Oxfam International Blogs - MDGs http://l.blogs.oxfam/en/tags/mdgs en How UN CSW can make Post-2015 more relevant to women’s rights http://l.blogs.oxfam/en/blogs/15-03-26-how-un-csw-can-make-post-2015-more-relevant-womens-rights <div class="field field-name-body"><p><em>This entry posted by Shawna Wakefield (<a href="http://twitter.com/ShawnaWakefield" rel="nofollow">@ShawnaWakefield</a>), Oxfam's Senior Gender Justice Lead, and Caroline Green, Oxfam Gender Policy Advisor, on 26 March 2015.</em></p> <p>A breakthrough agreement was made for gender equality and women’s rights 20 years ago in Beijing, known as the <a href="http://www.un.org/womenwatch/daw/beijing/platform/" rel="nofollow">Beijing Platform for Action</a> (BPfA). From March 9 to 20, government ministers met in New York for the annual <a href="http://www.unwomen.org/en/csw/csw59-2015" rel="nofollow">UN Commission on the Status of Women</a> (CSW), to present a Political Declaration that summed up the achievements of the last two decades and committed to achieving gender equality by 2030.</p> <p>Most of the estimated 8600 civil society representatives that came to CSW came to <strong>demand more from their governments</strong> than a reiteration of what was ambitiously agreed in 1995. They also recognize that achieving gender equality by 2030 requires a significant increase in implementation, changes in social norms and recognition of the role of movements in how transformation happens.</p> <p>At minimum, a cessation of the regular and systematic violation of women’s human rights – from sexual and reproductive health and rights, to economic discrimination, to violence against women, backlash against human rights defenders, and the impact of religious fundamentalisms on women’s freedoms – is urgent.    In a context where CSW is the only multi-lateral space dedicated to the advancement of women’s rights, it is time to recognize:</p> <ul><li><strong>the centrality of women’s movements</strong> in achieving positive change</li> <li><strong>social norms change is needed</strong> to stop the roll back on gains already won  </li> <li><strong>Post 2015 as an opportunity</strong> to advance objectives of BPfA (and make amends for the shortcomings of the MDGs)</li> </ul><h3>Centrality of women’s movements in achieving positive change</h3> <p>As in other years at CSW, an inter-generational collage of feminist activists, human rights defenders, INGO staffers, leaders of women’s rights movements around the world, and private sector representatives lobbied, strategized and re-connected. But this year, instead of the usual Agreed Conclusions outcome document, a Political Declaration was announced on day 1 of the official meetings. Around 1,000 women’s rights and feminist activists and organizations – and others standing in solidarity with them, including Oxfam - were dissatisfied and <a href="https://docs.google.com/forms/d/1IOSUTW_waxmw6BBwYRVETXS1XCq602WZ9f9q2H2KUfg/viewform" rel="nofollow">issued a statement to this effect</a>. These groups were expecting more than a reiteration of general commitments to gender equality but a more ambitious plan, with targets and indicators, for dismantling patriarchy and the deeply held social norms that keep it in place.</p> <p>Given the lack of proper negotiations, other statements expressed discontent with the lack of inclusion of civil society. The youth caucus, for instance, <a href="http://iwhc.org/resource/young-feminists-statement-for-the-59th-commission-on-the-status-of-women/" rel="nofollow">raised visibility of the need to recognize their issues</a> not as younger versions of those identified 20 years (or more) ago, but reflective of their particular concerns (<a href="https://twitter.com/search?q=%23WhatYouthWant%20&amp;src=typd" rel="nofollow">#WhatYouthWant</a>). An inter-generational dialogue was organized to reflect the need for shared learning, collaboration and cross-fertilization across generations.</p> <p><strong>We do need to celebrate the achievements since Beijing</strong>, catalysed and secured by women’s rights activists and movements. Some barriers have been broken for generations to come, including more constitutions that guarantee gender equality, more laws to guarantee equality, and more laws criminalizing violence against women (VAW). But, as noted from the coalition statements  and in bilateral and small group meetings during the weeks, the critical and unequivocal role women’s organizations, feminist organizations and women human rights defenders in pushing for gender equality, the human rights and empowerment of women and girls has been under-recognized.</p> <p>If the CSW and development actors in general don’t take this reality on board more seriously, it makes it more difficult to leverage achievements for lasting change.</p> <p>Now needed are new ways of convening, and bringing together new actors and norm setters, spaces to educate ourselves about the geopolitics and economics of today, to analyse power and to strategize about how to influence changes that will last. This requires resourcing, space and political support for women to come together and shape agendas (as pointed out in a small gathering of women’s human rights leaders organized by <a href="http://www.justassociates.org/" rel="nofollow">JASS</a> during CSW.</p> <h3>Social norms change to stop the roll back on gains already won</h3> <p>Unfortunately some at UN CSW were there specifically to undo hard won achievements on women’s rights. Among the trends seen since Beijing is the rise of religious fundamentalisms, including through the targeting of youth. New forms of social media and strategic communications are reaching wider audiences more quickly than ever before, with both positive and harmful effects on women’s rights. This plays out at CSW too. The proliferation of young people advancing these conservative agendas was visible, among those advocating for a roll back of political language that supports rights beyond hetero-normative family units or that secure sexual and reproductive health and rights.  </p> <p><img alt="Ending violence against women" title="Ending violence against women" height="515" width="289" style="float: right; width: 289px; height: 515px; margin: 0px 0px 10px 20px;" class="media-element file-default" typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://l.blogs.oxfam/sites/default/files/1-out-of-3-women-girls.jpg" /><a href="http://www.awid.org/eng=/Library/Development-gender-equality-and-religious-fundamentalisms" rel="nofollow">An Oxfam and AWID panel</a> on the subject of religious fundamentalisms, development and gender equality discussed a shared concern about the use of religion to violate women’s rights – including freedom of movement, leadership and participation in public life, sexual health and reproductive rights, access to resources and use of religion to justify violence. We looked at the issues in different contexts, Sri Lanka, Myanmar, Latin America, the Middle East and trends globally in recognition of the fact that religious fundamentalism is a global phenomenon, and the fact that nowhere is culture static or owned only by one group.</p> <p>Wider than this, however, is the concern that discrimination against women is being reinforced, or newly justified. We need to strengthen our analysis of the interconnections between gender, religion, culture, diversity, and development. This is an important basis for challenging discriminatory attitudes, behaviours, beliefs and social norms that undermine the advancement of gender equality and women’s rights. It will require both solidarity building across women’s and rights groups, based on the indivisibility of rights, as well as good power analyses of which new coalitions, decision makers, faith leaders and groups are supportive of women’s rights, and media can be influenced and mobilized to offer alternatives.</p> <h3>Post 2015 is an opportunity to advance objectives of BPfA (and make amends for the shortcomings of the MDGs)</h3> <p>This year includes negotiation of new sustainable development goals, and the anniversaries of Resolution 1325 on women, peace and security, Beijing, and the MDGs. What is the significance of these processes, including CSW in this context? Big issues are at stake, but are these multi-lateral processes up to it or even appropriate for facilitating, influencing or supporting the kind of changes needed today?</p> <p>The UN CSW of the last two weeks did not mobilize the kind of political energy seen in Beijing in 1995, but there is still conviction that this space needs to work and multi-lateral action is still needed. <strong>In Oxfam we are putting more emphasis on national level change and influencing</strong>, and the current system is not working well enough, but year after year our partners and many other activists tell us that we need to be there. Indeed, Joanne Sandler and Anne Marie-Goetz, for instance, spoke convincingly to the <a href="https://www.opendemocracy.net/5050/anne-marie-goetz-joanne-sandler/debating-5th-world-conference-on-women-defiance-or-defeatism" rel="nofollow">need for a 5th world conference on women</a>.</p> <p>In the meantime, this week, the UN is engaging in another round of international negotiations on the <a href="https://sustainabledevelopment.un.org/post2015" rel="nofollow">Post-2015 Sustainable Development Goals</a>. Specifically, Member States are discussing the goals, targets and indicators for the new framework. With some States trying to open up the agreed goals and targets in the Open Working Group, women’s rights groups are highlighting that there is potentially much too lose in terms of the gender equality goal and gender equality targets on the table. It is critical that these broad targets agreed in the Open Working Group process, covering a range of the structural barriers women face from unpaid care and VAW through to participation and SRHR, are retained in the final Post-2015 framework.</p> <p>So far this week, the majority of States have called for the goals and targets to not be reopened. And in addition, many such as Ecuador (on behalf of the bloc of Latin American countries), EU, Mexico, Germany, El Salvador, Serbia and Liberia highlighted the critical importance of <a href="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gender_mainstreaming" rel="nofollow">gender mainstreaming</a> throughout the framework, including through the use of strong indicators for the gender equality targets, and sex disaggregated data for the indicators throughout.</p> <p>The post-2015 framework can never cover the comprehensive and visionary agenda set out in Beijing, and CSW does need to re-invent itself to be up to the task of advancing women’s rights in the context of backlash and ever changing expressions of repression. But keeping women’s rights squarely on the agenda, collaborating directly with movements, and addressing the hard issues will ultimately be necessary to accelerate implementation of any and all agreements to advance gender equality.</p> <h3>You may also like</h3> <p><a href="https://blogs.oxfam.org/en/tags/womens-rights"><strong>More blogs on women's rights</strong></a></p></div><div class="field field-name-title"><h2>How UN CSW can make Post-2015 more relevant to women’s rights</h2></div> Thu, 26 Mar 2015 16:00:45 +0000 Shawna Wakefield 26052 at http://l.blogs.oxfam http://l.blogs.oxfam/en/blogs/15-03-26-how-un-csw-can-make-post-2015-more-relevant-womens-rights#comments Overcoming inequality and climate change is key to ending poverty and suffering http://l.blogs.oxfam/en/blogs/14-06-18-overcoming-inequality-climate-change-key-to-ending-poverty-post-2015 <div class="field field-name-body"><p><strong>Two major injustices – inequality and climate change – are threatening to undermine the efforts of millions of people to escape poverty and hunger.</strong> By concentrating wealth and power in the hands of a few, inequality robs the poorest people of the support they need to improve their lives. And as climate change devastates crops and livelihoods, it undoes poor people’s efforts to feed their families.</p> <p>But an historic opportunity is on the horizon as the sun sets on the <a href="http://www.oxfam.org/en/campaigns/health-education/millennium-development-goals" rel="nofollow"><strong>Millennium Development Goals</strong></a>. Right now the UN is in the midst of a heated debate about new set of <a href="http://sustainabledevelopment.un.org/?menu=1300" target="_blank" rel="nofollow"><strong>Sustainable Development Goals</strong></a>. This new framework for global development is an historic opportunity to end poverty and save the planet.</p> <p>Laudable progress has been made under the MDGs, which are set to expire next year. The goal to halve extreme poverty has been met - an achievement to celebrate. The MDGs have inspired a common purpose and ambition, and many development successes over the last 14 years.</p> <h3>The widening inequality gap</h3> <p>Yet the twin challenges of inequality and climate change have not been adequately tackled - and Oxfam fears the same mistake will be made again. If we are to create a fairer, healthier world, the new Sustainable Development Goals must be ambitious, and backed up by strong action on climate change.</p> <p>Recently, Oxfam revealed that the world's <a href="http://www.oxfam.org/sites/www.oxfam.org/files/bp-working-for-few-political-capture-economic-inequality-200114-en.pdf" rel="nofollow"><strong>85 richest people</strong></a> have as much wealth as the poorest 3.5 billion. That figure was recently revised. Now the richest 67 have the same as the bottom half of humanity. If the global community fails to curb the widening gap, a host of related economic and social problems will ensue, including the undermining of efforts to eradicate poverty. We can only lift up those at the bottom if we tackle the extreme wealth at the top.</p> <h3>Climate change threatens</h3> <p>At the same time, climate change is threatening to undo progress made in tackling poverty over the last decade. More than 800 million people are at risk of hunger. Through its devastating impact on crops and livelihoods, climate change is predicted to increase that number by as much as 20 per cent by 2050.</p> <p>It’s up to the <strong><a href="http://unfccc.int/2860.php" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">UN Framework Convention on Climate Change</a></strong> to set the global framework for climate action. But the Sustainable Development Goals offer the opportunity to complement this and go further, tackling climate change in the context of poverty alleviation and sustainable development. Action on climate change in the framework for development after 2015 could create significant political momentum, and increase ambition for a strong global climate deal.</p> <p>For these reasons, Oxfam has released <a href="http://www.oxfam.org/en/research/making-it-happen" rel="nofollow"><strong>a report on addressing inequality and climate change in the post-2015 framework</strong></a>.</p> <h3>Steps toward sustainability</h3> <p>To tackle inequality, we propose goals that eradicate extreme economic inequality, eradicate extreme poverty, achieve gender equality and realize women’s rights, and achieve universal health coverage and education through strong public services.</p> <p>To address climate change, we propose dedicated goals on climate change and energy, food and hunger, water, and risk, as well as integrating targets on climate throughout the framework. These measures can help ensure development consistent with limiting global warming to 1.5oC.</p> <p>The UN working group on the Sustainable Development Goals has released a ‘<a href="http://sustainabledevelopment.un.org/focussdgs.html" target="_blank" rel="nofollow"><strong>Zero Draft</strong></a>’ containing many proposed goals and targets Oxfam would welcome – including standalone goals on inequality and climate change. As the number of goals and targets are reduced and refined in the process of agreeing a new post-2015 development framework, it is essential that these remain.</p> <p>There’s also room for targets that are much more ambitious than those currently proposed.</p> <h3>On inequality, we must be bolder</h3> <p>In the inequality goal, we must be bolder. Oxfam backs the target proposed by former Chief Economist to the World Bank and Nobel Prize winner Joseph Stiglitz - to reduce income inequality so that the income of the top 10 per cent is no more than that of the bottom 40 per cent. Since the world is already on track to end $1 a day poverty, we must set the bar higher and eradicate $2 a day poverty. We must commit to achieving universal health coverage and universal education, provided through well-funded public services. Finally, the proposed climate goal should include targets to limit global warming to 1.5oC and promote low carbon sustainable development.</p> <p>If we get it right, a bold new framework for global development next year, together with agreement at the <a href="http://www.diplomatie.gouv.fr/en/french-foreign-policy-1/sustainable-development-1097/21st-conference-of-the-parties-on/" target="_blank" rel="nofollow"><strong>UN climate talks in Paris</strong></a>, could provide the impetus for a transition to a more equal world – a world without the scourge of poverty and climate change.</p> <p>This would transform millions of lives. So let us embrace the new beginning the Sustainable Development Goals offer.</p> <h3>You may also like</h3> <p><a href="http://www.oxfam.org/en/grow/food-climate-justice" rel="nofollow"><strong>Why climate change is making people hungry</strong></a></p> <p><strong><a href="http://blogs.oxfam.org/en/blogs/14-05-02-developing-countries-must-be-heart-global-tax-reform">Developing countries must be at the heart of Global Tax Reform</a></strong></p></div><div class="field field-name-title"><h2>Overcoming inequality and climate change is key to ending poverty and suffering</h2></div><ul class="links inline"><li class="translation_fr first"><a href="http://l.blogs.oxfam/fr/blogs/14-06-18-lutte-inegalites-changement-climatique-coeur-objectifs-developpement" title="La lutte contre les inégalités et le changement climatique doivent être au cœur des objectifs de développement" class="translation-link" xml:lang="fr">Français</a></li> <li class="translation_es last"><a href="http://l.blogs.oxfam/es/blogs/14-06-18-reducir-brecha-desigualdad-nuevos-odm" title="Reducir la brecha de la desigualdad y el cambio climático: claves para erradicar la pobreza y el sufrimiento" class="translation-link" xml:lang="es">Español</a></li> </ul> Wed, 18 Jun 2014 07:26:12 +0000 Winnie Byanyima 10700 at http://l.blogs.oxfam http://l.blogs.oxfam/en/blogs/14-06-18-overcoming-inequality-climate-change-key-to-ending-poverty-post-2015#comments La desigualdad revierte los progresos realizados en la lucha contra la pobreza http://l.blogs.oxfam/en/node/10442 <div class="field field-name-body"> <p>Mi único mensaje para los Gobiernos que esta semana se reunirán en la sesión especial de Naciones Unidas para hacer un balance de los progresos realizados en el marco de los <strong><a href="http://www.oxfam.org/es/campaigns/health-education/objetivos-desarrollo-milenio" rel="nofollow">Objetivos de Desarrollo del Milenio (ODM) </a></strong>y negociar un proyecto para el desarrollo global es que <strong>sólo enfrentándose sin tapujos a la desigualdad se podrá acabar con la pobreza</strong>. </p> <p>Los ODM han sido una importante fuerza motor para el progreso en el ámbito del desarrollo durante los últimos 13 años. Han conseguido unir a Gobiernos, donantes y sociedad civil tras un propósito y unas metas comunes e inspirado grandes éxitos. </p> <p><strong><a href="http://mdgs.un.org/unsd/mdg/Home.aspx" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">El primer objetivo</a>, reducir la pobreza extrema a la mitad, se ha logrado.</strong> El hecho de que tantas personas hayan conseguido salir de la pobreza extrema en un periodo de tiempo tan corto es un logro que debemos celebrar. Pero no es ni mucho menos el único:</p> <ul><li>En el África subsahariana, un 41% menos de mujeres mueren durante el parto de las que lo hacían hace dos décadas. </li> <li>La tasa de mortalidad de los menores de cinco años se ha reducido de forma drástica en Ruanda, Liberia, Madagascar, Malawi, Níger y Etiopía. Los esfuerzos realizados para combatir enfermedades están dando sus frutos salvando vidas. </li> <li>A nivel global, se ha producido una disminución del 25% en el número de muertes provocadas por la malaria. En  África, el porcentaje asciende al 33%. </li> </ul><p>Estos son grandes éxitos que debemos aplaudir.</p> <p>Son grandes logros resultado de los rápidos progresos realizados en muchos países en los que ha habido estabilidad y un crecimiento equitativo. </p> <p>Sin embargo, <strong>en el mundo, más de 1.000 millones de personas aún viven con menos de 1,25 dólares al día y la mayor parte de los ODM están lejos de alcanzarse.</strong> Los progresos han sido escasos o inexistentes allí donde el conflicto se prolongaba o donde el crecimiento ha sido profundamente desigual. </p> <p>La pobreza a nivel mundial está disminuyendo pero, en un país tras otro, la desigualdad aumenta. Miles de millones de personas están siendo dejadas de lado por el crecimiento económico. Existe un consenso cada vez más amplio que sostiene que los elevados niveles de desigualdad no son sólo moralmente inaceptables sino que también menoscaban la estabilidad social y el crecimiento en sí mismo. </p> <p>Es necesario afrontar estos retos sin tapujos. La mayor omisión de los primeros ODM fue la elaboración de un plan para reducir la desigualdad. Sin esfuerzos específicamente dirigidos a reducir la brecha entre personas pobres y ricas, los próximos objetivos de desarrollo globales serán con certeza inalcanzables. Por este motivo, es necesario incluir en la próxima estrategia marco para el desarrollo global un objetivo orientado específicamente a hacer frente a la desigualdad. </p> <p>Mientras, los Estados miembros de Naciones Unidas deben volver a trabajar en los ODM. Demasiados Gobiernos están recortando sus inversiones en desarrollo humano. Muchos se centran en los planes "post-2015" en lugar de acelerar las acciones para alcanzar los objetivos actuales. Mientras, la ayuda para los países más pobres decrece. El pasado año, la ayuda oficial al desarrollo disminuyó en 5.360 millones de dólares.</p> <p>La comunidad internacional debe emprender medidas audaces para garantizar recursos suficientes para hacer de los ODM un éxito. Para empezar, los países ricos deben cumplir los compromisos adquiridos en materia de ayuda al desarrollo. También deben recaudar fondos adicionales combatiendo la evasión fiscal corporativa que cada año despoja a los países pobres de miles de millones e introduciendo mecanismos de financiación innovadores como la tasa a las transacciones financieras. </p> <p>Acabar con la pobreza extrema es posible. Ahora es el momento de elaborar un nuevo acuerdo más justo para las personas pobres de todo el mundo.</p> <h3><strong>Información relacionada</strong></h3> <p><a href="http://www.oxfam.org/es/campaigns/health-education/objetivos-desarrollo-milenio" rel="nofollow"><strong>¿Cuáles son los Objetivos de Desarrollo del Milenio?</strong></a></p> <p><strong>Descárgate el informe: <a href="http://www.oxfam.org/es/policy/la-trampa-de-la-austeridad" rel="nofollow">La trampa de la austeridad. El verdadero coste de la desigualdad en Europa</a></strong></p></div><div class="field field-name-title"><h2>La desigualdad revierte los progresos realizados en la lucha contra la pobreza</h2></div><ul class="links inline"><li class="translation_en first last"><a href="http://l.blogs.oxfam/en/blogs/13-09-24-inequality-undermining-progress-poverty-goals" title="Inequality undermining progress on poverty goals" class="translation-link" xml:lang="en">English</a></li> </ul> Wed, 25 Sep 2013 09:29:58 +0000 Winnie Byanyima 10442 at http://l.blogs.oxfam http://l.blogs.oxfam/en/node/10442#comments Inequality undermining progress on poverty goals http://l.blogs.oxfam/en/blogs/13-09-24-inequality-undermining-progress-poverty-goals <div class="field field-name-body"><p>When the world’s governments meet at a special session of the UN this week to take stock of toward the <a href="http://www.oxfam.org/en/campaigns/health-education/millennium-development-goals" rel="nofollow"><strong>Millennium Development Goals</strong></a> and negotiating a blueprint for global development, my message to them will be that only by confronting inequality head-on will poverty be overcome.</p> <p><strong>The MDGs have been an important force for development progress</strong> over the last 13 years. They have rallied governments, donors, and civil society behind a common purpose and ambition, and inspired many successes.</p> <p>The first goal, to halve extreme poverty, <a href="http://mdgs.un.org/unsd/mdg/" target="_blank" rel="nofollow"><strong>has been met</strong></a>. The fact so many people lifted out of extreme poverty in such a short time is an achievement to celebrate. It is far from the only achievement.</p> <ul><li>In Sub-Saharan Africa, 41 per cent fewer mothers die in childbirth now than they did two decades ago.</li> <li>Deaths of children under five have been radically reduced in Rwanda, Liberia, Madagascar, Malawi, Niger and Ethiopia.</li> <li>Efforts to combat diseases are paying off in lives saved. Globally, there has been a 25 per cent decrease of malaria deaths; in Africa, this figure is 33 per cent.</li> </ul><p>These are achievements to celebrate.</p> <p>This success has been the result of rapid progress in many countries where there has been stability and equitable growth.</p> <p><strong>Yet globally more than a billion people still live on less than $1.25 a day</strong> and most of the MDGs are still off target. Progress has been slow or non-existent where there has been protracted conflict, or where growth has been highly inequitable.</p> <p>Global poverty is declining but in country after country, inequality is on the increase. Billions of people are being left behind by economic growth. There is an emerging consensus that high levels of inequality are not just morally objectionable, but they are damaging for social stability and to growth itself.</p> <p>These challenges must be met head-on. A plan for reducing inequality was a major omission in the original MDGs. Without targeted efforts to reduce gaps between rich and poor, the next set of global development goals is almost certain to be unachievable.</p> <p><strong>A serious omission in the original MDGs was a plan to reduce inequality.</strong> Without it, the next set of global development goals is almost certain to fail. Global growth and development that is strong, sustainable, and inclusive requires the challenges of inequality to be met head-on. For that reason, a stand-alone goal to tackle inequality must be included in a future framework for global development.</p> <p>In the meantime, UN member states need to get back to work on the MDGs. Far too many <a href="http://www.abc.net.au/news/2013-09-19/aid-agencies-criticise-ausaid-realignment/4966924" target="_blank" rel="nofollow"><strong>governments are cutting back</strong></a> on their investment in human development. Many are now focusing on post-2015 plans instead of accelerating action to attain the existing goals. Meanwhile, aid to the poorest countries is falling – last year global ODA dropped by $5.36 billion.</p> <p><strong>The international community needs to take bold steps</strong> to ensure sufficient resources are invested to make the MDGs a success. As a start, rich countries must stick to their commitments on aid for development. They should also raise additional revenue by tackling the corporate tax evasion that is bleeding billions out of poor countries each year, and by introducing innovative financing mechanisms like a financial transactions tax.</p> <p>Ending extreme poverty is possible. Now is the time to craft a new, fair deal for poor people across the world.</p> <h3>You may also like</h3> <p><strong>Blog: <a href="http://blogs.oxfam.org/en/blogs/13-09-13-cautionary-tale-europes-bitter-crisis-austerity-inequality">A Cautionary Tale: Europe's bitter crisis of austerity and inequality</a></strong></p> <p><strong>Blog: <a href="http://blogs.oxfam.org/en/blogs/13-04-05-keeping-eye-have-mores">The Post-2015 agenda: Keeping an eye on the have-mores</a></strong></p> <p><strong>More <a href="http://blogs.oxfam.org/en/category/tags/inequality">blogs on inequality</a></strong><a href="http://blogs.oxfam.org/en/category/tags/inequality"></a></p></div><div class="field field-name-title"><h2>Inequality undermining progress on poverty goals</h2></div><ul class="links inline"><li class="translation_es first last"><a href="http://l.blogs.oxfam/es/blogs/13-09-25-la-desigualdad-revierte-los-progresos-realizados-en-la-lucha-contra-la-pobreza" title="La desigualdad revierte los progresos realizados en la lucha contra la pobreza" class="translation-link" xml:lang="es">Español</a></li> </ul> Tue, 24 Sep 2013 10:13:28 +0000 Winnie Byanyima 10439 at http://l.blogs.oxfam http://l.blogs.oxfam/en/blogs/13-09-24-inequality-undermining-progress-poverty-goals#comments The fight against poverty and inequality – we are all in this together http://l.blogs.oxfam/en/blogs/13-05-28-fight-against-poverty-inequality-we-are-all-together <div class="field field-name-body"><p><strong>In 2000, the world set the <a href="http://www.oxfam.org/en/campaigns/health-education/millennium-development-goals" rel="nofollow">Millennium Development Goals</a> (MDG) as a global framework to halve extreme poverty by 2015 and has been working since then to achieve them</strong>.</p> <p>There have been some significant achievements, such as Nepal's success in reducing the infant mortality rate by one third in five years.</p> <p>Yet the realization of the ultimate goal of halving extreme poverty now seems unlikely. This is because the mobilization of the necessary political will and <strong><a href="http://blogs.oxfam.org/en/blogs/13-05-16-are-governments-meeting-their-mdg-spending-targets">financial resources are withering </a></strong>mainly due to the economic crises since 2008.</p> <p>With the deadline for the MDG approaching, the international community led by the United Nations has started discussing what should succeed them in crafting a new, post-2015 development framework.</p> <p>My organization Oxfam is among those actively involved in this debate, advocating tackling disparity and inequality as well as ensuring good governance in each country.</p> <p>In Japan, on the eve of the <a href="http://www.ticad.net/" target="_blank" rel="nofollow"><strong>Fifth Tokyo International Conference on African Development</strong> </a>(TICAD V), Africa is depicted as a continent of rapid economic growth and business opportunities, thus calling for policy attention to economic infrastructure rather than social development, and private investment rather than public aid.</p> <p>But macro-economic growth alone will have a limited impact on poverty reduction and could in fact exacerbate inequalities and destabilize societies, if the discriminatory structures that prevent certain populations from capturing the fruits of growth remain unchallenged.</p> <p>Economic growth will only help bring true "development" to societies if accompanied by the empowerment and participation of affected communities and civil society to hold the government accountable, effective institutions to uphold human rights, fair distribution of natural resources, and universal access to public services like health and education through progressive taxation and redistribution of wealth.</p> <p>When discussing a <a href="http://blogs.oxfam.org/en/blogs/13-04-05-keeping-eye-have-mores"><strong>post-2015 development framework</strong></a>, we Japanese need to refresh our thinking of what "ending poverty" really means to us.</p> <p>For too long we have associated "international development" with charity -- an activity one may choose to engage in according to one's disposable assets. But is it really?</p> <p>Oxfam reports that <a href="http://www.oxfam.org/sites/www.oxfam.org/files/cost-of-inequality-oxfam-mb180113.pdf" rel="nofollow"><strong>the annual income of the richest 100 individuals</strong></a> in 2012 was enough to end global poverty four times over. Regardless of national incomes, countries north and south are losing vast amounts of revenue due to their richest members of the society avoiding taxation through tax havens.</p> <p>As a result, the state is increasingly unable to fulfill its fundamental role of providing essential services to the have-nots with the wealth of the haves, damaging public trust in democracy. Extreme economic inequality also undermines the longer-term prospects for growth, and worsens environmental problems.</p> <p>Japan is no exception in this. "Ending extreme poverty" is no longer a matter of a favor to the poor living far away, but a question of how to deal with "extreme wealth" and rebuild a society of fair and mutual assistance - a question we all are grappling with in Japan.</p> <p>Understanding that we are all in it together as global citizens is where we need to start in envisaging the world we want.</p> <p><em>Takumo Yamada has been serving as advocacy manager of Oxfam Japan since 2002.</em></p> <p><em>Originally published by <a href="http://english.kyodonews.jp/news/2013/05/227068.html" target="_blank" rel="nofollow"><strong>Kyodo News</strong></a>.</em></p> <h3>You may also like</h3> <p><strong>Blog: <a href="http://blogs.oxfam.org/en/blogs/13-05-16-are-governments-meeting-their-mdg-spending-targets">Are governments meeting their MDG spending targets?</a></strong></p> <p><strong>Blog: <a href="http://blogs.oxfam.org/en/blogs/13-03-27-inequality-political-problem-requiring-political-solution">Inequality: a political problem requiring a political solution</a></strong></p> <p><strong><a href="http://www.oxfam.org/sites/www.oxfam.org/files/oxfam-post-2015-framework-policy-28jan2013.pdf" rel="nofollow">Oxfam's position on Post-2015 Development Goals</a></strong> (pdf, 28 January 2013)<strong></strong></p></div><div class="field field-name-title"><h2>The fight against poverty and inequality – we are all in this together</h2></div> Tue, 28 May 2013 11:27:52 +0000 Takumo Yamada 10325 at http://l.blogs.oxfam http://l.blogs.oxfam/en/blogs/13-05-28-fight-against-poverty-inequality-we-are-all-together#comments Los gobiernos están cumpliendo con las inversiones para lograr los ODM? http://l.blogs.oxfam/en/node/10314 <div class="field field-name-body"><p><strong>En el mundo del desarrollo, el dinero es la respuesta a muchas preguntas</strong>. Si queremos saber cuánto hemos progresado en la consecución de los <strong><a href="http://www.un.org/es/millenniumgoals/" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">Objetivos de Desarrollo del Milenio</a></strong> (ODM), o qué rumbo debemos seguir a la hora de determinar una agenda post 2015, es esencial disponer de las cifras correctas. Esto es lo que hace que <strong><a href="http://www.governmentspendingwatch.org/" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">Government Spending Watch</a></strong> (GSW) sea tan interesante. Por primera vez, podemos saber cuánto dinero se está destinando al desarrollo, quién lo está aportando, y dónde se está empleando. </p> <p>Los datos, compilados por <strong><a href="http://www.development-finance.org/es.html" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">Development Finance International</a></strong> con el apoyo de Oxfam GB, nos indican el nivel de gasto en iniciativas relacionadas con los ODM de 52 países de ingresos bajos y medio-bajos. A tan solo 32 meses de la fecha en que se deberían alcanzar los Objetivos de Desarrollo del Milenio, esta es la primera oportunidad para que los ciudadanos de a pie, en países <strong><a href="http://www.governmentspendingwatch.org/spending-data" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">desde Armenia hasta Zambia</a></strong>, puedan comprobar si los gobiernos están cumpliendo lo que prometieron y aportando las cantidades que se necesitan para combatir la pobreza y cumplir los ODM.</p> <h3>¿Qué nos revelan estos datos?</h3> <p><strong>El lado positivo es que, en términos reales, la inversión de muchos países en desarrollo es mayor que nunca</strong>; pero esta tendencia se está invirtiendo poco a poco. La gran mayoría de los países en desarrollo está gastando mucho menos de lo prometido, o mucho menos de lo que sería necesario –según estimaciones de las organizaciones internacionales– para cambiar vidas. Solo un tercio de los países está cumpliendo algún objetivo de educación o de salud, y menos del 30 por ciento está cumpliendo objetivos de agricultura o de agua y saneamiento (WASH). Y para complicarlo más, los avances logrados se ven seriamente amenazados por la disminución de los compromisos de ayuda, los bajos índices de materialización de esos compromisos y el bajo nivel de gasto recurrente.</p> <p><strong>Existen, por supuesto algunas lagunas en los datos que nos impiden abarcar todo</strong>. GSW ha podido compilar casi tres cuartas partes de los datos sectoriales de educación y salud, pero tan solo dos terceras partes de los datos del sector agrícola, la mitad de los de protección social y medio ambiente, una tercera parte de agua y saneamiento y una quinta parte de educación primaria y género. El mapa que aparece a continuación representa la cobertura actual de datos. Asimismo, es importante recordar que, aunque la cuantía de gasto público destinado a los ODM es de una importancia fundamental, es la calidad de esa inversión lo que realmente marcará la diferencia. Las inversiones en agricultura, por ejemplo, deben orientarse al apoyo a la pequeña agricultura para mejorar la seguridad alimentaria y los medios de vida de las personas que más lo necesitan. </p> <em><a href="http://www.governmentspendingwatch.org">www.governmentspendingwatch.org</a></em> <p><strong>Un aspecto fundamental en el desarrollo de GSW es su importancia como herramienta para hacer que los gobiernos vuelvan a retomar sus compromisos de gasto destinado a los ODM</strong>. Las campañas y los proyectos de incidencia política en los distintos países pueden conseguir que los gobiernos rindan cuentas al institucionalizar la exigencia de suministrar datos. GSW hará también que sea más fácil para las organizaciones globales, regionales y nacionales propugnar y hacer campaña porque se aumente el gasto destinado a los ODM. </p> <h3>Las campañas dan resultado</h3> <p><strong>Hemos comprobado que realmente se pueden lograr cambios</strong> <strong>cuando la sociedad civil dispone de la información adecuada para luchar</strong>. En Sierra Leona, por ejemplo, recursos vitales como los servicios de salud sufrieron un déficit de financiación enorme como consecuencia de una década de guerra civil. La esperanza de vida en el país es de tan solo 48 años, y es uno de los lugares más peligrosos del mundo en que una mujer puede dar a luz. </p> <p>En 2012 se llevó a cabo en <strong><a href="http://www.governmentspendingwatch.org/campaigns-and-advocacy/water-and-sanitation/52-increasing-health-and-sanitation-spending-in-sierra-leone" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">Sierra Leona</a></strong> un estudio haciendo un seguimiento presupuestario exhaustivo para analizar la calidad y la cantidad del gasto en salud y saneamiento a nivel nacional y local. Oxfam lideró la recopilación de datos para Freetown (la capital, que alberga a un tercio de la población del país), con la colaboración del Consejo Municipal de Freetown y el Equipo de Gestión de Salud del Distrito, y mediante visitas a clínicas y hospitales de la ciudad. El estudio, junto con la labor de cabildeoante el Ministerio de Finanzas, consiguió hacer que la salud figurara como asunto de importancia en el proceso de elaboración de los presupuestos de 2013.</p> <p><strong>El éxito de la campaña quedó patente con el anuncio por parte del Gobierno de Sierra Leona de la asignación de un 10,5 % del presupuesto de 2013 a salud y saneamiento</strong> –un notable aumento si se compara con la asignación del 7,4 % en 2012–.  Este aumento puede significar que se asignen 7.400 millones de Leones más (1,7 millones de dólares) al programa de salud gratuita, y 1.500 millones de Leones más (340.000 dólares) a la atención primaria –que cubre el coste del personal de enfermería, los centros médicos y el equipamiento que prestan servicio a las personas pobres para cubrir necesidades médicas básicas–. Con estos incrementos se podrían cubrir los sueldos de un año de 560 comadronas más.</p> <p>El proyecto Government Spending Watch mejorará la disponibilidad de datos y el análisis sobre gasto y ayuda presupuestarios para todas las partes interesadas. También mejorará la disponibilidad y la transparencia de los datos del gasto relacionado con los objetivos globales de desarrollo a nivel nacional, al institucionalizar la exigencia de suministrar tales datos, facilitando así el análisis por todas las partes interesadas. Promoverá asimismo un importante cambio en la escala y la coordinación de las labores de incidencia política y las campañas a escala global, regional y nacional a favor del gasto público para lograr tanto los ODM como los objetivos posteriores que puedan fijarse.</p> <h3>¿Y ahora, qué?</h3> <p><strong>El desarrollo futuro del proyecto GSW ampliará este análisis a otros 34 países</strong>, y se espera que también a otros sectores. Cuando se hayan obtenido la mayoría posible de los datos, GSW pasará a la siguiente pregunta fundamental: ¿se está gastando bien el dinero de que disponemos? Se trata de una pregunta de especial importancia ya que, si bien países como Níger están cumpliendo el compromiso adquirido en la <strong><a href="http://www.nepad.org/nepad/knowledge/doc/1787/maputo-declaration" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">Declaración de Maputo</a></strong> de dedicar un 10 % del PIB a la agricultura, es posible que ese gasto no esté llegando a las zonas adecuadas. </p> <p>¿Y qué sucederá más allá de la fecha límite de los ODM? Los datos y el análisis forman un acervo crítico de pruebas a aportar al debate sobre qué sustituirá a los ODM, por lo que <strong>GSW será una herramienta fundamental para ayudar a determinar objetivos posteriores a los ODM</strong>. Esperamos que la base de datos aumente rápidamente para cubrir nuevos objetivos de desarrollo a medida que se vayan adoptando en futuros acuerdos internacionales. Pero hay algo seguro. Con estos datos, los ciudadanos y ciudadanas de a pie podrán plantear cuestiones incómodas a sus gobiernos y a los donantes, y podrán exigirles que cumplan sus promesas y que inviertan más para salvar vidas.</p> <p><em>Elaborado por Guppi Bola (Global Campaigner, Essential Services) y Rachel Bladon (Essential Services Intern), Oxfam GB</em></p> <p>Sigue todas las noticias de Government Spending Watch en su portal web, en twitter <strong><a href="http://www.twitter.com/@govspendwatch" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">@govspendwatch</a> y en Internet utilizando <a href="http://www.twitter.com/#govspendwatch" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">#govspendwatch</a>.</strong></p></div><div class="field field-name-title"><h2>Los gobiernos están cumpliendo con las inversiones para lograr los ODM?</h2></div><ul class="links inline"><li class="translation_en first"><a href="http://l.blogs.oxfam/en/blogs/13-05-16-are-governments-meeting-their-mdg-spending-targets" title="Are governments meeting their MDG spending targets?" class="translation-link" xml:lang="en">English</a></li> <li class="translation_fr last"><a href="http://l.blogs.oxfam/fr/blogs/13-05-16-objectifs-millenaire-developpement-gouvernements-depenses-promises" title="Objectifs du Millénaire pour le développement : les gouvernements dépensent-ils comme promis ?" class="translation-link" xml:lang="fr">Français</a></li> </ul> Thu, 16 May 2013 16:34:42 +0000 Guppi Bola 10314 at http://l.blogs.oxfam http://l.blogs.oxfam/en/node/10314#comments Objectifs du Millénaire pour le développement : les gouvernements dépensent-ils comme promis ? http://l.blogs.oxfam/en/node/10315 <div class="field field-name-body"><p><strong>Dans le domaine du développement, l'argent résout de nombreux problèmes.</strong> Si l'on souhaite savoir dans quelle mesure des progrès ont été réalisés pour atteindre les <strong><a href="http://www.un.org/fr/millenniumgoals/" rel="nofollow">Objectifs du Millénaire pour le développement</a></strong> (OMD) ou dans quelle direction il faudrait s'orienter pour le programme de l'après-2015, il convient en premier lieu de disposer de donées fiables, avant de pouvoir avancer. Voilà ce qui rend <strong><a href="http://www.governmentspendingwatch.org/" rel="nofollow">Government Spending Watch</a></strong> (GSW) si passionnant. Pour la toute première fois, des réponses peuvent être apportées au sujet des sommes dépensées en faveur du développement, de leur source et de leur destination.</p> <p>Les données, qui ont été compilées par <strong><a href="http://www.development-finance.org/fr.html" rel="nofollow">Development Finance International</a></strong> avec le soutien d’Oxfam Grande-Bretagne, détaillent les dépenses de 52 pays à faible revenu et à revenu intermédiaire de la tranche inférieure (PFR et PRITI) en faveur des initiatives en lien avec les OMD. Avec un délai de tout juste 32 mois avant la date butoir des Objectifs du Millénaire pour le développement, il s'agit de la première possibilité, pour les citoyens ordinaires de pays allant de l'Arménie à la Zambie, de <strong><a href="http://www.governmentspendingwatch.org/spending-data" rel="nofollow">vérifier</a></strong> si les gouvernements respectent leurs promesses et dépensent les sommes nécessaires pour combattre la pauvreté ou atteindre les OMD.</p> <h3>Que nous indiquent les données ?</h3> <p><strong>La bonne nouvelle est que de nombreux pays en développement investissent plus, en termes réels, que jamais auparavant </strong>mais cette tendance est en train de s'inverser peu à peu. La grande majorité des pays en développement dépensent beaucoup moins que les sommes auxquelles ils s'étaient engagés, ou que celles estimées nécessaires par les organisations internationales pour avoir un impact réel sur des vies. Seul un tiers des pays remplissent un objectif en matière d'éducation ou de santé, et moins de 30 % atteignent les objectifs en matière d'initiatives pour l'agriculture ainsi que pour l'eau et l'assainissement (WASH). Ajoutez à cela le non-respect d'engagements relatifs à l'aide humanitaire, de faibles taux de mise en œuvre et des dépenses régulières peu importantes ; tous ces éléments s'associent pour constituer une véritable menace à tout progrès en cours.</p> <p><strong>Il existe, bien entendu, des lacunes dans ces données</strong> et elles ne nous révèlent pas tout. GSW a réussi à compiler presque trois quarts des données sectorielles en matière d'éducation et de santé mais seulement deux tiers pour l'agriculture, la moitié pour la protection sociale et l'environnement, un tiers pour l'eau et l'assainissement, et un cinquième pour l'éducation primaire et les problématiques de genre. La carte ci-dessous illustre de manière pratique la situation actuelle. Il convient également de se souvenir que, tandis que le montant des dépenses gouvernementales entraîne une avancée importante vers les OMD, la qualité de ces investissements fera réellement la différence. Ainsi, les investissements dans l'agriculture devront être centrés sur le soutien aux petits producteurs et petites productrices, en vue d'améliorer la sécurité alimentaire et les moyens de subsistance des personnes qui en ont le plus besoin. </p> <em><a href="http://www.governmentspendingwatch.org">www.governmentspendingwatch.org</a></em> <p><strong>L'aspect le plus intéressant du développement de GSW</strong> est l'importance que revêtira cette initiative en tant qu'outil dont le but est de remettre les gouvernements sur le droit chemin quant aux dépenses consacrées aux OMD. Les projets de campagne et de plaidoyer au sein des pays peuvent permettre d'œuvrer dans le but d'améliorer la redevabilité des gouvernements, en institutionnalisant la demande de ces données et leur transmission. Cela facilitera également le plaidoyer et les campagnes des parties prenantes mondiales, régionales et nationales en faveur de dépenses plus élevées pour les OMD.</p> <h3>Les campagnes ont réellement un impact</h3> <p><strong>De véritables changements ont pu être observés</strong> lorsque le public avait l'occasion de se battre en employant de façon pertinente les informations adéquates. Par exemple, en Sierra Leone, dix ans de guerre civile ont laissé cruellement sous-financées les ressources vitales, telles que les soins de santé. L'espérance de vie y est de tout juste 48 ans et ce pays est l'un des plus dangereux pour les accouchements. </p> <p>Au cours de l'année 2012, une étude complète portant sur le suivi budgétaire a été entreprise en <strong><a href="http://www.governmentspendingwatch.org/campaigns-and-advocacy/water-and-sanitation/52-increasing-health-and-sanitation-spending-in-sierra-leone" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">Sierra Leone</a></strong> en vue d'analyser la qualité et le montant des dépenses en matière de santé et d'éducation du niveau national jusqu'au niveau local. Oxfam a encadré la collecte de données concernant Freetown (la capitale, qui rassemble un tiers de la population du pays), les discussions menées avec le conseil municipal de Freetown et l'équipe de gestion de la santé des districts, ainsi que la visite des cliniques et hôpitaux de la ville. Cette étude associée au travail de pressions sur le ministère des Finances du pays ont garanti l'importance de la problématique de la santé dans le programme, à l'approche de l'affectation budgétaire pour 2013.</p> <p><strong>Les réussites de la campagne sont devenues évidentes</strong> lors de l'annonce, par le gouvernement de la Sierra Leone, que 10,5 % du budget de 2013 seraient affectés à la santé et à l'éducation, soit une hausse impressionnante par rapport aux 7,4 % affectés en 2012. Cette augmentation pourrait entraîner une hausse de 7,4 milliards de leones (1,7 million de dollars américains) en faveur du programme de santé gratuite, ainsi que 1,5 milliard de leones (340 000 dollars) en faveur des soins de santé primaires, ce qui financera les infirmières, les centres médicaux et l'équipement utilisé par les personnes pauvres pour leurs besoins de santé fondamentaux. Ces progressions pourraient financer le salaire annuel de 560 sages-femmes supplémentaires.</p> <p>Le projet Government Spending Watch améliorera la disponibilité des données et de leur analyse, au sujet des dépenses et de l'aide humanitaire gérée par le budget, pour toutes les parties prenantes. Cela améliorera également la disponibilité et la transparence des données sur les dépenses relatives aux objectifs mondiaux de développement à l'échelle nationale, en institutionnalisant la demande de ces données et leur transmission, ce qui facilitera leur analyse par toutes les parties prenantes. Par ailleurs, cela encouragera un changement progressif quant à l'échelle et la coordination des campagnes et du plaidoyer mondiaux, régionaux et nationaux, dont le but est que les dépenses publiques permettent d'atteindre les OMD et les objectifs post-OMD.</p> <h3>Quel avenir pour le projet ?</h3> <p>Le développement futur du projet GSW étendra cette analyse à 34 pays de plus et, espérons-le, à d'autres secteurs. Une fois que le maximum de données aura été collecté, GSW jouera aussi un rôle fondamental en posant une autre question importante : <strong>dans quelle mesure faisons-nous bon usage de l'argent dont nous disposons ?</strong> De telles questions sont d'autant plus importantes que des pays tels que le Niger sont en passe de remplir leur engagement d'affecter 10 % de leur PNB à l'agriculture, dans le cadre de la <strong><a href="http://www.africa-union.org/Official_documents/Heads%20of%20State%20Summits/Hog%20fr/Assembly%20-%20D%C3%A9c.%20%20D%C3%A9cl%20Maputo%202003.pdf" rel="nofollow">Déclaration de Maputo</a></strong>. Néanmoins, il subsiste des doutes concernant les domaines ciblés par ces fonds : il se peut que les dépenses ne ciblent pas les domaines fondamentaux.<strong></strong></p> <p><strong>Qu'en est-il du calendrier des OMD ?</strong> Les données et leur analyse constituent des preuves essentielles qui servent le débat au sujet de ce qui suivra les OMD ; l'initiative GSW sera donc un outil important qui contribuera à déterminer l'évolution des objectifs succédant aux OMD. Nous espérons que la base de données GSW progressera rapidement afin de refléter les nouveaux objectifs de développement à mesure qu'ils seront décidés dans les accords internationaux à venir. Une chose est sûre : grâce à ces données, les citoyens ordinaires sont en mesure de poser des questions épineuses à leur gouvernement et à leurs donateurs, et d'exercer une pression sur ces derniers afin qu'ils tiennent leurs promesses et dépensent plus pour sauver des vies.</p> <p><em>Corédigé par Guppi Bola (Global Campaigner, Essential Services) et Rachel Bladon (stagiaire Essential Services), Oxfam GB</em></p> <p><strong>Restez informé(e) des dernières actualités de Government Spending Watch sur le site web, sur Twitter </strong><strong><strong><a href="http://www.twitter.com/@govspendwatch" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">@govspendwatch</a></strong> et sur internet en utilisant le hashtag <a href="http://www.twitter.com/#govspendwatch" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">#govspendwatch</a>.</strong></p></div><div class="field field-name-title"><h2>Objectifs du Millénaire pour le développement : les gouvernements dépensent-ils comme promis ?</h2></div><ul class="links inline"><li class="translation_en first"><a href="http://l.blogs.oxfam/en/blogs/13-05-16-are-governments-meeting-their-mdg-spending-targets" title="Are governments meeting their MDG spending targets?" class="translation-link" xml:lang="en">English</a></li> <li class="translation_es last"><a href="http://l.blogs.oxfam/es/blogs/13-05-16-los-gobiernos-estan-cumpliendo-con-las-inversiones-para-lograr-los-odm" title="Los gobiernos están cumpliendo con las inversiones para lograr los ODM?" class="translation-link" xml:lang="es">Español</a></li> </ul> Thu, 16 May 2013 14:59:41 +0000 Guppi Bola 10315 at http://l.blogs.oxfam http://l.blogs.oxfam/en/node/10315#comments Are governments meeting their MDG spending targets? http://l.blogs.oxfam/en/blogs/13-05-16-are-governments-meeting-their-mdg-spending-targets <div class="field field-name-body"><p><strong>In the world of development, money answers many questions.</strong> If we’re interested in finding out how far we have come in achieving the <strong><a href="http://www.un.org/millenniumgoals/" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">Millennium Development Goals</a></strong> (MDGs) or in what direction we should go for a post-2015 agenda, having the right numbers in place is paramount to moving forward. This is what makes <strong><a href="http://www.governmentspendingwatch.org/" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">Government Spending Watch</a></strong> (GSW) so exciting. For the very first time we can answer how much money is being spent on development, who it’s coming from and where it is going.</p> <p>The data, compiled by <strong><a href="http://www.development-finance.org/" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">Development Finance International</a></strong> and supported by Oxfam GB, shows how much 52 low- and lower-middle-income countries (LIC’s and LMICs) are spending on MDG-related initiatives. With only 32 months to go until the Millennium Development Goals are due to be met, this is the first chance for ordinary citizens in countries <strong><a href="http://www.governmentspendingwatch.org/spending-data" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">from Armenia to Zambia</a></strong> to see whether governments are keeping their promises and spending the amounts needed to fight poverty or reach the MDGs.</p> <h3>So what does the data tell us?</h3> <p><strong>The good news is that many developing countries are investing more</strong> in real terms than ever before, but this trend is slowly reversing. The vast majority of developing countries are spending much less than they have committed to, or much less than international organizations have estimated are needed to change lives. Only one third of countries are meeting any education or health goals, and less than 30 per cent are hitting targets for agriculture and Water and Sanitation (WASH) initiatives. To top it off, falling aid commitments, low execution rates, and low recurrent spending have combined to put a real threat to any existing progress.  </p> <p><strong>Of course there are gaps in this data</strong>, and it doesn’t tell us everything. GSW has been able to compile almost three-quarters of sector data for education and health, but only two-thirds for agriculture, half for social protection and environment, one third for water and sanitation and one fifth for primary education and gender. Below is a handy map that visualises where we’re at. What’s also important to remember is whilst the quantity of government spending is significant in progressing towards the MDGs; it’s the quality of that investment that is will really make the difference. Investment in agriculture for example, needs to be focused on supporting small-scale farmers to improve the food security and livelihoods of those that need it most.</p> <em><a href="http://www.governmentspendingwatch.org">www.governmentspendingwatch.org</a></em> <p><strong>The most interesting part of developing GSW is how important a tool</strong> it will be in bringing governments back on track with their MDG spending. Campaigning and advocacy projects in country can work to keep governments more accountable by institutionalising demand for, and supply of, this data. It will also make it easier for global, regional and national stakeholders to advocate and campaign for higher spending on the MDGs.</p> <h3>Campaigning works</h3> <p><strong>We’ve seen real change occur when the public have had the opportunity to fight</strong> using the right information in the right way. In Sierra Leone for example,  a decade of civil war left vital resources such as health care woefully underfunded. Life expectancy is just 48 years, and it is one of the most dangerous places in the world for a woman to give birth.</p> <p>During 2012, a comprehensive budget tracking study was undertaken in <strong><a href="http://www.governmentspendingwatch.org/campaigns-and-advocacy/water-and-sanitation/52-increasing-health-and-sanitation-spending-in-sierra-leone" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">Sierra Leone</a></strong> to analyse the quality and quantity of health and sanitation expenditure from national to local level. Oxfam led on the data collection for Freetown (the capital city, which has a third of the country’s population), talking to the Freetown City Council and District Health Management Team, as well as visiting health clinics and hospitals in the city. The study, and lobbying work with the Ministry of Finance, ensured that health was an issue high on the agenda in the run-up to the budget allocation for 2013.</p> <p><strong>The successes of the campaign became clear with an announcement by the Government of Sierra Leone</strong> that 10.5% of the 2013 budget would be allocated to health and sanitation, a massive increase from the 7.4% allocated in 2012. This increase could see an additional 7.4 billion Leones (US $1.7 million) allocated to the Free Healthcare programme, and an additional 1.5 billion Leones (US $340,000) for primary healthcare – which pays for the nurses, medical centres, and equipment that is used by poor people for basic medical needs. These increases could pay the annual salary for an additional 560 midwives.</p> <p>Government Spending Watch project will improve the availability of data and analysis on spending and budget-managed aid for all stakeholders. It will also increase the availability and transparency of data on spending related to the global development goals at national level, by institutionalising demand for, and supply of, this data, facilitating analysis by all stakeholders.  It will also promote a step change in the scale and coordination of global, regional and national advocacy and campaigning for public spending to achieve the MDGs and post MDGs.</p> <h3>What next?</h3> <p><strong>Future development of the GSW project will extend this analysis to 34 more countries</strong>, and hopefully to other sectors too. Once we have captured as much of the data as possible, GSW will also be fundamental in asking the next important question; how well are we spending the money we have? Such questions are especially important when countries such as Niger are reaching their 10% GDP on agriculture commitment under the <strong><a href="http://www.nepad.org/nepad/knowledge/doc/1787/maputo-declaration" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">Maputo Declaration</a></strong>, yet there are still concerns it is not reaching the right areas.</p> <p>And what about the post-MDG timeframe? Data and analysis is a key body of evidence for the debate about what will follow the MDGs, so GSW will be an important tool in helping to determine how post-MDG goals evolve.  We’re hoping the database will   progress rapidly to express new development goals as they are agreed in future international agreements. One thing is sure. With this data, ordinary citizens can ask their governments and donors tough questions, and press them to keep their promises and spend more to save lives.</p> <p><em>Co-authored by Guppi Bola (Global Campaigner, Essential Services) and Rachel Bladon (Essential Services Intern), Oxfam GB</em></p> <p><strong>Keep up to date with Government Spending Watch on the website, on twitter <a href="http://www.twitter.com/@govspendwatch" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">@govspendwatch</a> and across the web using <a href="http://www.twitter.com/#govspendwatch" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">#govspendwatch</a>.</strong></p></div><div class="field field-name-title"><h2>Are governments meeting their MDG spending targets?</h2></div><ul class="links inline"><li class="translation_es first"><a href="http://l.blogs.oxfam/es/blogs/13-05-16-los-gobiernos-estan-cumpliendo-con-las-inversiones-para-lograr-los-odm" title="Los gobiernos están cumpliendo con las inversiones para lograr los ODM?" class="translation-link" xml:lang="es">Español</a></li> <li class="translation_fr last"><a href="http://l.blogs.oxfam/fr/blogs/13-05-16-objectifs-millenaire-developpement-gouvernements-depenses-promises" title="Objectifs du Millénaire pour le développement : les gouvernements dépensent-ils comme promis ?" class="translation-link" xml:lang="fr">Français</a></li> </ul> Thu, 16 May 2013 09:26:34 +0000 Guppi Bola 10313 at http://l.blogs.oxfam http://l.blogs.oxfam/en/blogs/13-05-16-are-governments-meeting-their-mdg-spending-targets#comments The Post-2015 agenda: Keeping an eye on the have-mores http://l.blogs.oxfam/en/blogs/13-04-05-keeping-eye-have-mores <div class="field field-name-body"><p><em>On why the post-2015 agenda should include a goal to limit the negative characteristics of inequality. On how indicators of income concentration are better suited for this. One proposal that could be used is the Palma index despite some technical shortcomings.</em></p> <p>The world of development wonks is abuzz with discussion about what to include in the post-2015 MDG framework. One of the areas that has gotten plenty of attention is the issue of inequality (although it didn’t feature prominently in the summary report of a recent meeting in Bali, but that’s another story).</p> <p>This lively debate on inequality is already a welcome change. Not long ago, the topic was taboo in many development circles who dismissed such non-sense as the “politics of envy”.  In 2003, for instance, the then Managing Director of the IMF, Anne Kruger said in a speech: <a href="http://www.imf.org/external/np/speeches/2003/061803.htm" target="_blank" rel="nofollow"><strong>“One has to wonder about this preoccupation with inequality. Poor people are desperate to improve their material conditions in absolute terms rather than to march up the income distribution. Hence it seems far better to focus on impoverishment than on inequality.</strong>”</a> But recent research at the Fund has provided an alternative view on the ills of inequality: “<a href="http://www.imf.org/external/pubs/ft/fandd/2011/09/Berg.htm" target="_blank" rel="nofollow"><strong>Do societies inevitably face an invidious choice between efficient production and equitable wealth and income distribution? Are social justice and social product at war with one another? In a word, no.</strong></a>”. Times have indeed a-changed.</p> <p>The post-2015 process provides an opportunity to maintain the interest in inequality in the medium term. The discussion has now moved (prematurely, it seems to me, but more on that later) on what kind of indicators could be used to monitor changes in the distribution of income. One of the most recent additions to this conversation comes from <a href="http://www.kcl.ac.uk/aboutkings/worldwide/initiatives/global/intdev/people/Sumner/Cobham-Sumner-15March2013.pdf" target="_blank" rel="nofollow"><strong>Alex Cobham and Andy Sumner</strong></a> from the Center for Global Development  and King’s College London. Cobham and Sumner (C&amp;S) propose the “Palma index”, which is a ratio of the income shares of poor and the rich populations in a given country (more precisely, the ratio between the top 10 percent and the bottom 40 percent). One of the main arguments in favour of this index, C&amp;S say, is the empirical regularity where the share of income going to the middle class is broadly the same across countries and time. The Palma index has many interesting qualities: it is simple to understand; there is enough data to calculate the index for close to 80 countries (including, very importantly, rich countries) and it’s closely correlated to other inequality indicators.</p> <p>It has several problems too. Branko Milanovic has voiced some: first, he says, it “too simplistic” but I don’t think this is necessarily a problem. Other simple indicators have been very successful at making a point - think of the Human Development Index. Second, he says (in a tweet, no less) “[s]uppose that you have (for simplicity) no overall growth, but you have an increase in the bottom share, and an even greater increase in the top share, Palma goes up. The middle class share declines. So inequality increased although the poor are now better off.”</p> <p>On this, Milanovic has a strong point. We do not know the axiomatic properties of the Palma which might then lead to some changes in the indicator that reflect the opposite to what it’s supposed to measure. For example: imagine a change in the income distribution where  the shares of the bottom 40 percent and the top 10 percent remain the same but the distribution in the middle 50 percent becomes more compressed; the Palma index would remain unchanged when the income of half the population is more evenly distributed.  But then we should ask, what is this index supposed to measure? Since it focuses in the extremes of the distribution, it is not an index of general inequality, it is more easily interpreted as a normalized index of income concentration. </p> <p>Now, why would it be important to focus on concentration of income instead of total inequality? First, in the context of the post-2015 discussion, it’s not an either or. There are eight Millennium Development Goals with 40-something indicators to track progress. The first goal “Eradicating extreme poverty and hunger”, for instance, had five indicators. Including an inequality goal in the post-2015 process does not mean that we have to choose between the Palma index (which measures concentration of income) and, say, the Gini Index (which uses information for the whole distribution). If the post-2015 agenda includes a goal on equity/inequality, it doesn’t need to choose only one indicator to track progress.  Second, concentration of income is important because it is closely associated with elite-capture, a distortion of the political process and regulatory weakness. This is one of the core arguments of J. Stiglitz’s new book <a href="http://www.amazon.co.uk/The-Price-Inequality-Divided-Endangers/dp/145265817X" target="_blank" rel="nofollow"><strong>The Price of Inequality</strong></a> where he shows that the uber-rich have used their power to influence the political debate and macroeconomic policy (tax cuts and monetary policy, mostly) in their favour.</p> <p><a href="http://www.thebrokeronline.eu/Authors/Klasen-Stephan" target="_blank" rel="nofollow"><strong>Stephan Klasen</strong></a> and <a href="http://www.thebrokeronline.eu/Authors/Ravallion-Martin/%28language%29/eng-GB" target="_blank" rel="nofollow"><strong>Martin Ravallion</strong></a> have argued against the inclusion of an MDG on inequality. One of Klasen’s and Ravallion’s main points is that it’s hard to know what is the right level of inequality, and thus how much we should reduce it. This is true. In a way, there is “good” inequality (the result of entrepreneurship and merit) and some “bad” inequality (the result of rent-seeking and state capture). The awfully hard exercise is how to disentangle between the two of them.</p> <p>The Palma Index also provides a starting point for this. One of its weaknesses (it can’t tell what happens in the middle of the distribution) can be one of its strengths as the “bad” inequality happens mostly, one would think, between the two extremes of the distribution.</p> <p>The post-2015 should have equity at the center of its agenda but we need to think harder about what we want to measure and about the difference between inequality and just concentration of income. We need to think about the overall goal before moving to indicators.  We care about rising inequality because it’s, at least partially, unfair but also because of it’s consequences. Any goal in the post 2015 should reflect both of these elements. There is more and more evidence that higher inequality is closely associated with<a href="http://www.economist.com/blogs/freeexchange/2013/02/mobility" target="_blank" rel="nofollow"><strong> low social mobility</strong> </a>and <a href="http://www.economist.com/blogs/freeexchange/2013/02/mobility-1" target="_blank" rel="nofollow"><strong>lower equality of opportunities</strong></a>. This all sounds abstract, but just ask yourself if you think that the sons and daughters of the lower and middle-classes should always and in every turn have a much lower chance to succeed in life, be healthy, educated and more confident regardless of their abilities or their effort. Just ask yourself if it’s acceptable to tell a child in the slums of any city that she can never live the life of his wealthier peers because there is, as Chrystia Freeland calls it, a <a href="http://blogs.reuters.com/chrystia-freeland/2013/03/22/the-permanent-class-divide/" target="_blank" rel="nofollow"><strong>permanent class divide</strong></a>. And this is not only unfair but inefficient, as the IMF paper referred above suggests.</p> <p>There are problems in the selection of the indicators and the reduction targets regarding inequality. But dodging the issue in the post-2015 agenda because it’s difficult to know the right level of any indicator is akin to eating your way through obesity just because you don’t know your perfect weight. In one thing everyone seems to agree: there is too much inequality. The top 10 percent get too big a share of the spoils. Time to revert that trend.</p> <p><em>This post originally appeared in <a href="http://www.thebrokeronline.eu/Blogs/Inequality-debate/Keeping-an-eye-on-the-have-mores" target="_blank" rel="nofollow"><strong>The Broker Online.</strong></a></em></p> <h3><em></em>You may also like</h3> <p><strong>Report: <a href="http://www.oxfam.org/en/policy/inequality-matters" rel="nofollow">Inequality Matters: BRICS inequalities fact sheet</a></strong></p> <p><strong>Blog: <a href="http://blogs.oxfam.org/en/blogs/13-03-27-inequality-political-problem-requiring-political-solution">Inequality: a political problem requiring a political solution</a></strong></p> <p><strong>Oxfam Briefing: <a href="http://www.oxfam.org/sites/www.oxfam.org/files/cost-of-inequality-oxfam-mb180113.pdf" rel="nofollow">The cost of inequality: how wealth and income extremes hurt us all</a></strong> (pdf)</p></div><div class="field field-name-title"><h2>The Post-2015 agenda: Keeping an eye on the have-mores</h2></div> Fri, 05 Apr 2013 17:06:57 +0000 Ricardo Fuentes-Nieva 10324 at http://l.blogs.oxfam http://l.blogs.oxfam/en/blogs/13-04-05-keeping-eye-have-mores#comments Inequality: a political problem requiring a political solution http://l.blogs.oxfam/en/blogs/13-03-27-inequality-political-problem-requiring-political-solution <div class="field field-name-body"><p><em>This blog was co-written by Nicole Metz, Oxfam Novib policy advisor on the Post-2015 Agenda, and </em><em>Tom van der Lee, a member of the Board of Directors of Oxfam Novib. </em></p> <p><strong>Inequality is not just unethical, it is also economically inefficient, politically corrosive, socially divisive, and environmentally destructive.</strong></p> <p>While 1.3 billion people remain living below the extreme poverty line of US $1.25 a day and another 2.6 billion live on less than US $2 a day, the one hundred richest billionaires worldwide enjoyed a US $240 billion net income in 2012. Furthermore, Oxfam research shows that inequality has increased significantly in 14 of the G20 countries since 1990. Other dimensions of poverty and inequality—such as inequality of opportunity, discrimination, and marginalization—are closely interlinked with income inequality and influence people’s lives and opportunities additionally.</p> <p>Greater equality, however, makes societies stronger: more equal societies suffer less from a wide variety of economic, political and social problems. This means that we have all the reason in the world to bring an end to the extreme inequalities that exist within countries—our own, too—as well as between countries worldwide.</p> <h3>Tackling inequality at the heart of the post-2015 agenda for development</h3> <p>That’s why Oxfam proposes that reducing inequality becomes an absolute priority in the post-2015 framework. The progress we will be able to make in the next decade with regard to ending inequality will determine whether the international community will succeed or fail in tackling poverty altogether. What’s more, inequality is one of the major omissions in the current framework of the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs). If it is to take itself seriously, the post-2015 agenda must therefore address the challenges posed by huge and growing inequalities—and, perhaps most importantly, in an explicitly political and practical way.</p> <p>The post-2015 framework should therefore include a specific commitment to tackle vertical inequalities of wealth and income, but must also establish universal or “zero targets”. Zero targets tackle inequality implicitly because they aim for the complete eradication of absolute poverty or strive for universal coverage of services and elimination of specific injustices for everyone, everywhere.</p> <p>Oxfam therefore calls for the following:</p> <ul><li><strong>A goal to reduce vertical inequality of wealth and income</strong>, within all countries and globally, should be included in the post-2015 agenda. Potential targets are reducing the income gap between the top 10% and bottom 10% of populations within countries, reducing the share of income going to the top 10% of populations, and making national tax systems more progressive and more robust with regard to tackling large-scale (private and corporate) tax evasion;</li> <p>  </p><li><strong>Universal targets for goals on absolute poverty</strong>, health, education, hunger, water and sanitation, and energy should be a part of the post-2015 agenda; </li> <p>  </p><li><strong>A goal on achieving gender equality</strong> should figure prominently, and; </li> <p>  </p><li><strong>Proper mainstreaming to address social inequalities across all goals</strong> should be aimed for. Goals have to address the specific needs of women and marginalised groups (which include women, the elderly, the disabled, ethnic minorities, cultural minorities, religious minorities, gays and lesbians, migrants, people affected with HIV/AIDS, Internally Displaced Peoples (IDPs), and the rural and urban poor) to tackle the challenges they are facing. Additionally, disaggregated, group-specific data measurement is needed to assess progress towards goals and targets, which implies the collection of new data where it is not available. </li> </ul><p>When implementing these four principles, the fundamental cultural norms and values that maintain inequalities within societies need to be addressed explicitly. Examples are persistent gender inequality, inequalities between ethnic groups, or between powerful and powerless stakeholders within the global financial system. Women’s organizations’ community work to change attitudes around gender norms provides us with useful insights into appropriate methodology. Also, specific investments are needed in all countries to meet the basic needs of the most vulnerable and marginalized groups. Effective social protection systems, investments in free (or low-cost) public services and access to justice are key elements for girls, boys, women and men, to find their own paths out of poverty.</p> <h3>A Global New Deal to reverse decades of increasing inequality</h3> <p>The developed world should certainly be part of this quest. We propose a Global New Deal to reverse decades of increasing inequality.</p> <p>Oxfam calls on world leaders to curb today’s income extremes and commit themselves to reducing inequality to at least 1990 levels. The post-2015 agenda should include “global partnership” measures and targets that foster greater fairness of the international financial system. A global partnership that truly curbs inequality promotes social responsibility of the richest individuals and most profitable corporations and introduces fair and accountable national and international tax systems. Furthermore, it should introduce an innovative approach towards financing for development that originates in the principles of burden sharing, solidarity and human rights.</p> <h3>Calling a political problem by its name</h3> <p>In the international debates on the post-2015 agenda for development, inequality remains a very sensitive issue. Some emerging economies are starting to understand they need to address inequality within their own countries, if they want to develop sustainably. Some key global powers use other countries’ sovereignty as a reason to not discuss in-country inequalities openly and are anxious to disturb their relations with the top 1% within their own societies.</p> <p>The European Union, and member states like the Netherlands, are aware of inequalities but shy away from bold steps. They are caught up in austerity policies or prefer to stay on the safe side by clinging to implicit rhetoric related to economic growth and how it will eventually trickle down to overall society. Oxfam calls on all parties to be fair and address inequality for what it is: a politically charged issue that requires strong political will as well as real actions to tackle it.</p> <p><em>Originally posted 20 March 2013, by <a href="http://www.thebrokeronline.eu/Blogs/Inequality-debate/Inequality-a-political-problem-requiring-a-political-solution" target="_blank" rel="nofollow"><strong>@thebrokeronline</strong></a></em><a href="http://www.thebrokeronline.eu/Blogs/Inequality-debate/Inequality-a-political-problem-requiring-a-political-solution" target="_blank" rel="nofollow"><strong></strong></a></p> <h3>You may also like<strong></strong></h3> <p><strong><a href="http://www.oxfam.org/sites/www.oxfam.org/files/oxfam-post-2015-framework-policy-28jan2013.pdf" rel="nofollow">Oxfam's position on Post-2015 Development Goals</a></strong> (pdf, 28 January 2013)<strong></strong></p> <p><strong><a href="http://www.oxfam.org/sites/www.oxfam.org/files/cost-of-inequality-oxfam-mb180113.pdf" rel="nofollow">The cost of inequality: how wealth and income extremes hurt us all</a></strong> (pdf, 18 January 2013)<strong></strong></p> <p><strong><a href="http://www.oxfam.org/en/pressroom/pressrelease/2013-01-19/annual-income-richest-100-people-enough-end-global-poverty-four-times" rel="nofollow">Annual income of richest 100 people enough to end global poverty four times over</a></strong><em><strong></strong></em> (press release, 19 January 2013)<em><strong></strong></em></p></div><div class="field field-name-title"><h2>Inequality: a political problem requiring a political solution</h2></div> Wed, 27 Mar 2013 16:11:50 +0000 Nicole Metz 10263 at http://l.blogs.oxfam http://l.blogs.oxfam/en/blogs/13-03-27-inequality-political-problem-requiring-political-solution#comments