Good actions give strength to ourselves and inspire good actions in others.

The quote is from Plato. This blog seeks to understand how micro-actions can be used by participants - often termed 'beneficiaries' in international development - to drive their own acquisition of resources, internal or external, to maintain quality of life.

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Unintended consequences. Thank you, Professor Hirschman.

Posted by Alan Upstone on Dec 17, 2012

I was touched to learn that Albert Hirschman died on December 10th.  He warned us about unintended consequences of development actions,  for which I’m grateful.  He also taught us how three mechanisms – exit, voice and loyalty – relate directly to...

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The Trouble with Aid

Posted by Alan Upstone on Dec 10, 2012

I watched the BBC’s The Trouble with Aid with my wife, who does not work in development or humanitarian aid. She was very troubled by the issues. So was I, of course, all over again. I was impressed by the honesty of Dr Randolph Kent of King’s College...

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Verifying micro-actions – how precise do we need to be?

Posted by Alan Upstone on Nov 13, 2012

When I am in an area of relative poverty compared to my home country, I am sometimes aware that I am paying over the local market price or being in some way ‘fiddled’. I have a souvenir from Koi Chang hanging in my kitchen that reminds me how well a beach...

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