Today, around 21,000 children died around the world. This daily tragedy, from poverty and other preventable causes, rarely makes headline news.

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World

  1. ‘Inna de Yard’ Delves into the ‘Soul’ of Jamaica

    Monday, June 24, 2019

    KINGSTON/PARIS, Jun 24 (IPS) - Dogs barking in the distance. Birds chirping nearby. A man walking through the mist, surrounded by lush vegetation. A distinctive vibrato singing "Speak Softly, Love" over it all.

  2. Liberalism and Developing Countries

    Monday, June 24, 2019

    AMSTERDAM/ROME, Jun 24 (IPS) - As China rapidly replaces Europe and the USA as the key player in developing countries, the Western press is full of articles about the dangers of dealing with the Chinese.

  3. Are Hotels Dangerous? Putting in Context Dominican Republic Tourist Deaths

    Monday, June 24, 2019

    STOCKHOLM / ROME, Jun 24 (IPS) - I stayed overnight at a motel by the E3. In my room a smell I'd felt before I stayed overnight in the echoing house. Many want to come in through the walls but most of them can´t make it: they´re overcome by the white hiss of oblivion. Anonymous singing drowns in the walls Discreet tappings that don´t want to be heard drown-out sighs my old repartees creeping homelessly.                                               Thomas Tranströmer The Gallery 1Being a frequent visitor to the Dominican Republic, where I occasionally have enjoyed the high standard, security and excellent service of its resorts, I became puzzled by recent, quiet excessive media reactions to statistically insignificant cases of deaths in these resorts. The number of demises in Dominican resorts have been more or less the same over the years and do not at all differ from those of most other tourist destinations. People die in hotels all over the world. There may even be specific reasons for this and they are far from being unique to the Dominican Republic.

  4. World’s Poorest Nations Weighed Down by Fastest Growing Populations

    Monday, June 24, 2019

    UNITED NATIONS, Jun 24 (IPS) - With a new report projecting a rise in population, specifically in Asia and Africa, the United Nations has warned that continued rapid population growth presents enormous challenges for sustainable development in the world's 134 developing nations.

  5. Chinese DG To Lead FAO For 4 Years From 1 Aug 2019

    Monday, June 24, 2019

    ROME, Jun 24 (IPS) - Qu Dongyu, China's vice minister for agriculture and rural affairs, was elected to be the next Director-General of FAO, winning a majority of the 191 votes cast in the first round of an election held Sunday.

  6. From Tony Blair to Mette Frederiksen

    Friday, June 21, 2019

    ROME, Jun 21 (IPS) - Social Democrats, who had been steadily disappearing following the crisis of 2008, have been making a small comeback in the last year. Now they are in power in Spain, Portugal, Sweden, Finland and, most recently, in Denmark.

  7. Low-Income Countries Pay Over 20 Times More for Generic Drugs

    Friday, June 21, 2019

    UNITED NATIONS, Jun 21 (IPS) - A recently-released report by the Washington-based Center for Global Development (CGD) shows that generic drugs, like omeprazole (used to treat heartburn), can cost 20-30 times more in low and middle-income countries than in high-income countries.

  8. Patriotism versus Hope: Eritreans Wrestle with Leaving Home or Remaining

    Friday, June 21, 2019

    ASMARA, Eritrea/ANTWERP, Belguim, Jun 21 (IPS) - Most media narratives about Eritrea suggest an endless stream of young people fleeing the country, who couldn't wait to escape. But the reality is far different and more nuanced—both when it comes to those who have left, and those who chose to remain.

  9. Sudan’s Fragile Hope for Democracy

    Friday, June 21, 2019

    UNITED NATIONS, Jun 21 (IPS) - Sudanese civilians risk their lives everyday protesting and campaigning for democracy but they face several obstacles, including street closures and no Internet access.

  10. Sharing the Burden of Refugees; the World Can Do Better

    Thursday, June 20, 2019

    NAIROBI, Kenya, Jun 20 (IPS) - Siddharth Chatterjee is the United Nations Resident Coordinator to Kenya.

    As the world marks World Refugee Day on June 20th to celebrate the strength, courage and perseverance of refugees, a glaring concern remains just how inadequate the global response to the refugee crisis has been.

  11. More stories…

Economy

  1. From Tony Blair to Mette Frederiksen

    Friday, June 21, 2019

    ROME, Jun 21 (IPS) - Social Democrats, who had been steadily disappearing following the crisis of 2008, have been making a small comeback in the last year. Now they are in power in Spain, Portugal, Sweden, Finland and, most recently, in Denmark.

  2. Low-Income Countries Pay Over 20 Times More for Generic Drugs

    Friday, June 21, 2019

    UNITED NATIONS, Jun 21 (IPS) - A recently-released report by the Washington-based Center for Global Development (CGD) shows that generic drugs, like omeprazole (used to treat heartburn), can cost 20-30 times more in low and middle-income countries than in high-income countries.

  3. Sharing the Burden of Refugees; the World Can Do Better

    Thursday, June 20, 2019

    NAIROBI, Kenya, Jun 20 (IPS) - Siddharth Chatterjee is the United Nations Resident Coordinator to Kenya.

    As the world marks World Refugee Day on June 20th to celebrate the strength, courage and perseverance of refugees, a glaring concern remains just how inadequate the global response to the refugee crisis has been.

  4. An Economic No-Brainer: Empower Women, Empower Economies

    Wednesday, June 19, 2019

    NEW YORK, Jun 19 (IPS) - As the first woman to lead the International Monetary Fund (IMF), and a leader in advocating for increased investment and action toward gender equality, Christine Lagarde helps Deliver for Good explore the steps needed to build sustainable financing & economic opportunities for girls and women.

  5. Colombia – Trade Unionism Under Threat of Death

    Tuesday, June 18, 2019

    BOGOTA, Jun 18 (IPS) - Miguel Morantes was almost murdered. Ever since, three bodyguards are part of his everyday life in one of the most dangerous countries for trade union members.

  6. Financialization Promotes Dangerous Speculation

    Tuesday, June 18, 2019

    KUALA LUMPUR and PENANG, Jun 18 (IPS) - Financialization has involved considerable ‘innovation', often of opaque, complex and poorly understood financial instruments. These instruments typically have large debt components involving leveraging, deepening connections across markets and borders.

  7. The Importance of the Upcoming FAO Election

    Tuesday, June 18, 2019

    ROME, Jun 18 (IPS) - With each passing day, the world gets just a little smaller as the internet and cell phones bring our communities together, reveal our shared challenges, and lay bare our failures. As global citizens, we are all concerned about the growing number of hungry people around the world and the threats to food security. The simple fact is that more than 800 million people go hungry every day, and if that number shocks you, know that experts predict the number to grow significantly over the next ten years.

  8. The Art of the Deal: What Trump May Teach Us

    Monday, June 17, 2019

    STOCKHOLM / ROME, Jun 17 (IPS) - Like any dealer he was watching for the card
    that is so high and wild
    he'll never need to deal another.

    -- Leonard Cohen Stranger Song

    A friend of mine who became wealthy as an art dealer but eventually lost his fortune told me: "Money isn´t everything, but it helps." This made me think of Donald Trump, who likes to describe himself as an entrepreneur, i.e. "owner of a business enterprise who, by risk and initiative, attempts to make profits."1 The keyword is profits. According to Trump, success is measured through wealth. Like chess and poker, entrepreneurship is about winning and losing. Trump characterizes people he dislikes as loserswhile he considers himself to be a winner.

  9. Air Pollution Ranked as Biggest Environmental Threat to Human Health

    Monday, June 17, 2019

    UNITED NATIONS, Jun 17 (IPS) - In a world that is becoming more and more industrial by the day, air pollution appears to be on the rise.

    While there have been efforts in major cities to combat the grave effects that pollution can have on the overall health of its citizens, there is still more progress to be made.

  10. South Africa’s First Carbon Farm

    Monday, June 17, 2019

    NAIROBI, Jun 17 (IPS) - Land restoration could attract large private investments in the fight against climate change over the coming decades, if Governments and the United Nations put the right incentives and conditions in place.

  11. More stories…

Climate

  1. Sharing the Burden of Refugees; the World Can Do Better

    Thursday, June 20, 2019

    NAIROBI, Kenya, Jun 20 (IPS) - Siddharth Chatterjee is the United Nations Resident Coordinator to Kenya.

    As the world marks World Refugee Day on June 20th to celebrate the strength, courage and perseverance of refugees, a glaring concern remains just how inadequate the global response to the refugee crisis has been.

  2. Rising Population Trends Threaten UN’s Development Goals in Asia & Africa

    Wednesday, June 19, 2019

    UNITED NATIONS, Jun 19 (IPS) - The world's developing nations, currently fighting an uphill battle in their attempts to implement the UN's Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), are facing another stark demographic reality: a rise in world population by 2.0 billion people in the next 30 years: from 7.7 billion to 9.7 billion in 2050.

  3. Desertification ‘More Dangerous and More Insidious than Wars’

    Tuesday, June 18, 2019

    ANKARA, Jun 18 (IPS) - Businesses are being encouraged to follow the lead of the youth to halt desertification, reduce degradation, improve agricultural sustainability and restore damaged lands.

  4. 'What it Takes to Feed 7.5 Billion People'

    Monday, June 17, 2019

    ANKARA, Jun 17 (IPS) - Events marking the 25th anniversary of the Convention to Combat Desertification (UNCCD) and the World Day to Combat Desertification opened here Monday, Jun. 17 with a call for urgent action to protect and restore degrading land.

  5. There’s No Continent, No Country Not Impacted by Land Degradation

    Monday, June 17, 2019

    ANKARA, Jun 17 (IPS) - The coming decades will be crucial in shaping and implementing a transformative land agenda, according to a scientist at the United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification (UNCCD) framework for Land Degradation Neutrality (LDN).

  6. Air Pollution Ranked as Biggest Environmental Threat to Human Health

    Monday, June 17, 2019

    UNITED NATIONS, Jun 17 (IPS) - In a world that is becoming more and more industrial by the day, air pollution appears to be on the rise.

    While there have been efforts in major cities to combat the grave effects that pollution can have on the overall health of its citizens, there is still more progress to be made.

  7. South Africa’s First Carbon Farm

    Monday, June 17, 2019

    NAIROBI, Jun 17 (IPS) - Land restoration could attract large private investments in the fight against climate change over the coming decades, if Governments and the United Nations put the right incentives and conditions in place.

  8. The Implacable Desertification of Planet Earth

    Monday, June 17, 2019

    MADRID, Jun 17 (IPS) - Yet another under-reported human-made disaster: the relentless desertification of Planet Earth that may make uninhabitable some regions like the Middle East, endanger food security, aggravate climate crisis, and force more and more millions of people to flee.

  9. World Day to Combat Desertification and Drought - “Let’s Grow the Future Together”

    Monday, June 17, 2019

    ROME, Jun 17 (IPS) - One third of the planet's land surface is under the threat of desertification, impacting over 250 million people.

  10. U. S. Backing for Heated Tobacco Products Triggers Misrepresentation

    Friday, June 14, 2019

    BANGKOK, Thailand, Jun 14 (IPS) - Wendell Balderas is Media & Communications Manager of the Southeast Asia Tobacco Control Alliance (SEATCA)

    The U.S. Food and Drug Administration's (FDA) decision authorizing the sale of Philip Morris International (PMI)'s heated tobacco system, IQOS, in the United States inadvertently puts a foot in the door to increase sales of new tobacco products in the developing world.

  11. More stories…

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Issues In depth

Latest

Action on climate change is cheaper than inaction

Posted Monday, February 02, 2015.

Many are afraid that tackling climate change is going to be too costly. But increasingly, studies are showing action will not just be cheaper than inaction, but could actually result in economic, environmental and even health benefits, while improving sustainability.

Read “Action on climate change is cheaper than inaction” to learn more.

Climate Change and Global Warming Introduction

Last updated Sunday, February 01, 2015.

The climate is changing. The earth is warming up, and there is now overwhelming scientific consensus that it is happening, and human-induced. With global warming on the increase and species and their habitats on the decrease, chances for ecosystems to adapt naturally are diminishing.

Many are agreed that climate change may be one of the greatest threats facing the planet. Recent years show increasing temperatures in various regions, and/or increasing extremities in weather patterns.

This section looks at what causes climate change, what the impacts are and where scientific consensus currently is.

Read “Climate Change and Global Warming Introduction” to learn more.

COP20—Lima Climate Conference

Posted Saturday, January 24, 2015.

An overview of the Climate Change Conference (also known as COP 20), held in Lima, Peru in December 2014.

While it seemed like it was a successful meeting, because developing nations were committed to drawing up their own plans for emissions reductions for the first time, a number of important issues were left undecided such as how financing would work.

This page is an overview of the Lima Climate conference.

Read “COP20—Lima Climate Conference” to learn more.

Ebola Outbreak in West Africa

Posted Saturday, September 27, 2014.

An overview of the Ebola virus outbreak in West Africa that has been described by the World Health Organization as the largest, most severe and most complex outbreak in the history of the disease.

The epidemic began at the end of 2013, in Guinea. From there it spread to Liberia, Sierra Leone, Nigeria and Senegal. Many of the affected countries face enormous challenges in stopping its spread and providing care for all patients.

Thousands of people have died and many are at risk as the fatality rate from this virus is very high. As the crisis worsens, as well as the enormous health challenges involved, the social and economic consequences may set these countries back, reversing some gains a number of these countries have made in recent years.

Read “Ebola Outbreak in West Africa” to learn more.

Foreign Aid for Development Assistance

Last updated Sunday, September 28, 2014.

In 1970, the world’s rich countries agreed to give 0.7% of their gross national income as official international development aid, annually.

Since that time, billions have certainly been given each year, but rarely have the rich nations actually met their promised target.

For example, the US is often the largest donor in dollar terms, but ranks amongst the lowest in terms of meeting the stated 0.7% target.

Net ODA in dollars and percent of GNI

Furthermore, aid has often come with a price of its own for the developing nations. Common criticisms, for many years, of foreign aid, have included the following:

  • Aid is often wasted on conditions that the recipient must use overpriced goods and services from donor countries
  • Most aid does not actually go to the poorest who would need it the most
  • Aid amounts are dwarfed by rich country protectionism that denies market access for poor country products while rich nations use aid as a lever to open poor country markets to their products
  • Large projects or massive grand strategies often fail to help the vulnerable; money can often be embezzled away.

This article explores who has benefited most from this aid, the recipients or the donors.

Read “Foreign Aid for Development Assistance” to learn more.

Nature and Animal Conservation

Last updated Sunday, January 19, 2014.

Preserving species and their habitats is important for ecosystems to self-sustain themselves.

Yet, the pressures to destroy habitat for logging, illegal hunting, and other challenges are making conservation a struggle.

Read “Nature and Animal Conservation” to learn more.

More updates

Most Popular

Poverty Facts and Stats

Last updated Monday, January 07, 2013.

Most of humanity lives on just a few dollars a day. Whether you live in the wealthiest nations in the world or the poorest, you will see high levels of inequality.

The poorest people will also have less access to health, education and other services. Problems of hunger, malnutrition and disease afflict the poorest in society. The poorest are also typically marginalized from society and have little representation or voice in public and political debates, making it even harder to escape poverty.

By contrast, the wealthier you are, the more likely you are to benefit from economic or political policies. The amount the world spends on military, financial bailouts and other areas that benefit the wealthy, compared to the amount spent to address the daily crisis of poverty and related problems are often staggering.

Some facts and figures on poverty presented in this page are eye-openers, to say the least.

Read “Poverty Facts and Stats” to learn more.

Global Financial Crisis

Last updated Sunday, March 24, 2013.

Following a period of economic boom, a financial bubble — global in scope — burst, even causing some of the world’s largest financial institutions have collapsed. With the resulting recession, many governments of the wealthiest nations in the world have resorted to extensive bail-out and rescue packages for the remaining large banks and financial institutions while imposing harsh austerity measures on themselves.

Some of the bail-outs have also led to charges of hypocrisy due to the apparent socializing of the costs while privatizing the profits. Furthermore, the institutions being rescued are typically the ones got the world into this trouble in the first place. For smaller businesses and poorer people, such options for bail out and rescue are rarely available when they find themselves in crisis.

Plummeting stock markets at one point wiped out 33% of the value of companies, $14.5 trillion. Taxpayers bailed out their banks and financial institutions with large amounts of money. US taxpayers alone have spent some $9.7 trillion in bailout packages and plans. The UK and other European countries have also spent some $2 trillion on rescues and bailout packages. More is expected. Much more.

Such numbers, made quickly available, are enough to wipe many individual’s mortgages, or clear out third world debt many times over. Even the high military spending figures are dwarfed by the bailout plans to date.

Taxpayers are paying for some of the largests costs in history

This problem could have been averted (in theory) as people had been pointing to these issues for decades. However, during boom, very few want to hear such pessimism. Does this crisis spell an end to the careless forms of banking and finance and will it herald a better economic age, or are we just doomed to keep forgetting history and repeat these mistakes in the future? Signs are not encouraging as rich nations are resisting meaningful reform…

Read “Global Financial Crisis” to learn more.

Causes of Poverty

Last updated Sunday, September 28, 2014.

Poverty is the state for the majority of the world’s people and nations. Why is this? Is it enough to blame poor people for their own predicament? Have they been lazy, made poor decisions, and been solely responsible for their plight? What about their governments? Have they pursued policies that actually harm successful development? Such causes of poverty and inequality are no doubt real. But deeper and more global causes of poverty are often less discussed.

Read “Causes of Poverty” to learn more.

Climate Change and Global Warming

Last updated Monday, February 02, 2015.

The climate is changing. The earth is warming up, and there is now overwhelming scientific consensus that it is happening, and human-induced. With global warming on the increase and species and their habitats on the decrease, chances for ecosystems to adapt naturally are diminishing. Many are agreed that climate change may be one of the greatest threats facing the planet. Recent years show increasing temperatures in various regions, and/or increasing extremities in weather patterns.

This section explores some of the effects of climate change. It also attempts to provide insights into what governments, companies, international institutions, and other organizations are attempting to do about this issue, as well as the challenges they face. Some of the major conferences in recent years are also discussed.

Read “Climate Change and Global Warming” to learn more.

Environmental Issues

Last updated Monday, February 02, 2015.

Environmental issues are also a major global issue. Humans depend on a sustainable and healthy environment, and yet we have damaged the environment in numerous ways. This section introduces other issues including biodiversity, climate change, animal and nature conservation, population, genetically modified food, sustainable development, and more.

Read “Environmental Issues” to learn more.

Racism

Last updated Sunday, August 08, 2010.

Racism is the belief that characteristics and abilities can be attributed to people simply on the basis of their race and that some racial groups are superior to others. Racism and discrimination have been used as powerful weapons encouraging fear or hatred of others in times of conflict and war, and even during economic downturns. This article explores racism from around the world.

Read “Racism” to learn more.

More articles

Topical

Global Financial Crisis

Last updated Sunday, March 24, 2013.

Following a period of economic boom, a financial bubble — global in scope — burst, even causing some of the world’s largest financial institutions have collapsed. With the resulting recession, many governments of the wealthiest nations in the world have resorted to extensive bail-out and rescue packages for the remaining large banks and financial institutions while imposing harsh austerity measures on themselves.

Some of the bail-outs have also led to charges of hypocrisy due to the apparent socializing of the costs while privatizing the profits. Furthermore, the institutions being rescued are typically the ones got the world into this trouble in the first place. For smaller businesses and poorer people, such options for bail out and rescue are rarely available when they find themselves in crisis.

Plummeting stock markets at one point wiped out 33% of the value of companies, $14.5 trillion. Taxpayers bailed out their banks and financial institutions with large amounts of money. US taxpayers alone have spent some $9.7 trillion in bailout packages and plans. The UK and other European countries have also spent some $2 trillion on rescues and bailout packages. More is expected. Much more.

Such numbers, made quickly available, are enough to wipe many individual’s mortgages, or clear out third world debt many times over. Even the high military spending figures are dwarfed by the bailout plans to date.

Taxpayers are paying for some of the largests costs in history

This problem could have been averted (in theory) as people had been pointing to these issues for decades. However, during boom, very few want to hear such pessimism. Does this crisis spell an end to the careless forms of banking and finance and will it herald a better economic age, or are we just doomed to keep forgetting history and repeat these mistakes in the future? Signs are not encouraging as rich nations are resisting meaningful reform…

Read “Global Financial Crisis” to learn more.

Climate Change and Global Warming

Last updated Monday, February 02, 2015.

The climate is changing. The earth is warming up, and there is now overwhelming scientific consensus that it is happening, and human-induced. With global warming on the increase and species and their habitats on the decrease, chances for ecosystems to adapt naturally are diminishing. Many are agreed that climate change may be one of the greatest threats facing the planet. Recent years show increasing temperatures in various regions, and/or increasing extremities in weather patterns.

This section explores some of the effects of climate change. It also attempts to provide insights into what governments, companies, international institutions, and other organizations are attempting to do about this issue, as well as the challenges they face. Some of the major conferences in recent years are also discussed.

Read “Climate Change and Global Warming” to learn more.

Food and Agriculture Issues

Last updated Sunday, September 28, 2014.

Food and agriculture goes to the heart of our civilizations. Religions, cultures and even modern civilization have food and agriculture at their core. For an issue that goes to the heart of humanity it also has its ugly side.

This issue explores topics ranging from the global food crisis of 2008, to issues of food aid, world hunger, food dumping and wasteful agriculture such as growing tobacco, sugar, beef, and more.

Read “Food and Agriculture Issues” to learn more.

Foreign Aid for Development Assistance

Last updated Sunday, September 28, 2014.

In 1970, the world’s rich countries agreed to give 0.7% of their gross national income as official international development aid, annually.

Since that time, billions have certainly been given each year, but rarely have the rich nations actually met their promised target.

For example, the US is often the largest donor in dollar terms, but ranks amongst the lowest in terms of meeting the stated 0.7% target.

Net ODA in dollars and percent of GNI

Furthermore, aid has often come with a price of its own for the developing nations. Common criticisms, for many years, of foreign aid, have included the following:

  • Aid is often wasted on conditions that the recipient must use overpriced goods and services from donor countries
  • Most aid does not actually go to the poorest who would need it the most
  • Aid amounts are dwarfed by rich country protectionism that denies market access for poor country products while rich nations use aid as a lever to open poor country markets to their products
  • Large projects or massive grand strategies often fail to help the vulnerable; money can often be embezzled away.

This article explores who has benefited most from this aid, the recipients or the donors.

Read “Foreign Aid for Development Assistance” to learn more.

Tax Avoidance and Tax Havens; Undermining Democracy

Last updated Monday, January 07, 2013.

Through tax havens, transfer pricing and many other policies — both legal and illegal — billions of dollars of tax are avoided. The much-needed money would helped developing (and developed) countries provide important social services for their populations.

Some tax avoidance, regardless of how morally objectionable it may be to some people, is perfectly legal, and the global super elite are able to hide away trillions of dollars, resulting in massive losses of tax revenues for cash-strapped governments who then burden ordinary citizens further with austerity measures during economic crisis, for example. Yet these super elite are often very influential in politics and business. In effect, they are able to undermine democracy and capitalism at the same time.

As the global financial crisis has affected many countries, tackling tax avoidance would help target those more likely to have contributed to the problem while avoid many unnecessary austerity measures that hit the poorest so hard. But despite rhetoric stating otherwise, it does not seem to high on the agenda of many governments as you might think.

Read “Tax Avoidance and Tax Havens; Undermining Democracy” to learn more.

World Military Spending

Last updated Sunday, June 30, 2013.

World military spending had reduced since the Cold War ended, but a few nations such as the US retain high level spending.

In recent years, global military expenditure has increased again and is now comparable to Cold War levels. Recent data shows global spending at over $1.7 trillion. 2012 saw the first dip in spending — only slightly —since 1998, in an otherwise rising trend.

After a decline following the end of the Cold War, recent years have seen military spending increase

The highest military spender is the US accounting for almost two-fifths of the world’s spending, more than the rest of the G7 (most economically advanced countries) combined, and more than all its potential enemies, combined.

Read “World Military Spending” to learn more.

More issues

“If a man is offered a fact which goes against his instincts, he will scrutinize it closely, and unless the evidence is overwhelming, he will refuse to believe it. If, on the other hand, he is offered something which affords a reason for acting in accordance to his instincts, he will accept it even on the slightest evidence.” — Bertrand Russell, Roads to Freedom