Tim Berners-Lee, a SOLID defender of Internet users

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Sir Tim, now 63, knighted in 2004, has made no secret of how dissatisfied he is with the way the Web is going.  He singles out three trends: Advertising’s pernicious effect on news. “Those...

DOMINICA: Coping with disaster

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THE MASSIVE DESTRUCTION CAUSED BY MARIA is immediately visible as you fly in from the Caribbean Sea to Douglas-Charles Airport. Huge swathes of trees stand pale and naked, or lie felled across the mountainsides, like...

Forget the profits. See how UN blockchains can save the world

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Since 2017 the U.N. has been seeking to incorporate blockchains into its programmes to increase the security and reduce the costs of aid. Latest: PIVX foundation in June 2019. What is Blockchain? The secret to bitcoins...

PRINCE SADRUDDIN AGA KHAN: Humanitarian & Visionary

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This article was first published in the Oct/Nov 2017 print and e-edition of Global Geneva magazine. FOR DIANA MISEREZ, SADRUDDIN, WHO WAS BORN in Paris and died at the age of 70 in 2003, was a...

Why the World Humanitarian Summit is adrift – and how to salvage it

With two months to go until delegates assemble in Istanbul for the first-ever UN summit devoted to humanitarian affairs, the odds on a successful outcome are slim. As Nick van Praag of Ground Truth...

Overcoming extreme poverty by 2030 – what can you do?

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There will be a double-anniversary concert in Geneva’s Victoria Hall 13 March 2016 at 17:00, celebrating the 40th anniversary of the 1% for Development Fund and the fifth anniversary of the United Nations Orchestra...

Bombing hospitals and civilians in Yemen

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The American airstrikes against a Médecins sans Frontières (MSF) hospital in Kunduz, Afghanistan, earlier this month indicate either a lethal flaw in US intelligence or, in a worst case scenario, a callous disregard for...

Nepal Earthquake: Ensuring that the countryside is not forgotten

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The international community has been quick to respond to last Saturday’s massive earthquake in Nepal. However, as Julien Bettler of Norlha, the Swiss Himalayan support NGO, reminds us, it is vital not to forget...

France to boost Geneva International

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While the Swiss government often fails to recognize the crucial importance of its international community, particularly in the Lake Geneva region, the French view it differently. The Lake Geneva area, which includes both Swiss...

Did the 2004 tsunami change emergency aid forever?

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The following piece by Simon Levine of the Overseas Development Institute's  Humanitarian Policy Group  (HPG) explores the increasing use of cash as a form of international humanitarian response. Exploring the changes that have come...

To Kill a Sparrow: Afghan women jailed for love

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For years, filmmaker Zohreh Soleimani followed a tragic romance set in Afghanistan. The couple met, fell in love … and went to jail. So what went wrong? With her camera in hand, Zohreh confronted the family...

Will the World Humanitarian Summit pass the accountability test?

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Nick van Praag, who directs the Ground Truth Programme of   Keystoneaccountability, explores whether World Humanitarian Summit will really look hard at whether, and if not why, humanitarian response is really working. As the long...

How to Save Afghanistan’s Democracy

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Afghanistan’s last election almost tore the country apart. The next one has to be different. In an opinion article for Foreign Policy, Tabish Forugh explores the pitfalls - and options - for the country's...

How Sierra Leone’s Fight Against Ebola Tested Cultural Traditions.

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The following piece is written by Amy Maxmen, a science and medical journalist who travelled to Sierra Leone with a grant from the Pulitzer Center on Crisis Reporting. FREETOWN, Sierra Leone—A great quarrel followed the...

Better Mapping for Better Journalism

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Willie Shubert of the Washington DC-based New Security Beat explores new visual tools for improving environmental journalism. Nearly every local story has a global context. This is especially true when it comes to the environment, and there...

One (difficult) step to curbing extremism

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The following article written by Sarah Chayes, a senior associate at the Carnegie Endowment, was contributed as a blog to the Reuters.com website. (See direct link). Given Sarah's exceptional experience working in Afghanistan and...

Tim to the rescue: Legislating accountability

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Nick van Praag sends this piece on the exceptional work achieved by US senatorial aide Tim Rieser regarding the reciprocal release of prisoners and the thawing of relations between the United States and Cuba. Tim...

Sierre Leone in the time of Ebola

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How frontline workers see the Ebola response in Sierra Leone. Nick van Praag, who is just back from this West African country, shares some random impressions.   With all due respect to Bob Geldof, people...

Beyond the blah-blah: What now with the Sustainable Development Goals?

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The creation of a new and more realistic post-2015 agenda to replace the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) is already happening with Geneva in the forefront. But how will the new SDGs be implemented and...

North Korea: first steps towards change?

Journalist Christopher Woodburn explores new directions for North Korea. Long-considered the last bastion of Stalinist socialism in the post-cold war era, the hermit kingdom—as it sometimes called—has purportedly made some ground-breaking changes which may pave...

Afghanistan – What went wrong?

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The following essay by Geneva-based journalist and author Edward Girardet was published by the Cairo Review of Global Affairs in October, 2014. Girardet is also co-editor of the 4th fully revised Essential Field Guide...

IRIN’s new challenge – independent humanitarian reporting

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Swiss journalist Daniel Wermus writes on the establishment of IRIN, a former UN humanitarian news agency, in Geneva as a new - and independent - media organization. Life and death – can there be an...

Time to focus on the people behind the numbers

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This piece is contributed by Nick van Praag, a humanitarian specialist and director of Keystone's Ground Truth programme. A slew of statistics released this week by UNHCR points to a rising tide of human misery as the...

Rebranding the Millennium Development Goals

by Priyash Bista Geneva - The Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) were supposed to create benchmarks for the developed world’s commitment to eliminating global poverty. The target date for completion is next year, and despite the...

Putting UNRWA back on the Map

With the civil war in Syria stalemated in its fourth year and more than 164,000 Syrians dead, the public has begun to be anesthetized to what is really at stake.  That changed briefly Thursday...

Frontline Earth: Maidan, Taksim, Tahrir – Revolution 2.0

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The following piece in French is by Essential Edge French editor Daniel Wermus.  Geneva -- Chaque bouleversement technologique a, dans l’histoire, produit un bouleversement social. L’imprimerie a déclenché la Réforme. La révolution industrielle, le mouvement...

How bad language leads to poor humanitarian outcomes

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Nicholas van Praag of Keystone's Groundtruth programme writes about the importance of language when dealing with the people one is trying to help. When someone as eloquent as Robert Chambers chides you on your use of language,...

Senegal turns toward agro-ecology

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The following piece is by Essential Edge French editor Daniel Wermus. Le Sénégal veut se tourner vers l’agro-écologie Le processus « Changement de cap dans l’agriculture », lancé après Rio+20 par le Comité de la sécurité alimentaire mondiale,...

No accounting for what charities ship overseas

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The following report was published 24 January 2014 by the Center for Investigative Reporting in San Francisco as part of the America's Worst Charities' Project with the Tampa Bay Times and CNN. It was...

Life after Guantanamo prison

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The following piece on Afghans incarcerated -- often with little or no evidence - by the Americans in Guantanamo by Dawood Azam was published on the BBC World website. See link. Kabul -- Some 220...

By air, by land and by Karma – transportation in Nepal’s Himalayas

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The following article on travelling in Nepal was written by Donatella Lorch, an American-Italian journalist living in Katmandu. Katamandu -- I learned a new expression this week: Controlled Flight into Terrain or CFIT meant to...

Sri Lanka’s Killing Fields, North Africa and the role of quality media

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Since starting out as a foreign correspondent during the late 1970s in Paris, Swiss-American writer and journalist Edward Girardet would often make a point of coming to Geneva to report on peace talks, wars...

The PCDN Network – More than just information

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For anyone - UN or NGO aid worker, policy analyst, researcher, journalist, donor, private sector - serious about being effective, the Peace and Collaborative Development Network (PCDN) is more than just an information tool,...

TedX plea for West not to abandon Afghanistan

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Masood Khalili, Afghan ambassador to Spain - and son of famed 20th century Afghan poet Khalillulah Khalili - makes an impassioned plea from the heart in an Alcobendas, Spain TedX  for the West not...

In Nepal’s Himalayas, the uphill battle is against plastic

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Letter from Katamandu Journalist Donatella Lorch has sent us this dispatch from Nepal.  As any tour company will tell you, Nepal is the land of the Gods. It is the birthplace of Buddha and home to...

Press Reset on AfPak Relations

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The following piece by Omar Samad was first published by Foreign Policy's SOUTH ASIA CHANNEL. Contrary to popular opinion, it is not so much the 2014 wrap-up of the coalition combat mission in Afghanistan, or even...

Humanitarian work: from intention to action

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This piece contributed by Nick van Praag was published by The Essential Edge 22 March, 2012. How good are really the humanitarian agencies that claim to respond to the needs of the people - the...

The Arab Crisis: Food, Energy, Water and Justice

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Tunisia's popular uprising is reverberating across the Arab world. But such movements face problems that go far wider than dictatorship to encompass the whole range of human security, writes Vicken Cheterian of the Geneva-based...