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Date: 2024-07-24 Page is: DBtxt003.php bk005N0000
Burgess Manuscript
Hundreds of Issues
From the book 'Hundreds of Issues that Impact Relief and Development'
Section NNN

Issue
NGOs
Basic observation
Non-Governmental Organizations (NGOs) are private sector, usually not for profit organizations, that are engaged in various activities broadly associated with the relief and development sector.
Prevailing response
Many NGOs get a large part of their funding from government, and while they are non-governmental in form, they are obliged to follow policies imposed by their funding organizations. While the NGO has some flexibility to operate in ways that a government organization cannot, they are an organizational hybrid with curious characteristics.
A better response
NGOs and the whole of the not for profit private organization sector need to have a better framework for governance and public accountability. Some of the organizations are doing amazing work with modest resources and achieving incredibly valuable results. Other organizations are merely serving their own interests and are diverting resources from good work to merely sustaining the lifestyles of the organization's staff and management.

Issue
NIMBY
Basic observation
Not In My Back Yard (NIMBY) is a driver of a lot of decisions
Prevailing response
The views of community leadership gets taken into consideration in rich and powerful communities ... but the same level of concern does not exist in poor countries.
A better response
A much greater care and consideration should be applied to ALL communities. Certain economic activities of importance will have to be located where people are inconvenienced, but they should be remunerated in an appropriate manner.

Issue
National Accounts
Basic observation
The modern systems of national accounts were developed in the 1950s based on work by Dr. Stone at Cambridge.
Prevailing response
National Accounts have been a low priority in global socio-economic data organization.
A better response
Good government accounting and better national account preparation would improve information at the country level. This and a new set of information about community activities and progress can be the basis of far better management information about the relief and development sector.

Issue
Natural disasters
Basic observation
Natural disasters are not new, but they seem to be more frequent and doing more damage.
Prevailing response
There has been a big expansion of global population and development of economic activities in places that would have been avoided in years past. Houses have been built on barrier islands and in flood plains, and are being damaged and destroyed with high frequency. It is to be expected.
A better response
People are able to do amazing things, but the power of nature is huge. The potential for natural disaster should be taken with a high level of seriousness.

Issue
Natural resources
Basic observation
Natural resources are one of the main drivers of economic performance.
Prevailing response
Natural resources are driving a lot of modern economic success, but the value chains associated with the exploitation of natural resources has been distorted in favor of rich and powerful global interests to the detriment of people and communities in poor countries.
A better response
When the public has a better understanding of the value chains associated with the exploitation of natural resources it should be possible for the value chains to be modified so that there is more justice and equity. This has been always resisted by the people who are in control of wealth and power, and is not going to change easily.

Issue
Nuclear bombs
Basic observation
Nuclear bombs use the power of atomic energy in a military device.
Prevailing response
Nuclear bombs were used by the USA in Japan to bring the WWII to an end. A nuclear standoff between the USA (and other allies) and the Soviet Union was a worrying aspect of the “cold war”.
A better response
The damage that can be caused by nuclear devices is well known, and therefore cause for concern. National pride and legitimate concern over real power is driving the growth of nuclear ambition around the world. At the same time, non governmental actors are also potential users of nuclear devices.

Issue
Nuclear power
Basic observation
Nuclear power is a use of atomic power for the peaceful generation of electricity.
Prevailing response
Nuclear power has had a good safety record in spite a few well publicized incidents. The problem with nuclear power is the nuclear contamination that results and how to dispose of it. Many nuclear facilities were built in the 1950s, 1960s and 1970s, but few have been built since.
A better response
Nuclear power needs to be revisited as a potential source of power. Though it does create nuclear contamination, it does not create greenhouse gases which might well pose a bigger and more immediate threat. Fusion rather than fission is a nuclear development that holds promise, but has not yet proved practical in spite many decades of research.

Issue
Nutrition
Basic observation
Nutrition is a very important dimension of human health.
Prevailing response
The world has evolved into a place where many eat too much and have become obese, and many get to eat too little and have a nutrition deficit. The nutrition deficit for children is a huge impediment to good health and future success. Though there is abundant global food production, there are many places where food shortage is endemic ... and there are no effective mechanisms to address this.
A better response
An economic system where market forces are the only drivers has proved to be very good at the allocation of resources between people with some level of economic power ... purchasing power must exist for economic items to be offered for sale. Market forces work to satisfy demand, but market forces alone do not satisfy needs. For desperately poor and the economically disenfranchised who are hungry, mechanisms beyond the market have to be developed ... and they can be.
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From 'HUNDREDS OF ISSUES THAT IMPACT RELIEF AND DEVELOPMENT'
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