Saturday 25 Jun 2022 | 18:59 | SYDNEY
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Aid & Development

Aid links: fixing the climate to reduce poverty, more

Speaking at the launch of Christian Aid Week in Westminster on Sunday morning, former UK prime minister Gordon Brown set out a passionate defence of the international aid budget and the importance of the fight against global poverty, before addressing the themes behind the Brexit debate.In this

Book Review: Utopia For Realists

Book Review: Utopia For Realists, And How We Can Get There, by Rutger Bregman (Bloomsbury, 2017) Rutger Bregman shot to public fame calling out billionaires at this year’s World Economic Forum meeting in Davos. “1500 private jets flying in here to hear Sir David Attenborough speak about

Budget 2019: the race to the bottom for foreign aid

There were few surprises for the Australian aid program in this week’s federal budget, which has disappointingly continued the downward trend of Australian aid spending. At $4.044 billion in 2019, when adjusting for inflation, aid will have now been cut by 27% since its peak in 2013–14.

Reset required for DFAT-AusAID integration

“Foreign policy alignment” was the political “abracadabra” used to explain how the late 2013 integration of what was then AusAID into the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade would deliver better outcomes. DFAT would have direct control over Australian aid and by virtue of that,

Book Review: A Partnership Transformed


Economic diplomacy: Development aid in the Belt & Road era

Mergerplomacy Five years after the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT) swallowed AusAID in the first major spending cuts of the new Coalition Government, two contradictory trends seem to be emerging. The reality of the takeover is getting some grudging acceptance in the

Aid mergers: no unscrambling the egg

Britain’s former foreign secretary Boris Johnson has called for the UK’s Department for International Development (DFID) to be rolled into the Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO). This would be a monumental mistake for a country looking for relevance in a post-Brexit world. Over the past two

Lowy Institute Pacific Aid Map - Country Profiles

These summary profiles of the 14 Pacific Islands countries analysed in the Lowy Institute Pacific Aid Map pull together the key findings for each country. They include the total aid spent and committed, the top donors and the total number of projects. Each profile highlights the key projects in each

Aid links: plastic ban, celebrity ties, and more

Japan has decided to stop its 40-year official development assistance for China, as China has become the world’s second largest economy. Australia gave $5.5 million in relief aid to Indonesia this month after the earthquake and tsunami that killed more than 2,000 people and displaced millions

America builds on development aid

In the biggest reform of US foreign aid policy in recent history, the US Senate this month passed the Better Utilization of Investment Leading to Development, or the BUILD Act. This legislation, signed into law by President Donald Trump on 5 October, will create the new US International

Reconciling with China in the Pacific

Last month, Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi met with Australia’s Foreign Minister Marise Payne on the sidelines of the United Nations General Assembly in New York. Wang Yi struck a surprisingly conciliatory tone, expressing the wish to partner with Australia in the development of the Pacific

Aid links: river relief, ranking helpers, more

The report of the UN Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) explained why the world has just over a decade to get global warming under control. Chris Mooney and Brady Dennis discuss the implications of the research. The full impact of the tsunami in Central Sulawesi is still unknown,

Sulawesi tsunami: how Australia can best help

Yet another tsunami in Indonesia. The earthquake and resulting wave of destruction in Palu, Central Sulawesi, is the second major natural disaster to strike the country this year. It is not yet two months since more than 500 people died in the August earthquake in Lombok near Bali.

Aid links: African debt, Taxify and more

In New York, Turkey’s First Lady Emine Erdoğan says humanitarian aid policies should not increase the dependency of the recipients, but should focus on development. Lisa Cornish from Devex analyses the impact of the new government on Australia's aid and development program. This month

The case for a foreign aid tsar

The Australian aid program has always laboured under multiple and competing objectives, both implicit and explicit. This was identified in the 1997 Simons Report on foreign aid, commissioned by the Howard Government, into what was then a separate agency, AusAID: The managers of the aid

Aid links: Idlib and “humanitarian tragedy”, more

On Tuesday, UN Secretary-General António Guterres argued the situation in Idlib, Syria, is not sustainable, adding the presence of terrorist groups sheltering in the enclave cannot be tolerated. He warned the situation had the potential to be the worst “humanitarian tragedy” of the

Aid links: political change and adjustment, more

Following Julie Bishop’s resignation as Australian foreign minister after five years in the job, Stephen Howes reflects on her aid and development legacy, which is only saved by the growth of the Seasonal Workers Program. Ashlee Betteridge and Lisa Cornish separately

Aid links: USAid cuts, blockchain bonds, and more

Samuel Oakford comments on the new rule applied by the Trump administration on money spent by USAid through the UN and other multinational agencies. The measure could negatively impact a quarter of all US foreign assistance. The Australian picked up Jonathan Pryke’s recent submission to the

Foreign aid and religion in the Pacific

Sometimes we in developed nations fail to grasp that not everything we do, no matter how well intentioned, is entirely welcomed in developing countries. Often they’re just too polite to tell us. Once on a flight to a Pacific island nation, I was seated next to an NGO worker who

Aid: investing in impact

This article is based on episode 9 of the Good Will Hunters podcast with Giles Gunesekera, CEO of the Global Impact Initiative. In March 2015, the Coalition committed $140 million over four years to an innovation hub within the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade. The hub, known as

Aid links: dealing with data deluge, more

Terence Wood provides a good take on this Guardian op-ed from a group of development notables decrying foreign aid. Aid is not perfect, but is better than inaction. Working in development involves collecting a lot of data. But without adequate visualisation, the

Business aid and aiding business

This article is based on episodes 7 and 8 of the Good Will Hunters Podcast with Georgina Camp, CEO of Huber Social, and Andrea De Almeida, CEO of B Lab Australia.  B Corp certification is to businesses what Fair Trade certification is to coffee. In Australia, there are just

Aid links: an escape from the resource curse, more

The Thai cave rescue has been a global success story. Jody Lightfoot argues that the rescue is a good example of how Australian aid can change the world. In addition, PM Turnbull will award honours to Australian divers Richard Harris and Craig Challen for playing a key role in

Aid and the new face of entrepreneurship 

This article is based on episodes 5 and 6 of the Good Will Hunters podcast. Most would agree that “entrepreneurship” has been a business buzzword for quite some time. Less apparent is how entrepreneurship is redefining the informal economy, especially in developing countries. Last week

Aid links: empowering women, mapping welfare, more

Dan Kopf at Quartz summarises “the transformative power of giving young women cash”, covering work in Malawi, South Africa, and Bangladesh on cash transfers and domestic violence. A new study shows average unemployment rates are substantially lower in poor countries than in

Asking the wrong questions in the aid debate

This article is based on episode 4 of the Good Will Hunters podcast, featuring former deputy director of AusAID Richard Moore.   One draft title for this article was “Why I won’t campaign for Australian aid”. While in some ways this statement is true, it has many, many caveats. A