Going “Back to the Future” only works in Hollywood


Filed under: Peace and security

2, immigrant boy in Lisbon church

Across Europe there is a risk that nationalism, protectionism and populism will usher back in an era where ‘fearing thy neighbour’ once again becomes a defining characteristic of our policy making.

Many politicians will have us believe that we are now more fractured as societies – at precisely the time we are more diverse, more inter-dependent and more inter-connected than ever.

Reconciling this political discourse with the reality of our globalized world is futile. No country – big or small – can rewind diversity and “un-globalize” its economy.

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Inequalities: When perceptions don’t reflect reality


Filed under: Anticorruption Development Governance Inequalities


Photo: Freya Morales

Nostalgia for the Soviet (or Yugoslav) economic systems is often encountered in Eastern Europe and Central Asia. Many of the reasons for this—security, stability, an absence of armed conflict—are not hard to understand.

However, many people from these regions—including those who approve of the changes that took hold in the 1990s—also seem to miss the equality in incomes that these systems produced.

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The elephant in the income distribution room


Filed under: Development Development 2.0 Inequalities

Branko Milanovic’s “elephant in the income distribution room” Data taken from “Get Ready to See This Globalization 'Elephant Chart' Over and Over Again”, Bloomberg, 27 June 2016.

Branko Milanovic’s “elephant in the income distribution room” Data taken from “Get Ready to See This Globalization ‘Elephant Chart’ Over and Over Again”, Bloomberg, 27 June 2016.

To “leave no one behind”, we must measure inequalities – but with what conceptual frameworks?

The “elephant” chart above, prepared by Branko Milanovic, shows real incomes received during 1988-2008 (vertical axis) by various shares of the global population (horizontal axis).

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You want to engage your parliament in the fight against corruption? Here are 5 steps you can take


Filed under: Anticorruption

Last year, a competition in Moldova encouraged children to draw what corruption means to them.

According to Transparency International Corruption Perception Index (2016), Moldova is ranked 103rd (out of 168 countries worldwide) making it one of the most corrupt countries in Europe.

When we talk about corruption, we often talk about corruption at government level and the role of citizens in tackling it, but what about the role of parliamentarians?

After all, parliamentarians oversee actions of executive bodies, including how the budget is prepared and spent, whether they are in line with legal framework and how they correspond to people’s needs. Does it not make sense to also target them?

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How a small film brought a big impact to a Kosovo* village


Filed under: Development Disaster response Human rights and rule of law Migration and remittances Roma


I met BAFTA Award winning director Daniel Mulloy in Prishtina in early 2015.

Being deeply concerned by the refugee crisis, Daniel wanted to make a movie that would speak to the West.

As a refugee myself who returned home with help from the international community I shared Daniel’s passion. We decided to create a piece of art that would ask for dignity for the world’s displaced individuals, and the short film Home was born.
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The Global Goals need alternative sources of financing: Introducing UNDP Alternative Financing Lab

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Filed under: Development Other Social innovation


Our innovation team rocks the camera.

Financing the Global Goals will take a lot of resources. In fact, there’s currently a $2.5 billion gap in funding the current SDG agenda.

On the bright side, though, there are a whole new set of funding sources out there.

Crowdfunding investments, for example, reached US$37 billion in 2015, amounting to one-third of development assistance.

Alternative sources of funding haven’t quite made it on the radar of development organisations or governments, but we think they matter greatly. This is why we set up the UNDP Alternative Finance Lab.

Since the beginning of this year alone, we mobilized over EUR 3 million experimenting with new financial mechanisms.

Take a look at some of our successes so far!

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Professors become students: Bringing data journalism into the classroom


Filed under: Guest posts Other


The power of data does not come from technology, but from the stories we are able to tell around the data.

Having access to data isn’t enough. We need more journalists who can use the data to tell impacting stories.

This is why I recently helped to facilitate an intensive 12-day workshop in Montenegro, where we explored with journalism professors ways of bringing data journalism into the classroom.

The event brought together journalism professors and communications and computer science faculty. Check out some of the main takeaways below.

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Labour migrants in Central Asia deserve our attention


Filed under: Human rights and rule of law Migration and remittances

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Nurlan came to Moscow a few years ago to work at a construction site. He works 12-hour shifts including weekends.

He has a wife and five children to feed in native Tajikistan. In order to save and send more money to his family, he shares a one-room apartment with seven other people.

Nurlan’s work is physically exhausting, with barely any free time to spare. Last month, Nurlan’s compatriot fell from the sixth floor of the construction they were building. He didn’t have a safety belt, nor a safety helmet. Nurlan felt really upset about the accident, but having no alternative job prospects, continues to work at the same place.

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Organising an innovation camp? Here are 4 things you need to consider

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Filed under: Development 2.0


Last month’s “Healthcare Heroes” was our fifth innovation camp in five years.

For the uninitiated, social innovation camps are intended as a space for using tech to solve social challenges. These two-day events help to crowdsource ideas, especially from those citizens (youth, or minorities) who are often lacking access to contribute to issues directly affecting them.

Building on UNDP’s “Toolkit for Troublemakers,” here are 4 tips from us for your next innovation event:

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