April 09, 2009
Jeffrey Sachs on Shape of U.S. International Aid
Jeffrey Sachs just published an Op-Ed on improving Obama's international aid for agriculture through local participation in shaping the program. Jeffrey Sachs, "Homegrown Aid," New York Times, Apr. 8, 2009.
February 05, 2009
Social Entreprenuership and Obama
Of interest perhaps to students considering applying for social entreprenuership grants such as Echoing Green is a short paper on what Obama could do to support such activities: Michele Jolin, "Innovating the White House: How the next President of the United States can spur social entreprenuership," Stanford Social Innovation Review (Spring 2008).
(Another article that seems interesting is "Romanticizing the Poor," by Aneel Karnani and critiquing "bottom-up" market solutions to poverty, but it requires a subscription to read.)
-Courtesy of Echoing Green. E.R. firstname.lastname@example.org
January 23, 2009
National Prayer Service -- focus on poverty
Though most people probably have seen Obama's inaugural speech (full text here), probably fewer saw the speech given by Rev. Sharon Watkins for the National Prayer Service the day after inauguration. It focused on poverty and the need to work on this even with the other problems the country is facing (full text here, video here).
December 23, 2008
Alternative Christmas/Holiday Presents
It is that time again and if you haven't already done your holiday shopping or want to give generally here are some options that I have been emailed about in the last two weeks that I thought might be of interest.
Two non-profits founded by law students at American University stand out as great examples of what committed students are capable of:
- Roots and Wings International. Founded by AU 3L Erik Swanson, Roots and Wings provides college scholarships to an indigenous community in Guatemala. The scholarship recipients then become teachers in their own community, creating a virtuous cycle. Roots and Wings is now working on getting funding for both scholarships ($750 provides a scholarship for an entire year) and constructing a school for the community. To make a donation, click here.
- Asylum Access. Amalia Greenberg, an AU 3L, helped launch the work of this non-profit "dedicated to making refugee rights an on-the-ground reality in Africa, Asia and Latin America." It does this by supporting local legal aid efforts on behalf of refugees and has offices in Tanzania, Ecuador, Thailand. To make a donation, click here.
A couple of other causes that seem worthy of charitable holiday donations and that I have gotten emails about:
- Heartland Alliance. I can't quickly summarize all that they do because it spans a whole range of human need. But they have created a "catalogue" where you can buy things like a "wellness check" for a newborn baby or pay an electric bill for a struggling family. To make a purchase/donation, click here.
- Your local foodbank. This or a donation to someone in the armed forces via a USO care package was suggested in an autogenerated email from Michelle Obama.
-Note: I am in El Salvador for the break and I may be unable to post other suggestions either related to this post or in general for a while given limits on my internet access. Cheers, E.R. email@example.com
May 06, 2008
Global Food Crisis
The "globe's worst food crisis in a generation" is occurring right now and the Washington Post today published a good introduction to the crisis. Anthony Faiola, "The New Economics of Hunger," Washington Post, April 27, 2008. A photo gallery is associated with the story, as are two very good graphics, one on which countries have grain, and one presenting reasons for the rise in grain prices.
Judge Posner and Gary Becker have both commented about the rising prices on their blog (click by name). A New York times Op-Ed by Tyler Cowen, "Freer Trade Could Fill the World's Rice Bowl" April 27, 2008, makes its premise clear in its title. The World Bank's website includes a statement by President Zoellick as well as a video overview of the crisis and a policy statement of the crisis/World Bank response. Maros Ivanic & Will Martin also have a working paper on topic "Implications of Higher Global Food Prices for Poverty in Low-Income Countries" (World Bank Policy Research Working Paper 4594, April 2008).
UPDATE: A number of other blog postings have covered this crisis in much greater detail (thanks to Patrick S. O'Donnell's comment, which I though was worth bringing out of the comment part of the page):
- Patrick S. O'Donnell at Ratio Juris Blog
- Deven Desai at Concurring Opinions
- Rebecca Bratspies at IntLawGrrls