The End of Poverty: Economic Possibilities for Our Time, by Jeffrey Sachs
In his address, Sachs emphasized that if the MDGs are to be met, not only must official development assistance from the world’s wealthiest countries be increased, but more broadly the international donor community must adjust its approach to development aid. A key strategy of this change is for rich countries to partner with poor countries.
Sachs commended the World Bank for its work and outgoing President James Wolfensohn for his exceptional leadership over the past decade moving the institution toward the goal of poverty reduction and away from structural adjustment lending. To emphasize his assertion that donors must scale up their development efforts, Sachs shared a series of recent photos from Africa that document the urgent issue of extreme poverty in the world. Sachs ended his remarks with a challenge to the audience, saying “together we can end poverty, but we have to decide to do it.”
A question and answer period followed the presentation. Topics addressed included implications of the Poverty Reduction Strategy Paper (PRSP) initiative, the problem of aggregating middle income and transition countries with the poorest countries when establishing a development agenda, and the evolving role of the international financial institutions.