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Binghamton Professor Launches Web Tool to Track Impact of Drugs Worldwide

BINGHAMTON, NY – Billions of dollars have been spent on developing drugs and supplying them around the world, but which companies\’ drugs are actually making an impact? The Global Health Impact Index, headed by Binghamton University Associate Professor Nicole Hassoun, addresses this issue by ranking pharmaceutical companies based on their drugs\’ impact on global health. ASAP has supported the project since 2011.

Launched on Jan. 23 at the World Health Organization in Geneva, Switzerland, the Global Health Impact Index considers how companies drugs measure up on the basis of their impact on the “big three” infectious diseases: malaria, HIV/AIDS and tuberculosis. While previous indexes have measured the need for different drugs worldwide, the Global Health Impact Index is the first to measure the actual impact of these drugs.

\”People have focused on measuring the need for different drugs…but we’re looking at the impact that they’re actually having,\” said Hassoun. \”This is important for setting goals, evaluating performance — trying to have a bigger impact on global health and saving millions of lives.\”

The index looks at three things: the need for several important drugs for tuberculosis, HIV/AIDS, and malaria; the drugs\’ effectiveness; and the number of people who can access the drugs. Each company\’s score is the sum of its drugs\’ impacts.

According to the index, the companies whose drugs having the most impact on the \”big three\” diseases are:

  • Sanofi
  • Novartis
  • Pfizer

The following companies\’ drugs had the lowest drug impact scores on the index:

  • Eli Lilly
  • Kyorin Pharmaceutical Co.
  • Bayer Healthcare

\”We are looking at the outcomes of the drugs that the companies hold, so the actual impact on death and disability,\” said Hassoun. \”We\’re looking at the amount of death and disability that the company\’s drugs are alleviating.\”

Hassoun hopes to motivate pharmaceutical companies to meet the health needs of impoverished people around the world.

According to Hassoun and ASAP, one third of all deaths globally, about 18 million per year, are linked to poverty, because people living in poverty cannot afford medicines and pharmaceutical companies do not have the financial incentive to develop treatments for diseases that primarily affect impoverished people.

By better understanding the impacts of companies\’ products on the burden of disease, said Hassoun, researchers can have a tool for measuring impact; governments, donors, etc. can better target their efforts; and companies can be incentivized to focus on impact.

Visit the Global Health Impact Index website or contact Nicole Hassoun for more information.


Zorka Milin Joins ASAP Team as Director of Research for Financial Transparency

Zorka Milin photoZorka Milin, Legal Adviser to Global Witness, has volunteered to serve as ASAP\’s Director of Research for Financial Transparency. In this role, she will seek to identify opportunities for ASAP, as thinkers and researchers, to influence and intervene in policy debates and advocacy campaigns related to financial transparency and illicit financial flows.

Milin is an international tax lawyer, and at Global Witness she works to improve accountability for grand corruption and to advance tax and revenue transparency in the oil, gas and mining sectors. She is a member of the BEPS Monitoring Group of tax experts and represents civil society stakeholders on the tax working group in the US Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative. She is also serving as a visiting fellow at Yale University, with the Global Justice Program and with the Information Society Project at the law school. She is originally from Serbia and has practiced international tax law for six years with two major global law firms.


James Hansen: Climate, Energy, Development, Human Health, and Global Justice

Dr. James Hansen, Director of the Climate Science, Awareness, and Solutions Program at Columbia University and former Director of the NASA Goddard Institute, speaks on climate change and global justice at the conference Justice in Development at Yale University. The conference was co-organized by Academics Stand Against Poverty, Global Financial Integrity, and the Yale Global Justice Program.


Call for Papers on Participation and Climate Governance


CISDL/GEM Working paper Series on Public Participation and Climate Governance

Call for PapersS

Deadline for submission of abstracts: rolling until May 15, 2014

The Centre for International Sustainable Development Law (CISDL) and the Governance, Environment & Markets Initiative at Yale University (GEM) are calling for papers for their new Working Paper Series on “Public Participation and Climate Governance.” The series will be edited by Sébastien Jodoin (GEM / CISDL); Sébastien Duyck (University of Lapland), and Katherine Lofts (CISDL).

The principle of public participation has long been recognized as paramount for effective and equitable climate policy and governance. Article 6 of the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) thus outlines States\’ responsibilities to promote and facilitate, inter alia, education and public awareness, public access to information, public participation, training, and international cooperation with respect to addressing climate change and its effects. The Work Programme on Article 6, initially adopted by the Conference of the Parties to the UNFCCC in 2002, encourages governments, international organizations, and non-governmental organizations to collaborate in matters of access to information and public participation. Under the Doha Work Programme adopted in 2012, a formal dialogue covering access to information, public participation, and public awareness is scheduled to take place in 2014.

With this Working Paper Series on \”Public Participation and Climate Governance,\” CISDL and GEM aim to encourage new and rigorous research of compelling interest to scholars and policy-makers active in climate law, policy, and governance at multiple levels. Contributions are encouraged from legal scholars, social scientists, and practitioners from several fields, including international law, comparative law, international relations, comparative politics, public policy, political economy/ecology, and environmental studies.

Contributions are most notably sought on the following themes and topics:

  • Analysis of the legal developments, practices and discourses associated with public participation within the UNFCCC and other multilateral fora focusing on climate change;
  • Case studies of the development and application of the concept of public participation with respect to particular sectors and mechanisms of climate governance (mitigation, adaptation, carbon trading, CDM, REDD+, etc.);
  • Case studies highlighting best practices and challenges in the operationalization of the concept of public participation in the policy-making processes and governance mechanisms addressing climate change in particular countries or regions around the world;
  • Analysis of experiences with public participation in other fields of environmental governance and how lessons learned might apply to climate governance;
  • Theoretical and critical reflections on the notion of public participation and the opportunities and challenges it presents for equitable and effective climate governance.

Full papers (ranging between 6,000 and 8,000 words) should be submitted by 15 August 2014. The drafts of the working papers may also be discussed during a session of the 3rd Yale/UNITAR Conference on Environmental Governance and Democracy, \”Human Rights, Environmental Sustainability, Post-2015 Development, and the Future Climate Regime,\” which will be held in New Haven, Ct., 5-7 September 2014. Prospective authors interested in participating in this conference are encouraged to submit an abstract.

The final versions of the working papers will be posted on the CISDL and GEM websites and will be launched at a side-event organized during the 20th Conference of the Parties to the UNFCCC to be held in Lima, Peru in November 2014. Selected working papers may also be collected into a book or special journal issue to be published at a later date.

Submissions of abstracts (of approximately 500 words) will be accepted on a rolling basis until 15 May 2014. Authors are encouraged to submit abstracts as soon as possible to ensure paper eligibility and avoid overlap between different papers in the series. While papers should not have been published elsewhere before being submitted to the series, inclusion in the series does not preclude future publication elsewhere.

Abstracts submitted for inclusion in the working paper series should be submitted as Microsoft Word Documents and should include a 500 word abstract and a 50 word biography of the author. All abstracts should be submitted to Ms. Katherine Lofts (CISDL) at


Jeffrey Sachs Speaks on Future of Sustainable Development

Jeffrey Sachs at Yale

The Yale Global Justice Program and ASAP hosted Dr. Jeffrey Sachs of Columbia University for a special lecture, \”Sustainable Development Goals: The Emerging Global Agenda.\” Critical responses were given by Dr. Dean Karlan, Professor of Economics at Yale and President and Founder of Innovations for Poverty Action and Thomas Pogge, Leitner Professor of Philosophy and International Affairs and Director of the Global Justice Program and President of ASAP.

Videos are available of Dr. Sachs’s lecture, responses from Dr. Karlan and Dr. Pogge, and audience Q&A. Photos from the event are also available.

Dr. Sachs has been a leading figure in the effort to achieve the Millennium Development Goals, an eight-point framework for promoting poverty alleviation and development worldwide, agreed to by all the world\’s countries and leading development institutions. The Millennium Development Goals will expire in 2015, and the framework that replaces them will shape poverty alleviation and development efforts for the next fifteen years. Dr. Sachs\’s is an important voice in the global debate over priorities for the next phase in international development.

Dr. Sachs is a world-renowned professor of economics, leader in sustainable development, senior UN advisor, bestselling author, and syndicated columnist whose monthly newspaper columns appear in more than 80 countries.

Dr. Sachs serves as the Director of The Earth Institute, Quetelet Professor of Sustainable Development, and Professor of Health Policy and Management at Columbia University. He is Special Advisor to United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon on the Millennium Development Goals, having held the same position under UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan. He is Director of the UN Sustainable Development Solutions Network. He is co-founder and Chief Strategist of Millennium Promise Alliance, and is director of the Millennium Villages Project. Sachs is also one of the Secretary-General’s MDG Advocates, and a Commissioner of the ITU/UNESCO Broadband Commission for Development. He has authored three New York Times bestsellers in the past seven years: The End of Poverty (2005), Common Wealth: Economics for a Crowded Planet (2008), and The Price of Civilization (2011).


New Legal Reference: Human Rights and Climate Change Policy-making

The Center for International Sustainable Development Law, Academics Stand Against Poverty, and the Governance, Environment & Markets Initiative at Yale University have developed a new legal reference guide that examines the connections between climate change and human rights, with a particular focus on the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights (ICESCR).

The legal reference guide can be downloaded here.

Given the serious human rights ramifications of climate change, States are obliged to take all appropriate means to avoid and mitigate climate change and its harmful consequences, as well as assist vulnerable communities in adapting to its consequences. States are also required to ensure that their responses to climate change are consistent with their human rights obligations under domestic and international law. This introductory legal reference guide seeks to provide policy-makers, advocates, and experts with basic knowledge of obligations and principles related to international economic, social, and cultural rights in the context of new challenges brought by climate change, as well as to highlight opportunities for policy-makers worldwide.

Part I of this manual provides a general introduction to human rights and the international climate change regime, including the relationship between climate change and human rights. Part II surveys basic concepts of international human rights law. Part III examines the ICESCR more specifically, including its structure, the nature of its obligations, means of implementation, and compliance mechanisms. Finally, Parts IV through X discuss specific rights enumerated in the ICESCR, including: the right to equality and non-discrimination; the right to work and social security; the right to family life; the right to an adequate standard of living; the right to the highest attainable standard of physical and mental health; the right to education; and the right to culture. These sections also provide case studies illustrating how climate policies are being implemented to concomitantly address climate change and enhance the realization of human rights.

The legal reference guides was edited by Sébastien Jodoin and Katherine Lofts and includes a foreword by Thomas Pogge. The contributing authors include: Christiane Bossé, Christopher Campbell-Furuflé, Benoît Mayer, Karine Péloffy, Patrick Reynaud, and Sean Stephenson.

For more information regarding this publications, please contact Ms. Katherine Lofts at


ASAP Internship Program Now Accepting Applications

ASAP is recruiting! We are seeking exceptionally talented and motivated students to join the team this winter. Internships take place both in-person in New Haven, Connecticut, and remotely from anywhere in the world—students outside of the New Haven area may submit work electronically and coordinate with ASAP staff via e-mail and Skype. All internships are UNPAID and entail a minimum commitment of 3 months of work, beginning December 1, with an average of 5-10 hours of work per week.


Rights & Justice 2015 Kicks Off at Yale

The fifth annual conference on illicit financial flows and financial transparency at Yale kicked off this Friday. ASAP, the Yale Global Justice Program, and Global Financial Integrity co-hosted the event.


Thomas Pogge Presents Report on Illicit Financial Flows and Poverty at IBA Conference

Report concludes that state action that facilitates tax avoidance and evasion may amount to a violation of human rights.


Yale Conference Update: Agenda Now Available

Rights & Justice Post-2015: Call for Registration

Academics, NGO leaders, and policy makers from around the world will gather at Yale October 18-20 for the conference Human Rights and Economic Justice: Essential Elements of the Post-MDG Agenda. Speakers and conference participants will discuss policy solutions to urgent problems in international development, including global health disparities and illicit financial flows and will investigate new ways for academics to contribute to the fight against global poverty. We invite you to review our agenda and register. You can also download a printable version of this call for registration.

This event is the fifth in a series of annual conferences at Yale on financial transparency, all co-hosted by the Yale Global Justice Program and Global Financial Integrity. For the second year in a row, year Academics Stand Against Poverty has come on board as a co-organizer. The event will take place in Sudler Hall, 100 Wall Street, in the heart of Yale\’s campus.

The conference is free and open to the public, and complimentary coffee and light lunch will be served. Luce Hall Auditorium is conveniently located near New Haven’s central business district and a 10-minute walk from spacious parking facilities. Information about travel and accommodation in New Haven is provided at the end of this page.

Schedule and Themes:

Conference sessions will run from 9 am to 5 pm on Friday, 9 am to 6 pm on Saturday, and 9 am to noon on Sunday.

Friday, October 18, the opening day of the conference, will be dedicated to illicit financial flows from the Global South — massive outflows of money resulting from tax avoidance and evasion, corruption, and organized crime. It is estimated that every year $1 trillion flows out of developing countries through illicit means, roughly ten times the amount that comes in as foreign assistance. Such losses seriously aggravate poverty and weaken public institutions. Recent commitments from the G8 and G20 to tackle tax dodging add new urgency to the search for policy solutions, and identifying a policy agenda for the Global South will be the focus of the day\’s presentations. We are honored to host a group of distinguished policy makers and scholars from around the world as contributors to this important discussion. For a list of confirmed speakers, see the bottom of this document and accompanying agenda.

Saturday, October 19, will have a dual focus on global health and the role of academia in poverty alleviation. The morning session will feature speakers leading diverse initiatives to improve healthcare in the Global South, including a proposed global fund that would extend access to new medicines by rewarding pharmaceutical companies based on the health impact of their products and an organization using the energy from cell towers to refrigerate vaccines in remote areas.

Saturday’s second session will feature academics researching, advocating for, and implementing initiatives to alleviate poverty, and Sunday, October 20 will be wholly dedicated to the question of how academics can more effectively work together to improve the lives of people living in poverty. These panel discussions will be chaired by members of the International Board of Directors of Academics Stand Against Poverty, as a part of the Impact: Global Poverty project. Through Impact: Global Poverty, ASAP seeks to shed light on best practices from academic efforts at influencing poverty policy and civil-society efforts.

The conference will conclude on Sunday at noon. On Sunday afternoon, there will be a closed session for leaders of research centers focused on poverty and global justice, to discuss future collaboration.

Registration, Travel, and Accommodation:

Registration is free but necessary. To register, please e-mail Mariana Ramírez Herrera at

If you need hotel accommodation in New Haven, consider reserving a room today, because local hotels tend to fill up early. We suggest the Omni Hotel, the New Haven Hotel, the Study, and the Courtyard Marriott. New Haven is served by the Greyhound bus company, MegaBus, MetroNorth, and Amtrak. The city has a small airport, called Tweed, which connects to a few regional airports. If you plan to come to New Haven by way of New York City airports or Hartford\’s Bradley airport, you can reach New Haven by bus, train, or by using a shuttle service like GO Airport Shuttle or CT Limo. If you have questions about travel and lodging, contact Mariana Ramírez Herrera at

Learn more about the Global Justice Program and Global Financial Integrity at their respective websites.

Conference Speakers:

Friday, October 18: Perspectives on Illicit Financial Flows Post-2015

  • Peter Ackerman, Founding Chair of the International Center on Nonviolent Conflict; Raymond Baker, Director of Global Financial Integrity
  • Jose Cuisia, Jr., Ambassador of the Philippines to the U.S.
  • Shaazka Beyerle, Senior Advisor of the International Center on Nonviolent Conflict
  • Lena Diesing, Governance Advisor in the Global Partnerships and Policy Division of the OECD
  • Pascale Dubois, Chief Suspension and Debarment Officer at the World Bank
  • Rafael Espada, Former Vice President of Guatemala
  • Itai Grinberg, Associate Professor of Law at Georgetown Law School
  • Gail Hurley, Policy Specialist in Development Finance at the UNDP
  • Thomas Pogge, Leitner Professor of Philosophy and International Affairs at Yale University
  • Ebrahim Rasool, Ambassador of South Africa to the U.S.
  • Susan Rose-Ackerman, Henry R. Luce Professor of Jurisprudence at Yale University
  • Lee Sheppard, Contributing Editor at Tax Analysts\’ Tax Notes
  • Jarmo Viinanen, Ambassador and Permanent Representative of Finland to the UN

Saturday, October 19, Morning Session: Global Health

  • Julian Cockbain, Consultant European patent attorney
  • Steven Hoffman, Assistant Professor of Clinical Epidemiology and Biostatistics at McMaster University
  • Thomas Pogge, Leitner Professor of Philosophy and International Affairs at Yale University
  • Harvey Rubin, Director of the Institute for Strategic Threat Analysis and Response at the University of Pennsylvania
  • Sigrid Sterckx, Founding Member of the Bioethics Institute at the University of Ghent

Saturday, October 19, Afternoon Session: Impact: Global Poverty

  • Martha Chen, Lecturer in Public Policy at the Kennedy School of Government at Harvard University
  • Teddy Cruz, Co-Director of the Blum Center for Cross-Border Poverty Research and Practice at the University of California-San Diego
  • Andries du Toit, Director of the Institute for Poverty, Land, and Agrarian Studies at the University of the Western Cape
  • Juliana Martinez-Franzoni, Member of the Scientific Committee of the Comparative Research Programme on Poverty
  • Nidhi Sadana Sabharwal, Director of the Indian Institute for Dalit Studies
  • Alberto Cimadamore, Scientific Director of the Comparative Research Programme on Poverty
  • Alberto Minujin, Director of Equity for Children at the New School
  • Jonathan Morduch, Managing Director of the Financial Access Initiative at New York University
  • David Hulme, Executive Director of the Brooks World Poverty Institute at the University of Manchester
  • Sukhadeo Thorat, Chairman of the Indian Council of Social Science Research

Sunday, October 20: Impact: Global Poverty, Continued

  • Fonna Forman, Co-Director of the Blum Center for Cross-Border Poverty Research and Practice at the University of California-San Diego
  • Tim Hayward, Director of the Just World Institute at the University of Edinburgh
  • Darrel Moellendorf, Chairman of Normative Orders Cluster of Excellence at Goethe University Frankfurt
  • Jill Coster van Voorhout, Researcher in the Rule of Law Program at The Hague Institute for Global Justice
  • Heather Widdows, Director of the Center for the Study of Global Ethics at the University of Birmingham
  • Thomas Pogge, Leitner Professor of Philosophy and International Affairs at Yale University

Poster photo: CC photo courtesy of Shreyans Bhansali via Flickr