UNDP sits atop and China is at the bottom of the 2014 Aid Transparency Index. Overall, donor countries are off pace to meet their promise to join the IATI standard by the end of 2015. From Humanopshere:
“If donors want to truly see the maximum value for their aid, they must walk the talk of transparency and accountability; with no any element of double standards in a true spirit of partnership. They must intensify publishing all information on their development cooperation properly to achieve all the intended development results,” said Dalitso Kubalasa of the Malawi Economic Justice Network, in response to the report.
The various programs run by the U.S. government show a wide range of transparency scores. The Department of Defense was the worse US agency, ranking 38th overall. A total of 68 aid donors, from countries to development funds, were assessed by Publish What You Fund. The current trend shows that the majority will not reach their comments to publish all aid information to a common standard by the end of 2015
“A lot of progress was made at the political level in the early days of aid transparency, including a promise to publish aid information to an internationally-agreed common standard by the end of 2015,” said Rachel Rank, Director of Publish What You Fund.
“But with a year to go until that deadline, progress has stalled. The ranking shows that no matter how many international promises are made, and no matter how many speeches there are around openness, a startling amount of organisations are still not publishing what they fund.”
This is the fourth edition of Publish What You Fund’s index. Rank admitted that the first edition received a “chilly response,” when delivering remarks today at the Center for Global Development (CGD) in Washington D.C. Despite that, she is buoyed by the importance of transparency and how the index is helping to spur changes. The hope is that improving transparency helps all involved understand what is happening.
Spotlight on PSI
PSI Ambassador Mandy Moore and Moms For Social Good founder Jennifer James are traveling to Tanzania this week to spotlight the vital contributions of health workers to global health and development. See the highlights from the first day of the trip here.
A robust and effective global health workforce must be a top priority for the international community, and Mandy Moore is helping to champion this cause along with Jennifer James, founder of Mom Bloggers for Social Good, a coalition of more than two-thousand mom bloggers who currently span twenty countries who care about spreading the good news about the amazing work nonprofit organizations and NGOs are doing around the world. They’re visiting health workers in Tanzania with us along with IntraHealth International, with whom PSI partnered to produce the latest issue of Impact Magazine, focusing on the global health workforce.
Follow @TheMandyMoore, @JenniferJames, @SocialGoodMoms, and @IntraHealth as well as@PSIImpact and PSI’s @MarshallPSI, @Mandy_McAnally and @regaroni, who will be tweeting and Instragramming the trip all week using #HealthWorkersCount. We’ll be creating a Storify every day to collect some of the best photos, tweets, and commentary from Mandy and the group in Tanzania. We would love to include your thoughts and tweets about the value of an empowered global health workforce.
Global Health and Development Beat
Liberian national Thomas Eric Duncan, the first person diagnosed with Ebola in the United States, died on Wednesday morning at a Dallas hospital.
With thousands of displaced women in Pakistan now clamoring for care, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province’s limited healthcare services are falling short, sometimes with disastrous consequences.
Pakistan is losing ground in the battle against polio, with the country suffering its worst outbreaks in more than a decade, but suspicions about the vaccine itself are also proving an obstacle.
FAO launched a new program to urgently assist 90,000 vulnerable households in Guinea, Liberia and Sierra Leone whose food supplies and livelihoods are threatened by the disruptive effect the Ebola epidemic is having on rural economies, agricultural activities and markets. http://bit.ly/1vRgn25
Indian PM Modi, in his biggest attempt at fiscal change since he swept to power in May, has been less bold than some would wish, steering clear of reforming the most sensitive and costly benefits – food and fertilizers.
Travelers arriving in the United States from Ebola-stricken Liberia, Sierra Leone and Guinea will face mandatory screening measures for the deadly virus as soon as this weekend, according to a media report on Wednesday.
Britain will send 750 troops to West African state Sierra Leone to help build an Ebola treatment centre, the BBC reported on Wednesday following a meeting of the government’s emergency response committee chaired by Prime Minister David Cameron.
The deadly Ebola epidemic could deal a $32 billion-plus blow to the West African economy over the next year if officials cannot get it under control, the World Bank warned Wednesday.
Buzzing in the Blogs
Education and behavior change need to be a part of India’s big sanitation push, says Nitya Jacob in the Guardian. An excerpt:
Studies from different parts of India indicate that the use of toilets, even where they do exist, is low (pdf), at about 35%. That means only about 220 million people in rural India actually use their toilets. Another 270 million do not.
Why is this happening? Part of the problem is the poor quality of the toilets. But another part is the previous programme’s fundamental flaw: only small amounts of money were allocated to promote better hygiene and trigger a change in behaviour. It began as a demand-led campaign, teaching people about the hazards of open defecation, so that they would then presumably demand toilets. But it has become driven by achieving numbers, rather than ensuring that the loos are used.
Modi’s new campaign to end open defecation in the next five years does not address this systemic flaw. This ambitious campaign sets a target of 17m toilets a year for the next five years. But funding for education in hygiene and behavioural change remains a small fraction of the total amount. The danger is this, too, will be driven purely by numbers.
It takes six to eight months to convince a village of the need and usefulness of toilets, according to a study by the World Bank. It takes a lot of time and resources, but leads to better construction and much higher levels of use. Focusing on the importance of hygiene before, during and after the construction of toilets can take a community from realising why they need toilets to demanding and using them.
Most people are aware of subsidies for building toilets and will comply with the letter of the scheme. However, they may not comply with its spirit and fail to use the toilets.
In its current form, this ambitious new attempt to end open defecation may spend the equivalent of £1.6m over five years to create even more unused or ineffective toilets.
2:00 PM – Drumbeat to COP 20: Linking Reproductive Health, Food Security, and Climate Change – Aspen Institute
10:00 AM – Mental Health Needs in a Humanitarian Crisis – Kaiser Family Foundation and The Global Mental Health Advocacy Working Group
12:30 PM – Food for the Future: Achieving Food Security in the Face of Climate Change – World Bank
Friday – 17 October
8:30 AM – Ensuring Equity for NCDs in Women’s Health Throughout the Life Course – FHI 360
By Mark Leon Goldberg and Tom Murphy
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Disclaimer: Opinions presented in this email do not necessarily reflect the views of PSI.