A picture says more than...Merry Christmas, Africa from the German ministry of development

Merry Christmas, Africa! German minister for development cooperation Dirk Niebel wishes every g iraffe and roundhouse happy holidays Christmas in this official newspaper ad from December 2012 (not 1962...). This really says a lot about the current leadership of the Bonn-based ministry and potentially also about their communications team and their expectations of the German, printed new spaper reading public... We have already achieved a lot. With your help we can even do more. May be rethinking communications and images/stereotypes of Africa could be one of those achievements in the future... (HT: Claudia of OpenAid Germany )

Simulating civil society participation, European Investment Bank edition

I am a firm believer that relatively small, routine events, conferences or seminars actually say quite a lot about large organizations and how they perceive their environment and engage with the outside wor ld. Granted, I was not expecting a lot from the Luxembourg-based E uropean Investment Bank (EIB) , but their announcement of their ‘ EIB Board of Directors Seminar with Civil Society 2013 ’ is a particularly good example of ‘civil society engagement – you are doing it wrong’ (see last week’s post on the EU 's ‘ European Year of Citizens ’ for another bad example from the European heartland...). The ‘Board of Directors Seminar’ is essentially a 90 minute affair. Prior to the Board of directors holding court engag ing with civil society, there is a half-day of meaningless discussions that somehow is supposed to simulate a critical debate: ‘Promoting growth in Europe – with the right economic, social and environmental returns’ already contains all the spoilers in the title. You

Links & Contents I Liked 57

Hello all! Happy New Year! And w elcome to the first regular Thursday link review of 2013! There's some interesting stuff to ki ck-off a new year in development (blogging), featuring a very interesting piece on the 'murky fields of imposition' inside an organization that struggled with a systemic review process , an innovative Tanzanian digital poli tician , the question whether or not Oxfam should pay interns, a word from 'Everyday Ambassador' Jennifer Lentfer, an essay on anthr opology and the U.S. military, great career advice from Forbes (the economy needs YOU! 'transcultural anthropologist'!), a list of great po litical science & IR bloggers and last not le ast a new study on gender disparities in academia.  Enjoy! New from aidnography Learn, stimulate, encourage: Participatory plastic words & the EUs European Year of Citizens Links I Liked 56 I started combing through my every-increasing list of interesting and noteworthy links and

Participatory plastic words: On the EU's European Year of Citizens

2013 is the European Year of Citizens! The better the men and women of Europe understand their rights as EU citizens, the more informed the decisions they can take in their personal lives, and the more vibrant democratic life in Europe can be at all levels. This is the vision for the European Year of Citizens 2013, which will provide an opportunity for people throughout Europe to: -learn about the rights and opportunities open to them thanks to EU citizenship – particularly their right to live and work anywhere in the EU -stimulate debate about the obstacles that prevent people from fully using these rights and generate specific proposals for addressing them -encourage people to participate in civic fora on EU policies and issues. The Year's activities will be organised as much as possible at the grass-roots level, by citizens and civil society organisations themselves. Happy new year of citizens! Although not strictly development-related the recent announcement of t

Links & Contents I Liked 56

Hello all! As the year is coming to its end, a special period of reflection for many of us seems to be setting i n over the final stretch of 'the holidays'. So I started combing through my every-increasing list of interesting and noteworthy links and decided to compile a slightly more special link review before the regular one will resume on Thursday. My aim is to share new links, but being selective in as much as I think that many of these issues have been part of bigger issues and/or are likely to 'stick around' in forthcoming debates in 2013. T his review features thoughts on participation, the value of global summits, politics in the 'post-2015 ' age, the future of philanthrop y and Afghanistan, higher education funding, abolishing academic tenure as well as book recommendations . Looking forward to a share-ful and networked new year! New on aidnography My development blogging review 2012 Development Participation for development: a good time to be alive

My development blogging review 2012

Sometimes it's not that bad if you are pr oven wrong... I wrote almost a year ago in my last annual development blogging review   ‘ The development blogging year of 2012 will most likely be similar to 2011-or 2010 ’ and in some ways that has turned out not be enti rely the case . What is still true this year is that ‘ I will also try to stick to the topics I know best – blogging at the interface of anthropology and development research with a primarily academic hat on ’ so this is naturally a subjective review mainly driven by ‘development blogging’ and social media. But enoug h with the introduction ! Kony 2012 Let’s deal with the big Kony 2012-elephant right away so I can focus on other areas ;)... In both quantity and quality, the Kony 2012/Invisible Children debate has been a great example of ‘virtual development’ debates and new forms of engagement that go beyond any traditional offline campaigning or media reporting. But in other ways it also confirmed that development b