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Hi all,

This week's #globaldev review has turned into an outlet for me to avoid more doomscrolling, cope with feelings of helplessness as war unfolds in Europe & show a little bit of global digital solidarity; I probably failed in many ways, but it's all I have left to give right now...

My quotes of the week
“Do we want global health … to be radically different from colonial health or tropical medicine,” he asked in an interview last year. “If so, then let’s stop referring to it as ‘global public health’ or ‘global health security’ and start calling it ‘global health equity.’” (Paul Farmer's lasting legacy: The quest for equity in global health)

Although consumers in the Global North may think that a label in a T-Shirt stating that certain standards have been met and social responsibilities upheld, the groups mainly impacted in the Global South may think differently. (Labour Codes of Conduct: Workers' Rights and Unions in Southern Africa's Garment Industry)

Development news
Paul Farmer's lasting legacy: The quest for equity in global health
“Do we want global health … to be radically different from colonial health or tropical medicine,” he asked in an interview last year. “If so, then let’s stop referring to it as ‘global public health’ or ‘global health security’ and start calling it ‘global health equity.’”
In that reframing, he saw the beginning of a fundamental reorientation of a system that was “overtly colonialist in nature and focused on control over care. The idea behind ‘global health equity’ is to break that bond
Andrew Green for DevEx with another power obituary for Paul Farmer.

UK government accused of ignoring victims in efforts to tackle ‘sex for aid’
But the report found that abuse cases were still underreported. Icai said a survey in Uganda found people were hesitant to report cases to agencies because of long investigation processes, and concerns about corruption and not being believed.
Mechanisms for dealing with complaints were often overwhelmed because they dealt with a broad range of safeguarding issues beyond sexual exploitation, Icai added.
It said there were weaknesses internationally in sharing information about exploitation. However, the report said there had been progress in working with donors to promote a coordinated response within the humanitarian sector.
Kaamil Ahmed for the Guardian on the latest report from UK's Independent Commission for Aid Impact.

In this age of climate crisis, humanitarians need to learn to love tech
Humanitarians should make themselves more accessible to tech companies, and collaborate directly with them to ensure that products, solutions, and programmes are needs-based, user-centred, and adhere to humanitarian principles. For example, if a local community largely relies on WhatsApp messaging, humanitarians can help make sure a flood-prediction model that issues alerts uses that preferred platform.
Devorah West for the New Humanitarian; I'm not completely disagreeing with the analysis & some of the author's suggestions, but why not fund the humanitarian system properly first & see whether well-funded efforts also lead to better engagement with 'tech'; otherwise it sounds a little bit as if the humanitarian sector is supposed to do even more 'innovative' work to help global tech platforms, for example...

Too Close to Home? We Must End the Normalized Dehumanization of Domestic Workers
The starting point is to recognize and understand the oppressive realities that domestic workers are faced with daily – the problems, deprivations, humiliations, and abuses – as well as their causes and effects. The second step is to look at this as a labor issue, and therefore an employment issue and consequently a development issue – because that is what it is. In recent years, intensive campaigning and research by feminist collectives and women’s rights organisations has seen some ground gained. The realities faced by domestic workers are no longer a secret kept hidden in the privacy of employers’ homes, and their social origins are much more clearly understood. We are now witnessing more domestic workers organising.
Elizabeth Kemigisha for African Feminism on domestic work(ers) in Uganda.

How white saviour 'voluntourism' gets you famous on TikTok
It also implements and upholds a colonial pecking order, with mainly white teenagers being told that their limited experience is somehow better than that of bonafide professionals in the country they volunteer in, simply because they come from the Global North.
Academic Robtel Neajai Pailey terms this as international development’s “white gaze” phenomenon, where whiteness is seen as a signifier for progress, modernity and expertise, and the standard against which non-white people are judged.
Frankie Leach for with a good overview over recent 'white saviour' debates & old challenges on a new platform...

It’s not just climate: Are we ignoring other causes of disasters?
“While politicians may want to blame crises on climate change, members of the public may prefer to hold government accountable for inadequate investments in flood or drought prevention and precarious living conditions,” they write in a paper published in December.
“A really striking example is the current food crisis in Madagascar, which has been blamed on climate change quite prominently,” Otto told e360. Last October, the UN’s World Food Programme said more than a million people in the south of the African country were starving after successive years of drought. Its warning that the disaster “could become the first famine caused by climate change” was widely reported. Madagascar’s President Andry Rajoelina said: “My countrymen are paying the price for a climate crisis that they did not create.”
But in December, Luke Harrington of the New Zealand Climate Research Institute concluded that climate change played at most a minor role in the drought, which was a reflection of past natural variability in rainfall, as evidenced by records dating back to the late 19th century. He instead pinned the blame for the crisis on poverty and poor infrastructure, such as inadequate water supplies to irrigate crops — issues that had gone unaddressed by Rajoelina’s government.
Fred Pearce for Yale Environment 360 on the complex relationships between climate change, vulnerabilities and 'good, old' bad policy making...

Labour Codes of Conduct: Workers' Rights and Unions in Southern Africa's Garment Industry
Although codes of conduct fulfil some minimum conditions according to national law, these codes do not necessarily ensure ‘good working conditions and proper (living or decent) wages’.
Although consumers in the Global North may think that a label in a T-Shirt stating that certain standards have been met and social responsibilities upheld, the groups mainly impacted in the Global South may think differently.
While minor improvements in working conditions and (minimum) wages might be celebrated as ‘major achievements’ at one stage, the benefits and experience impact in the Global South can be limited and short-lived.
Søren Jeppesen & Andries Bezuidenhout for the Center for Business and Development Studies with interesting findings from the latest research in South Africa.

Crappy hiring practices that need to die, and some new ones we need to adopt
Spell out your ENTIRE hiring process and timeline in your job posting: If you plan to have finalists do five interviews, a presentation, and a Thunderdome battle with only office supplies as weapons, say so upfront. Job candidates deserve to know how much time they will need to spend with you and whether it’s reasonable. If you haven’t thought out your process in its entirety enough to spell it out, you’re not ready to hire.
Send interview questions in advance: If you want thoughtful answers, give candidates time to think and reflect. We need to stop equating being extroverted, charismatic, and good at talking, with a high degree of intelligence and qualification. Most jobs require thinking, research, and deliberation, so reflect that by giving job candidates time to do that.
Vu Le for Nonprofit AF with more great reflections on changing organizations.

Our digital lives
Podcasting in the Pacific: tips from experience
Producing the podcast was challenging. The key for us was to stay focused on the goal, and the benefit the podcast would bring for Samoan women. Ultimately the hurdles were not insurmountable for us as amateurs, and hopefully our lessons will lower the hurdles for other aspiring podcasters.
Ramona Boodoosingh, Jess O’Callaghan, Falelua Maua, Saunima'a Ma Fulu-Aiolupotea, Filipina Amosa Lei-Sam, Sione Pifeleti & Mayday Fanueli for DevPolicy Blog with a really hands-on, bottom-up view on podcasting from Samoa.

Stations encounter burnout, frustration in ‘long game’ of advancing DEI goals
Now that the committee’s work has resumed, Chávez hopes to avoid another bout of burnout by making sure that supervisors recognize that committee members’ involvement with DEI content is part of what they do on a daily basis. Her supervisor has supported her participation in this way, and other supervisors are starting to come around, she said. She also hopes that management will budget funds that can, in part, compensate members of the committee.
“This is hard work, and especially for staff of color,” Chávez said. “DEI efforts can sometimes, and I’m not talking about OPB here, but just in general … fall on people of color.”
“One of the big challenges that I would say organizationally, not just for us, but also probably for leadership and anyone who’s engaged in this work, is that it needs to be sustainable,” Chávez said. “Because this is really a long-term investment. DEI work can’t just be like, ‘OK, we have a committee: check. OK, we hired a person of color.’ There’s so much more that needs to be done. And public media and OPB has made a lot of progress, but the work’s not over.”
Tyler Falk for Current reports from inside the DEI 'engine room' of US public media stations.

Principled humanitarian programming in Yemen
The overarching finding of the research is that a lack of trust and communication about how each agency/organisation operationalises the principles is hindering the effectiveness of the response. Whether implicitly or explicitly, principles are an everyday reference for all humanitarian actors in the country, and a coordinated principled approach is considered by most as the best way to reach the people most in need with good quality assistance and protection. Still, organisations tend to navigate the context from their own individual perspective, and without consideration of the way their decisions impact the principled humanitarian programming of others, or in the future.
Marzia Montemurro & Karin Wendt for HERE-Geneva with an interesting paper already published in December.

You can find more readings in my weekly newsletter!

Book Review: White Philanthropy: Carnegie Corporation’s ‘An American Dilemma’ and the Making of a White World Order by Maribel Morey
White Philanthropy is a vivid and thorough account of how a wealthy and powerful philanthropic organisation initiated, and eventually completed, a project to establish how white governance could improve the status of Black people. Morey’s work draws close attention to the capacity of elite philanthropy to disseminate and uphold ideologies. More importantly, it carefully explains the tools and mechanisms that make this, and a white world order, viable.
Juvaria Jafri for LSE Review of Books with one of those books on my ever-growing 'to read' pile...

Revealed: leading climate research publisher helps fuel oil and gas drilling
For more than a decade, the company has supported the energy industry’s efforts to optimize oil and gas extraction. It commissions authors, editors and journal advisory board members who are employees at top oil firms. Elsevier also markets some of its research portals and data services directly to the oil and gas industry to help “increase the odds of exploration success”.
Amy Westervelt for the Guardian with more evidence on how terrible the global academic publishing mafia really is...

What we were reading 5 years ago
(Link review 226, 31 March 2017)

Failing in the field (book review)
Failing in the field is a great primer for students and non-academic researchers who are embarking on the exciting journey of data collection and fieldwork. But while getting research design and implementation right, we should remember not to leave ‘the field’ to the political scientists and economists alone ;)!
Me, with a book review.

Africa deserves better from Comic Relief
Of course the fundraising is worthwhile, but the Red Nose Day formula is tired and patronising to Africans. This year things must be different. We must have voices debating debt and dictatorship, trade agreements and climate change, education and entrepreneurship – not just appeals for people to phone in and pledge a few pounds. Otherwise another opportunity will be missed.
David Lammy for the Guardian on the never-ending story of (un)ethical fundraising...

“Do-Good” Exploitation
When capitalists play the do-good card to squeeze more performance and loyalty out of their employees, and then conveniently cite business necessities when it benefits them, then doing good becomes little more than their latest exploitative tool.
But Agrawal’s rhetoric also reveals the inherent conflict between the needs of companies and the needs of workers. And that is the structural reality of capitalism, no matter how personally altruistic individual capitalists might be.
Sarah Ngu for Jacobin with another theme almost as old as this blog...


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