From the Editor’s Desk (September 2012)

Tony Addison

Mid-September finds UNU-WIDER very busy preparing for our big conference on climate change and development policy that takes place later this month, as well as our WIDER Annual Lecture by Lant Pritchett of Harvard University (you can also register here to view it as a webcast) just beforehand. The climate change conference is a great opportunity to take stockIMG_2745.jpg on the biggest challenge facing humanity. And Lant Pritchett’s lecture gives us the chance to re-examine the whole agenda of state effectiveness in relation to development. Check out our website over the coming days and weeks as these events unfold. There is also a Review of Development Economics special issue on climate change and development. Finally, with employment to the fore in the development debate, the topic of ‘Jobs–Aid at Work’ is our theme for the 8 October ReCom results meeting in Copenhagen (also available as a webcast).

And before introducing you to this month’s Angle I should remind readers that the application process for next year’s visiting scholars and PhD internships at UNU-WIDER is about to close. Further details here on our website.

This month’s Angle kicks off with two pieces from our climate change work. James Thurlow’s piece introduces you to the forthcoming conference, while Youngfu Huang discusses whether the aims of development and climate change really compete as some suppose. You can read more about James and Youngfu, and their work here.

Our Research and Communications on Foreign Aid programme (ReCom) has a new member of the team—Carl-Gustav Lindén, who joined UNU-WIDER as a senior communications specialist over the summer. In this Angle, Carl-Gustav reflects on the communications interface between research and policy. Some innovative communication tools will be rolled out for our 8th October ReCom meeting.

Turning to the GUESTAngle, we are delighted to welcome this month, John Langmore and Perrin Wilkins, both of the University of Melbourne, whose subject is international tax co-operation. They highlight the costs of global tax evasion for developing and developed countries alike. Candidates for high political office should take note.

ResearchAngle gives you a further taste of some recent work. Malokele Nanivazo and Lucy Scott set out the agenda for foreign aid and gender equality (one of our 5 ReCom themes). We had a successful first workshop on this interrelationship in July (reported in the last Angle here ). We also include summaries by James Stewart of UNU-WIDER working papers from two other ReCom themes. The first, which comes from the governance and fragility theme, is by Aili Mari Tripp on ‘Donor Assistance and Political Reform in Tanzania’ (a paper I will read with great interest since Tanzania was my first taste of Africa thirty years ago). The second summary is of John Page’s working paper on ‘Aid, Structural Change and the Private Sector in Africa’. John urges aid donors to think again on industrial policy.

In case you have not been keeping up to date on UNU-WIDER’s working papers, we now have more than 70 published so far this year (go here for the latest). Recent highlights include: M.G. Quibria on microcredit and poverty alleviation (next month’s GuestAngle will be by M.G.); Yongfu Huang and Jingjing He on the decarboniZation of Chinese agriculture; two papers by Yongfu Huang, Jingjing He, and Finn Tarp on the clean development mechanism; David Bevan on aid, fiscal policy, climate change, and growth; and Poul Nielson on successes in EU aid. 

Our library of videos is steadily building up, and the latest VideoAngle features David Richards on human rights and development aid. David participated in the Democracy and Fragility ReCom results meeting in Stockholm before the summer.

You will have noticed that Angle’s ‘sidebar’ has become busier over the last few issues. There you will see links to our events, including the annual lecture, the ReCom site, and the climate change conference. We have also included a link to a new and exciting organization, the Association for the Advancement of African Women Economists (AAAWE).

And the Helsinki weather? Getting chillier by the minute. The leaves are turning red, gold and yellow—wonderful vibrant colours. I can’t wait for the six months of winter, just around the corner. Angle returns in October.

Tony Addison is Chief Economist-Deputy Director, UNU-WIDER.

WIDERAngle newsletter
September 2012
ISSN 1238-9544