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© UNU-WIDER/Alexander Zach
Staff, Director, Rector and Board of UNU-WIDER

For the fourth year running the United Nations University World Institute for Development Economics Research (UNU-WIDER) is ranked in the top ten of... Read more...


On 14 January 2014, the Vietnamese Minister of Planning and Investment (MPI) Bui Quang Vinh presented a Medal of Honour, the highest official award... Read more... 

Photo: The Minister of Planning and Investment Bui Quang Vinh and Professor Finn Tarp.
The Minister of Planning and Investment, Vietnam, Bui Quang Vinh giving Professor Finn Tarp the medal of honour.


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Papers, presentations, reports, articles, and videos available on the event websites:


© Evan Schneider/UN Photo


ReCom results meeting: Aid for Gender Equality

Copenhagen, Denmark, 16 December 2013


© UN Photo/Shareef Sarhan


ReCom results meeting: Challenges in Fragility and Governance

Copenhagen, Denmark, 23 October 2013


ReCom results meeting: Aid and Our Changing Environment

ReCom results meeting: Aid and our changing environment


ReCom results meeting: Aid and the Social Sectors

ReCom results meeting: Aid and the Social Sectors


For more research findings from the ReCom- project go here.

Fragility and Aid - What Works?

25 October 2013, New York, USA

© UN Photo/UNICEF/Marco Dormino

Inclusive Growth in Africa: Measurement, Causes, and Consequences

20-21 September 2013, Helsinki, Finland

© UN Photo/Arne Hoel

WIDER Annual Lecture 17: 'Egalitarian principles – the foundation for sustainable peace' by President Martti Ahtisaari

19 September 2013, Helsinki, Finland

© Allison Kwesell / World Bank


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Falling Inequality in Latin America: Policy Changes and Lessons. Edited by Giovanni Andrea Cornia


Falling Inequality in Latin America: Policy Changes and Lessons

Edited by Giovanni Andrea Cornia

The book aims to document and explain the sizeable decline of income inequality that has taken place in Latin America during the 2000s. It does so through an exploration of inequality changes in six representative countries, and ten policy chapters dealing with macroeconomics, foreign trade, taxation, labour market, human capital formation, and social assistance, which point to the emergence of a 'new policy model'. The book addresses a major issue in economic development with profound implications for many developing regions and those OECD countries mired in a long-lasting financial crisis and economic stagnation. Read more

Also available as: eBook


All UNU-WIDER books published by Oxford University Press are currently available to WIDERAngle readers at an exclusive 20% discount by clicking here

(offer applied in shopping basket). For more information about this offer, please contact:



Publications search

Please search our archive of publications.

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External announcements

DFID and ESRC announce call for research on China’s development lessons for and engagement with Africa

The UK Department for International Development (DFID) and the Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC) today announced a research collaboration of up to £4.5 million, to investigate in comparative perspective the economic development impact of China's engagement in sub-Saharan Africa. The research will also critically evaluate what lessons China's own economic development transformation can offer other developing countries - in particular in low-income Africa.

Successful projects will either take as a starting point a developmental challenge facing Africa and examine possible solutions linked to recent experience from China’s own economic development, or build our understanding of aspects of China’s engagement with Africa relevant to the continent’s economic development.

Research grants will be for up to four years in duration with a value of between £200,000 and £2 million. For more information on the research programme and the application process, please visit: DECARP or contact DECARP@esrc.ac.uk


New funding opportunity from ESRC and DFID will close on 25 March 2014

ESRC/DFID Education and Development: Raising learning outcomes in education systems call 2013-2014.

A 'Town Hall meeting'

Strategies for education research in international development. Senior representatives from the UK Department for International Development (DFID), UK Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC), World Bank and USAID will outline their priorities in education research for international development, and take questions. The UK Collaborative on Development Sciences (UKCDS), as a group of funders, will host the event, promoting constructive two-way dialogue between the research and funding communities, and networking within the academic community.  

Call for Papers: IEA Young African Scholars Program
IEA World Congress, 6-10 June 2014, Amman, Jordan

The IEA is the association of the economic associations from around the world, and is the unique international organization that brings together economists from developed and developing countries across a broad range of fields.  More than 500 economists will attend this year’s congress and over 400 papers will be presented in parallel academic sessions. In addition, there will be a number of policy sessions and keynote lectures.

A special session on Africa will be organized there to allow young scholars from Africa to attend and present their research. This special session aims to provide a forum for discussing innovative theoretical and empirical research on the key challenges facing Africa, and to facilitate the exchange of views among researchers and policymakers as the continent search its path towards economic emergence. 


INCORE Announcement 

MSc in Applied Peace and Conflict Studies. Visit the programme website here for more information


Unlocking the Potential for Groundwater for the Poor (UPGro) Announcement of Opportunity: Consortium Grants 2014

Closing date: Monday 3 March 2014 16:00 UK local time (GMT/UTC)

Outline proposals are invited for a new funding round as part of the Unlocking the Potential for Groundwater for the Poor in sub-Saharan Africa research programme funded by DFID, NERC and ESRC. 

Further information is available here


Please visit:


Africa Economic Research Consortium AERC


The Association for the Advancement of African Women Economists (AAAWE)


Please visit:

African Economic Research Consortium (AERC)

The Association for the Advancement of African Women Economists (AAAWE)

© UNU-WIDER/Alexander Zach

UNU-WIDER Staff and Board, 2014

The WIDERAngle editorial team:

Executive Editor - Tony Addison 
Managing Editor - Annett Victorero 
Copy Editor - Lorraine Telfer-Taivainen 
Editor - James Stewart 
Web administration and digital content - Anu Laakso and Elli Keränen
Assistant - Martin Maingi 

January 2014


From the Editor’s Desk

Tony Addison

The first Angle of 2014 comes amidst the start up of our new research programme which is now kicked off. It has three big themes: transformation, inclusion and sustainability. We’ll be putting up further details of projects and conferences on the website as things evolve. Right now, I’m in Dar es Salaam where we are building up the Tanzania side of our programme–and this looks especially exciting. Tanzania has come far since I first came here to begin my career in development in 1980, so it’s great to see the optimism around. And there is at least a 30oC degree difference in temperature between Dar and Helsinki at the moment–where we were recently down to minus 15oC.  Full article

The panelist and chair of the session on gender equality from a partner country perspective that took place in the ReCom meeting on 16 December in Copenhagen, Denmark. 

From left to right: Shirin Sharmin Chaudhury, the speaker of the Jatiyo Sangshad/ Parliament of Bangladesh, Finn Tarp, Director, United Nations University World Institute for Development Economics Research UNU-WIDER, Attiya Inayatullah, Former Ministry for Women's Development, Population Planning, Social Welfare and Special Education, Member of Parliament, and only Women member on the National Security Council (1999-2001), Pakistan, Khieu Serey Vuthea, Director General of Social Development, Ministry of Women's Affairs, Cambodia.

Report from Gender Equality results meeting

Roger Williamson

The last ReCom research results meeting brought together gender experts around the world to discuss a range of key issues for development. The meeting started with a welcome by Amartya Sen who stated unequivocally that gender equality is, first and foremost, an issue of humanity. Caren Grown introduced the scope of the ReCom  gender equality theme. The day was filled with new insights and intense conversation on topics ranging from the economy, education, health, to the importance of statistics, gender mainstreaming and foreign aid actors. Full article

Read the social media report from the event.

The Bangladesh paradox – an interview with Shirin Sharmin Chaudhury

Carl-Gustav Lindén

Bangladesh has made some remarkable strides in development and poverty reduction since independence, despite generally weak governance. The quota for women in parliament was raised to 50 out of 350 in 2011, but the actual number is higher. That means that 20% of the seats belong to women, which is much more than in most developing countries but less than the often quoted critical mass of 30% set by the follow up to the Beijing Platform for Action. And it should be noted that the majority of people in the country living on US$1 a day are women.

Recently the UNU-WIDER communications specialist Carl-Gustav Lindén had the opportunity to ask one these prominent women what does it takes to be a female politician in the country; Dr Shirin Sharmin Chaudhury is the current, and first ever, woman, Speaker of the Parliament of Bangladesh, having previously served as the State Minister of the Ministry of Women and Children Affairs. Full article 



Trends in environmental aid: global issues, bilateral delivery

A consistent demand of developing countries has been that any requirement to pursue economic development in a way that is less damaging to the global environment be paid for, in part, by developed countries. Environmental aid flows have increased significantly, from roughly US$10 billion per year in the early 2000s, to roughly US$15 billion per year by the end of the decade. At the same time as the global problems facing the environment are being recognized through an increase of aid, the delivery of environmental is becoming gradually more bilateral. Full article

The effectiveness of aid to women’s political participation in MENA

The MENA region has substantially reduced gender inequality in education and health outcomes in recent years, but the role of women in the policymaking process in these countries remains limited. Even when women are in parliament they do not have the ‘critical mass’ necessary to facilitate change. How can foreign aid support increased political representation of women in the MENA region? Full article 

Assessing the role of gender in DfID and Sida challenge funds

Corporate actors are playing an increasingly important role in international development. Donors have taken note of the new role of business in development and, in some cases, are combining the experience of traditional donors with the business knowledge of corporate entities in new partnership modalities, such as challenge funds  which encourage companies to compete for support and investment in much the same way that academics seek out research funding. While this new aid modality has great potential, it is essential to examine the extent to which it integrates important social development agendas—such as gender—into their agenda. Full article

Job creation and small and medium size enterprises

Aid providers seeking to promote employment often target their aid towards small and medium-sized businesses. This is because, globally speaking, these firms are responsible for a large part of employment in the formal sector, in low-income countries their share of employment is nearly 80 per cent. But, due to the high failure rates and low wages of small and medium size enterprises (SMEs) focusing on them may not be the most productive use of aid and firm size alone is too crude a measure to be of much use to policy makers.  Full article

The development process – the problem of imitating success

While modern development discourse espouses the idea that different countries require different solutions, there is still an overemphasis on imported—one size fits all—solutions. This approach not only fails to develop state capacity, but also slows the process by encouraging developing countries to adopt predefined solutions which focus on form over function, and thus neglect the importance of experimentation. Full article

The unintended consequences of the MCP on foreign aid for family planning

There is an increasing awareness that providing women with the possibility to plan, prevent, and terminate pregnancies is an important component of poverty alleviation and economic development efforts. Despite this, family planning needs remain unmet in many developing economies, especially in sub-Saharan Africa. Further exacerbating the paucity of donor funds, restrictive foreign policy decisions in the USA, one of the largest donors,, periodically limits the amount of aid earmarked for such programmes in accordance to the ideology of the party in power due to the Mexico City Policy (MCP). All else being equal when the MCP is enacted family planning aid is reduced globally by between 3-6 per cent annually. Full article

The microeconomic impact of interventions against HIV/AIDS, tuberculosis and malaria

HIV/AIDS, tuberculosis (TB) and malaria remain the leading causes of morbidity and mortality, with 99 per cent of people who die from these diseases living in developing countries. However, besides the health burden, these diseases also have negative macroeconomic effects due to decreased economic growth, primarily in sub-Saharan Africa. At the micro level these effects are far more relevant for vulnerable households, which are evident as losses in wages and income; absenteeism from education and work; cost of treatment; and other expenses involved with care and transportation to health centres. What interventions have been most successful in mitigating the microeconomic effects of these diseases? Full article

A systematic review of the impact of microfinance on poverty

Since its institutionalization about 35 years ago, microfinance has been promoted and supported by foreign aid as an innovative tool against poverty and vulnerability. Microfinance has proved not only to allow the poor to access credit, but because it often relies on group-lending also encourages peer sharing while reducing transaction costs to the lender by achieving economies of scale.  Although microfinance has been examined under various socio-economic conditions, , there is no consensus on the impact it has had on poverty reduction. Given this, it is important to review the available literature to assess whether any clear conclusions can be drawn about the impact microfinance on poverty. Full article 


Inequality in Latin America: the role of conditional cash transfer - An interview with Armando Barrientos

In this interview Professor Armando Barrientos reviews the recent UNU-WIDER project on inequality in Latin America which looks at the regional trend of decreasing inequality since 2000 and the reasons behind it. Full interview and video

Brazil's economics success: Lessons for Africa - An interview with Armando Barrientos and Ed Amann

Armando Barrientos and Ed Amann give an introduction to their research project at the Brooks World Poverty Institute on the relevance of the Brazilian development model for Africa.
Full interview and video



To be announced soon, please see Calender of events 2014.


Presentation and book launch within the framework of ECLAC's public finance workshop on fiscal policy.
Santiago, Chile 22 January 2014

Presentation and book launch within the framework of ECLAC's regional annual seminar on fiscal policy.
Santiago, Chile 20 January 2014


ReCom results meeting: Aid for gender Equality, 16 December 2013. © Photo John Isaac/World Bank

ReCom results meeting: Aid for Gender Equality. Copenhagen, Denmark 16 December 2013

Project meeting: 'Good Aid in Hard Places: Learning from What Has Worked in Fragile Contexts'. Helsinki, Finland 12 December 2013

Peking University National School of Development, UNU-WIDER, African Development Bank and World Bank meeting of contributors to the Oxford Handbook of Africa and Economics, Beijing, China
8 December 2013

Presentation: Symposium on the Interface of Academic Research and Government Policy, UK 6 December 2013


Book: Democratic Trajectories in Africa: Unravelling the Impact of Foreign Aid

Book edited by Danielle Resnick and Nicolas van de Walle

Book: Falling Inequality in Latin America: Policy Changes and Lessons
Book edited by Giovanni Andrea Cornia

UNU-WIDER Special Issue: Entrepreneurship and Conflict Journal of Conflict Resolution
Edited by Tilman Brück, Wim Naudé and Philip Verwimp

Book: Achieving Development Success: Strategies and Lessons from the Developing World
Edited by Augustin K. Fosu

Book: Pathways to Industrialization in the Twenty-First Century: New Challenges and Emerging Paradigms
Edited by Adam Szirmai, Wim Naudé, and Ludovico Alcorta

Book: Development Success: Historical Accounts from More Advanced Countries
Edited by Augustin K. Fosu

Journal: Review of Development Economics Special Issue: Climate Change and Economic Development
Guest Editors: Channing Arndt, Paul Chinowsky, Ken Strzepek, Finn Tarp, and James Thurlow

Book: The Role of Elites in Economic Development
Edited by the late Alice H. Amsden, Alisa DiCaprio, and James A. Robinson

Journal Article: The Political Economy of Green Growth: Cases from Southern Africa 
Danielle Resnick, Finn Tarp, and James Thurlow

Policy briefs

Democratic Trajectories in Africa: Unravelling the Impact of Foreign Aid
Danielle Resnick  07/2013

Business and the Barrel of a Gun: Understanding Entrepreneurship and Violent Conflict in Developing Countries
Wim Naudé, Tilman Brück and Philip Verwimp 04/2013

Achieving Development Success: Strategies and Lessons from the Developing World
Augustin Kwasi Fosu 03/2013

Industrial Policy for Development
Wim Naudé and Adam Szirmai 02/2013

Development Success: Historical Accounts from More Advanced Countries
Augustin Kwasi Fosu 01/2013

WIDER Working Papers 2014

Distributional impacts of the 2008 global food price spike in Vietnam
Andy McKay and Finn Tarp January WP/2014/030

Transfers for extreme poverty reduction: Implications for patron-client relationships in the context of Bangladesh's agricultural reformation
Lucy Scott January WP/2014/029

The impact of climate change on pastoral production systems: A study of climate variability and household adaptation strategies in southern Ethiopian rangelands
Wassie Berhanu and Fekadu Beyene January WP/2014/028

Climate variability and household welfare in northern Ghana
Paul Kwame Nkegbe and Naasegnibe Kuunibe
January WP/2014/027

Evaluation of non-governmental development organizations
Chris Elbers and Jan Willem Gunning January WP/2014/026

First order dominance analysis: Child wellbeing in the Democratic Republic of Congo
Malokele Nanivazo January WP/2014/025

Using evidence and operational responses to accelerate gender equality in Kenya
Åsa Torkelsson January WP/2014/024

Aid and policy preference in oil-rich countries: Comparing Indonesia and Nigeria
Ahmad Helmy Fuady January WP/2014/023

How do we increase the share of aid to agriculture in Africa?
Peter Quartey January WP/2014/022

The evolution of industry in Uganda
Marios Obwona, Isaac Shinyekwa, Julius Kiiza January WP/2014/021

Implications of climate change for Ghana’s economy
Channing Arndt, Felix Asante, and James Thurlow
January WP/2014/020

Industrial development and growth in Nigeria: Lessons and challenges
L. N. Chete, J. O. Adeoti, F. M. Adeyinka, and O. Ogundele
January WP/2014/019

Producing biofuels in low-income countries: An integrated environmental and economic assessment for Tanzania
Giacomo Branca, Erika Felix, Irini Maltsoglou, Luis E. Rincón, and James Thurlow January WP/2014/018

The effect of climate change on economic growth: Evidence from Sub-Saharan Africa
Paul Alagidede, George Adu, and Prince Boakye Frimpong
January WP/2014/017

Effectiveness of international aid for diarrheal disease control and potential for future impact
Richard A. Cash and James R. Potter January WP/2014/016

Foreign aid effectiveness in African economies: Evidence from a panel threshold framework
Didier Yélognissè Alia and Romuald E. Kouadio Anago
January WP/2014/015

Employment, unemployment, and underemployment in Africa Stephen Golub and Faraz Hayat January WP/2014/014

Climate change and economic growth prospects for Malawi: An uncertainty approach
Channing Arndt, Adam Schlosser, Kenneth Strzepek
January WP/2014/013

Transition regimes and security sector reforms in Sierra Leone and Liberia
Ato Kwamena Onoma January WP/2014/012

Global collective action in health: The WDR+20 landscape of core and supportive functions
Nathan Blanchet, Milan Thomas, Rifat Atun, Dean Jamison, Felicia Knaul, and Robert Hecht January WP/2014/011

Gender inequality, female leadership, and aid allocation: A panel analysis of aid for education
Linda Kleemann, Peter Nunnenkamp, and Rainer Thiele
January WP/2014/010

Optimum fisheries management under climate variability: Evidence from artisanal marine fishing in Ghana
Wisdom Akpalu, Isaac Dasmani, and Ametefee K. Normanyo
January WP/2014/009

Youth in Tanzania’s urbanizing mining settlements: Prospecting a mineralized future
Deborah Fahy Bryceson January WP/2014/008

Aid and the environment: The case of Botswana
James S. Juana January WP/2014/007

Minimum wage and informality in Ecuador
Carla Canelas January WP/2014/006

Aid, environment, and climate change in Africa: The case of Senegal January WP/2014/005

Global interpersonal inequality: Trends and measurement
Miguel Niño-Zarazúa, Laurence Roope, and Finn Tarp
January WP/2014/004

Health shocks and coping strategies: State health insurance scheme of Andhra Pradesh, India
Sowmya Dhanaraj January WP/2014/003

Aid and institution-building in fragile states: The case of Somali-inhabited eastern Horn of Africa
Ken Menkhaus January WP/2014/002

Cities of youth: Post-millennial cases of mobility and sociality
Karen Tranberg Hansen January WP/2014/001

WIDER Working Papers 2013

Aid to Africa: The changing context
Tony Addison, Saurabh Singhal, and Finn Tarp
December WP/2013/144

The impact of foreign aid on economic growth in ECOWAS countries: A simultaneous-equation model
Patricia A. Adamu December WP/2013/143

Aid and the environment: Uganda
Eseza Kateregga December WP/2013/142

South Sudan: The road from the Paris Declaration to the reality of Juba, 2005-11
Greg Larson December WP/2013/141

Poverty, vulnerability, and reference dependent utility
Isabel Günther and Johannes Maier December WP/2013/140

Aid and environment in Burkina Faso
Yiriyibin Bambio December WP/2013/139

Asian donor support for gender equality and women’s empowerment: Comparative experience, challenges, and opportunities
Eugenia McGill December December WP/2013/138

The ideal of gender justice and the UNSCR 1325: Two case studies: Kenya and the Democratic Republic of Congo
Sirkku K. Hellsten December WP/2013/137

The international fiscal implications of global poverty reduction and global public goods provision
Valpy FitzGerald December WP/2013/136

REDD+ as performance-based aid: General lessons and bilateral agreements of Norway
Arild Angelsen December WP/2013/135

Economic history of industrialization in Cambodia
Sokty Chhair and Luyna Ung December WP/2013/134

Aid and the environment: The case of Kenya
Wilfred Nyangena December WP/2013/133

Aid and Dutch Disease: Evidence from Moroccan and Tunisian time-series data
Tony Addison and Mina Baliamoune-Lutz November WP/2013/132

The care connection: The World Bank and women’s unpaid care work in select sub-Saharan African countries
Sarah Bibler and Elaine Zuckerman November WP/2013/131

Is Kazakhstan vulnerable to natural resource curse?
Yessengali Oskenbayev and Aziz Karimov November WP/2013/130

Innovation at the World Bank: Selective perspectives over three decades 1975-2005
Roger Grawe November WP/2013/129

Environmental and climate finance in a new world: How past environmental aid allocation impacts future climate aid
Christopher Marcoux, Bradley C. Parks, Christian M. Peratsakis, J.
Timmons Roberts, and Michael J. Tierney November WP/2013/128

Education from the bottom up: UNICEF’s education programme in Somalia
James Williams and William Cummings November WP/2013/127

State-building through neotrusteeship: Kosovo and East Timor in comparative perspective
Lise Morjé Howard November WP/2013/126

Industrial policy and development in Ethiopia: Evolution and present experimentation
Mulu Gebreeyesus November WP/2013/125

Foreign capital inflow and economic growth in Cameroon
Samuel Fambon November WP/2013/124

Aid and environment in Ghana
Daniel Kwabena Twerefou November WP/2013/123

Aid and governance in vulnerable states: Bangladesh and Pakistan since 1971
Mushtaq H. Khan November WP/2013/122


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