Smarter economics: investing in girls

I had occasion today to visit the Department For International Development (DFID). Currently the atrium is adorned with a huge banner carrying an illustration called “The Girl Knight” by Kenyan graphic artist Eric Muthoga. You can see a version of the picture here.

The banner depicts a young black girl armed with a ‘shield’ in the form of a book attacking a monster labeled ‘poverty’ with a pen which is plunged into its eye. The illustration has divided staff at DFID. Some find it bold and believe that it stimulates discussion. Others believe it is over simplistic and unnecessarily aggressive.

‘The Girl Knight’ is the face of a campaign called ‘The Girl Effect’ promoted by the multinational Nike in collaboration with a variety of partners. The message is that investing in the 600 million girls in developing countries will help to break the cycle of intergenerational poverty and lead to better, fairer, and more productive lives.

You can check out some key facts ands figures here.


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