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The End of Aid:

Does foreign aid maintain poverty?

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  • The Debate

    The End of Aid

    We think aid saves lives. Yet the IMF warns there is no correlation between aid and growth. Might the UK's £11bn maintain the very cycles of poverty it seeks to abolish?  Worse still, is aidjust another name for colonialism?  Or would giving up on aid neglect our responsibility to the worlds poorest?


    The Panel

    Development Secretary to Brown Hilary Benn, World Bank Economist Thomas Dichter, Prospect editor Bronwen Maddox and Danish novelist Janne Teller envisage a future without aid. In association with Prospect Magazine.

  • Find out more about speakers

Jump to what you want to see in the debate
  • Thomas Dichter
    The Pitch
    We must abandon aid in order for countries to develop.
  • Hilary Benn
    The Pitch
    Aid is fundemental and needs to adapt according to circumstances.
  • Bronwen Maddox
    The Pitch
    Well run countries make use of aid, poorly run countries squander it.
  • Janne Teller
    The Pitch
    Aid in its present form is detrimental.
  • The Debate
    Theme One
    Is aid an industry?
  • The Debate
    Theme Two
    What kind of aid works?
Want to learn more about our speakers?
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Jon Quirk on 04/11/2014 3:19pm

Aid has been and is a disaster; consider the Horn of Africa - think back to the Bob Geldorf and Live Aid days. Then the problem was relatively small; comparatively few millions in dire hunger and need.

And today? A burgeoning population that will soon, may already have, hit 150 million with many more in dire circumstances.

The Laws of unintended consequences? Perhaps - but there is no doubting that aid in this region has been an unmitigated disaster; feeding those in the "aid industry" - financially and in a self-glow of moral superiority and sainthood.

And throughout Africa aid has fed despots, the aid industry (why ask someone like Hilary Benn who has built his existence around it is beyond me - do turkeys vote for christmas?) and been generally counter-productive except on the rare occasions it bypasses the industry and somehow goes straight to the problem - even then beware the Horn of Africa dilemma.

pelverden on 21/10/2014 9:37am

Jeff Sachs is the one man who I believe has gotten closest to trying to solve this problem. Having a holistic approach, targetting the infrastructure and building it grounds up in order to build a sustainable micro-economy is the way forward. That's where we should be targetting our money at, not throwing it to the pockets of bureaucrats.

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