General international development is a little off theme. However, I can
assure you that the recommendations I make to the extractive sector are
very strong on not building hospitals and health centres but trying to
improve basic water supplies, provide microfinance, generate local
procurement and sometimes strengthen primary health care facilities.
Provision of contraception is very high on the agenda as large
infrastructure projects have the potential to create HIV epidemics through
the 3 Ms: "mobile men with money". There is also an interface with social
investment programs (these are budget allocations for the social good which
have nothing to do with health impacts of the project). There is a great
deal of variation between corporations with ExxonMobil coming near the
bottom, Chevron a bit higher up, and corps like Shell and Eni looking
fairly good (as I have experienced it).
Aid funded public sector development in poor countries tends to suffer
from a lack of funds to undertake HIA.
Hope this helps
Dr Martin Birley
BirleyHIA, Consultants in Health Impact Assessment
Mobile +44 (0) 7725040361
Landline +44 (0) 208 546 0823
Mail: 44 Woodbines Av, Kingston, Surrey, KT1 2AY, UK
My award winning book "Health Impact Assessment: Principles and Practice"
(2011). Available from all book suppliers and ebooks.
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On 16 June 2014 12:32, <mbrenman001(a)comcast.net> wrote:
Thanks, Martin. Many of these international
principles apply in principle
but not in practice in the US; they have little or no legal standing.
Individual organizations could adopt them, and also pursue their own
visions, like the Gates Foundation. The values of a very large and rich
organization like Gates can drive international efforts. Gates has been
criticized for this; driving out other efforts.
I wonder about the effectiveness of the work of corporations "ahead of
the national government in which project is located." For example, when I
look at sixty years of humanitarian assistance in Haiti, I see almost no
progress. Organizations built medical clinics and hospitals that met no
seismic design and construction standards, even though they were on a known
earthquake zone, and consequently fell down in the big earthquake a few
years ago. This argues for inclusion of best practices from various forms
of infrastructure when HIAs are done. This could be another example of the
"silo" or "stovepipe" problem.
Another aspect from Haiti is the fact that some otherwise highminded
organizations refuse to provide contraception, family planning, and
abortion funding, services, or advice due to religious and theological
reasons. They thus perpetuate poverty and thus wipe out any progress that
may be made in another area.
A third example those medical people on this discussion know much more
about than me-- the lack of education and aid on basic sanitary services in
places like Haiti. I watch sophisticated medical services being provided,
when a shipload of 50 cent Chinese shovels and soap and instructions about
digging pit latrines away from water sources and washing hands could
accomplish more in cutting the chain of disease transmission.
A fourth example from tragic Haiti is the emphasis by some organizations
on electronic solutions to "problems," using cellphone and computer
networks, for example, when much lower tech solutions are needed.
Sorry to go on like this, but when I look at evaluation of humanitarian
operations, I see this sort of thing. If anyone is interested, I have a
paper on this subject.
*From: *"Martin Birley" <martin(a)birleyhia.co.uk>
*To: *"marcomcast" <mbrenman001(a)comcast.net>
*Cc: *"Alex Scott-Samuel" <A.Scott-Samuel(a)liverpool.ac.uk>uk>, "Salim
<sal(a)publichealthbydesign.com>om>, "Ben Cave"
"Jenny Mindell" <j.mindell(a)ucl.ac.uk>uk>, "TRB Health and
h+t--friends(a)chrispy.net>gt;, "Ben Harris-Roxas (b.harris-roxas(a)unsw.edu.au)"
*Sent: *Monday, June 16, 2014 12:06:42 AM
*Subject: *Re: [H+T--Friends] H+T--Friends Digest, Vol 38, Issue 4 - HIA
It would be great to have your detailed view of how the IFC PF and Equator
Principles apply in US in light of what US is and is not signatory to. Also
how well IFC addresses civil rights.
Treaties on human rights include the right to health. we have had legal
opinion in the past that this is about progressive realization and that
decisions by government that would reduce health are then in breach of
In HIA I'm usually just constructing a justified argument to a corporation
who are concerned about their reputation, social license to operate and
investment risk rating. They are usually ahead of the national government
in which project is located.
I think the IFC PS anticipates your point and expects clients to act even
when government is uninterested. It's a loan condition.