There is a small Twitter fad going around recently, it goes something like this:
“What do you do?”
“I’m an economist.”
“Oh, cool! I’ve been thinking about making some investments, any advise?”
“I’m not that kind of economist. I’m a development economist who studies poverty alleviation in Africa.”
“Ah, okay. I’ve never been to that country.”
This week has been kind of a blur for development economics. The publishing of the annual letter on aid and development by the Gates Foundation sparked the dry kindling that is “the great aid debate” (or perhaps better known as Jeff Sachs vs. EVERYBODY else).
If you happened to miss all of this (a.k.a. if you don’t have a Twitter account) or if your head is spinning and you don’t know what to think; allow me to (try to) make some sense of the letter, articles, blog posts, and tweets that have been published and republished this week.