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Voices of Experience: A Conversation with Former Treasury Under Secretaries for International Affairs

There is no more valuable time than now, in the early days of the new administration, for a bipartisan exchange among leaders of previous administrationson the formulation and execution of the international economic policies. Join CGD for a conversation with three former Treasury Under Secretaries for International Affairs who played central roles in the Bush II and Obama administrations. The panel discusses the outlook for the global economy, international structural changes and challenges that have emerged since their time in office, the critical issues that will confront the next Under Secretary for International Affairs, and the nature of the job and lessons learned. This event marks the launch of the US Development Policy Initiative’s Voices of Experience series, which will feature discussions with senior officials from past administrations of both parties who shaped international development, economic, and financial policy.

Are We Ready for the Next Pandemic?

Consider this statement: Science knows how to deal with a pandemic outbreak, but policy gets in the way. That was how we framed a recent event at CGD with key people who led the US government’s response to the Ebola outbreak in 2014. Drawing from that event, this podcast brings you some ideas of how to improve the global system of response and increase our preparedness for the next inevitable outbreak. Speakers include Jeremy Konyndyk, Amy Pope, David Smith, Rebecca Martin, and Amanda Glassman.

The Conservative Case for OPIC: Harnessing the Private Sector for Development

With cuts to foreign aid on the horizon, the United States, now more than ever, needs to sharpen its tools to operate in a constrained budget environment. Key to this approach is a strong development finance institution that can leverage private investment to achieve development outcomes, as well as create opportunity for American companies abroad—all at less than no cost to the US taxpayer. At this event, Congressman Ted Yoho of Florida addresses the vital role the Overseas Private Investment Corporation plays in US development policy, and discusses how he came to support its mission. An expert panel discusses the conservative rationale behind OPIC, why its critics are wrong, and what can be done to strengthen the institution and leave it better prepared to address future development challenges.

Preventing the Next Pandemic: Opportunities and Challenges

An infectious disease outbreak anywhere on earth poses a direct threat to Americans. On airplanes, trains, and ships—and via migratory birds or insects that cannot be constrained by borders—pathogens can easily travel around the world, reaching a network of major cities in as little as 36 hours. Keeping Americans safe from the pandemic threat will require U.S. action and leadership both at home and abroad. A diverse panel of experts discusses the scale and scope of pandemic risk; the economic and security rationale for investment in pandemic preparedness; and opportunities to strengthen America’s ability to prevent and respond to the next pandemic.

Young Professionals and the Future of Global Development

Today’s newest recruits will determine tomorrow’s development agenda—and in this highly interactive, first-of-its-kind event, CGD research assistants and communications staff invite other young professionals and students to consider the future of global development.

What will international development look like in 20 years? What challenges will command our attention as leaders in the field? And how will we respond to, or rebuild, the fraying political consensus around development cooperation?

How to Make Disasters Predictable

Last year more than 83 million people in low- and middle-income countries were affected by natural disasters. We may not know when or where the next disaster will strike, but we know it will. So why do we still treat disasters like surprises? A new CGD report urges a different approach: make disasters predictable, using the principles and practices of insurance. Hear from four members of the working group in this week's podcast. 

Estimated Change in Total ODA Funding Level FY2016-FY2018

Given the false economies and the apparent prioritization of diplomatic and political objectives—what is the underlying strategic rationale here? At CGD we have been combing through the data to see what narrative emerges—and, in particular, which parts of the budget would sustain the most pain. This map shows the impact relative to all Official Development Assistance receipts to the countries.

Percent Change in the FY2016-2018 Budget

Percent Change in the FY2016 Budget to FY2018 Budget

Given the false economies and the apparent prioritization of diplomatic and political objectives—what is the underlying strategic rationale here? At CGD we have been combing through the data to see what narrative emerges—and, in particular, which parts of the budget would sustain the most pain. This map shows country-level cuts proportionally relative to FY2016 funding.

Absolute Difference from the FY2016 Budget to FY2018 Budget

Absolute Difference from the FY2016 Budget to FY2018 Budget

Given the false economies and the apparent prioritization of diplomatic and political objectives—what is the underlying strategic rationale here? At CGD we have been combing through the data to see what narrative emerges—and, in particular, which parts of the budget would sustain the most pain. This map shows the country-level cuts in absolute terms.

Payouts for Perils: Using Insurance to Radically Improve Emergency Aid

Emergencies cause poverty, drive displacement, and exacerbate insecurity. Aid to tackle natural disasters is generous, but mainly arrives when needs are acute rather than when it would do most good. Responding effectively is hard because budgets are uncertain and funding gets promised but not delivered. Please join us for the launch of a new CGD report Payouts for Perils: Using Insurance to Radically Improve Emergency Aid setting out how we can use the principles and practice of insurance to save lives, money and time when catastrophes strike.

Financing for Learning: Making Global Education a Reality

Building on the momentum of last year’s report of the International Commission on Financing Global Education Opportunity, chaired by former UK Prime Minister Gordon Brown, and the launch of the Education Cannot Wait Fund, incubated at UNICEF, to address learning needs in humanitarian emergencies, this event discusses how current investment can be leveraged and increased to ensure that every child can access their right to a quality education.

A Universal Basic Income for India? – Arvind Subramanian

The Indian Ministry of Finance’s 2017 Economic Survey considers—though does not commit to—the idea of a large-scale experiment in UBI, or universal basic income. How would it work? What effects would it have? Arvind Subramanian—lead author of the Survey, chief economic adviser to the government of India, and a CGD senior fellow on leave—joins me to discuss the big ideas currently shaping India’s economy. 

Addressing the Global Refugee Crisis: How We Can Bridge the Gap Between Humanitarian Response and Development Assistance

Of the 21 million refugees around the world today, low- and middle-income countries host more than 80 percent. The strain of refugee flows can threaten stability in these countries, with regional and global consequences. But this is an eminently manageable challenge for the international community. A new report, the culmination of a joint CGD-IRC study group on forced displacement and development, suggests compacts—agreements between host countries and humanitarian and development actors—are a uniquely well-suited approach to address the refugee crisis. Join us for a discussion on how host countries, humanitarian and development agencies, the private sector, and civil society can forge new and stronger partnerships to better meet the needs of refugees and the communities where they seek refuge.

Why and How Change is Coming to the World Bank – New CEO Kristalina Georgieva

Just ahead of the annual World Bank/IMF spring meetings, the Bank’s new CEO, Kristalina Georgieva, spoke with me about a new way of thinking at the 72-year-old institution. The Bank has renewed ambition, she told me, to be a catalyst for massive transformative investment in development. She went on to lay out how the Bank plans to do that in this edition of the CGD Podcast.

The Global Refugee Crisis in Urban Settings: Improving Self-reliance and Reducing Aid Dependence

More than 21 million people around the world are living as refugees. Three-quarters of those do not live in refugee camps, but in urban communities, profoundly altering the social fabric of cities in major host countries. Currently their survival depends on both regular outside assistance from humanitarian agencies and host country governments, and their own support structures such as social network ties. With the average duration of refugee status now more than ten years, this is often an unsustainable solution. Please join the Center for Global Development, in collaboration with the Urban Institute, as we explore how urban refugees can play a greater role in local economies, become more self-reliant and less dependent on outside assistance. What might help them integrate more with host communities? What is the role of social and economic networks?

Latin American Policy Options for Times of Protectionism

A protectionist stance from the US looms large as a policy concern for Latin America, where many countries have chosen a growth model based on increased integration with the rest of the world. What should Latin America’s response be? What are the alternative forms of trade integration and markets creation that the region should explore? What is the role for monetary, fiscal and financial policies? What are the mistakes of the past to be avoided? These are among the key and timely issues that the Latin American Committee on Macroeconomics and Financial Issues (CLAAF) will address. 

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