How to spend
An ambitious attempt to work out the best use for scarce resources
The Economist has published an entire article writing about the Bangladesh Priorities project and the 75 solutions analyzed by our economists. Some are amazing (663 takas of social benefit for every taka spent) – some unfortunately do less than one dollar of good for every dollar spent.
Every government minister, senior civil servant and charity official is familiar with the pitch. Spend money on my project, says the supplicant: it will bring such large benefits that you will actually save money in the long run. At this, the official sighs, knowing that another supplicant with an equally bold pitch is waiting outside. How can he pick among competing pleas for bridges, IT systems, deworming medicines and a thousand other things?
Next week, at a conference in Dhaka, the Copenhagen Consensus will try to answer that question. For more than a decade the think-tank has assessed the global costs and benefits of different development schemes. Now it has commissioned studies, mostly by academics at BRAC, a local charity, into 70-odd activities in Bangladesh."
Read the entire article here.
Smarter Solutions for Bangladesh
Here's an expanded version of the figure included in The Economist, comparing the amount of social, economic and environmental benefit per taka spent on pursuing different solutions for Bangladesh.