Can we transform the repetition of virtual development debates into something bigger? And do we have to?
Maybe it was purely coincidental. Or maybe it was because I have more time to engage with digital content during my summer teaching break, but there seems to be an increased number of well-known discussions popping up that leave me a bit puzzled. The Fifty Shades of Aid facebook group discussed expat salaries and various expat-local gaps again, Duncan Green revived the discussion on whether and how academics should influence policy-making , the Guardian wrote on volunteer stress and burn-out and on Africa is a Country there was a reminder that overseas volunteering needs a reflective framework . Add to these debates the fact that a Western journalist apparently wrote a terrible book on his time in ‘Africa’ and mainstream celebrities got excited about clean water in Burundi (Beyonce) and hospital wings in Malawi named after their children (Madonna) this pretty much sounds like any other week. Some policy debates, e.g. how much spending on refugees at home should count as ODA ?