Rethinking Bretton Woods | Thu, Jul 9, 2015

RBW attends Addis Ababa Financing for Development Conference

On July 13-16, 2015, RBW Project Director Aldo Caliari will attend the Third Financing for Development Conference in Addis Ababa (Ethiopia). Also in Addis Ababa, the previous weekend, July 11-12, he will be part of the Civil Society Forum.

Center of Concern has substantively contributed on several aspects of the agenda of this important conference through side-events, policy briefs and public and private panel presentations. The Center has advocated on the structure, the follow –up process, the application of specific sustainable development and human rights principles. It is also proud to be part of a Rapid Response Group among civil society organizations following the conference which led drafting of analysis and alternative language proposals on previous versions of the document and is currently leading drafting of the CSO Forum declaration. (Photo credit: IISD/Earth Negotiations Bulletin)

Rethinking Bretton Woods | Wed, Jul 1, 2015

Infrastructure finance: Can democracy prevail in the global policy debate?

What is the influence the Group of 20 in the economic policy debate and how is it exerted? An article by RBW Project Director Aldo Caliari explains how this informal entity with restricted membership has been able to influence and pre-empt outcomes in a formal, universal membership institution such as the UN. The article, appeared in the G20 Update newsletter published by the Heinrich Boell Foundation, illustrates the argument by focusing on the debate on a proposed infrastructure initiative within the United Nations. (Photo credit: CC/Flickr/Rod with additional graphic work: Heinrich Boell Foundation)

Global Women's Project | Wed, Jun 24, 2015

How is Technology Interrupting the Business Model of Human Trafficking?

According to the Economist's report on human trafficking, women suffer most severely. The report says, "victims of international trafficking are women forced into some form of prostitution." In Europe and Central and South Asia, women, often previous victims of trafficking, are expected to recruit other women. The BBC reports of USSD technology being applied to camouflage text messages and allow local authorities to locate a phone.

Should pension funds jump into the infrastructure investment bandwagon?

Rethinking Bretton Woods | Mon, Jun 22, 2015

Should pension funds jump into the infrastructure investment bandwagon?

Within the new infrastructure finance agenda emerging in the Group of 20, World Bank and other fora, the USD 85 that institutional investors, and in particular pension funds, are estimated to hold in savings, are seen as playing a starring role. In a blog appeared on RightingFinance, RBW Project Director Aldo Caliari queries human rights risks of such investments and makes recommendations for addressing them.

Read full blog.

Center of Concern | Wed, Jun 10, 2015

What happens the day after?


Negotiations on the financing framework that will accompany the Sustainable Development Goals continue in full gear. But much more than the conference itself, what matters is the implementation that begins the day after: commitments undertaken at the conference will mean little without a strong framework for follow up, monitoring and review.

As part of its advocacy on the parallel processes towards a Third Financing for Development Conference (Addis Ababa, Ethiopia) in July and Post-2015 Development Agenda (New York) in September, Center of Concern is promoting a strong accountability framework so the conference commitments make a difference in the years to follow.

CoC team member Aldo Caliari drafted the briefing paper published by CIDSE “Some reflections on the Third FFD Conference Follow-up – A Thinkpiece.” CoC is also cosponsoring side-events on this same topic during the Third Drafting Session of the Financing for Development Conference, June 18, and at the conference itself, in Addis Ababa.

“The Financing for Development Conference follow up process . . .  without major adjustments . ..  will . . . disappoint in a task to support achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals,” he warned in a statement delivered as speaker selected by the Major Group of Non-governmental Organization during the recent New York negotiations. (Photo credit: United Nations Photo Library)

Rethinking Bretton Woods | Tue, Jun 9, 2015

CoC-authored chapter featured in Fair Finance Guide


The international civil society network Fair Finance Guide International (FFG) recently launched its report on Transparency and Accountability in the Financial Sector. The report examines key aspects relating to transparency and accountability, and to reporting about tax related issues, as they apply to 47 banks in the seven countries where FFG is active. The report includes a contribution authored by CoC team member Aldo Caliari: “Transparency of banks’ environmental, social and human rights - the case of the United States."



Rethinking Bretton Woods | Sat, May 30, 2015

CoC joins call to cancel earthquake-struck Nepal's debt


Over the course of three weeks, two major earthquakes struck Nepal and took over 8,000 lives. Nepal is one of the poorest countries in the world and pays nearly $600,000 a day in debt. Join this petition by Jubilee USA calling on the IMF and the World Bank to immediately cancel Nepal's debt to support recovery and rebuilding efforts. (Photo credit: CC/Flickr/ Laxmi Prasad Ngakhusi / UNDP Nepal.)



Rethinking Bretton Woods | Thu, May 21, 2015

Human rights aspirations for financing conference set


The co-facilitators of the upcoming Third Conference on Financing for Development (to be held in July) released a new draft outcome. Center of Concern adds its voice to the organizations suggesting how to improve the text so outcomes of the conference are aligned with human rights.

Read suggestions by the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights.  

Read suggestions jointly developed by civil society working on Financing for Development.

Read some recent RightingFinance blogs on these issues:

Finance and development summit should be opportunity for economic justice, not  corporate profits

Addis Ababa financing conference: Will the means undermine the goals?

Will the new development agenda strike the right public-private balance?

CoC featured at trade union leaders seminar

Rethinking Bretton Woods | Tue, May 12, 2015

CoC featured at trade union leaders seminar


On May 12, 2015, RBW Project Director Aldo Caliari will speak at a seminar for a delegation of trade union leaders worldwide. The seminar, “Post 2015 Framework on Sustainable Development Goals Financing For Development and Means of Implementation,” is being held by the Friedrich Ebert Foundation-NY and the Trade Union Development Cooperation Network of the International Trade Union Confederation, in the city of New York. During that week and also in New York, Mr. Caliari will also be attending consultation sessions on Financing for Development at the UN Headquarters.

Center of Concern | Sun, May 10, 2015

CoC calls for accountable behavior of firms investing in land abroad


As the US government continues to carry out consultations to shape its National Action Plan on Responsible Business Conduct, RightingFinance, Friends of the Earth and Global Witness submitted a joint input calling for measures to improve human rights accountability of financial firms.

The submission calls for disclosure and risk prevention for investments in land and infrastructure, a review of investment treaty clause that allow companies to sue governments attempting to implement human rights obligations and measures to prevent companies’ tax evasion.

RightingFinance is a consortium of human rights and gender organizations that Center of Concern coordinates. The input was delivered at a consultation held by International Corporate Accountability Roundtable and others to communicate views of different interested parties to the US Administration. (Photo credit: Juliette Martin-Prével)