The global cashpoint – remittances, mobiles and the unbanked; expat disillusion; defending UNCTAD; organic v chemicals; sharing solutions: links I liked
‘In 2011 remittances to poor countries totalled $372 billion…. In 1970 46% of recorded remittances were reckoned to originate in America. By 2010 America’s share was just 17%. One big new player is the Gulf.’ Excellent update on the rise and rise of global remittance flows (now = three times global aid flows and – unlike aid – still rising fast).
‘In Kenya, a staggering 68% of adults use mobile money (by far the highest rate in the world, partly because regulation is extremely light) [compared to] more than 40% also have ordinary bank accounts.’ But according to the Economist, high rates of mobile banking extend far beyond East Africa (see map – the darkest shade means over 40% of people have used mobile banking).
And the World Bank’s Findex project has released an avalanche of data on ‘the unbanked’, summarized in a nice infographic. Plus interesting comparison by Jonathan Morduch between the Bank’s Big Data exercise with the findings of the epic Portfolios of the Poor micro study.
The ‘aid bitchslap’, (and some pretty bad aid, by the sound of it). The frustrations and miseries of an expat in Haiti.
Don’t pack away those fertilizers just yet. A comprehensive review of research on organic v chemical agriculture concludes that organic yields are significantly lower, although it varies a lot by crops (strawberries and soybeans do better).
Solution to world hunger? Ask the kids – sweet. [h/t Alex Evans]