The world’s most important “to do” list: The Copenhagen Consensus


The Copenhagen Consensus is arguably the world’s most rational approach to Government spending.    The group, which includes many luminaries in economics, science, and development, reviews many approaches to making the world a better place and ranks them in terms of global priority.     The approach takes the return on investment in terms of dollars for lives very seriously.   Unlike political spending these decisions are looking at the most bang for the buck, rather than the most political benefits which are often strongly influenced by irrational concerns from lobbyists or personal agendas.     Obviously there’s no perfect way to allocate money but it’s certainly the best major effort to date and people *opposed to this approach* should be the ones making their case against it.      One of the most pressing reasons to move ahead with these efforts – even during a time of economic crisis – is that they are very, very cheap ways to do a huge amount of good both morally and strategically.    The reason we do not proceed?   Ignorance, pure and simple ignorance.

http://www.copenhagenconsensus.com/Default.aspx?ID=953

Solution
Challenge
1
Micronutrient supplements for children (vitamin A and zinc)
Malnutrition
2
The Doha development agenda
Trade
3
Micronutrient fortification (iron and salt iodization)
Malnutrition
4
Expanded immunization coverage for children
Diseases
5
Biofortification
Malnutrition
6
Deworming and other nutrition programs at school
Malnutrition & Education
7
Lowering the price of schooling
Education
8
Increase andimprove girls’ schooling
Women
9
Community-based nutrition promotion
Malnutrition
10
Provide support for women’s reproductive role
Women
11
Heart attack acute management
Diseases
12
Malaria prevention and treatment
Diseases
13
Tuberculosis case finding and treatment
Diseases
14
R&D in low-carbon energy technologies
Global Warming
15
Bio-sand filters for household water treatment
Water
16
Rural water supply
Water
17
Conditional cash transfers
Education
18
Peace-keepingin post‐conflict situations
Conflicts
19
HIV combination prevention
Diseases
20
Total sanitation campaign
Water
21
Improving surgical capacity at district hospital level
Diseases
22
Microfinance
Women
23
Improved stove intervention
Air Pollution
24
Large, multipurpose dam in Africa
Water
25
Inspection and maintenance of diesel vehicles
Air Pollution
26
Low sulfur diesel for urban road vehicles
Air Pollution
27
Diesel vehicle particulate control technology
Air Pollution
28
Tobacco tax
Diseases
29
R&D and mitigation
Global Warming
30
Mitigation only
Global Warming

Copenhagen is not focused on reviving the flailing global economy although I’d love to see us evaluate the types of global stimulus we’d see by funding innovative solutions to pressing global problems.     New grass for the national mall might put a few fertilizer guys to work for a few months, but it would be a lot more interesting  (let alone morally imperative) to throw a tiny fraction of that budget item towards some innovative new jobs in the health and poverty sectors, where simply improving health and reducing poverty will have powerful positive effects on raising the US and global GDP.      Raising living and health standards lowers birth rates so one of the consequences of spending the relatively tiny sums budgeted  by Copenhagen Consensus is helping to reduce population pressure as well as improve the quality of life for those already here.

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About JoeDuck

Internet Travel Guy, Father of 2, small town Oregon life. BS Botany from UW Madison Wisconsin, MS Social Sciences from Southern Oregon. Top interests outside of my family's well being are: Internet Technology, Online Travel, Globalization, China, Table Tennis, Real Estate, The Singularity.
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