Notes from the Field

Notes from the Field

AEC Skilled-Labor Migration: A Gap between Aspiration and Reality?

August 26, 2015

As ASEAN countries have moved up the technology ladder and the demand for skills has grown, a labor gap has emerged that mirrors the gap between more- and less-developed nations. Higher-income countries such as Thailand, with falling birthrates and greying populations, are suffering from growing labor shortages in sectors such as healthcare and IT, while lower-income countries face burgeoning youth populations and high levels of graduate unemployment.

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Notes from the Field

Vietnam Then and Now

August 26, 2015

In the early years of Renovation (Doi Moi), at a time when the market economy was just beginning to gain a foothold, Hanoi was a much greener city than it is today. Nearly all the fruits and vegetables, meats, and fish consumed here were produced in the suburbs and sold fresh in the city’s public markets. Within the city, Ho Tay and Bay Mau lakes produced hundreds of tons of fish per year.

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Notes from the Field

Challenges in the Malaysian Social Enterprise Scene

August 26, 2015

The social enterprise scene in Malaysia is a nascent, growing space. It is estimated that only 100 of these socially oriented, hybrid enterprises exist in Malaysia, tackling causes such as education, environmental sustainability, rural development, and poverty. It’s a strikingly low figure…

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Notes from the Field

Infographics Aside, Are Fragility Indices Useful?

August 12, 2015

Devising quantitative measures of state weakness is big business in the development industry. As awareness of the importance of institutions to growth and peace has spread, development practitioners and policymakers have been served an ever-expanding smorgasbord of state fragility indices (see here, here, and here). Countries receive a numerical score based on a range of indicators deemed to capture the ability of states to serve their people.

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Notes from the Field

Boosting Economic Mobility in Asia: SMEs as Drivers of Inclusive Growth

August 12, 2015

Over the last four decades, Asia has experienced unprecedented economic growth that has shifted the global economic center of gravity to the region. Asia enters 2015 as the world’s fastest-growing region, with the International Monetary Fund predicting that GDP will increase by 5.5 percent this year.

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Notes from the Field

Fragile and Conflict-Affected Situations: Why They Matter, How Aid Can Help

July 29, 2015

Where governments do not function well, growth and sustainable development are rare, and destructive, violent conflicts are more likely. Working in such fragile and conflict-affected situations (FCASs) – common across Asia and the Pacific – requires development agencies, including ADB, to do business differently.

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Notes from the Field

Timor-Leste: The Economic Dimensions of Domestic Violence

July 22, 2015

As in many countries, there are myriad challenges to ending violence against women and children in Timor-Leste. Among these challenges, assumptions concerning women’s economic vulnerability and their dependence on their spouses can have a significant…

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Notes from the Field

LankaCorps: A Conversation with Dr. Naj Nagendran

July 22, 2015

Last week in Washington DC, The Asia Foundation held a fund-raising event to present its LankaCorps Fellowship Program, a unique opportunity for young leaders of Sri Lankan heritage to engage in social, cultural, and economic development activities in post-conflict Sri Lanka. Each year since 2012, the Foundation has selected an outstanding group of young people…

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Notes from the Field

Mongolia: Tracking Public Concern about Corruption

July 8, 2015

Mongolia’s public commitment to fight corruption has been strong, from the adoption of the Anti-Corruption Law of 2006 and the creation of the Independent Authority Against Corruption (IAAC) in 2007, to the Law on Information Transparency and the Right to Information of 2011 and the…

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Notes from the Field

Nepal: The Quake and the Constitution

June 24, 2015

Two months have passed since Nepal was rocked by a series of devastating earthquakes. The tremors continue, but it appears that the earth is finally settling and some respite may be had – for a short while at least, until the monsoon rains bring their annual havoc of landslides and floods, which are certain to be far worse this year…

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