Greece).