Improving labour conditions in the global electronics industry

By Dr Gale Raj-Reichert

In recent years, there have been numerous labour violations in the global electronics industry. They include factory worker suicides, forced labour, child labour, excessive over-time, poisonings, illnesses, and deaths from chemical exposure. Many of these violations occur in supplier factories of big brand companies such as Apple, Hewlett-Packard, and Dell. While brands are considered ultimately responsible for these violations, their efforts to improve the situation are more often than not inadequate and unsustainable (Locke, 2013).

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LISTEN | David Hulme on the SDGs as transformation or evolution?

GDI Director Professor David Hulme spoke last week at our Global Development Seminar Series. David discussed the recently announced Sustainable Development Goals, and whether they are merely a continuation of the evolving UN “Global Goals” process or demonstrate that the idea of “development” has been fundamentally transformed.

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DON’T MISS | Professor Ravi Kanbur on utilitarianism & egalitarianism

Ravi Kanbur, Cornell University, utilitarianism, egalitarianismThe next lecture in our Global Development Seminar Series takes place on Wednesday December 9, with Cornell University professor Ravi Kanbur. Ravi’s talk is titled Is Utilitarianism All That Bad A Doctrine For Egalitarians?

The lecture will run 4.30pm-6pm in Cordingley Lecture Theatre, Humanities Bridgeford Street (HBS) building.

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Good COP, bad COP: How COP21 will impact on the SDGs

By Professor David Hulme

The 21st COP Summit started yesterday in Paris. After almost 20 years of climate talks, it is hoped that the international community will finally agree concerted action to tackle climate change. Though a tiny minority still debate the science, it is generally agreed that the world needs to reduce emissions so that warming of the climate due to human activity does not climb higher than 2 degrees celsius – remembering that a number of already-vulnerable countries are threatened by temperature rises of 1.5 degrees celsius.

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Do the SDGs signal revolution or evolution?

By Heiner Janus

In his Global Development seminar last week, Professor David Hulme asked: Are the newly adopted Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) the world’s biggest promise or just another development fad? The short answer: a bit of both.

Content-wise the 2030 agenda, including the SDGs, is transformative. The 17 goals and 169 targets contain every issue one could wish for in a global development agenda, such as eradicating poverty, combating hunger, better education and health, protecting the climate and even controversial issues like reducing inequality or promoting peace and security.

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WATCH | Food Security in Africa: Crop Choice, Climate & Gender

By Dr Ralitza Dimova

Food security in Africa is challenged in three key ways – by competition between food and cash crops, by constrained access to productive resources, and through social norms.

This is the upshot of my 10-minute film on agriculture in Ivory Coast, which summarises evidence from past research, samples the views of local stakeholders and outlines the contours of a future research agenda. The film is investigatory in scope. Firstly, it seeks to uncover the mechanisms that determine the allocation of land and labour in Africa to food and tropical cash crop production, considering consequent impacts on food security. Secondly, it investigates the role gender-related social norms play within agricultural choices and outcomes.

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LISTEN | Sandra Halperin on Re-Envisioning Development

Royal Holloway Professor Sandra Halperin gave a compelling lecture last week at our Global Development Seminar Series. Drawing on her most recent book, Re-Envisioning Global Development: a Horizontal Perspective, Sandra critiqued Eurocentric tellings of development – calling for a broader narrative that acknowledges the horizontal spread of capitalist development, and the implications of this for global development thinking and practice today.

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The Global Development Seminar Series brings together scholars involved in cutting edge research on international development. It aims to facilitate dialogue and discussion, providing a space for leading development thinkers to share their latest research ideas.

Listen to the second seminar, with Professor Dan Brockington on the Paradoxes of Celebrity Advocacy.