03 January 2010

Sunday Links

1. New evidence on Gender and attitudes to risk - nurture is more important than nature

2. New evidence on African exports - "While improvements in ports and customs and less bureaucracy will help exporters, the impact of improved inland transit is roughly five times greater."

3. An aid success story - the original M-PESA pilot was funded by DFID (via David Roodman's optimistic take on the future of microsavings)

4. Not a resolution - but my plan for 2010 is getting a "personal mba" (i.e. buying lots of business books). Partly inspired by the likes of Mootbox. Partly by excellent quotes like this:
"Maximum tolerance to failure" v. "idiot-proof". The second is some much pithier. Leave it to 'development' as a whole to over-complicate things. Leave it to business to get things done. 
It's one more reason why the methods of most modern NGOs are hopelessly unsuitable to making things happen: it takes a veteran author coining an elaborate phrase to sum up an idea every mediocre businessperson already knows.

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