Can Mexico change the face of international co-operation for development?


By Gerardo Bracho, International Co-operation Expert and Member of the Mexican Foreign Service  


We still do not have all the details on the “World Plan for Fraternity and Well-Being” that Mexican President Andrés Manuel López Obrador recently proposed at the UN. What is clear, however, is its ambition to pull our present paradigm of international co-operation for development out of the doldrums.

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Why women are made to rely on vulnerable work


By Maria C. Lo Bue, Research Associate at UNU-WIDER, Lecturer in the Department of Economics and Finance, University of Bari; Tu Thi Ngoc Le, Tu Thi Ngoc Le, PhD in Economics, Hoa Sen University; Manuel Santos Silva, Postdoctoral researcher at the Centre for Interdisciplinary Economics, University of Münster; and Kunal Sen, Director of UNU-WIDER; Professor of Development Economics at the Global Development Institute, University of Manchester


The gender pay-gap is one of the foremost indicators of gender inequality and thus a guide for women’s economic empowerment policies. Although there is abundant data available on the phenomenon in OECD economies, this is not the case for the majority of developing countries, where most workers are self-employed and do not receive a regular wage, making it difficult to measure “pay gaps for similar work”. In a recent study for the United Nations University, we took a different approach, examining the gender gap in vulnerable employment in 101 developing countries worldwide. The results have important implications for policymakers.

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To recover from the crisis, tax the wealth of multimillionaires like me


By Djaffar Shalchi, Entrepreneur from Denmark and Founder of Millionaires for Humanity, a network of wealthy people who advocate for raising taxes on wealthy people


As the world reels from the COVID-19 crisis, countries desperately need to finance health for all, the economic recovery, and poverty reduction. And as the world grapples with the social tensions generated by rising inequality, countries desperately need to find a way to rebuild social cohesion. The great news for 2022 is that there is a way: tax the wealth of multimillionaires to help fund the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

I know – because I am one of the multimillionaires who would have to pay a wealth tax.

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Building a more collaborative and inclusive international co-operation system


By Xiuli Xu, Professor, Dean of the College of International Development and Global Agriculture (CIDGA), China Agricultural University


The term “development” that emerged in Western Europe over 300 years ago has evolved into a set of ideas, institutions and practices, particularly encompassing the concept of official development aid (ODA) that emerged after the Second World War, led by OECD countries. Development concepts, principles and approaches have long been supplied by Western countries, even though a distinction exists between “an interpretive discourse” and “a normative discourse” – with the former indicating a wider pattern of non-Western countries’ societal change and the latter consisting of Western donor agencies’ deliberate efforts to “improve” recipient countries.

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Least Developed Country graduation: Past, present and future


By Jose Antonio Ocampo, Professor at Columbia University and chair of the ECOSOC Committee for Development Policy. Former UN Under-Secretary-General for Economic and Social Affairs and Finance Minister of Colombia


As the world prepares for the 5th United Nations Conference on the Least Developed Countries (LDC5) in Doha[1], we need to ask not only whether this category is still relevant today but also what graduation from this status implies. After the LDC category was created fifty years ago, the number of such countries grew steadily due to the emergence of newly independent countries that faced significant disadvantages as well as major setbacks experienced by other developing countries. Nonetheless, LDC status was envisaged as a temporary phase in a country’s development trajectory: the concept of graduation was introduced twenty years after the LDC category itself.

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How much is an elephant worth? Valuing natural capital to protect nature and improve wellbeing


By Ekkehard Ernst, ILO Research Department and Geneva Macro Labs


Countries in the Global South dispose of a wealth of natural resources. Yet, many of them are also among the least developed. In the following I will argue that we have the tools to ensure that restoring and maintaining this astonishing biodiversity will enable these countries to reach middle-income status over the next decade, at the same time safeguarding our survival.

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Keeping 1.5 degrees alive means a better future for everyone


By Jayathma Wickramanayake, Secretary-General’s Envoy on Youth, and Heeta Lakhani and Marie-Claire Graf, Focal Points – UNFCCC Youth Constituency


“Climate change will affect youth, children and future generations the most if we do not take action now!” This narrative is frequently heard at climate events in recent years, yet climate commitments and targets set by world leaders continue to focus on the distant future instead of prioritising the urgent climate action needed today. Families are already being repeatedly knocked into poverty, while eco-anxiety is rising among children and youth confronted by a disastrous future. Heat waves are leading to school closures, while floods, cyclones and droughts are driving unprecedented rates of food insecurity.

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How aid for trade can best support Least Developed Countries in the next decade


By Ratnakar Adhikari, Executive Director of the Enhanced Integrated Framework Executive Secretariat at the World Trade Organisation and Annette Ssemuwemba, Deputy Executive Director of the Enhanced Integrated Framework Executive Secretariat at the World Trade Organisation


The median recovery time of least developed countries (LDCs) from the economic impact of the COVID-19 pandemic is three years, according to the International Monetary Fund. More worryingly, more than a dozen of them are likely to take at least five years to recover.   

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Street view of the market in Lome, Togo, Western Africa, October 16, 2007. Photo by EiZivile, Shtetterstock

50 ans de pays moins avancés : l’heure est venue pour une nouvelle génération de mesures de soutien international


Par Ablamba Ahoéfavi Johnson, Ministre, Secrétaire général de la Présidence de la République du Togo.


La catégorie des pays les moins avancés (PMA) a été établie par l’Assemblée générale des Nations Unies en 1971, suite à la prise de conscience par la communauté internationale de la nécessité de mettre en place des mesures d’appui aux pays souffrant de handicaps structurels et qui sont menacés par l’extrême pauvreté.

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