29 June 2015
And so we come to the summer Angle. We have just passed the longest day (midsummer) in Helsinki, with 19 or so hours of daylight. The seagulls nesting near the UNU-WIDER office have hatched their chicks, and everyone is looking forward to the summer holiday month of July.
Here at UNU-WIDER we are in the middle of a big overhaul of our IT system in advance of the launch of the new website in September. And there will be a new interface for the World Income Inequality Database (WIID).
As Angle was being finalized, we learnt the sad news of the death on 23 June of Professor Ajit Singh, Professor Emeritus of economics at Cambridge University. Ajit was one of the outstanding figures in the last 50 years of development economics. I well recall the time I first met him Dar es Salaam in 1980 when the door to my office in the Ministry of Trade and Industries opened and in walked the imposing figure of Ajit. We then fell into deep conversation about the economic crisis that Tanzania was going through at the time. I saw him regularly over the years, particularly when he came over to Manchester University to participate in our BWPI summer schools with Joe Stiglitz. He was a very good friend for UNU-WIDER, an inspiration to all, and we will miss him greatly.
Turning to this month's Angle I report back from Dar es Salaam where we held a policy seminar on aid and its impact, hosted by the Embassy of Denmark. It was an excellent gathering, and a good opportunity to take stock of what we know about aid, and what the future might hold.
I also recently spoke at an event on aid organized by the Ministry for Foreign Affairs of Finland. Meanwhile, Finn Tarp and I have a special issue of World Development just out on aid, which is open access--like all UNU-WIDER special issues and journal articles.
In June Mozambique celebrated 40 years of independence. The country has gone through much since then. I remember being in Maputo in the early 1990s as the war ended. A lot has been achieved over the last 25 years, including robust growth, and the country is looking forward to the arrival of revenues from offshore natural gas. The task ahead is to reduce poverty, and achieve regional economic development.
Channing Arndt, UNU-WIDER senior research fellow, has considerable experience in Mozambique, and in this issue of Angle, Channing reflects on what must be done to deliver broad-based development. He gives especial emphasis to the central role of...