Categorie: Analysis (pagina 1 van 2)

World Bank Dispossessing Rural Poor

The World Bank’s Enabling the Business of Agriculture (EBA) project, launched in 2013, has sought agricultural reforms favouring the corporate sector. EBA was initially established to support the New Alliance for Food Security and Nutrition, initiated by the G8 to promote private agricultural development in Africa.
The New Alliance has been touted as “a new model of partnership” for agricultural transformation in Africa. The Bank has used the EBA to address the land issue in developing countries, particularly in Africa. The effort is strongly supported by the US and UK governments as well as the Gates Foundation, all strong proponents of corporate agriculture.
(Jomo Kwame Sundaram, Anis Chowdhury)
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The Poor and Middle Classes: who are they?

When I finished my research on the global poverty discourse, some twenty years ago, one of my conclusions was that the inevitable victims of the new neoliberal social paradigm would be the middle classes. This is why I have always preferred to focus on the importance of universal social protection instead of targeted poverty reduction. Lees verder

ISDS: Many Fear Meaningless Reforms

This week, representatives of around 100 countries are meeting in New York to talk about investor-state dispute settlement (ISDS). ISDS is a legal instrument that multinationals can use to sue governments for billions. External experts and observers fear that the new negotiations will amount to ‘old wine in new bottles’. They believe that those who benefit from this instrument (powerful states and top lawyers from the ISDS sector) are controlling the debate.

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Flawed conditions: the impact of the World Bank’s conditionality on developing countries

The World Bank exerts enormous influence over the  economies of developing countries through loan conditions, advisory services, technical assistance and policy blueprints. Conditions are significant because they tend to lock in a donor-driven reform agenda in recipient countries. Loan conditions are part of the World Bank’s Development Policy Financing (DPF) and have long been criticised by civil society, academics and developing country governments. They undermine borrower country ownership and restrict policy space, and all too often they have harmful impacts on the lives and livelihoods of people, especially the world’s poorest and most vulnerable.
This briefing aims to shed light on the extent to which the World Bank advances its own policy agenda through loan conditionality. Eurodad – the European Network on Debt and Development – examined the loan conditions attached to Development Policy Operations (DPOs) for 2017. We looked at 53 DPOs in 46 countries, including 30 International Development Assistance (IDA) operations (in 28 countries) and 23 International Bank for Reconstruction and Development (IBRD) operations (in 18 countries). We ‘unbundled’ conditions to identify all conditions including those that refer to more than one policy issue, and we found 506 conditions for 53 DPOs – 9.6 conditions per operation on average. We focused on prior actions, the conditions borrower countries need to fulfil before the loans are disbursed.
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Human Rights and Institutionalized religions


[As some of you know, I follow the issue of human rights and religion closely. I have found materials that ask important questions. I share them with you here – Claudio Schuftan].

A battle between faith and science?

-Is science the great antidote to the poison of enthusiasm and superstition? (Adam Smith)
-Science says the body is a machine; advertising says the body is a business; the body says I am a celebration; does the Church say the body is guilt? (Eduardo Galeano, Apuntes para Fin de Siglo) So, as regards guilt, without explaining it, does Christianity actually considers the original sin as a defining element/determinant of human behavior? (Edmundo Moure)
-Considering the immense power of Christianity, does this remind believers of their basic and uninterrupted condition as sinners? (Milan Kundera) So one can justifiably ask: What results then when God instructs the heart, not by ideas but by pains and contradictions? (De Caussade) Lees verder

What does universal social protection really mean?

The notion that social protection is “universal” rests on two elements, namely that “everyone” is “covered.”

In many cases, the debate revolves around the “everyone” aspect – that is, the rationale and modalities to cover all members of society and not just some. Yet, this assumes clarity on the meaning of “coverage.” This is a big assumption.

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By Ugo Gentilini, Senior Economist, Margaret Grosh, Senior Advisor, and Michal Rutkowski, Senior Director, Social Protection and Jobs Global Practice, The World Bank

Social protection: not simple, but worth the effort

Well, according to the OECD:

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The IMF on Basic Income

In advanced economies, universal basic income is often used as an instrument to address inadequate safety nets (and ensure inclusion) and a way to tackle the challenges of technological and demographic changes.

Discussions around universal basic income can be heated, both in a scholarly context and in public discourse, and there is no established common understanding. Very different income-support programs are often labeled “universal basic income,” even when they have little in common or do not aim at the same goal.

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Walking The Line Of Caution On Refugees And Migrants’ Health In Europe

Surely, the topic of human mobility has been the stumbling block in the common agenda of European countries for the last few years. In fact, the very existence of the European Union as we have known it so far is at stake, on this political issue. A certain degree of prudence would seem understandable, then, a few months ahead of the May EU elections. Surely, the intergovernmental nature of the UN agencies force them to interact with Member States, that is why exacerbating the political arena is a risky operation that may not pay off at all, in the long run. Moreover, for WHO Europe, the report on the health of refugees and migrant people in the 53 countries of the region is the first one of its kind, which may explain the hesitance of the beginner. But it is difficult to deny a bitter aftertaste, especially after the press conference.

By Nicoletta Dentico, director of Health Innovation in Practice (HIP)

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What happened to the WHO’s social justice project?

For 40 years, the World Health Organization has been subjected to pressure from powerful economic actors, separated from the people it serves and diverted from its public health mandate. Every principle and value of its 1978 social justice project « Health for All » has been undermined.


The people’s international health authority has fallen victim to neoliberal global restructuring, as have most social and economic institutions serving the public interest, including of course, many UN programmes and agencies. The WHO today is on its knees and deeply compromised. How did this happen ?


Health for All (HfA) became WHO’s slogan at the end of « Les trentes glorieuses » (1945-1975) – thirty years of genuine progress towards a fairer – and therefore a healthier – world. This was the era of decolonization when the need for redistribution of power and resources, including the rights of peoples to self determination and control over national resources was widely recognized and there was a strong commitment to universal, comprehensive public services to meet basic needs for health. It was a time of optimism, moral vision and genuine progress.  Lees verder

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