A ‘bad girl’ no longer: Tackling gender inequality in Azerbaijan

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Filed under: Development Gender equality Social inclusion

In Azerbaijan, especially in rural areas, there exists a very powerful term for women who don’t follow the rules: ‘pis giz’ – or bad girl. For an Azerbaijani woman, being called a pis giz is more than just a gender slur. It can mean the total loss of respect in her community, ineligibility for marriage,… Read more »

Everybody’s talking Rio+20, but who remembers Capacity 21?

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Filed under: Development

Rio+20, the United Nations conference on sustainable development called for significant investment in capacity development for sustainable development: the outcome document mentions capacity building more than 60 times. It almost seems as if we are starting afresh. Now, who remembers Capacity 21? Capacity 21 was part of the sustainable development strategy that came out of… Read more »

Is substitution really such a big deal?

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Filed under: Development

Over the past few months I increasingly see statements in our UNDP documents that we are avoiding, or at least should be avoiding, the substitution of capacities. We seem to assume that if we (UNDP) are doing something that we believe the government should be doing, we are substituting and, hence, it is bad and should be… Read more »

Libya rebuilds

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Filed under: Governance

Nothing like hitting the ground running after the new Government of Libya was formed. After lots of horse-trading as to who will be appointed to which position, strategic planning and organizational work in the ministries, agencies, and institutions have begun. Of course it is hard to know exactly what is going on but at least… Read more »

Ohrid @ 10 years – celebrating peace and the good governance agenda

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Filed under: Governance

We are just back in Skopje from an exciting high-level conference in the lakeside town of Ohrid that brought together more than 100 key national and international political actors to celebrate the 10th anniversary of the Ohrid Peace Agreement. That Agreement ended the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia’s (FYROM) internal conflict in 2001. It also… Read more »

Governance models for Eastern Europe and Central Asia. Mimicry is not the solution

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Filed under: Development Governance

I recently came across a thought provoking paper from Lans Pritchett et al. at the Center for Global Development entitled “Capability Traps? The Mechanisms of Persistent Implementation Failure.” The authors focus on what they call “state capability traps”: how is it possible that countries fully engaged in the logic of international development consistently fail to… Read more »