Mobile telephone technology is poised to dramatically improve millions of lives across the globe's weak and failed states. No other recently-introduced technology has so much potential to improve rural and urban outcomes in Africa, Asia, Latin America, and elsewhere.
Botswana has made tremendous strides in the fight against HIV/AIDS in the last decade, supported by the early and important U.S. partnership created through the President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR).
Less than 18 months into its life as an independent nation, South Sudan is facing a desperate struggle for survival. Because the terms of its separation from Sudan were not decided before independence, negotiations have dragged on over issues including borders, security arrangements, and the qualifications for citizenship, diverting attention from the urgent task of development.
Kenya’s national elections in March 2013 will signal the end of the coalition government that has been in power since April 2008 and will take place within a political structure fundamentally transformed by the passage in 2010 of a new constitution. But Kenyans’ hopes that the elections will herald a new political dispensation are likely to be frustrated.
On November 17, the people of Sierra Leone go to the polls in presidential, parliamentary, and local council elections. This will be the third presidential election since Sierra Leone’s decade-long civil war ended in 2002, and it will be an important benchmark for judging the extent of its post-conflict recovery.
Over the past several decades, the world has witnessed some astonishing global health success stories—from the eradication of smallpox to the expanding control of other vaccine-preventable diseases to the widespread provision of effective treatment for HIV/AIDS to millions of people.
Barack Obama campaigned as a transformational candidate on the weak and failing states agenda, so why has more not been accomplished? While only modest headway has been made to date, specific actions on most of these five challenging cases may soon be easier to consider, no matter who is president.
Angola is holding national elections for only the third time since the country gained independence in 1975 and the second time since the end of a decades-long civil war in 2002. The polls take place against a backdrop of growing frustration and expressions of popular discontent in a country widely seen as an emerging strategic player in Africa.
The process of rebuilding Liberia’s health system, shattered by 14 years of devastating conflict, is entering a crucial and potentially destabilizing phase. The Liberian government and local NGOs are assuming a larger responsibility, but Liberia’s health system is beset with serious problems.
Meles Zenawi, who has died at the age of 57, presided over a tumultuous period in Ethiopian history. As the rebel leader of the Tirgrayan People’s Liberation Front, he was instrumental in helping bring an end to Colonel Mengistu Haile Mariam’s feared Derg regime.