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Bjorn Lomborg

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14 May2018

How to improve agricultural productivity

Published by Mint

Global attention has been devoted to water scarcity and its effect on Indian farmers. However, new analysis from Indian researchers suggests that far more good could come if irrigation were combined with seed improvement. Tata Trusts and Copenhagen Consensus have commissioned new research by noted experts from India and around the world, looking at measures that would help Indian states respond to major challenges and improve their competitiveness, economic performance, and the well-being and prosperity of citizens. The new research focuses on establishing how much different policies would...

14 May2018

Diabetes and heart disease should be top health priorities

Published by Hindustan Times

Chronic diseases claim more Indian lives than infectious diseases, and take a huge toll: Between 2012 and 2030, non-communicable diseases and mental health conditions are expected to cost India $4.58 trillion. The government supports states to respond, but much more needs to be done. New research for India Consensus, a collaboration between Tata Trusts and Copenhagen Consensus, reveals some strategies should be prioritised against specific diseases. The analysis by Professor Shreelata Rao Seshadri of Azim Premji University with Vijayalakshmi Hebbare fills evidence gaps by identifying the...

23 Apr2018

The Sky Is Not Falling

Published by Project Syndicate

Humans are partial to bad news. Media outlets reflect and shape this preference, feeding us woe and panic. Long, slow, positive trends don’t make it to the front page or to water-cooler conversations. So we develop peculiar misperceptions, especially the idea that a preponderance of things are going wrong. When I published The Skeptical Environmentalist in 2001, I pointed out that the world was getting better in many respects. Back then, this was viewed as heresy, as it punctured several common and cherished misperceptions, such as the idea that natural resources were running out, that an...

12 Apr2018

Building India’s talent base

Published by The Hindu

When India found itself at the 103rd position in the recent World Economic Forum ranking of 130 nations on the preparedness of talent, it was just another indication of the skills challenge. In just five years, the government’s skill gap analysis report estimates that an extra 40 crore workers need to be skilled, reskilled or upskilled. The current official estimate is that slightly more than half a crore people are being trained annually. Policymakers are responding swiftly. But with limited resources and time, which skills policies will make the biggest impact? New research commissioned by...

4 Apr2018

Fighting TB matters since one case treated saves many others

Published by Hindustan Times

Prime Minister Narendra Modi has set the impressive goal of eradicating tuberculosis (TB) in India by 2025. TB claims the lives of more than four lakh Indians every year. The prime minister has made it clear that now is not the time for the status quo to prevail. New economic evidence commissioned by India Consensus, a collaboration between Tata Trusts and the Copenhagen Consensus, shows that Prime Minister Modi is entirely right to focus on tuberculosis. In Andhra Pradesh and Rajasthan, Tata Trusts and the Copenhagen Consensus have worked with hundreds of stakeholders to identify the best...

3 Apr2018

Identifying the policies that work best against child marriage: Empowerment of girls is the key

Published by Times of India

Despite significant progress against child marriage, it remains a huge challenge. Last year 320 lakh girls under 18 were married according to UNICEF estimates. The Supreme Court’s landmark ruling criminalising sex with a minor even within marriage forms part of a solid legal framework. But global experience shows that laws alone are not enough to entirely change practices and mores. New economic analysis can help speed progress. The negative consequences of child marriage include making girls less healthy and less educated, as well as being linked to more domestic violence. The Centre and...

15 Mar2018

A Trade War On the World’s Poorest

Published by Project Syndicate

US President Donald Trump’s steel tariffs have brought the prospect of a trade war closer to reality. The European Union warns that it has “a whole arsenal at our disposal with which to respond,” while China threatens “a justified and necessary response.” Economists, politicians, and public figures have all raised concerns about the threat of tit-for-tat trade barriers. But it is difficult to overstate the potential damage. New obstacles to free trade not only take us in the wrong direction; they also undermine the best opportunity to transform the lives of billions of the world’s poorest...

23 Feb2018

The cost of domestic violence is astonishing

Published by The Washington Post

Mass shootings such as last week’s in Florida have prompted law enforcement and the media to look for patterns, and here’s one that has emerged: A disturbing number of perpetrators have previously been accused of domestic abuse. Everytown for Gun Safety, a gun-control-advocacy group, analyzed FBI data on mass shootings from 2009 to 2016 and found that in 54 percent of cases, the victims included the shooter’s current or former spouse or intimate partner, or another family member — and 16 percent of attackers between 2009 and 2015 had previously been charged with domestic violence. Not every...

22 Feb2018

The Return of a Forgotten Killer

Published by Project Syndicate

Once, tuberculosis was one of the world’s greatest preoccupations. Consumption, as it was known, killed indiscriminately, claiming luminaries like Franz Kafka, John Keats, and US President James Monroe. In the last two centuries, TB has claimed more lives than any other disease: an unprecedented and unsurpassed death toll of one billion. Thanks to the advent of a vaccine and cheap drugs, TB kills very few people in the developed world nowadays. So it has quickly been forgotten in rich countries – thought of as a relic from the Victorian era.

5 Feb2018

Trump's cuts to renewable energy put us on the ropes in the fight against climate change

Published by USA Today

News that the Trump administration is poised to ask Congress for deep budget cuts to the Energy Department's renewable energy and energy efficiency programs has thus far generated less outrage than the White House’s abandonment of the Paris Climate Treaty, yet has the potential to be far more damaging to efforts to respond to climate change. According to documents obtained by the Washington Post, the White House is seeking to slash the budgets by 72% in fiscal year 2019, which would cut research in fuel efficient vehicles by 82%, bioenergy technologies by 82%, advanced manufacturing by 75%,...

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