Monthly Archives: May 2010

Why Government Microfinance Doesn't Work

One of the reasons a lot of people find microfinance attractive is that it is a fundamentally capitalist approach to economic development.  Done right, it can be sustainable and even profitable.  By focusing on a social mission, successful microfinance institutions … Continue reading

Posted in Development Economics, Microfinance | Tagged , , , | 4 Comments

The "Entrepreneur Myth" Myth

Muhammad Yunus, the godfather of microfinance, contends that everyone is an entrepreneur.  And microfinance is about individual economic empowerment, built on the premise that credit is both a human right and a path to economic freedom.  This reading has been … Continue reading

Posted in Development Economics, Microfinance | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Filler: Links of the Week

Maintaining a self-described journal of economics and development is not easy work, particularly for someone such as myself who knows little about either subject and is engaged in a Madoff-esque Ponzi scheme of information, feeding you, the reader, the bare … Continue reading

Posted in Development Economics | Leave a comment

Competition, Saturation, Interest Rates, and Microfinance

CGAP, the World Bank’s microfinance arm, turns 15 this year, having been formed ten years prior to Muhammad Yunus winning the Nobel Peace Prize.  In commemoration, Alexis LaTortue, the CEO of CGAP, wrote a summary of the state of the … Continue reading

Posted in Development Economics, Microfinance | Tagged , , , , , , | 2 Comments

The Movers vs. The Shakers: The Microfinance Debate

In the noisy echo chamber of the development community, there are a lot of arguments for (emphatically) and for (tentatively) microfinance as a tool of poverty.  The debate surrounds a series of experimental studies questioning the impact of microfinance in … Continue reading

Posted in Development Economics, Microfinance | Tagged , , , , | 2 Comments

Dirty Politics: The Philippine Elections

This is a campaign poster found plastered on a wall on the side of the road somewhere in Bacolod.  It shows Benigno “Noynoy” Aquino, the current frontrunner for president in the Philippines election, with Andal Ampatuan Jr., perpetrator of the … Continue reading

Posted in Travel and Culture | Tagged , , , , | 1 Comment

China and Poverty Alleviation: The Case for a Strongman

On Monday, the Philippines will hold a national election.  It is the first time the country will be using an automatic voting system, and nobody knows what is going to happen.  It seems appropriate to include this post before the … Continue reading

Posted in Development Economics, Foreign Policy | Tagged , , , , , , , | 3 Comments

A New Way Forward on Global Development

The Obama Administration recognizes that the successful pursuit of development is essential to our security, prosperity, and values.  In a world shaped by growing global economic integration and the fragmentation of political power; by the rise of emerging powers and … Continue reading

Posted in Development Economics | Tagged , , , , , | Leave a comment

Beard Update #3

There is an old adage that April showers bring May flowers.  But flowers are not the only things growing in May.  Not having a razor in April brings explosive, unchecked growth in Josh Weinstein’s beard.  Not much has changed since … Continue reading

Posted in Travel and Culture | 1 Comment

Industrial Agriculture and Solutions to World Hunger

In this essay, the author discusses the right approach to combating the problem of hunger – an attribute shared by closed to 900 million people worldwide.  He takes issue with the arugula-eating liberal elites, like Food First, a California-based organization … Continue reading

Posted in Development Economics | Tagged , , , , , | 7 Comments