Globally, violence between intimate partners costs the world 25 times more than all wars and terrorism.

Newsletter

Bjorn Lomborg
In a partnership with Tata Trusts, the oldest and most respected Indian philanthropic organization, we are helping set priorities for India, starting with two states: Andhra Pradesh and Rajasthan. The project has been underway for a year, involving more than 600 stakeholders and 30 teams of top economists. Over the coming months, we'll present a wealth of new research for both states, profiled in national and state media.

Are parents to blame for climate change?

Across all cultures, raising a child is considered one of the most rewarding things a person can do. Yet a chorus of campaigners, scientists, and journalists is suggesting that everyone should think twice before procreating, warning that having a child is the worst environmental action anyone could take.

Lomborg argues in his new column for Project Syndicate (available in six languages) that even in crude monetary terms, the “benefits” of children far outweigh their climate “costs.”

     

The article was published by newspapers around the world, including The Australian, Shanghai Daily (China), The Sunday Times (Sri Lanka), My Republica (Nepal), La Nacion (Costa Rica), El Comercio (Ecuador) TRT World (Turkey), Tageblatt (Luxembourg) and Finmag (Czech Republic).

Diabetes and heart disease should be health priorities


Cardiovascular disease is a killer with such a high national burden that its cost between 2012 and 2030 is almost the equivalent of wiping out an entire year of Indian GDP. Providing screening and cheap medicine for those at risk could avoid more than 260,000 deaths over 13 years, at an average cost of about 4,000 rupees ($60) per treated person.
Social benefits will be worth 31 times the costs.

Similarly, screening and therapy for diabetes could save more than 11,000 lives annually and achieve benefits worth more than 18 times the costs.

Read Bjorn Lomborg and Saleema Razvi's article in The Hindustan Times.

Reducing domestic violence will unleash an economic bonanza


Globally, violence between intimate partners costs the world 25 times more than all wars and terrorism. In India, the latest National Family Health Survey shows 22% of married women aged 15-49 experienced spousal physical or sexual violence in the past year.

New research for India Consensus shows that in Andhra Pradesh, a community mobilization intervention seeking to change norms and behaviors that result in gender inequality, violence and increased HIV vulnerability for women could yield almost 20 rupees of social good for every rupee invested. The benefit-cost ratio is even higher for a self help group-based intervention for combating violence against women.

In the world's highest-circulating English language newspaper, The Times of India, Lomborg and Shireen Vakil show that reducing domestic violence is not only morally imperative, but can help Indian states become more productive and generate vast economic benefits.

Ease of doing business: Land record reforms ahoy!


While India climbed a phenomenal 30 spots to the 100th position out of 190 surveyed countries in the World Bank’s ‘Ease of Doing Business’ index this year, investors have ample choice among Indian states. Investor perception is key, and each state wants to make sure that it is competitive.

New research for India Consensus identifies specific policies that would help gain an advantage. Ensuring clear property titles can go a long way in making the land market more transparent and efficient. Completion of survey and resurvey activities, and digitisation of cadastral maps will yield phenomenal benefits of more than 50 rupees for every rupee spent in Andhra Pradesh.

Read Bjorn Lomborg and Manorama Bakshi's op-ed in India's biggest business newspaper, The Economic Times.

The best solutions to combat household air pollution


Indoor air pollution from household cooking and heating with biomass fuels kills almost 800,000 people in India every year. Various measures have promoted cooking with LPG, a significantly cleaner fossil fuel. An LPG subsidy is supposed to make sure that the poor can afford clean cooking fuel. However, this policy was deemed to be too costly by the government, which announced — and later shelved — a plan to cancel the LPG subsidy altogether.

New research for India Consensus suggests that the U-turn was the right move. Even better interventions, however, are the promotion of improved biomass cookstoves, which yields more than 6 rupees of social good for every rupee spent in Rajasthan, and the free provision of LPG connection to poor households, for which benefits are three times higher than the cost.

Read Bjorn Lomborg's op-ed in New Delhi's most influential newspaper, The Hindustan Times.

The arithmetics of housing for all

Having a safe, secure home provides dignity and protection against life shocks, and is an important goal for government to deliver. India Consensus therefore assessed several policies to provide housing to more people in Rajasthan and Andhra Pradesh, which can achieve benefits worth up to 2.5 times their cost.

Yet, it is important to point out that there are policies helping the urban poor—such as investment in improved tuberculosis-screening and treatment, or improved water and sanitation access—that generate many times more rupees of benefits, for every rupee spent.

Read Bjorn Lomborg and Manorama Bakshi's op-ed in India's biggest business newspaper, The Economic Times.

How to improve agricultural productivity


Global attention has been devoted to water scarcity and its effect on Indian farmers. However, new analysis for India Consensus suggests that far more good could come if irrigation were combined with seed improvement, which will lead to better crop yields, increased production, and higher incomes. Every rupee spent will have benefits to Andhra Pradesh worth around 15 rupees, and 20 rupees in Rajasthan.

Bjorn Lomborg and Saleema Razvi discuss the smartest policies for water resource management and agriculture in an op-ed for Mint newspaper.

Time for Indian states to pick best opportunities to compete globally


Andhra Pradesh is one of the top five exporting states in India, and its long coastline provides it with significant and often unique export opportunities.

Looking at policies to enhance trade competitiveness, new research for India Consensus recommends setting up a local laboratory for certifying high quality seafood products for export to the United States, European Union and other overseas markets. The benefits will be 8 times larger than the cost.


Read Bjorn Lomborg and Saleema Razvi's op-ed in India's biggest business newspaper, The Economic Times.

Poverty: The direct approach isn’t always best


In recent times, microcredit schemes have been presented as a panacea to poverty, attracting a lot of money around the world. However, a series of trials have shown that microcredit doesn’t do much good—often not even increasing average incomes, and burying the poor in debt.

Research findings for India Consensus suggest that a gradu-ation scheme for the ultra-poor could be a better solution. The model follows a strict set of targeting criteria to reach the ultra-poor and provides time-bound support that includes providing food, cash, livestock, and health care as well as training in technical skills and life skills. In Rajasthan, this investment could provide social benefits worth at least 3.5 times the cost.

Read Bjorn Lomborg and Manorama Bakshi's op-ed in Mint newspaper.

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About Bjorn Lomborg and the Copenhagen Consensus 

Dr. Bjorn Lomborg researches the smartest ways to improve the environment and the world, and has repeatedly been named one of Foreign Policy’s top 100 public intellectuals.

He is the author of several best-selling books, an adjunct professor at Copenhagen Business School and works regularly with many of the world’s top economists, including seven Nobel Laureates.

His think tank, the Copenhagen Consensus Center, was named Think Tank of the Year by Prospect Magazine, in US International Affairs. It has repeatedly been top-ranked by University of Pennsylvania in its global overview of think tanks.

Lomborg is a frequent commentator in print and broadcast media, for outlets including the New York Times, Wall Street Journal, The Guardian, CNN, FOX, and the BBC. His monthly column is published in 19 languages, in 30+ newspapers with more than 30 million readers globally.
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