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  • Blog post

    The cautious return of import substitution in Africa

    As import substitution becomes fashionable again in some African countries, LSE’s Pritish Behuria analyses how successfully this policy can be implemented given the evolving aid and investment landscape. The international development industry is currently experiencing turbulence and uncertainty. Donald Trump’s victory in the United States elections and the rise of...

    14 Jun 2017 | Pritish Behuria

  • Blog post

    Ensuring land rights through community mobilisation

    Many poor households in Bihar do not have a title to their land. Some households may not be aware of the benefits of a title, and applying for one is a challenging process. There are signs that village-level community mobilisation can play a key role in facilitating this process, but resource, administrative, and political barriers remain. Many governments guarantee their...

    13 Jun 2017 | Andre Joshua Nickow, Sanjay Kumar

  • Blog post

    Intra-national trade costs and economic isolation

    High intra-national trade costs prevent market integration, so reducing them can help develop local economies in remote parts of a country. Building transport infrastructure alone is insufficient. The case of Liberia demonstrates that intra-national transport costs remain significant due to high vehicle prices, vehicle repair costs, credit constraints, and...

    12 Jun 2017 | Golvine de Rochambeau, Jonas Hjort

  • Blog post

    Beyond a connection: Improving energy access in Indonesia with open data

    Fransiska’s business, a local bookstore in Indonesia’s capital Jakarta, is frequently impacted by unpredictable electricity. Although her business is in a commercial area, the power often goes out during peak business hours. These interruptions affect her ability to run her business effectively: lights are often dim, her store gets hot because she is unable to run fans,...

    2 Jun 2017 | Davida Wood

  • Blog post

    Sacrificing consumption to mitigate catastrophic risks

    Many scientists agree that the probability of a rare environmental disaster increases as the stock of greenhouse gases accumulate in the atmosphere. This column asks how much consumption current generations should be willing to sacrifice to reduce the risk of such a future catastrophe. If there were a way of immediately eliminating the risk of all future catastrophes,...

    29 May 2017 | Avinash Dixit, Tim Besley

  • Blog post

    Hazards of farm loan waivers

    In theory, debt waivers are expected to induce the optimal level of effort from the debtor for loan repayment. However, repeated waivers may distort household expectations about credit contract enforcements in the future. This column analyses the effect of Uttar Pradesh’s state-level debt waiver programme – announced right after India’s nationwide Agricultural Debt...

    24 May 2017 | Aarti Gupta, Tanika Chakraborty

  • Blog post

    Neglected drivers of urbanisation in Africa

    The common assumption that rural-to-urban migration is the primary source of rapid urban population growth in Africa is flawed. Natural population increase within urban areas and rural transformation are also important forces. Policies aimed at easing population pressure in urban areas by discouraging migration are therefore unlikely to succeed. Most economists and...

    22 May 2017 | Sean Fox

  • Blog post

    The demographic impact of extended paid maternity-leave in Bangladesh

    With the passage of the Labour Act of 2006, Bangladesh outperforms India and other South Asian countries in paid maternity leave (ML) provisions. This record improvement in coverage to 24 weeks makes it quite unique among developing countries. Nearly all countries in South Asia have provided at least 12-weeks of paid maternity leave for decades. A study has been conducted...

    19 May 2017 | Salma Ahmed

  • Blog post

    What the government is (and isn't) doing to fix urban issues

    What is the government currently doing about Pakistan’s staggering urban challenges? Where is more work needed? Here is an overview per issue. Housing Pakistan faces a growing housing shortfall of approximately 4.4 million units. When provided, the quality is often substandard and low income groups receive little benefit. To redress chronic housing problems,...

    15 May 2017 | Ijaz Nabi, Hina Shaikh

  • Blog post

    How well represented are women in Pakistan's rural volunteer organisations?

    Since the 1980s, Pakistan has followed a unique model of social mobilization that has contributed greatly towards rural development and poverty alleviation. This model of social mobilization and community participation involves setting up local community organizations at the neighborhood, village and union council (UC) levels. These organizations comprise local volunteer...

    9 May 2017 | Hamna Ahmed, Asha Gul, Saheem Khizar, Simon Quinn, Katherine Vyborny