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On Corruption in Africa

02.16.2006
The Institute of Public Policy Analysis in Nigeria is soon to release a report on corruption (in its February Newsletter), which suggests that foreign aid contributes to the problem as elites skim off their portion at every level. Dr. Kasper, the author of the report, argues that 'corruption is a bl...

Revising the OECD Anti-Bribery Convention

02.15.2006
When the OECD Anti-Bribery Convention was drafted in 1997 and entered into force in 1999, it was a significant step forward, to say the least, for efforts to combat bribery in international business transactions.  Yet, more needs to be done, says a new report released by the Center for Global Devel...

Update on the Russian NGO Law

02.15.2006
The passing of the Russian law on NGOs [see my earlier post on this] has stirred up a lot of controversy over the past several months.  But, did the international development community and Russian NGOs worry too much too soon?  Or not?  Here is what the Moscow Times has to say: Despite sizzlin...

Overcoming obstacles to information

02.15.2006
Language is the most fundamental unit in information gathering. Without it, human beings would have a limited capacity to communicate. Language has often been the cause of miscommunication and misunderstanding, a problem that is exacerbated by the lack of precision in translation. Sometimes, ther...

Coming to Market

02.14.2006
Even during the Soviet occupation, Ayamuddin's father was a businessman. He started out by selling small articles of clothing by the side of the road. Then the Soviets left Afghanistan and civil war ravaged Kabul. The opportunities to conduct business were scarce and Ayamuddin's father continued to ...

Development Banks and Anti-Corruption

02.13.2006
The Asian Development Bank (ADB) is taking the necessary steps to hold companies accountable for corrupt behavior. [ADB] last year banned 40 firms and 22 individuals from working for the multilateral agency due to corruption, the Manila-based bank said today. Since the bank began investigating corr...

Salwa’s Story

02.13.2006
I remember the day that Salwa’s father came to see me.  He was dressed impeccably and his demeanor was refined.  He came to our office in Kabul at Salwa’s request in order to talk to me about her possible employment with CIPE.  Salwa desperately wanted the job.  As a top student at t...

Help Africa Help Itself

02.13.2006
Is "doubling aid and forgiving debt" a good strategy for eliminating poverty in Africa?  Bill Easterly certainly doesn't think so.  He argues that such a strategy is not enough for getting the continent on the path of economic growth and prosperity in his op-ed in the Washington Post.  The title ...

Vision for the Future

02.10.2006
In Kabul, schools take a three-month break in the winter, due to scarce heating. When school got out this year, 17 year old Muslim was determined to do something productive over the vacation. He went to his father with ideas for improving the family business, which sells prescription glasses and con...

Hope Grows in the Killing Fields

02.09.2006
Jan Mohammad, Governor of Uruzgan Province, has known little but war throughout his life.  A man with one eye, uneducated, yet wise from years of conflict against the Russians and the Taliban.  His militia is everywhere, and when we arrive in a military convoy from the U.S. military base in Tarin ...
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