Sierra Leone’s civil war drove Amara Bangura into hiding – but it also drove him to launch a career as a radio journalist. Today, Amara sees journalism as a powerful tool for development around the world… when it’s used responsibly. Amara, part of the BBC Media Action team and the Gordon N. Fisher/JHR William Southam Journalism Fellow at Massey College, discusses the many roles media can play in the developing world – both contributing to the causes of war and repairing societies when the fighting stops – as well as what Canadian reporters can learn from journalists around the globe.
Global Health & The World Of Business explored how Canada’s leadership in innovative public-private partnerships has contributed to the reset of global health financing.
Canada and the Fight to Protect all Children from Polio explored Canada’s sustained leadership supporting eradication efforts in some of the most inaccessible and conflict-affected regions in the world as well as the most difficult challenges ahead. A keynote address was delivered by Canada’s Minister of International Development, the Honourable Christian Paradis.
On the airwaves and in print, former CBC journalist Mellissa Fung has shared Afghanistan’s stories with Canadians. Even after being abducted in 2008, while on assignment at a refugee camp on the outskirts of Kabul, her commitment to exploring the fragile country remains steadfast. Using images and video she collected on her most recent trip, Mellissa explored the Afghan people’s success and challenges, and explained why the international community must continue to invest at this crucial moment for the country.
AKFC and Right To Play invited people from across the country to discuss how sport and play are used to educate and empower children around the world. Unlocking the Power of Play marked the debut of AKFC’s event series, Making the Grade in Global Education. Three knowledgeable speakers gathered to discuss the effectiveness of play-based learning and shared a wide range of perspectives, from how teachers are trained to play and how child-centred learning fosters the development of a child’s language and social skills.
Aga Khan Foundation Canada (AKFC) hosted a discussion between experts and practitioners working to create economic opportunities for youth. The discussion marked AKFC’s 10th University Seminar Series and was followed by an interactive workshop. Our goal? To spur important conversations on how we can create economic opportunities for youth and ensure that the voices of young people across Canada are heard in this critical global debate.
Increasingly, there have been discussions that suggest that Canada may look to create a DFI to bolster investments in emerging economies aligned with current development priorities. Speakers reviewed the current international DFI landscape, addressed key concerns and challenges from the Canadian context, and outlined what a Canadian DFI will mean for current and future development priorities.
Aga Khan Foundation Canada, in partnership with the Humanitarian Coalition, the International Development Research Centre and the Canadian Research Institute on Humanitarian Crisis and Aid, invite you to watch a series of webcasts by renowned humanitarian experts at the second annual Canadian Humanitarian Conference. The conference was held at the Delegation of the Ismaili Imamat, Ottawa on December 4 and 5, 2014. It set the stage for a national conversation showcasing Canadian expertise in humanitarian response and related fields.
Is “global citizenship education” just a new buzzword or a concept that is transforming education policies, approaches, and, ultimately, the dynamic between developed and developing countries? Listen to Ms. Choi, Director, Division for Teaching, Learning and Content, of the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization’s (UNESCO) keynote address, and the Q&A session on how global citizenship education is being defined, put into action, and measured.
In 2003, when the Aga Khan Fund for Economic Development established the Afghanistan mobile company Roshan, there was virtually no telecommunications infrastructure in the country. Some Afghans actually had to walk to a neighbouring country to make a phone call. Today, Roshan’s 1,000 towers reach more than six million subscribers. Spur and Aga Khan Foundation Canada invited Roshan CEO and Canadian native Karim Khoja to a discussion of the mobile tech sector in Afghanistan. The event was moderated by May Jeong, an award-winning freelance writer based in Afghanistan.
Digital diplomacy, or what some call “Twiplomacy”, is using the medium of digital technology to directly connect with a foreign population to achieve international objectives. With more than 1 billion people using Facebook, Twitter, Qzone or Snapchat daily, digital connectivity has made the world smaller and, in the process, changed the daily lives of billions of people; linking rural farmers to markets in Bangladesh, offering e-health services to women and children in Tanzania and improving access to information to hold government accountable to citizens worldwide. Is digital diplomacy truly the game changer some say it is? What are some of the latent risks posed by such an open approach? What benefits does it offer? And, how might Canada successfully use it to forward our foreign policy goals?
Measuring the true impact of social policies and programs is a significant challenge for the development sector. Over the last decade, researchers and policymakers have increasingly used Randomized Control Trials (RCTs) to measure the impact of development programs to understand if a program is achieving its intended results. Watch Iqbal Dhaliwal, Deputy Director of the Abdul Latif Jameel Poverty Action Lab’s (J-PAL) presentation, “Can Randomized Control Trials transform development?” to learn more about RCTs, when they should be used, what questions they can answer, and how the connect to key trends in international social experiments.
The World Food Programme (WFP) is the world’s largest humanitarian organization, reaching 80 million people with food assistance in 75 countries each year. WFP operates in many countries, such as Syria, that are involved in complex, protracted crisis. Listen to Ertharin Cousin, Executive Director of WFP, as she reflects on the challenges faced by humanitarian agencies working in protracted crises, and the opportunities presented by the Sustainable Development Goals and the World Humanitarian Summit.
Rapid innovations in digital technology have the potential to profoundly affect the lives of billions of people, through better access to digital devices and the Internet. Increased connectivity is sparking new opportunities for inclusion, efficiency, and innovation, but the broader benefits of the digital revolution may still be on the horizon. The World Bank’s 2016 World Development Report, Digital Dividends, explores how development actors can harness digital technologies to improve the lives of the world’s poorest.
“Scaling-Up” is one of the biggest challenges in development. Interventions that work well with small populations routinely face challenges in expanding to a larger number of communities. Such projects hinge upon their adaptive capacity —the ability to be nimble, to learn by doing, and to make mid-course corrections in management and design—in order to be effective. Vijayendra Rao, Lead Economist, The World Bank, discusses the Social Observatory, an interdisciplinary approach to improve development impact.
Randomized controlled trials have long been used in medicine and public health. In recent decades, development economists have adopted this rigorous evaluation methodology to test interventions in many sectors. Thomas Chupein of the Abdul Latif Jameel Poverty Action Lab (J-PAL) discusses the evidence and policy lessons that have emerged from more than 150 health evaluations conducted by J-PAL affiliated researchers.
How do we know what works in development? In crisis or conflict situations, how do we determine the effectiveness of humanitarian interventions? Dr. Jyotsna (Jo) Puri, Deputy Executive Director and Head of Evaluation, International Initiative for Impact Evaluation (3ie) explores the evidence on what is working, how and for whom, in both development and crisis situations.
Bank accounts. Credit cards. Loans. For more than two billion people around the world, these basic financial tools are out of reach.
But innovations in financial technology – or FinTech – have the potential to break the cycle of poverty. Learn how new technologies at the forefront of the FinTech revolution, such as mobile banking, can unlock new opportunities for the world’s poor, by providing access to new markets and promoting financial inclusion.
We have a treasure chest of qualitative methods to draw upon in assessing multiple contributions to social and development goals. These include realist evaluation, contribution analysis, process tracing and participatory learning and action. But weak incentives and poor practice can easily undermine their credibility and cost-effectiveness.
This is the fifth event of our series Measuring Development Impact with Professor James Copestake from the University of Bath. Dr. Copestake’s research takes a fresh, empirically grounded look at how we can strengthen qualitative and mixed method impact evaluation by benchmarking different methods against each other. Dr. Copestake draws upon his own action research into the complex causal attribution problems arising from climate change and livelihood transformations in Ethiopia and Malawi.
A new generation of leaders is taking shape in Northern Pakistan, thanks to a Canadian-sponsored program that is fostering new approaches to engaging youth in the social and economic life of their communities. With amazing results. Enhancing Employability and Leadership for Youth (EELY) focused its efforts on skills and leadership training for youth in the Gilgit-Baltistan and Chitral regions in Northern Pakistan. Recent regional elections saw a large number of youth who participated in the training, elected to village councils.