Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Getting Ready for the In-Person Session

With the in-person session starting on Friday, there are a ton of things going on that I need to prepare for. Not is there the issue of getting in final papers, organizing my grade book, etc., but this next month Dr. Butler is returning to being the IDV Director and I will be the Assistant Director. What this means is that I will be taking over a lot of the issues dealing with students. These areas include advising, course scheduling, and in-person schedules. This will mostly mean a lot of paperwork, but it will also mean more direct involvement with students, which I look forward to. One of the first challenges is to get students' plans of studies updated and signed off on, so they will have their paperwork in order for the graduate school.

Monday, April 20, 2009

The Role of Women in Disaster Risk Reduction

The role of women in peace-building, conflict resolution and reconstruction was recognized in 2000 by the UN Security Council when it adopted the landmark Resolution 1325...

Gender, like governance, is a key cross cutting issue that underlies all aspects of development. It is worthy of our serious and sustained attention. Gender equality does not merely mean equal rights for men and women and non-discrimination based on gender. It also requires empowerment and the achievement of parity of status in participating in and contributing to development.

Read More from Sri Lankan Daily News

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Women in the Boardroom

According to the Motley Fool, there is a connection between diversity in the boardroom and better governance (which a lot of firms could use nowadays) and higher profitability. In this article they list a rating of gender diversity on corporate boards. Here's an excerpt.

If you're particularly in gender diversity, a new stock index series introduced by the folks at Pax World and KLD provides a shortcut to finding promising investment candidates. The objective of The Gender Investment Index series is "demonstrating that gender equality is an important indicator of financial health, and that companies that empower women and encourage gender diversity outperform others over the long term."

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Financial Crisis and Developing Countries

For those worried about the political/social/cultural effects of foreign direct investment, the world wide recession offers a bright spot. For those more concerned about the economic fortunes of the developing world, this is yet another dire notice about the state of the world's economy.

According to the World Bank, foreign investment into Asia, Latin America and Africa will decline by $180 billion in 2009, or 31% over 2008 levels. While some economies will be doing fine this year (the Arab Gulf is reporting projected growth despite lower oil prices), this is another sign of the truly global nature of the current downturn.

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Palestinian Economy and the Gaza Crisis

I've just had an interview posted on the Brookings website. They decided to release my working paper this week and this is part of the promo package. Here's a snippet and the link.

Navtej Dhillon : The Palestinian economy has gone through two major changes: first a partial integration with the Israeli economy post 1967, leading to increased job opportunities for Palestinians to work in Israel, but a fundamentally fragile structure generating very limited investment and weak private sector job creation. Second more recently, a significant disengagement from Israel which has severed the main lifelines of the Gazan economy and subsequently any opportunities for the Gazan population to seek employment outside of Gaza. Could you please reflect on the trajectory of the West Bank and Gaza economy and their future viability?

Edward Sayre: The Palestinian economy currently is best described as three separate economies. There is the economy of the city of Ramallah, in the West Bank. Ramallah is the seat of power for the Fatah-led Palestinian Authority of the West Bank and it serves as the headquarters for most international NGOs and embassies. It is through Ramallah that nearly all of the hundreds of millions of dollars in aid has been flowing. As a result Ramallah’s economy has recovered strongly since the end of the second Intifada. The rest of the West Bank is a different story. In cities such as Bethlehem, Khalil (Hebron) and Nablus, the restrictions on movement throughout the region and to jobs in Israel have thrown these cities into a long term pattern of higher unemployment, lower wages and few private sector opportunities.

[Read the entire interview.]

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

More depressing news from Gaza

As of this morning the death toll from fighting in Gaza has risen to 900. Unlike the mainstream media, however, I won't say "most of these are Palestinians." I won't say that because the asymmetric nature of this conflict means that any discussion of the minuscule Israeli casualties is pointless. When one side has killed nearly a thousand people, about half of which are non-combatants, why should one pay any mind to what has happened to the handful of Israeli deaths? Not only that, but the Israelis are killing Palestinians with the full support of a blood thirsty public, while the Israelis that were killed by Palestinians where killed by terrorists who did not receive the official sanction of a majority of Palestinians. Finally, it needs to be noted that of the 13 Israeli deaths, 10 of them were soldiers and 4 of those were by 'friendly fire.' Thus, Israelis have killed more Israelis (4) than Palestinian terrorists have killed Israeli civilians (3). Compare to the 40 killed when Israelis "accidentally" shelled a UN run Palestinian school.

Sunday, January 11, 2009

What really happened in Gaza

Here's one of the few accounts [CSM story] of what truly led to the current mess in Gaza. The US forced this situation upon the Palestinians by convincing Abbas to hold elections before he was ready. It's all been downhill ever since.