Foreign Policy Blogs


Kinder Capitalism

Bill Gates spoke at the Davos Conference yesterday and made a call for a kinder, more creative form of capitalism that will provide services and products that the poor need. He's absolutely right, the medicines and agricultural technologies needed by those in poor countries don't get the attention they deserve. There are profits to be […]

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Pepsi Hops on the Clean Water Bandwagon

PepsiCo has donated $6 million to the Earth Institute and will partner with H20 Africa, an NGO trying to increase access to clean water in rural Africa. The press release wasn't terribly specific, but I think that the $6 million donation will be supporting the Earth Institute in several sectors – water, climate, and agriculture […]

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The Candidates on Foreign Aid

The Foreign Policy Association already has a blog on the 2008 elections. But as we get them narrowed down, I’ll also be keeping track of what the candidates say about foreign aid. The One campaign asked all of the candidates to explain their plans to address global poverty. Many replied with video as well as […]

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Dealing with Donor Intent

The New York Times commented yesterday (registration required) on the problem that humanitarian NGOs such as the Red Cross are having with earmarked donations. When too many donors say that 100% of their money has to go to a specific cause, NGOs aren't able to react to sudden issues or less-publicized crises. They also have […]

read more's Five-Ten Year Plan

Yesterday, announced the five core activies that they will pursue for the next five to ten years. All are intimately connected to technology. The dollar amounts announced today are small when compared with those the Gates Foundation throws around – only $25 million in new grants and $175 million over 3 years – but […]

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Emergency in Childhood Nutrition?

According to new research published in The Lancet, early childhood nutrition has even more impact on an individual's lifetime health, education, and earning potential than previously thought. The journal published a series of five reports on the topic. They are available for free download. I recommend the executive summary, which is only 12 pages long […]

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Philanthropy is Good for Your Children

The Guardian reports that many multibillionaires choose to give their money to charity for the sake of their children. They feel that to inherit such vast fortunes would ruin their children's lives in a Hilton-esque way. This feeling is behind William Barron Hilton's recent donations as well as Warren Buffet's. Buffet gave a great quote: […]

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I’ve been meaning to post about remittances – the money that migrant workers send home – because they are specifically mentioned in the Great Decisions Show You don't hear that much about them, because they aren't usually used to fund giant initiatives, but they already account for more than Official Development Assistance. But when I […]

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American Philanthropy Seen by a Chinese Observer

Li Yuan writes an interesting column in the Wall Street Journal about the Chinese perspective on American business. Yesterday's column tried to answer the question, “What is US-style philanthropy, anyway?” She comes up with a mixed bag, and some of the reasons she finds for why Americans give their time and money for others are […]

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Everybody Loves Lists

The Financial Times has published a list (registration required) of the top private charitable donations of 2007. William Barron Hilton takes the top spot by giving $1.2 billion to his father's foundation. The top ten were: 1. William Barron Hilton – $1200m 2. Jon M. Sr. and Karen H. Huntsman – $750m 3. T. Denny […]

read more – You too can be a microfinancier

This weekend the FT wrote a nice article (registration required, but free) about Kiva is an exciting tool that allows regular people to make micro-loans (generally under $500) to entrpreneurs in developing countries. In minutes you can go online, find the entrepreneur you want to work with, and make your loan. Then you can […]

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Investing Gates's Money

The LA Times seems to have appointed itself the official Gates Foundation watchdog. Last week they printed a scathing report on the negative effects of the investments the Foundation makes with its endowment funds. To give you the flavor of what it says: “The Gates Foundation has poured $218 million into polio and measles immunization […]

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It was pointed out to me offline that I neglected to mention the controversy that surrounds (RED). The campaign has been accused of spending too much money on marketing, and not enough on donations to the Global Fund. (RED) disputes the estimates, believing that their critics count the marketing budgets spent by their corporate partners. […]

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(Product) RED has now raised $50 million dollars from the sale of specially-branded, socially-conscious merchandise. This money has gone to the Global Fund to Fight HIV/AIDS, Tubercuosis, and Malaria to help with their projects in Rwanda, Swaziland, and Ghana. If you haven't given (RED) a look, you should, because it's an interesting idea. Yes, the […]

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Public-Private Partnerships for Health

I just watched a video at about the global USAID healthcare project, Private Sector Partnerships (PSP-One). This video is about 15 minutes long (I didn't time it, though) and is pretty clearly a PR piece meant to calm fears about public-private partnerships, but does an overall fair job presenting the issues. Two thoughts: – […]

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