Bjorn Lomborg

Get the facts straight

30 Sep2015

Stepping up fight against domestic violence likely to pay dividends

Published by The Age Australia

The Australian government's decision to step up its fight against the scourge of domestic violence does not just make moral sense: it is underpinned by a sound economic case too. Researchers for Copenhagen Consensus recently conducted one of the first analyses of the total costs of violence worldwide, and found that gender-based violence – believed to affect around one in three women globally – has a considerably higher financial impact on society than many would think.

29 Sep2015

The U.N. Chose Way Too Many New Development Goals

Published by Time Ideas

After years of build-up, world leaders at the U.N. Friday set some of the most important priorities for the next 15 years, the sustainable development goals. At stake is about $2.5 trillion in development aid. Unfortunately, because of politicking and a desire to please everyone, this massive budget will likely achieve less good than it could. The presidents and prime ministers agreed to replace the eight goals and 18 targets of the Millennium Development Goals with an impossibly long list of 17 goals and 169 targets. The chief problem with this new laundry list of targets is that trying to...

25 Sep2015

What Youths Could Teach World Leaders on Development Targets

Published by The Huffington Post

At the United Nations in New York today, world leaders are gathering to finalize the Global Goals -- the targets that will replace the Millennium Development Goals and shape trillions of dollars of spending over the next 15 years. There is much high-minded rhetoric here at the United Nations that development is all about people. This has been a key theme during the consultations on the targets that took years and have brought us to this point. As United Nations Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon has put it, "People should be at the centre of our vision". Do the goals live up to the rhetoric? Over...

24 Sep2015

On climate change, Pope Francis isn’t listening to the world’s poor

Published by New York Post

The global elite has little idea what afflicts the poor, says Pope Francis. He’s right — but that observation sometimes applies to him, too. In his US visit, the pope is already creating headlines about the urgent need to respond to climate change. Invoking the need to “protect the vulnerable in our world,” he calls for an end to humanity’s reliance on fossil fuels. This comes after his June declaration that global warming is one of the pre-eminent problems facing the poor. The elite, he said, are out of touch if they don’t realize this: “Many professionals, opinion makers, communications...

18 Sep2015

Trade-Offs for Global Do-Gooders

Published by Wall Street Journal

Later this week, world leaders will gather in New York at the United Nations to endorse international development goals for the next 15 years. It is the culmination of a four-year process for setting priorities to help the world’s most disadvantaged people—a process beset from the start by horse-trading, haggling and endless consultation. In a bid not to offend anyone, the new development agenda is expected to include an incredible 169 targets for investment. Giving priority to 169 things is the same as giving priority to nothing at all.

16 Sep2015

Unsustainable Development Goals

Published by Project Syndicate

At the end of this month, one of the most consequential political conferences of the decade will take place, with more than 150 world leaders gathering in New York to set the path for global development spending – more than $2.5 trillion – between now and 2030. But, in fact, heads of state are not expected to do much at the conference at all. With the so-called Agenda for Sustainable Development having been quietly finalized by diplomats and United Nations bureaucrats last month, the leaders are expected just to smile for the cameras and sign on the dotted line. Unfortunately, they are...

13 Aug2015

Next-Generation Development

Published by Project Syndicate

Over the next 15 years, some two billion children will be born, 90% in the poorest parts of the world. Providing these kids with a better start would be one of the greatest achievements that humanity could make. Doing so also would be one of the most efficient uses of the resources that the world dedicates to development. Next month, world leaders will gather at the United Nations in New York to agree on the Sustainable Development Goals: the targets that will succeed the 18 set in the year 2000 by the Millennium Development Goals. The list of potential targets is impossibly long: 169 in all...

3 Aug2015

These are the four SDGs we need to agree on to help the planet

Published by The Guardian

In contrast to the MDGs, the Sustainable Development Goals include a large number of environmental targets. Bjorn Lomborg explains in The Guardian which are among the best: Cutting indoor air pollution, halving coral reef loss, taxing pollution damage from energy and phasing out fossil fuel subsidies.

22 Jul2015

The Best Ways to Fight Extreme Poverty

Published by Project Syndicate

In 1950, people in South Korea and Pakistan earned roughly the same amount of money annually. Today, the two countries are scarcely comparable. South Korean’s per capita income has grown 23-fold since then, while Pakistan has experienced only a three-fold increase. How we can help more of the world’s poorest countries emulate South Korea’s success is one of the most important questions facing the world today. Better economic outcomes mean empowering entire populations with better health, more education, longer life, and less vulnerability to challenges like natural disasters.

22 Jul2015

Bjorn Lomborg and the List That Could Save the World

Published by OZY

“There is a reason why Moses came down Mount Sinai with Ten Commandments” and not 169, Bjorn Lomborg tells digital magazine OZY for their feature on the SDGs and the Post-2015 Consensus. He points out that 169 targets are impossible to remember, let alone to implement, and the world would do much better to focus on the 19 targets the Copenhagen Consensus Center's Nobel laureate economists prioritized.