image missing
HOME SN-BRIEFS SYSTEM
OVERVIEW
EFFECTIVE
MANAGEMENT
PROGRESS
PERFORMANCE
PROBLEMS
POSSIBILITIES
STATE
CAPITALS
FLOW
ACTIVITIES
FLOW
ACTORS
PETER
BURGESS
SiteNav SitNav (0) SitNav (1) SitNav (2) SitNav (3) SitNav (4) SitNav (5) SitNav (6) SitNav (7) SitNav (8)
Date: 2022-05-20 Page is: DBtxt001.php bk005A0000
Burgess Manuscript
Hundreds of Issues
From the book 'Hundreds of Issues that Impact Relief and Development'
Open Chapter Navigation NEXT ... Open bk005B0000
.
Section AAA
Issue
Academia
Basic observation
The academic community can be a valuable source of research, analysis and understanding. They are also associated with the lack of practical performance in the relief and development sector.
Prevailing response
The academic agenda is implicated with the lack of performance in relief and development. To a great extent study of humanitarian relief and development has been framed by an academic mindset and little seems to have emerged that gets tangible equitable results.
A better response
The academic community, particularly in the global south, is a huge resource. There needs to be effective vehicles that translates what is known into practical results. The academic community in the “south” can catalyze the global academic community to everyone's benefit.

Issue
Accelerator effect
Basic observation
Keynes described the accelerator effect in macro-economic analysis. Changes in investment impacts economic performance, especially employment and productivity.
Prevailing response
Relief and development sector strategy reflects little thinking about the accelerator effect and its impact on socio-economic performance. This is an indicator of the selective analysis and lack of rigor that pervades RDS analysis.
A better response
The accelerator effect can be very valuable in “jump starting” community development. Development investment should plan for the impact of accelerator both as period investments grow and also as they decline.

Issue
Account codes
Basic observation
Account codes are the foundation for easy powerful analysis. They should be absolutely logical and reflect sound accounting principles.
Prevailing response
Accounts codes are not on the leadership agenda anywhere, even though they are critical to building powerful and easy analysis capability. The IMF work in this area is academic more than it is practical and not easy to use.
A better response
Increasingly a standard set of analytical codes should be used for accounting and socio-economic development analysis. The development of standards should be an organic process and the result absolutely logical.

Issue
Accountability
Basic observation
Accountability is the process that holds people in an organization responsible for their decisions and the results being achieved. It is key to management and high performance in organizations.
Prevailing response
There has been huge growth in the dialog about accountability over the past 20 years, but the underlying systems to deliver meaningful accountability have changed little. The systems produce very little data can be used for accountability and performance analysis.
A better response
Accountability is a key USE of accounting. Accountability - holding decision makers and management “responsible” for their decisions and their actions is needed to improve performance. It will be most easily achieved in partnership with the public and all the legitimate stakeholders.

Issue
Accounting
Basic observation
Accounting is the most basic of management tools, but also one of the most powerful. It is simple accounting that provides the definitive measure of financial performance, especially in corporate organizations.
Prevailing response
Accounting in the Relief and Development Sector (RDS) is weak. There is little use of analytical accounting for RDS management and accounting systems are incapable of being used for much meaningful analysis.
A better response
Accounting is the most basic management tool. Pre-1960, modern analytical accounting was rare, but it is now so commonplace that it is taken for granted. The norm should be for good accounting to be everywhere, with organizations readily sharing their performance information for the guidance of the public.

Issue
Accounts
Basic observation
Every organizational entity and every activity should have accounts. They can be simple, but they must be complete.
Prevailing response
Accounts in most of the ORDA community are based on cash based systems, which usually incompletely reflects the accounting transactions, and the reporting is weak.
A better response
Accounts are an essential and basic foundation. They should be complete recording all value transactions, and should be the basis for good analysis and good reporting.

Issue
Adult education
Basic observation
Adults should have the opportunity to learn, either to catch up or to learn incrementally.
Prevailing response
The ORDA community recognizes the need for and the value of adult education, but it has rarely been adequately funded.
A better response
A sustainable community can integrate adult education into the portfolio of priority activities that are funded within the community. In general adult education can be expected to have a high return.

Issue
AIDS
Basic observation
See HIV-AIDS
Prevailing response
A better response

Issue
Air Pollution
Basic observation
Air pollution has been a bad bye-product of industrial economic development and the use of energy.
(see also global warming)
Prevailing response
Tremendous resistance to reducing air pollution because of its cost and the profit impact. Horrible pollution allowed where automobiles clog city streets in the “south”
A better response
A broader advocacy for air quality is needed, including air quality ratings in “tourism” advertising. The link between air pollution and global warming should be more on display in the media

Issue
Agricultural inputs
Basic observation
Ready supply of agricultural inputs: fertilizer, seed, insecticides, etc. as well as labor and energy are needed for agricultural success.
Prevailing response
In most of the poor rural areas of the global “south”, agricultural inputs are in short supply. Farmers cannot afford them, and the present productivity of agriculture does not justify their use. A typical catch 22 of failed development.
A better response
Techniques for facilitating use of adequate inputs must be developed. This might best be done within the community and with community based organizations. A systemic approach is needed to get out of the catch 22 of failed agriculture.

Issue
Agriculture
Basic observation
Agriculture is highly productive in the “north” and mainly subsistence in most of the “south”. Without improving productivity in agriculture there will always be relative poverty in rural communities in the “south”.
Prevailing response
In many places there has been “investment” in support of subsistence agriculture. A lot of actions have removed initiative from the farmer and the community to organizations that have cost a lot and then failed to deliver anything of value.
A better response
The farmer and the community have a vested interest in success. Many small initiatives that are priority from the community perspective can change performance and productivity. Community needs efficient access to resources that are needed to improve performance and their results.

Issue
Airports
Basic observation
Airports are critical infrastructure.
Prevailing response
Airports are expensive and often a drag on the economy. Airports get funded in part because of the “prestige” and the willingness of donors to be associated with them.
A better response
Airports are needed, but the cost of the airport is not justified for the limited use that is normal and its role in the local economy. How can the airport be used to drive more economic activity like, for example, tourism, conference business, fast freight and so on.

Issue
Armed intervention
Basic observation
Armed intervention ought to be a last resort, but it should be an option.
Prevailing response
The use of armed intervention has rarely come at the right time ... it is usually too late and is needed because all forms of governance have failed and violence is already dominating society. Too often, armed intervention is used clumsily and without adequate cause.
A better response
A modest show of force before violence and chaos has taken over is a better way ... but to support the goals of society rather than to suppress the freedom of society. Armed intervention should be more possible where there is abusive government and leadership and the rights of the population have been totally ignored.

Issue
Arms trade
Basic observation
The scale of the modern international arms trade is huge. It serves to destroy value in a lot of counties while enriching the organizations that design and produce the equipment.
Prevailing response
The arms trade puts on display a massive failure of leadership and business ethics. “National Security” is used to justify expenditures on development and production of weapons and ammunition, but it is more about making money and playing politics and the consolidation of power and control.
A better response
The arms trade is difficult to stop because many powerful political and corporate people benefit. Much more information about the arms trade needs to be easily accessible so that leadership and the decision makers can be held accountable, especially as it relates to the killing and mayhem that military systems facilitate.

Issue
Assets
Basic observation
Assets are things of value that are recorded on a financial balance sheet according to generally accepted classifications.
Prevailing response
The relief and development sector mainly uses government type cash basis accounting that is very weak in its accounting and control of balance sheet items. Public institutions that use cash based accounting have poor control over their assets, and overall financial control is sadly weak, which facilitates corruption.
A better response
Assets are a critical metric in a good comprehensive management information system. The purpose of economic activity is usually to increase the value of the assets in the company or community. Understanding assets and economic behavior that increases the value of assets is a key to socio-economic development performance.

Issue
Audit
Basic observation
Audit is a process that confirms that an accounting system is working right and the reports are correct.
Prevailing response
Audit does little more than to provide a check on the accountants, the accounting system, and the financial reporting. It is a limited exercise, and totally unsuited to be used as a substitute for good accounting. Few of the senior people in the relief and development sector seem to understand an audit cannot substitute for good basic systems and analytical accounting. Audit merely confirms that leadership failed to take accounting seriously and did not do its job.
A better response
The effort being used on audit after the fact should be put into improving the underlying accounting and the routine reporting, both internal and external. Audit should simply ascertain and then certify that everything is OK. If the audit cannot do that, then all responsible leadership within the project, the implementing organizations and the disbursing institutions should be called to account.
.
From 'HUNDREDS OF ISSUES THAT IMPACT RELIEF AND DEVELOPMENT'
This books is available at 'lulu.com' using their print-on-demand system
To find this book, open the Lulu webpage ... then search for PETER BURGESS
Open the Lulu webpage
Open Chapter Navigation NEXT ... Open bk005B0000


The text being discussed is available at
SITE COUNT<
Amazing and shiny stats
Blog Counters Reset to zero January 20, 2015
TrueValueMetrics (TVM) is an Open Source / Open Knowledge initiative. It has been funded by family and friends. TVM is a 'big idea' that has the potential to be a game changer. The goal is for it to remain an open access initiative.
WE WANT TO MAINTAIN AN OPEN KNOWLEDGE MODEL
A MODEST DONATION WILL HELP MAKE THAT HAPPEN
The information on this website may only be used for socio-enviro-economic performance analysis, education and limited low profit purposes
Copyright © 2005-2021 Peter Burgess. All rights reserved.