Fifteen years ago I was working for a nongovernment organization (NGO) in Bangladesh documenting stories of training and economic empowerment of communities. A common recurring theme in virtually all the communities was the gender stereotyping in skills training programs.
There is no universal strategy for pursuing a triple bottom line of high, socially inclusive and environmentally sustainable growth, but better governance is an imperative.
Over the last week, 3ie staff in Delhi, London and Washington were busy coordinating conference logistics, finalizing the program, and putting the last touches to their presentations. This is usual preparation for a conference but this one is going to be different. Why? Because the participant mix–of more than 500 people–is balanced among policymakers, program managers, implementers, and researchers.
Asian countries are increasingly turning to investing in dedicated development programs rather than relying entirely on economic growth to deliver better social outcomes. Evaluations of their actual impact have not always accompanied such decision making, but where they have, it has made a key difference.
Malaria can be beaten. Proof of this can be found in the fact that across the Asia Pacific region, millions of people who would have died from the disease are living healthy, productive lives. Still, malaria remains a serious threat to lives and livelihoods. Endemic in 22 countries across Asia, it is contracted by an estimated 32 million people annually and kills 47,000 of them.
Over the past couple of decades, no one can deny that the Asia and Pacific region has represented a remarkable success story. Absolute poverty levels have fallen significantly and the region is on course to achieve a number of Millennium Development Goals (MDGs).
Indonesia has made impressive gains in poverty reduction in recent years, but some unfavorable childhood nutrition figures bode ill for the economy and the country’s achievement of a key Millennium Development Goal (MDG).
Nana lives in a remote village. She is married with three children. Both she and her husband are farmers. Nana went to school up to grade 3. Every now and then, the households in her community are asked to attend a meeting. One day, the village leader requested her to attend a meeting the next day.
Feeding the world is becoming an increasingly complex task. Providing all our daily bread—or rice—requires grappling with intense competition for natural resources, producing more from less land and dealing with changing dietary habits. But meeting food needs is not just about quantity. Quality is also important. Along with daily minimum calorie requirements, people also need vital micronutrients from their meals. High levels of micronutrient deficiencies, a phenomenon we call “hidden hunger” remains pervasive, particularly in South Asia and Southeast Asia.
Is changing 9,000 years of eating habits the solution to vitamin A deficiency in poor communities in Asia?