Imagining alternative futures

Programme Researcher, John Magrath, describes the process of applying ‘participatory scenario development’ to explore how Bangladesh might achieve zero hunger and zero carbon emissions by 2041. It is tempting to assume that the future will follow much the same trajectory as the past. Imagining alternative futures can be dismissed as dreaming, or science fiction. And if we do imagine the …

Making markets work in fragile settings

Oxfam OPT’s Economic Justice team shares four lessons learned from their market system development (MSD) work with small-scale farmers in the Occupied Palestinian Territory (OPT). Israel’s occupation of the Palestinian Territory affects 4.8 million Palestinians, nearly a quarter of whom live below the poverty line. Among other threats, at least 1.9 million Palestinians experience – or are at risk of …

Solar study lamps in Sierra Leone

Renewable Energy Policy Advisor, Kevin Johnstone, outlines some of the educational benefits of solar study lamp campaigns, and their potential to achieve much more. The cost of night studies Sometimes Bintu’s family couldn’t afford batteries for home lighting, and on those nights, she couldn’t complete her school work. Bintu’s mother explained that if “you don’t have batteries, your children will …

Young feminists driving change

Imogen Davies, Oxfam GB’s Global Adviser on Youth, Gender & Active Citizenship, and co-editor of the latest issue of Gender & Development, describes the political approaches young feminist movements are taking to reshape the international development landscape. There are more young people alive today than there ever have been before. Almost one person in four is aged 10-24, with 90 per …

Raising the voices of indigenous youth at the UN

Soledad Carrasco reflects on her experience of attending the UN youth forum as a representative of the indigenous peoples of Peru. Youth are often accused of being indifferent to the political events unfolding in our society. But I saw no evidence of that at the Youth Forum of the United Nations which I attended recently in New York. The forum, organized …

Keeping education alive in South Sudan

‘Our country had suffered from war and under-development for generations, but we knew education could help us find a better path’. Martin Lubajo shares his journey from refugee in Uganda to teacher and trainer in South Sudan, striving to ensure that children do not miss out on their education even amid the ongoing war and humanitarian crisis. In 2009, I …

Working with young people for employment in West Africa

For International Youth Day Marième Soda Ndiaye from RENF and Oxfam’s Magalie Laliberté reflect on the process of supporting active citizenship and youth employment opportunities in West Africa. All over Africa, especially in West Africa, the proportion of youth in the population is increasing. In sub-Saharan Africa, 70% of the population are less than 30 years old. Mali (with an …

A new model for economic growth and youth inclusion

Investing in the skills of young people, start ups and the sharing economy, could be key to fostering socially inclusive economic growth in Asia, argues urban development consultant Nicholas Taylor. Our cities, their inhabitants, and our planet are in danger from cascading sets of urban woes including unsafe housing, rising waters, increased incidences of natural disasters, temperature extremes, inequitable development, …