The 1,000-day milestone to achieve the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) gathered professors Jeffrey Sachs, Prabhjot Singh, and Vijay Modi on April 4 for the Sustainable Development Seminar Series to take a critical look at how far the Millennium Villages Project (MVP) has come in the eight years since its founding and analyze what still needs to be accomplished.
Researchers using nighttime lights data to ask questions about economic development in sub-Saharan Africa have findings counter to expectation.
“This is a mess, and it is a mess that we have not attended to yet,” Earth Institute Director Jeffrey Sachs said at a conference on water security held today at Columbia University. “Humanity is the driver, but we don’t have our hands on the steering wheel very much.”
Earth Institute partner PepsiCo has achieved its stated goal of partnering with organizations, including the Columbia Water Center, to provide access to safe water to three million people in developing countries by the end of 2015.
A new two-year climate change initiative, led by the International Research Institute for Climate and Society aims to help farmers in Indonesia, the Lao People’s Democratic Republic and Bangladesh reduce their vulnerability to climate risks.
The Social Process Diagram published in 1992 was an attempt to map out the key systems and interactions among systems that were seen as underpinning the human drivers of global environmental change.
Haiti Dialogue Series: Should funds be more effectively channeled through the Haitian government, a decentralized finance program could help streamline financing and reinforce local government planning efforts. As part of the Haiti Research and Policy Program dialogue series, Tatiana Wah was joined by Leslie Pean to discuss possible approaches to achieving the call for decentralization in Haiti that has been a part of the country’s development plans for decades, with renewed efforts after the 2010 earthquake. Most current international aid and development funding circumvents the government ministries at the national level. The lack of dedicated local budgets, as well as a weak incentive structure to attract or retain skilled professionals who are capable of complex governance, is a considerable hurdle for any decentralization proposal in Haiti.
We traveled to the Brahmaputra River, one of the most active on the planet, to continue our fieldwork. We visited two places while working our way downstream and saw the rapid changes in the river bank and chars (islands). At one ghat (dock) the river had eroded a mile of the coast while in the other it added a similar amount. The chars had moved, appeared, disappeared and reemerged. In this changing environment, the resilient Bangladeshi char people shifted and adapted with the land.
Haiti Dialog Series: Author Jonathan M. Katz joined the Haiti Research and Policy Program’s dialogue series to discuss his new book and two years reporting on the Haitian recovery after the devastating 2010 earthquake. Katz argues within his book that the international aid money has become a missed opportunity to address core development challenges in Haiti and that the country remains equally vulnerable today as it did prior to January 10th, 2010.
Visit the interactive digital Earth Institute 2012 Annual Donor Report to see some of the remarkable projects, initiatives and achievements that have been made possible through the support and advocacy of donors, students, faculty and staff in fiscal year 2012.