The ultra-poor: a pioneering technique is helping the hardest to reach 

The term ultra-poor was coined in 1986 by Michael Lipton of the University of Sussex. It is defined as “a group of people who eat below 80% of their energy requirements despite spending at least 80% of income on food”. The majority tends to be landless rural women.

The ultra-poor: a pioneering technique is helping the hardest to reach | Global Development Professionals Network | The Guardian

It is difficult to say how many people in the world today fit this definition, but it’s likely in the hundreds of millions. About 162 million people live in “ultra-poverty,” defined as living on less than 50 cents a day, with an additional 323 million living in “medial poverty”, defined as living on between 50 and 75 cents a day, according to a 2007 report from the International Food Policy Research Institute, based on 2004 data.

Northeast Braces For Colossal Snowstorm.

The morning commute was delayed Monday for drivers on a section of Interstate 81 near Harrisburg, Pennsylvania. A tractor-trailer jack knifed, and a truck hauling beer crashed into the median. No injuries were reported.

Some schools were planning to close early or not open at all Monday in Pennsylvania, New Jersey, New York and Connecticut.

Government officials began to activate emergency centers on Sunday as professional sports teams, schools and utilities hastily revised their schedules and made preparations.

“This could be a storm the likeNortheast Braces For Colossal Snowstorms of which we have never seen before,” New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio told a news conference in a Manhattan sanitation garage where workers were preparing plows and salt for the massive cleanup on about 6,000 miles of city roadways.

Child labour in the fashion supply chain.

Around 260 million children are in employment around the world, according to the International Labour Organisation (pdf). Of them, the ILO estimates that 170 million are engaged in child labour, defined by the UN as “work for which the child is either too young – work done below the required minimum age – or work which, because of its detrimental nature or conditions, is altogether considered unacceptable for children and is prohibited”.

Child labour is forbidden by law in most countries but continues to be rife in some of the poorest parts of the world.

International Monetary Fund: The world economy is worse off than we thought – Jan. 19, 2015.


Sorry folks, the world economy is not going to improve much this year. Or next year.

The world economy will grow by just 3.5% in 2015, and by 3.7% in 2016, according to the latest estimate from the International Monetary Fund. Both estimates are down 0.3 percentage points from the group’s previous forecast, made in October.

One bright spot was the United States: The IMF revised its estimate for U.S. economic growth to 3.6% this year, up half a percentage point from the October forecast.

Hibernating Animals Might Provide Clues For Fighting Alzheimer’s.

What does animal hibernation have to do with Alzheimer’s? More than you might think. According to new research, the way that critters wake up from a long winter’s rest could help scientists devise new treatments for dementia. Research from Leicester University have isolated a cold-activated protein, RBM3, which helps restore brain activity of animals that are coming out of long hibernation periods. Though the protein also exists in humans, it’s been found to be missing among Alzheimer’s patients, whose brains also commonly have a reduced number of synapses.

OxfamNovib – Kloof tussen arm en rijk steeds groter.

In 2016 bezit 1% van de rijkste mensen op aarde evenveel als de overige 99%. Tenminste… als we niets doen aan de steeds groter wordende kloof tussen arm en rijk.

Het nieuwe Oxfam onderzoeksrapport Wealth: Having it all and wanting more toont harde cijfers:
• In 2009 bezat de rijkste 1% van de wereld 44 procent van de welvaarts-taart. In 2014 was dit 48 procent. Als het in hetzelfde tempo  doorgaat, zal hun aandeel in 2016 boven de 50% procent uitkomen: meer dan de helft dus van de taart.
• Deze rijkste 1% had in 2014 gemiddeld per persoon een vermogen van $2,7 miljoen.
• Dit terwijl meer dan 1 miljard mensen op de wereld het moeten doen met minder dan 1,25 dollar per dag. En 1 op de 9 mensen niet genoeg te eten heeft.