If you only read one thing this week…

Moving Up or Moving Out? A Rapid Livelihoods and Conflict Analysis in Ethiopia by Nick
November 17, 2010, 3:17 pm
Filed under: Articles, Development theory

Mercy Corps recently partnered with Tuft’s University to produce a rapid analysis report and strategic framework about better integrating livelihoods and conflict programs in Mieso-Mulu Woreda, Shinile Zone, Somali Region, Ethiopia. They focus on one district of the Shenile Zone and use a combined livelihoods-conflict analysis to develop a strategic framework that links conflict prevention, land issues, service delivery and strengthened economic activities. The framework uses the concept of economic inter-dependency as a means to support peace, and highlights the need to work across regional state borders in Ethiopia with harmonized programming. Check out the full report here.


Pumping water through play – too good to be true? by ifyouonlyreadonethingthisweek
November 3, 2010, 3:08 pm
Filed under: Development theory

Could accessing clean water in rural South Africa be as simple as child’s play? South African advertising entrepreneur Trevor Field thought he had found the solution to the clean water problem facing most developing nations by creating a water pump that was fun! The idea seemed so simple – a merry-go-round that pumped water while children played. The water then gets filtered and stored so that clean water is available on demand. Watch the optimistic PBS Frontline video from 2005 when the project was just beginning (text also available).  It was so easy and practical that Field had no problem finding investors to expand the project into other neighboring countries. Unfortunately, Field learned that development wasn’t as easy as he had hoped. Frontline recently returned to follow-up (video and text) on the project only to uncover many of the challenges the project had faced. The website also provides additional information about the project including interviews with UNICEF and USAID.