Natural resources: from curse to purse. Weekly Compass, Issue 127, 26 October 2012
Africa’s current resource boom is at the centre of high-level discussions at this week’s 8th African Development Forum addressing the challenge of how to govern and harness natural resources for development. This will also be a central element of the African Caribbean Pacific Group of States meeting on Global Commodities in Brussels next week. ECDPM experts are participating in both meetings and Isabelle Ramdoo released her new paper ‘From Curse to Purse: Making extractive resources work for development.’ The Guardian cited Ramdoo explaining that Africa must diversify its economy to save itself from resource curse.
Regional action to boost food security in the Horn of Africa. Weekly Compass, Issue 127, 26 October 2012
Since the 2010 food and drought crisis in the Horn of Africa, a number of initiatives have been launched to address food insecurity and strengthen the region’s resilience to disasters. One of them is the regional Comprehensive Africa Agriculture Development Programme (CAADP) for north-east Africa, led by the Intergovernmental Authority on Development. A new ECDPM paper – building on series of studies mapping regional CAADP progress across Africa – presents early lessons on the complexities associated with using CAADP as a framework for regional action on food security. It highlights how important it is to clarify the links and possible synergies with other initiatives and recommends that a ‘roadmap’ identifying complementary actions and investment areas to boost the region’s food security could be useful.
‘Thorny issues’ in support to weak civil society. Weekly Compass, Issue 127, 26 October 2012
In fragile situations, state-society relations are at the core of the transition out of fragility, and civil society has an important role to play. It can contribute to a broader ownership of national development plans, contributes to domestic accountability and state-society relations, and fills a service gap. Perhaps even more importantly, civil society channels societal dynamics and can foster change, explains ECDPM’s Frauke de Weijer in a new discussion paper. Her research looks at how international support affects the ability of an often weak civil society to perform these functions and addresses some of the ‘thorny issues’ that arise from external engagement in fragile states.
Development ministers meet on MDGs, finance. Weekly Compass, Issue 126, 19 October 2012
At Monday’s EU Council meeting of Development Ministers, several stressed the importance of maintaining poverty eradication as the focus of the future development agenda, while addressing gaps in the existing MDGs framework, such as sustainable growth or fragility and conflict. In relation to financing for development, the EU, inter alia, decided to incorporate tax administration into policy dialogue with partner countries, support reform and help to combat illicit capital flows. Council conclusions also call for mainstreaming of civil society in all areas of cooperation. EU Member States also agreed that they should coordinate better in the programming process of future cooperation to ensure policy coherence for development and support for social protection.
This article was published in Great Insights Volume 1, Issue 9 (November 2012)