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Economist Sir Richard Jolly to lecture on the U.N. and Economic Development at Swarthmore College

Economist Sir Richard Jolly to lecture on the U.N. and Economic Development at Swarthmore College

Swarthmore, PA – Economist Sir Richard Jolly will visit Swarthmore College to give two talks about various aspects of U.N. agencies’ involvement in economic development. Both events are free and open to the public.

On Tuesday, March 23 at 7 p.m. in Science Center 101, Jolly will give a talk titled United Nations Ideas That Changed the World. Too often, people think of the United Nations as little more than an endless and often ineffective talk shop on issues of conflict, peace, and security. In fact, 80 percent of the U.N.’s work is on economic and social development. Drawing on a ten year project documenting the U.N.’s contributions in this area and on his nearly 20 years of professional experience with UNICEF and UNDP, Sir Richard Jolly will reflect on a number of successes in this area and the work remaining to be done. He will also share his thoughts on the challenges the U.N. faces today if it is to retain relevance in the world.

On Thursday, March 25 at 7 p.m. in Science Center 101, Jolly will give a talk titled Human Development: Challenges to Neo-Liberal Economic Thinking. Since 1990, human development—putting people at the center of national and international policy making—has gained increasing interest and attention. Economist Sir Richard Jolly has employed this approach to his work on the U.N.’s Human Development Report. Issued annually, it ranks countries by the Human Development Index (HDI). In contrast to GNP and per capita income, HDI measures the ability of a country’s population to live long, knowledgeable and varied lives. At a time when many are questioning the dominance and inadequacy of orthodox economic thinking—especially of the neo-liberal variety—human development is part of the shift of emphasis to broader issues of well-being, happiness and freedom.

Sir Richard Jolly is a co-director of the U.N. Intellectual History Project; in that capacity he is currently overseeing and working on a 14 volume history of the U.N.’s contributions to economic and social development since its beginning in 1945. As recipient of a Carnegie Scholarship, he is also undertaking a study of the trends in global inequality since 1820 and what can be done to narrow global gaps over the next 50 years. Jolly is a trustee of OXFAM, a director of the Overseas Development Institute and chairman of the U.N. Association of the United Kingdom. He was made a Knight of the Order of St. Michael and St. George in the New Years Honours of 2001 for his contributions to international development. Earlier in his career Richard Jolly served an Assistant Secretary General of the United Nations, holding senior positions in UNICEF and UNDP.

Sponsored by Swarthmore College and The William J. Cooper Foundation.

Cooper Series events are free and open to the public; there is no reserved seating. Event details may be subject to change without notice.

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Contact: Rob Hollister – rhollis1@swarthmore.edu