Category: Development and Aid

“At least we fed the hippos”

via TED “What you do [to provide better aid is] you shut up. You never arrive in a community with any ideas.” An often funny TED talk from Ernesto Sirolli on listening to communities in development, which also emphasises the importance of consulting entrepreneurs. My friend Nicholas (a programme manager on water and...

Mother and child on community work detail to assist with construction of a new kindergarten

Embedding dignity in development

‘A Day Without Dignity‘ was established to provide a counterbalance to the popular image of people in the developing world as hopeless, helpless, and in need of ‘saving’ by affluent Westerners. The latest of these images to be shared around the world are of Ugandans, apparently powerless against the warlord Joseph Kony,...

Ice

Vanilla Ice’s development advice

Maybe it’s because it’s a four-day weekend here, maybe I’ve been inspired by Britney Spears’ Guide To Semiconductor Physics (look it up), I don’t know, but I just discovered that Vanilla Ice, intentionally or not, offers one of the most essential pearls of international development wisdom I’ve seen yet: Stop; collaborate and...

Satellite broadband in the Cambodian countryside

Small voices

Duncan Green speculates in From Poverty To Power on why NGOs struggle with blogging. Why does anyone struggle with blogging? You feel like you’re going to be graded. You don’t necessarily want to share your thoughts with everyone. You started a draft post and deleted it a million times. Nothing much happened...

Repairing a borehole in Bosomkyekye, Ghana

Water, poo and people power

Last week, Ban Ki-moon announced that the UN millennium development goal to ‘halve the number of people who do not have access to safe drinking water’ by 2015 had been met – five years early. But it has quickly become clear that, while this is good news, it’s not all good news. The actual...

Cloud poo poo land

…one of the world’s most prominent development economists says Ghana is proving to be one of the strongest performers on the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) in Africa and unlike some of its African counterparts is likely to fulfill them by the 2015 deadline. Africa Rising: Jeffrey Sachs says Ghana’s future looks bright When I first read...

Making toilets objects of desire

“The people say ‘Why should I use the toilet? It’s fresh air outside, I can chit chat with my friend while I’m squatting there’. Our big breakthrough will happen when we look at the poor as if they are customers. We need to sell them products that are very beautiful and sexy....