IPA’s weekly links

Guest post by Jeff Mosenkis of Innovations for Poverty Action.

  • Dean Karlan, Esther Duflo and many others will be at the World Bank Thursday AM, streaming live here from 9AM to 12:45PM (Washington, DC time). They’ll be talking about the new results in Science on the programs for the ultra-poor, and what’s next for scaling up.
  • The New York Times Magazine has an interesting feature on a Russian agency devoted to creating and planting hoax news stories in the U.S., and trolling other internet targets.
  • What’s worse than Ebola and keeps Bill Gates up at night? Pandemic flu. According to a simulation run by his foundation, if a flu strain like the 1918 Spanish flu appeared today, given modern travel patterns, it would be in every major city within 60 days, and by 250 days would have killed 33 million people. That also means that low spending on health in developing countries is everybody’s problem.
  • As if to underscore his point, one business traveler brought Middle East Respiratory Syndrome back with him to South Korea, where it seems to have spread rapidly. Currently at least two people are dead, 700-1300 people are under quarantine, 200 schools are closed preventatively, and at least one other infected person brought it from there to China, where nurses reportedly held a lottery to see who would have to treat the patient.
  • Income smoothing isn’t just for the poor, according to a new paper by Carlson, Kim, Lusardi, & Camerer. Despite earning an average of $3.2 million, 15 percent of U.S. football players declare bankruptcy by the time they’ve been out of the league for 12 years. Effects are independent of how long they played or how much they made, and the bankruptcies start almost immediately on retirement.

And, France’s ambassador to Cameroon wins at podiums:

FrenchAmbassadorToCameroon

(via the Embassy’s Facebook page)