Sustainable Development

Bento Rodrigues, destroyed by a flood of chemical-laced water and sludge after a tailings dam collapsed in Brazil in November 2015.

Shareholder Litigation Puts a Spotlight on Environmental Risk

Lawsuits based on corporate misrepresentations to investors are gaining attention from those who want to see companies held more accountable for environmental damage–including risks associated with climate change.

by |July 11, 2016
Sinkhole, Dead Sea, Israel. Photo: Lena Gregorian

Dead Pool: the Depletion of a Shared Natural Resource

The Dead Sea could soon enough become a dead “pool” of sea. But perhaps there’s another alternative.

by |June 23, 2016
Arina Larasati Susijo

ESP Student Profile: Arina Larasati Susijo

Arina Larasati Susijo has a passion for science, and was drawn to the MPA-ESP program to take advantage of learning the science behind the environmental policy issues facing her native Indonesia and the Southeast Asian region.

by |June 20, 2016
In 2011, cyclone-driven floods hit eastern coastal Madagascar, damaging crops and infrastructure and displacing populations. At the same time the island nation’s southwest was suffering from two years of drought. Food shocks caused by climate-related events can have far-reaching repurcussions. Photo: Bruno Rakoson/World Food Programme

Preparing for Climate-Related Food Shocks

Researchers are investigating if the projected increase in climate change-generated droughts, floods, heat waves and other intense short-term occurrences will result in increased shocks that could jeopardize food security worldwide.

by |June 14, 2016
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Global Philanthropy and Inequality

Recent trends now point towards global philanthropy becoming the new norm. Global philanthropy aims to reduce inequality in developing countries through many forms. But inequities persist, and different manifestations of global philanthropy will be challenged to increase impact and achieve a demonstrable shift in areas such as poverty, health, access to opportunity, and beyond.

by |May 17, 2016
New York subway construction in the beginning of the 20th century. Aging infrastructure hampers the system's efficiency. Photo: NY Public Library Digital Collections

How to Rethink Urban Transit, and Pay for It, Too

“We have conflated mobility with access, but mobility is not the same as access. The best solution to a transportation problem is to not have to travel. The city itself was invented as a solution to a transportation problem. We have cities so we don’t have to travel.”

by |April 19, 2016
Panelist

Climate Change and the Paris Agreement: What’s Next?

“Climate change is an extreme example of what happens when you do not have sustainable development. We will not address climate change unless we change the patterns of production and consumption that drove us to this situation in the first place.”

by |April 14, 2016
philanthropy

Philanthropy and Inequality

In the field of philanthropy, foundations have been confronted with how to address structural racism and various forms of systemic inequities. How can foundations play a greater role in reducing racial disparities, promoting criminal justice reform, and tackling any range of manifestations of inequality?

by |April 12, 2016
Jhohora Akhter, 30, of Iruain village, draws water from the family well, which is contaminated with arsenic. Jhohora’s mother Jahanara Begum died of arsenic-related health conditions. Her father suffers from diabetes, an illness associated with chronic arsenic exposure. Her brother Ruhul Amin also suffers arsenic-related health conditions. Photo: © 2016 Atish Saha for Human Rights Watch

Report Charges ‘Nepotism and Neglect’ on Bangladesh Arsenic Poisoning

Two decades after arsenic was found to be contaminating drinking water across Bangladesh, tens of millions of people are still exposed to the deadly chemical. Now a new report from the group Human Rights Watch charges that the Bangladesh government “is failing to adequately respond” to the issue, and that political favoritism and neglect have corrupted the government’s efforts.

by |April 7, 2016
A major impediment to stricter pollution regulation in China is the fear of slowing down the economy. Photo: Nicolò Lazzati / Flickr

Does Pollution Regulation Kill Jobs? Lessons for China from the U.S.

The problem of air pollution in China continues to reach new heights. To combat the problem in any real way stringent regulation is needed. A new paper from Columbia University’s Earth Institute finds that this can be done without hurting job creation.

by |April 6, 2016