[CFP] Conference 2020 – Private Finance and Development

2020 IIPPE Annual Conference – Ferrara, Italy, September 9-11, 2020 
Deadline for Submission of Abstracts: March 15, 2020 

Call for Papers: Supporting private finance: Towards a new global financial architecture? 

Achieving the targets for 2030 set in the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) requires a significant increase in resources. The annual ‘financing gap’ is estimated to be around USD 2.5tn. Raising finance on such scale is beyond the reach of governments, Official Development Assistance (ODA) and philanthropic resources combined. Hence attention has turned to global private finance and the trillions held in ‘assets under management’ by institutional investors. 

There has been a surge in initiatives to attract private investment in infrastructure and essential services in developing countries. Raising private finance has become elevated to a development objective in its own right so that public funds are used to leverage the private sector, as for example with the World Bank’s Maximising Finance for Development approach and a number of schemes established by the EU to promote ‘blended’ finance for development. 

Yet, despite widespread support, there is little evidence that this financing approach has been successful in promoting long-term sustainable development. Furthermore there are concerns that such measures will be at high cost, will lack accountability and transparency and will deepen rather than alleviate inequality. Such approaches are institutionally demanding and public sector alternatives may be crowded out. 

We invite contributions that will advance knowledge in this field. In particular we would welcome submissions on the following themes: 

  • Innovations in development finance – numerous new initiatives are emerging from a range of actors from philanthropists to private equity investors alongside development finance institutions and donors. The influence of large institutions such as asset management companies in these processes raises key questions about the political economy of development finance. We are interested in analyses of emerging institutions and mechanisms in development finance, particularly linking with financialisation narratives more broadly. 
  • The effects of global private finance in development – analysis of development finance tends to focus on upfront financial flows. We welcome insights into the effects of private finance on areas linked to long term development impact such as job creation, inequality reduction, fiscal resilience or climate change mitigation. 
  • Lessons from elsewhere – It is not just developing countries that have been seeking to attract global private capital. We welcome examples from other locations where these have relevance for developing country finance. The experiences with public-private partnerships, or the involvement of private institutions in establishing standards for “green finance” are key parallel processes to the attraction of private actors into development finance. 
  • Alternatives – private finance is increasingly depicted as essential to achieving the SDGs. We are interested in contributions that consider alternative financing mechanisms for development such as strengthening taxation or curbing capital flight. 

If you are interested being part of a panel in this stream, or have any questions please e-mail Ourania Dimakou (od1@soas.ac.uk) and Kate Bayliss (kb6@soas.ac.uk). 

Please tick the Financialisation Working Group when you make your submission and then indicate clearly (under the title or abstract tab) that you are submitting to this call by adding Private Finance and Development

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