Who to blame? The rough start for living income cocoa prices in Côte d’Ivoire and Ghana

By Felix Maile, Bernhard Tröster, Cornelia Staritz and Jan Grumiller

Commodity price instability is a major challenge for commodity-dependent countries. This is also true for the major cocoa producer countries Côte d’Ivoire and Ghana, which account for two thirds of world’s cocoa production. As we argue in a recent article in the EJDR , the two West African countries can challenge the price-setting power of highly concentrated international buyers through their state-governed price-stabilization measures. However, export and producer price stabilization is limited to one season and entails great risks for the state due to intra-seasonal price volatility. Moreover, inter-seasonal price instability is not addressed and largely born by smallholder farmers, and export and producer prices remain linked to world prices set on futures markets in London and New York.

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Time to consider ‘multidimensional poverty’ and ‘inequality’ in Fiji and the wider Pacific

By Kim Andreas Kessler

The recent adjustment of Fiji’s estimated poverty rate by the World Bank has caused controversies. While it is important to scrutinise this key figure, policy dialogue and policymaking should not miss the bigger picture. Economic poverty is only one dimension of poverty. Besides this, considering inequalities is crucial to evaluate Fiji’s progress and recalibrate polices aiming to enhance the quality of life of deprived Fijians.

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What is Development Studies? 

Development Studies is an established area of scholarly enquiry, which implies some consensus over what the study of development entails. Does such a consensus exist?

Andy Sumner of King’s College London explores this question further in a new discussion paper

The Debate Revisited

Although there is some common understanding on Development Studies being about ‘development’ and inter-disciplinary as well as normative in orientation, there is a set of quite different approaches to Development Studies is or what Development Studies should be. 

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The Legitimacy of Sustainability Initiatives in Tanzania 

By Rasul Ahmed Minja

One of the chief concerns of new sustainability initiatives for managing natural resources and involving public and private actors is to build and retain legitimacy among different audiences and stakeholders, legitimacy understood as the ‘process where partnerships gain recognition and become accepted as a relevant alternative or supplement to government policy on a particular issue’. But how can we better understand the legitimacy of sustainability partnerships from the perspective of local communities? Or, more precisely, how do different sustainability partnerships develop, gain (or fail to gain), and manage legitimacy in local communities? What kinds of legitimacy do they seek and how? And which paths for building and maintaining legitimacy yield what kinds of perceived conservation and socio-economic outcomes?

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Health-Energy-Nexus: How off-grid energy can play a vital role in quality healthcare provision in Sub-Saharan Africa

By Jonas Bauhof and Callistus Agbaam

Access to electricity

In 2019, 770 million people were without access to electricity globally. They are left without the possibility of using electric light at night, powering refrigerators and stoves, or charging their phones and other devices. Until 2019, the number constantly decreased but the Covid-19 pandemic reversed the trend. In its World Energy Outlook 2021 report, the International Energy Agency (IEA) predicts that between 2019 and 2021 the global number of people without access to electricity stuck at its pre-crisis level – after seeing improvements by around 9% annually since 2015. In Sub-Saharan Africa (SSA), for the first time since 2013, the numbers are likely to have even increased in 2020.

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