Could you imagine Grading Bill Gates? Well Columbia University Professor Chris Blattman did just that. What did he grade? A must read for those interested in aid and development. Find out more below.
A Must Read for those interested in Aid and Development
Each year Bill and Melinda Gates release a letter to the public and in 2014 they decided to Bust Three Myths about Aid and Development. These are that:
1) Poor countries are doomed to stay poor
2) Foreign aid is a big waste
3) Saving lives leads to overpopulation
The letter contains a large amount of evidence. If you have not read it already make sure you do, it is available here.
Also check out the following videos that summarise the evidence provided in the letter.
MYTH ONE: Poor Countries are doomed to Stay Poor
MYTH TWO: Foreign Aid is a Big Waste
MYTH THREE: Saving Lives leads to Overpopulation
Bill Gates Graded
Overall Bill and Melinda Gates received an A- from Columbia University Professor, Chris Blattman. The full report can be found here.
The main reason they do not score higher is because they claim aid leads to economic growth. Professor Blattman notes ‘The evidence that aid projects are associated with growth is amazingly absent’. This is problematic for the new Australian Government who have shifted the objective of the aid program away from poverty reduction and towards economic growth. Even though there is not any evidence that aid can actually cause economic growth.
There is however a great deal of evidence that aid can dramatically improve the lives of those in poverty. Professor Blattman comments ‘aid projects work and we know it’ and ‘Plenty of aid projects have huge impact’.