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Poverty

Identifying Future Disease Hot Spots - Infectious Disease Vulnerability Index

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Monday, September 12, 2016
Abstract in English: 
Recent high-profile outbreaks, such as Ebola and Zika, have illustrated the transnational nature of infectious diseases. Countries that are most vulnerable to such outbreaks might be higher priorities for technical support. RAND created the Infectious Disease Vulnerability Index to help U.S. government and international agencies identify these countries and thereby inform programming to preemptively help mitigate the spread and effects of potential transnational outbreaks.
The authors employed a rigorous methodology to identify the countries most vulnerable to disease outbreaks. They conducted a comprehensive review of relevant literature to identify factors influencing infectious disease vulnerability. Using widely available data, the authors created an index for identifying potentially vulnerable countries and then ranked countries by overall vulnerability score. Policymakers should focus on the 25 most-vulnerable countries with an eye toward a potential "disease belt" in the Sahel region of Africa.
The infectious disease vulnerability scores for several countries were better than what would have been predicted on the basis of economic status alone. This suggests that low-income countries can overcome economic challenges and become more resilient to public health challenges, such as infectious disease outbreaks.
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96
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Advancing into the Golden Years – Cost of healthcare for Asia Pacific's elderly

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Wednesday, August 24, 2016
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Asia Pacific (APAC)* is the fastest ageing region in the world with more than 200 million people expected to move into the ranks of the elderly (aged 65 years and above) between now and 2030. This represents an increase of 71 percent in the number of elderly people, compared to increases of 55 percent in North America and 31 percent in Europe over the same period.
Driven by improving socio-economic conditions and increasing life-expectancy, the speed at which societies in APAC are ageing poses an unprecedented challenge. For comparison, Singapore’s elderly population will rise from 11 to 20 percent in the next 15 years, while it took France 49 years to do the same. By 2030, Japan will become the world’s first “ultra-aged” nation, with the elderly accounting for more than 28 percent of the population, while Hong Kong, South Korea, and Taiwan will be considered “super-aged”, with more than 21 percent.
Many APAC countries are moving from a period when they reaped a “demographic dividend” to one where they face the prospect of paying a “demographic tax”. Such a significant demographic shift will be accompanied by a host of financial and socio-economic risks affecting multiple stakeholders, as shown in Exhibit A. Consequently, there is an urgent need to evaluate each country’s readiness to manage increasingly aged societies and to develop solutions that mitigate the associated risks. This report takes a deeper look into the impact of societal ageing on elderly healthcare costs in APAC.
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68
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Poorer than their parents? Flat or falling incomes in advanced economies

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Wednesday, July 20, 2016
Abstract in English: 
The real incomes of about two-thirds of households in 25 advanced economies were flat or fell between 2005 and 2014. Without action, this phenomenon could have corrosive economic and social consequences.

Most people growing up in advanced economies since World War II have been able to assume they will be better off than their parents. For much of the time, that assumption has proved correct: except for a brief hiatus in the 1970s, buoyant global economic and employment growth over the past 70 years saw all households experience rising incomes, both before and after taxes and transfers. As recently as between 1993 and 2005, all but 2 percent of households in 25 advanced economies saw real incomes rise.

Yet this overwhelmingly positive income trend has ended. A new McKinsey Global Institute report, Poorer than their parents? Flat or falling incomes in advanced economies, finds that between 2005 and 2014, real incomes in those same advanced economies were flat or fell for 65 to 70 percent of households, or more than 540 million people (exhibit). And while government transfers and lower tax rates mitigated some of the impact, up to a quarter of all households still saw disposable income stall or fall in that decade.
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112
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The impact of demographic change on European regions

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Thursday, March 17, 2016
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The core long-term structural demographic change in Europe is ageing: the current ratio of working age population to old dependent population below 4 to 1 will, according to Eurostat projections, be replaced by a ratio of 2 to 1 by 2050.
Demographic change in individual Local and Regional Authorities (LRAs) will depend on their capacity to attract the working-age population. However, concentrations of seniors in specific localities and regions do not necessarily constitute a challenge or handicap, insofar as this population’s income from retirement schemes provides the basis for the development of a wide range of economic activities.
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147
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The Future of the WTO after the Nairobi Ministerial Conference

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Tuesday, March 8, 2016
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The WTO’s 10th ministerial conference took place shortly before Christmas 2015, the first to be held in Africa. Verdicts on its outcomes range from “the death of the Doha Round” to WTO Director-General Roberto Azevêdo’s praise for a “historic” package. A more measured assessment reveals a mixed picture. While a number of important decisions were reached in Nairobi, most of the controversial questions were not even on the agenda. And it is less clear than ever where the talks should go from here. A consistent and ongoing shared interest in the global public good of a strong world trade system should persuade the member-states to find constructive new approaches.
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8
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Security and Public Order Report

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Thursday, February 18, 2016
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The security situation facing the Middle East is grave and appears to be trending toward greater violence and instability. The Middle East Strategy Task Force's Security and Public Order report, published in cooperation with the Brookings Institution, demonstrates that states of the region have tended to focus on traditional, external threats but the internal threats they face—from domestic unrest, state failure, and civil war—have become both more common and dangerous.

It is highly unlikely that these security problems will solve themselves or that regional states will be able to resolve them on their own. Given the ongoing importance of Middle Eastern energy resources to the international economy, the region’s central geographic location, its multiplicity of terrorist groups, and the extent of regional anger at numerous other countries for their predicament, it would be a mistake to assume that these security problems will not affect the wider world. Already the problems of terrorism and refugees generated by Middle Eastern upheaval have made many Americans, Europeans, Russians, and Middle Easterners want to take action themselves.
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48
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Strategic Foresight: How to Enhance the Implementation of 2030 Sustainable Development Goals in Developing Countries

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Monday, January 18, 2016
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This publication is the third in a series of newsletters dedicated to raising awareness of global trends analysis and how future scenarios may affect Latin America. It summarizes a report by the UN Economic and Social Council on the importance of strengthening strategic predictive capabilities for policy makers, particularly in developing countries.

The report, Strategic foresight for the post-2015 development agenda, delineates the priorities of the UN Commission on Science and Technology for Development.

The summary accompanies a presentation by Dialogue senior fellow Sergio Bitar to the commission in May 2015 in Geneva, designed to complement the main ideas and proposals in their report. We are also pleased to include an essay by Amy Zalman, CEO and president of the World Future Society, on governance as it relates to anticipating global trends.
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10
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Achieving Zero Hunger

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Thursday, October 1, 2015
Abstract in English: 
This paper provides estimates of investment costs, both public and private, required to eliminate chronic dietary energy deficits, or to achieve zero hunger by 2030. This target is consistent with achieving both the Sustainable Development Goal 2, to eliminate hunger by 2030, and the Sustainable Development Goal 1, to eradicate poverty. The study adopts a reference 'baseline' scenario, reflecting a “business as usual” situation, to estimate the additional investment requirements. In this scenario, around 650 million people will still suffer from hunger in 2030. We then estimate the investment requirements to eliminate hunger by 2030. Hunger is eliminated through a combination of social protection and targeted “pro-poor” rural investments. The first component aims to bring the poor immediately to the US$1.25/day poverty line income in purchasing power parity (PPP) terms through social protection for a “Transfer to cover the Poverty Gap” (PGT). The second component requires additional investment to accelerate pro-poor rural growth of incomes and employment particularly in rural areas, where most of the poor live, than in the business as usual scenario. Targeted pro-poor rural, including rural and agricultural, investments are required to raise the earned incomes of the poor. This would, in turn, reduce the need for social protection to cover the PGT. The analysis is complemented by looking at alternative ways to achieve such pro-poor rural growth.
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39
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Reducing poverty in Africa Realistic targets for the post-2015 MDGs and Agenda 2063

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Monday, August 25, 2014
Abstract in English: 
The eradication of extreme poverty is a key component of the post-2015 MDG process and the African Union’s Agenda 2063. This paper uses the International Futures forecasting system to explore this goal and finds that many African states are unlikely to make this target by 2030. In addition to the use of country-level targets, this paper argues in favour of a goal that would see Africa as a whole reducing extreme poverty to below 20% by 2030 (15% using 2011 purchasing power parity), and to below 3% by 2063.
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28
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Africa's current and future stability

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Wednesday, November 19, 2014
Abstract in English: 
This paper first presents a summary of recent conflict trends in Africa, largely drawing on data from the Armed Conflict Location and Event Data Project. Then, to provide a picture of the potential future impact of changes in Africa’s development and security prospects up to 2063 (a timeline that ties in with the African Union’s Agenda 2063 initiative), the paper models the implications of three alternative futures for Africa. These are a 'Base Case’ scenario (the current trajectory), an "African Renaissance" scenario (a best-case scenario) and a ‘Politics of the Belly’ scenario (in which the trends analysed take a negative course).
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24
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