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copenhagen consensus project
eye opener
global issues
developing world
billion dollars
If You Had $75 Billion, What Would You Do With It?
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If You Had $75 Billion, What Would You Do With It?

This is for all of the sincere philanthropists and economists out there and for those who are simply interested in giving. Beginning in 2004, the first Copenhagen Consensus project took place. Since then, there has been Consensus projects in 2008, and then again, this May, in 2012.

In late 2002, this grand idea, which will soon be explained, was begun by a small group led by Bjorn Lomborg (the head of the Copenhagen Consensus Center). Every four years, when the Copenhagen Consensus takes place, the same question is posed: If you had $75 billion (to spend throughout the upcoming four years), and your goal was to aid human well-being (particularly concentrating on the developing world), how would you get the most value for the money?

This is not an easy question to answer, yet it is the question that drives the Copenhagen Consensus Center in Denmark. Every four years, since 2004, experts throughout the world are sought to participate in this one of a kind conference. This year, 5 highly accomplished economists served as the panel, giving their feedback on 30 different research papers presented by scholars throughout the world. The research presented focused on ten different topic areas, each paper concentrating on conquering a specific global challenge.

The purpose of the panel, with much thought and careful precision, is to determine which solutions would be most cost effective. There are problems and issues worldwide, without a doubt, too many to tackle. Thus, here is a group dedicated to basing their solutions on fact, rather than on, say, political motives. As stated from their website, the conclusions gathered from each consensus " . . . [are] meant to be an eye-opener for policy-makers all over the world, and [are] to act as a vehicle for improving decision-making on spending on global issues."

To clarify, the Copenhagen Consensus Center is not a non-for-profit donation organization, as far as the author can gather. In other words, their center does not have the $75 billion dollars that it hypothetically speaks of. Rather, their's is a center dedicated to gathering a think-tank of individuals, in order to hopefully influence the political and giving agencies that do fund global relief efforts.

Thus, for all those "think-tanks" who are interested in philanthropy and economics, the Copenhagen Consensus Center could be a highly valuable resource for you to inquire about. For those of us who are simply interested in giving, though the Consensus Center does not take donations itself, their website does offer ideas on what organizations to give toward.


Street Talk

joe witt  

Keep the money out of the hands of politicians and so called experts and you would have a good start. Instead of giving anyone any amount of money, let people who earned money keep more of it. I've seen that people who are spending other people's money are pretty callous with it. Spend your own hard earned money and you would be more concerned with some positive results.

Reply
  about 1 decade ago

Good article. Hey, maybe some billionaires will turn over $75 billion together and do a test run? With plans laid out and explored it would be a good place for an investment in the future.

Reply
  about 1 decade ago

Yeah, Cynthia. It would be so nice if things were easy; if people worked together . . . and what do you know a lot of people were helped. Thanks for reading, Cynthia. I appreciate it:)

Reply
  about 1 decade ago

Well, billionaires probably know each other. Perhaps a "new" billionaire will "come up" the steps who does exactly that. A few here, a few there - 25 billionaires tossing 3 apiece gets to 75.

  
  about 1 decade ago

To be honest it seems their time would be better spent actually doing something to help those in need

Reply
  about 1 decade ago

I think they are John. think about it.You get a bunch of thinkers picking the best ways to spend money to help people, then you share that info with people who can actually get the jobs done. great concept.

Reply
  about 1 decade ago

I see your point Shawn. I've always been a doer so thats where I come from.

  
  about 1 decade ago

Yeah, I was a little bummed when I finally figured out that the $75 billion dollar question is hypothetical. Their organization doesn't have the $75 billion . . . but they try to influence the people WHO DO have the money. This took me a while to figure out while searching their site. Like you, I initially felt a little turned off, then I thought okay they are trying to accomplish something here and I'm grateful for that. Whether or not all of their ideas are the best or not, they're trying to accomplish some good. So I thought their organization was interesting. Never heard of anything like it before.

Reply
  about 1 decade ago
Golfspice  

Good article and interesting topic. There are certainly lots of global challenges out there, which will only be resolved through a global approach, but can human beings be united enough to tackle such issues.

Reply
  about 1 decade ago

I have no idea, Golfspice!

Reply
  about 1 decade ago

I've never heard of this Penny. It's very interesting and will give me something to think about as I go about my afternoon here.

Reply
  about 1 decade ago

It sparked my interest too, Heather:) Thanks for reading. I was beginning to wonder if you were okay; hadn't received an article from you in a while in my inbox. But seeing you comment on another article yesterday assured me that you were still around:) Good to hear from you.

Reply
  about 1 decade ago

Hi Penny, thanks for your concern. I'm working (part time but 4 days a week) at the moment and we've started packing up our house to move overseas (to Canada). I've also been trying to work a little on my website which has a long way to go. As you can imagine my head is in several different spaces (I've written articles and haven't published them as I'm confused lol) and there's just not enough hours in the day. Trying to keep my foot in the door... like now, quick visit before getting the kids off to school!

  
  about 1 decade ago

Wow, Heather, you do have much going on. I'm glad to hear that your alright. I hope all goes well in these upcoming weeks . . . as you do many, many things. And safe travels!

  
  about 1 decade ago

Another great article Penny, a very thought provoking question!

Reply
  about 1 decade ago

Yeah, it's a big question . . . .

Reply
  about 1 decade ago

good one, Penny--thanks for sharing.

Reply
  about 1 decade ago

Thanks, Christopher. You're welcome.

Reply
  about 1 decade ago

Interesting article Penny

Reply
  about 1 decade ago

Thanks for reading, Kevin:)

Reply
  about 1 decade ago

A very interesting article and yes I went and read the PDF down load, although no economic expert, to me I would have prioritized the items differently. One of the concerns, major concerns, being man's inability to grow and feed himself, malnutrition a big killer, because an underfed individual fed on the incorrect foods is an unhealthy person, making themselves more susceptible to illness, TB, malaria, Hepatitis B as well as many other deadly diseases. If mankind could grow their basic food, healthy food, and sufficient, it would go a long way to solving the major problems of the world. Poverty attracts people to the bigger centers in search of food and nutrition, so that when natural disasters happen more die because of this. Education at schools of the underprivileged, would teach them the basics of food production, healthy living and how to look after themselves. If that was the outcome of education, rather than the search for riches, I think, developing self reliance in schools today would be more beneficial. Naturally I maintain some money should be spent on combating corruption in government, of those with only one thing in mind, self enrichment, This could turn to into an article rather than a comment so I will stop now, with my side of the debate. But it would be nice if one could spread the $75 billion amid the most needy of all, the hungry children.

Reply
  about 1 decade ago

Rob, thanks for reading and for looking up the website. I thought it was interesting, cause I'd never heard of this group who does this. I think you bring up some good points. Regarding this 2012 consensus, I think they have yet to share what they all discussed and decided upon. However, even when they share the outcome, I don't know that they'll concentrate on some of the key things you mention. Speaking of which, for a long time I have been frustrated even in my own country that we don't teach our kids the basic things of life; many are completely out of touch with farming, with cooking, with even doing laundry. Instead . . . we go after riches, as you say. (though just a generation or two ago, this was perhaps not the case . . . .) Yeah, reading their solutions . . . it seems that giving people mineral supplements was the solution, rather than teaching them to grow food to aid their malnutrition. Thanks again for your comments and thoughts, Rob. I'm still excited about this group . . . I hope they come up with some good stuff that can then be influential on various giving organizations.

Reply
  about 1 decade ago

Awesome, Rob!

  
  about 1 decade ago

Having started an article in comment to you I wrote an article myself to try and get my point across. I linked it to your article, you might find my explination clearer in the article... It's awaiting publication.

  
  about 1 decade ago
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