Economic Development

A security guard walks through the headquarters of the International Monetary Fund in Washington on April 5.

The World Bank Is Missing U.S. Leadership

Biden’s sacking of Trump appointees at international financial institutions has left a vacuum.

A boy holds a Djiboutian national flag in front of a Chinese national flag at the launching ceremony of new housing construction project in Djibouti on July 4, 2018.

To Win Friends and Influence People, America Should Learn From the CCP

Beijing’s development projects are flashy, fast, and relevant. Why aren’t Washington’s?

U.S. Vice President Kamala Harris speaks as Guatemalan President Alejandro Giammattei looks on during a press conference at the Palacio Nacional de la Cultura in Guatemala City on June 7.

Biden’s Dangerous Corruption Obsession

Rooting out graft may be good politics at home, but it won’t fix Latin America’s socioeconomic woes.

Syrian refugees recharge their mobile phones from an extension attached to the van of a nearby TV crew as they rest beside the highway on their way to the border between Turkey and Greece in Edirne, Turkey, on Sept. 17, 2015.

Cryptocurrency Isn’t All Bad

The blockchain holds the key to sustainable development for the world’s poorest people.

Young people march against climate change in Uganda.

A Green Africa Is the Key to a Greener World

The United States won’t be a global leader in climate change until it works with African nations.

Workers construct a double-decker suspension bridge across the Yangtze River in Wuhan, China on May 8, 2018.

The Shrinking Chinese State

A look at Beijing’s spending suggests that Western fears of its influence may be misdirected.

A man walks past a billboard for the construction of an oil refinery and storage facility in the port city of Hambantota, Sri Lanka, on March 24, 2019.

Chinese Belt and Road Investment Isn’t All Bad—or Good

As Sri Lanka shows, when it comes to Chinese debt, small states have agency and great powers have responsibilities.

A cutout of the Goddess of Democracy stands out in a sea of light during a vigil to remember the Tiananmen Square movement on its 10th anniversary in Hong Kong, on June 4, 1999.

Autocrats Have a Playbook—Now Democrats Need One Too

With democracy still in retreat, it is time to get smart about fighting back.

People in a migrant village on the outskirts of Beijing on June 20, 2017.

China Will Run Out of Growth if It Doesn’t Fix Its Rural Crisis

No country with China’s vast education and public health problems has ever broken out of the ranks of middle-income countries.

A woman counts money outside a U.S. remittance collection agency in San Isidro, San Salvador, on June 10, 2020.

The Pandemic May Change Remittances—for the Better

Long denominated in cash, payments back to home countries are finally going digital.

A view of the U.S. Capitol and police tape ahead of the inaugural ceremony for President-elect Joe Biden and Vice President-elect Kamala Harris in Washington on Jan. 19.

A Democracy Summit Is More Urgent Than Ever

Jan. 6 gave the world’s democracies a glimpse of their own mortality, but it can also be a catalyst for revival.

Employees on their lunch break at the Dongfeng Honda factory in Wuhan, China, on March 23.

Has China Decided That ‘Moderately Prosperous’ Is Good Enough?

As China’s growth model sputters and Xi Jinping prioritizes repression over reform, China looks unlikely to join the ranks of developed countries.

Smoke spews from the stacks of a nickel plant in Monchegorsk, Russia

Document of the Week: Aid Donors Blast UNDP for Resisting Appeals to Fight Corruption

A dozen wealthy donor states press the United Nations Development Program to investigate allegations that funds were misappropriated from a Russia climate program it managed.

Kenyan daily newspapers with the headlines “Donald Trump fired” and “Biden wins” in Nairobi on Nov. 8.

Biden’s Priority in Africa Should Be Debt Relief

More than other kinds of aid, to get out from under China’s thumb, the continent will need debt financing and private investment.

Actress Deborah Mailman speaks during the UN Global Goals Flag Raising Ceremony on September 24, 2015 in Sydney, Australia.

It’s Called the Sustainable Development Goals Index for a Reason

In defense of our metric for measuring the world’s economic and environmental progress.

People pass a Huawei logo at a trade fair in Berlin

The Huawei Ban Could Crush U.S. Overseas Aid Efforts 

A new law meant to keep Chinese telecoms out of American networks threatens to make life impossible for diplomats, aid workers, and the military across much of Africa and Asia.

Mauricio Claver-Carone

Trump’s Candidate Would Be a Disaster for Latin America’s Bank

The Inter-American Development Bank has never been led by a U.S. citizen before.

Dockers unload U.S. humanitarian aid in Sudan

Trump Appointee Takes ‘Slash and Burn’ Approach to Key USAID Bureau

Peter Marocco, after tumultuous tours at Pentagon and State, is stopping the agency’s newest division in its tracks, critics claim.

People take part in an anti-government rally in the rain in Minsk, Belarus, on Aug. 30.

Lukashenko Unleashed Changes in Belarus That Are Out of His Control

Whatever happens in the ongoing protests, the country’s society is increasingly less governable for a dictator.