Apr 19: Global Poverty panel

The Causes of Poverty and Global Obligations to the Poor: What is the Link?

This panel focuses on the relationship between the causes of poverty and global obligations to the poor.Mathias Risse argues that domestic institutions are the primary determinant of wealth or poverty. This argument, along with the inability of international actors to do much to affect the shape or quality or domestic institutions, means that global obligations to the poor are sharply limited. Nicole Hassoun criticizes the philosophical justification for one of the metrics for distributing foreign aid used by international financial institutions. This metric is based on the CIPA index, a measure of "institutional quality." She is critical of this measure, arguing that it either relies on an unjustifiably simple story about the causes of growth and poverty or that it is designed to fend off moral hazard arguments which are themselves ill-justified (probably both).Michael Goodhart argues that we don't need clear or definitive answers to questions about the causes of poverty to answer questions about global obligations to the poor. Causes are relevant for designing effective aid programs, but not for assigning responsibility for addressing poverty.

Panelists include Michael Goodhart (Associate Professor, Department of Political Science, University of Pittsburgh), Nicole Hassoun (Assistant Professor, Department of Philosophy, Carnegie Mellon University), and Mathias Risse (Associate Professor, Public Policy and Philosophy, John F. Kennedy School of Government, Harvard University).

4:30 in Gregg Hall (Porter 100). Humanities Center lecture Co-sponsored by the Center for the Advancement of Applied Ethics and Political Philosophy (CAAEPP).

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