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Showing posts for "Governance"

Boosting Education in Africa

by Terra Lawson-Remer
Pupils in Zimbabwe study outside their classrooms at Courtney Selous Primary School, a government-run school in the capital Harare, February 10, 2010 (Philimon Bulawayo/Courtesy Reuters). Pupils in Zimbabwe study outside their classrooms at Courtney Selous Primary School, a government-run school in the capital Harare, February 10, 2010 (Philimon Bulawayo/Courtesy Reuters).

Last week on the Ask CFR Experts feature, I took on the question of how Zimbabwe and other African countries can best improve educational quality. Noting that educational failures are often due as much to corruption as to scarce resources, I recommended greater transparency in school expenditures. As I write: Read more »

Governing Natural Resources Wisely

by Terra Lawson-Remer
Handout picture taken onboard drilling rig Aker Barents in the Barents Sea, where Norwegian oil firm Statoil has made a new oil find, Havis, January 9, 2012 (Harald Pettersen/Statoil/Courtesy Reuters). Handout picture taken onboard drilling rig Aker Barents in the Barents Sea, where Norwegian oil firm Statoil has made a new oil find, Havis, January 9, 2012 (Harald Pettersen/Statoil/Courtesy Reuters).

The Revenue Watch Institute has just released its 2013 Resource Governance Index and accompanying report, measuring countries’ transparency and accountability in the governance of oil, gas, and mining on four criteria: legal framework, transparency levels, checks and balances, and the broader governance context. The Index assesses fifty-eight countries—which together produce 85 percent of the world’s oil, 90 percent of diamonds, and 80 percent of copper. Of the fifty-eight countries studied, forty-seven were found to fall short on basic standards of openness and accountability.

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Africa’s Growing Prospects

by Gayle Tzemach Lemmon
A view is seen of the Nigeria stock exchange building in the central business district in Lagos, April 10, 2013 (Akintunde Akinleye/Courtesy Reuters). A view is seen of the Nigeria stock exchange building in the central business district in Lagos, April 10, 2013 (Akintunde Akinleye/Courtesy Reuters).

The African growth story continues as investors pour into Africa. Investment is booming and interest in the continent is surging as capital seeks regions still able to flourish despite the broader global economy’s fight to return to robust—or at least decent—health.

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Human Rights and Access to Legal Representation

by Terra Lawson-Remer
The Arizona-Mexico border fence near Naco, Arizona on March 29, 2013 (Samantha Sais/Courtesy Reuters). The Arizona-Mexico border fence near Naco, Arizona on March 29, 2013 (Samantha Sais/Courtesy Reuters).

Last week a federal judge ruled that mentally disabled immigrants facing deportation have a right to representation in immigration proceedings, and ordered immigration courts in Arizona, California, and Washington to provide legal representation for mentally disabled immigrants if they cannot represent themselves.

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Governance and Growth in the Arab Transitions

by Gayle Tzemach Lemmon
A man waits for tourists to visit his souvenir shop in Carthage, near Tunis, Tunisia February 10, 2013 (Zoubeir Souissi/Courtesy Reuters). A man waits for tourists to visit his souvenir shop in Carthage, near Tunis, Tunisia on February 10, 2013 (Zoubeir Souissi/Courtesy Reuters).

Examining the economic fallout of the Arab uprisings is critical as societies struggle to move past the upheaval and fight for a measure of stability and security. Read more »

Economic Instability, Capital Controls, and Bilateral Investment Treaties

by Terra Lawson-Remer
Joseph E. Stiglitz, Professor, Columbia University, of the U.S., attends a session at the World Economic Forum (WEF) in Davos on January 26, 2012 (Christian Hartmann/Courtesy Reuters). Joseph E. Stiglitz, Professor, Columbia University, of the U.S., attends a session at the World Economic Forum (WEF) in Davos on January 26, 2012 (Christian Hartmann/Courtesy Reuters).

Last night I had the privilege of hosting Nobel Laureate Joseph Stiglitz at a roundtable at CFR. His wide-ranging remarks addressed many challenges at the nexus of poverty, inequality, and global economic governance, but one discussion stood out because it echoed and amplified a serious concern I’ve heard raised in a number of other fora over the past few months.

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The U.S. Supreme Court and Global Human Rights

by Terra Lawson-Remer
Plaintiff Esther Kiobel (L) joins a protest against Royal Dutch Shell Petroleum in front of the U.S. Supreme Court in Washington on October 1, 2012 (Gary Cameron/Courtesy Reuters). Plaintiff Esther Kiobel (L) joins a protest against Royal Dutch Shell Petroleum in front of the U.S. Supreme Court in Washington on October 1, 2012 (Gary Cameron/Courtesy Reuters).

On Tuesday the Supreme Court ruled that victims of torture, arbitrary executions, and other human rights abuses in foreign countries could not seek justice in U.S. courts. Read more »

Is the IMF Fighting for Social Justice in Egypt?

by Terra Lawson-Remer
An Egyptian protester holds a loaf of state subsidized bread during a demonstration against the International Monetary Fund (IMF) delegation visit, in front of the General-Prosecutor's office in Cairo, April 3, 2013 (Mohamed Abd El Ghany/Courtesy Reuters). An Egyptian protester holds a loaf of state subsidized bread during a demonstration against the International Monetary Fund (IMF) delegation visit, in front of the General-Prosecutor's office in Cairo, April 3, 2013 (Mohamed Abd El Ghany/Courtesy Reuters).

This week a team from the International Monetary Fund is in Cairo yet again, attempting to reach agreement with the Egyptian government on a $4.8 billion loan to plug Egypt’s increasingly serious external financing gap and budget deficit. Egypt’s foreign currency reserves—in precipitous decline as the Central Bank continues to prop up the exchange rate in efforts to avoid skyrocketing costs for wheat and other staple imports—have dropped from more than $36 billion in early 2011 to less than $14 billion at the end of MarchRead more »

New From CFR: Joshua Kurlantzick on Democracy’s Woes

by Development Channel Staff
Russia's President Vladimir Putin (R) exchanges documents with his Chinese counterpart Xi Jinping during a signing ceremony at the Kremlin in Moscow, March 22, 2013 (Sergei Karpukhin/Courtesy Reuters). Russia's President Vladimir Putin (R) exchanges documents with his Chinese counterpart Xi Jinping during a signing ceremony at the Kremlin in Moscow, March 22, 2013 (Sergei Karpukhin/Courtesy Reuters).

In an interview and op-ed last week, CFR fellow Joshua Kurlantzick analyzes the setbacks facing democracy as autocratic powers such as China and Russia advance their own political philosophies in the developing world. Read more »

New From CFR: Joshua Kurlantzick on the China Model and Shannon O’Neil on Mexico’s Economy

by Development Channel Staff
China's newly elected Premier Li Keqiang (L) shakes hands with Wen Jiabao as China's President Xi Jinping and other delegates clap during the fifth plenary meeting of the first session of the 12th National People's Congress (NPC) in Beijing, March 15, 2013 (Courtesy Reuters). China's newly elected Premier Li Keqiang (L) shakes hands with Wen Jiabao as China's President Xi Jinping and other delegates clap during the fifth plenary meeting of the first session of the 12th National People's Congress (NPC) in Beijing, March 15, 2013 (Courtesy Reuters).

In two recent pieces, CFR fellows weigh political and economic developments in a pair of emerging giants: China and Mexico. In an excerpt on TheAtlantic.com from his recently released book, Democracy in Retreat, CFR fellow Joshua Kurlantzick analyzes the appeal to developing countries of China’s development model. Read more »