Thursday Headlines

Local Efforts Are Key To Improving Education For Girls
Rebecca Winthrop and Eileen McGivney of the Brookings Institution make the case that all of the plans to improve education opportunities for girls worldwide unveiled at the United Nations this week will bear no fruit without action being taken on the local level.

“To accelerate and sustain progress in education, and especially girls’ education, it is necessary to have strong networks of local girls’ education advocates, thought leaders, and social entrepreneurs.  More than ever before, the girls who are left behind face multiple barriers to getting into school and receiving a quality education.  Finding sustainable solutions to overcoming these barriers will need to draw upon global good practice but will ultimately need to be developed, adapted, and owned locally in communities across the developing world,” they assert.

From South Africa to Pakistan, they highlight efforts of 10 local activists who are making a difference.

America Has No Choice But To Lead The World
All of the articles and books written about the “decline” of American leadership, says Joseph Nye, ignore the fundamental reality that the nation will have to lead for decades to come.

The responsibility comes in part from the fact that the talk about the unrivaled strength of the Chinese economy, it is weakening and the United States remains the most stable of the global powers. Furthermore, the US academic system – despite its warts – continues to produce leaders.

“Despite our various problems, the United States is the only major developed country that will hold its place (third) in the demographic ranking of countries, rather than shrinking in population or being overtaken by other countries. Our dependence on imported energy has decreased, we remain in the forefront in development of key technologies (bio, nano, information) that are central to this century’s economic growth; American universities dominate in the area of higher education; and our culture remains open and entrepreneurial. It’s going to take decades for other countries to wrest leadership on those issues from the United States,” Nye writes in The National Interest.

The Debate About Britain’s Future In The European Union Begins
As Britain seeks to reform its membership of the European Union ahead of an in/out referendum that is likely to occur next year, the debate is heating up on the future of UK membership. Politico’s Sebastian Payne provides a nice summary of the ongoing reform debate and how it is shaping up in Parliament.


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