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In Zambia, 3 out of 4 economically active people work in the informal sector because large-scale Foreign Direct Investments (FDI) have not created needed jobs. Domestic Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) and small-scale FDI, which have created relatively more jobs and are a seedbed for inclusive wealth creation are not adequately supported by policy measures. Education and vocational skills training is largely supply-driven, reinforcing a mismatch between job vacancies and skills of available candidates.

There is a lack of national HR policy to ensure demand-driven and effective job skills match analysis to meet the short, medium and long-term human resource needs of the country. This bolsters the case for Government to undertake conscious, aligned and reasonably sequenced policy and regulatory initiatives with realistic targets to create jobs.

A policy mix should create a right mix between FDI and SME incentives, tailor FDI incentives to direct quality jobs created, and combine business and poverty objectives. Training and skills needs to respond to current and future industry needs, Says Augustine Mkandawire – PMRC Head of Research.

Read the full article on this link

How can Government through the Zambia Development Agency foster linkages between domestic SME’s and large business to create decent jobs?

Zambia does not have one consolidated and widely accepted tool for measuring Government delivery of development commitments and targets. Instead there are a number of measurement frameworks, which sometimes lead to inconsistent measurements of progress and outcomes across several data sources. Within Government, there are several Key Performance Indicators which also provide an opportunity for harmonisation. There is an opportunity to develop a single, widely accepted composite index, the Government Delivery Index (GDI).

The GDI will create awareness and drive Government to align its various strategies, track and timely review its performance. Alignment of key strategic documents is an urgent requirement as it will enhance a harmonized way of monitoring Government delivery, says Salim Kaunda, PMRC – Researcher.

You can read the Detailed Policy Brief here:


Do you think the Government should develop and abide by a single, common Monitoring and Evaluation (M&E) tool, for measuring its performance and delivery?

Zambia does not have a single, consolidated M&E tool. The use of multiple unaligned M&E frameworks which focus clearly on input and output assessment, leads to information variations and unclear reporting of Government progress. Bearing that some sector’s KPIs take long to measure, the GDI tracks progress using 3 dimensions, of progress, output and outcome. Citizens want to know how money is being utilized and this is a case of transparency and accountability for Government and public office bearers. The major challenge is that framework documents are not aligned and this has led to information variances and inconsistencies in monitoring government performance. Better decision-making within government is enhanced as a result of monitoring public office bearers. It provides a forum for purposeful and concrete engagement between the executive, the legislature and civil society around critical choices and outcomes. The Government Delivery Index (GDI) will help track and contribute to consensus based comprehensive monitoring feedback on delivery and provide Government with the necessary feedback, Says Salim Kaunda-PMRC Researcher.

Read the full article from Renowned Governance Indices to Inform the GDI: Towards Methodological Options


Should public office bearers be held accountable for their actions?

Zambia aspires for greater economic growth and sustainable development; this requires well-articulated policy and regulatory coherence. The Paris Declaration proclaims a harmonized development agenda between cooperating partners (CP‟s) and Government. There is need for a focused comprehensive developmental plan, mapping strategies, projects, programmes and policies. The government has various frameworks employed to guide and sequence the developmental process. These frameworks contain guiding policies, strategies and implementation plans that outline sequential execution of the development policies. They also contain core areas of interest and general priorities, highlighted by either Government or CP‟s.

Analysis shows, the purpose of all these guiding documents is sustainable development. Many of the targeted sectors are similar but there are lapses, differences of priorities, as well as varying key performance indicators (KPIs). Implementation plans and M&E mechanisms are also notable absentees. This builds the case for serious consideration of harmonising all documents guiding Zambia’s delivery and development agenda. Says Salim Kaunda and Chileshe Chaunga, PMRC Researchers.

The world today is interconnected and interdependent in social, economic and developmental ways, thus acclaiming the name “One Global Village”. In order to fully increase the potential of this Global village, it is essential that countries design and implement comprehensive diaspora strategies for engaging with their global citizens. The size of the countries population can no longer be calculated within the contours of its borders, rather it must be perceived through the global lens of migration and encompass those who are defined as the ‘diaspora’.

The emigration of a specific labour sector can lead to shortages in the country of origin. In Zambia, this has primarily affected the health care and education sectors. The International Monetary Fund (IMF, 2007) has reported that levels of attrition (degree of loss) of highly skilled workers in the health sector range from 15 to 40 people per annum in Zambia. This loss hinders the ability of Government to achieve its national development plans.  There is an opportunity to engage the diaspora and leverage from their intellectual capital, Says Susan Chima and Salim Kaunda – PMRC Researchers.

Read the full Background Note:


Do you think that Zambians living in the diaspora can contribute to this country’s social and economic development?

Did you know that according to the Auditor General Report of 2012, over 70% of the total, abuse of funds was attributed to Ministry of Finance (33%), Ministry of Agriculture (20.6%) and Ministry of Education (17.1%)? How do you think this abuse of funds is impacting national development in Zambia?

Click here to access the In-Depth Ministerial Analysis for further details

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he term minimalism is also used to describe a trend in design and architecture where in the subject is reduced to its necessary elements. Minimalist design has been highly influenced by Japanese traditional design and architecture. In addition, the work of De Stijl artists is a major source of reference for this kind of work.

Architect Ludwig Mies van der Rohe adopted the motto Less is more to describe his aesthetic tactic of arranging the numerous necessary components of a building to create an impression of extreme simplicity, by enlisting every element and detail to serve multiple visual and functional purposes (such as designing a floor to also serve as the radiator, or a massive fireplace to also house the bathroom). Designer Buckminster Fuller adopted the engineer’s goal of Doing more with less, but his concerns were oriented towards technology and engineering rather than aesthetics. A similar sentiment was industrial designer Dieter Rams’ motto, Less but better adapted from Mies. The structure uses relatively simple elegant designs; ornamentations are quality rather than quantity. The structure’s beauty is also determined by playing with lighting, using the basic geometric shapes as outlines, using only a single shape or a small number of like shapes for components for design unity, using tasteful non-fussy bright color combinations, usually natural textures and colors, and clean and fine finishes.

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Using sometimes the beauty of natural patterns on stone cladding and real wood encapsulated within ordered simplified structures, and real metal producing a simplified but prestigious architecture and interior design. May use color brightness balance and contrast between surface colors to improve visual aesthetics. The structure would usually have industrial and space age style utilities (lamps, stoves, stairs, technology, etc.), neat and straight components (like walls or stairs) that appear to be machined with equipment, flat or nearly flat roofs, pleasing negative spaces, and large windows to let in lots of sunlight. This and science fiction may have contributed to the late twentieth century futuristic architecture design, and modern home decor. Modern minimalist home architecture with its unnecessary internal walls removed probably have led to the popularity of the open plan kitchen and living room style. De Stijl expanded the ideas that could be expressed by using basic elements such as lines and planes organized in very particular manners.

Another modern designer who exemplifies reductivist ideas is Luis Barragán. In minimalism, the architectural designers pay special attention to the connection between perfect planes, elegant lighting, and careful consideration of the void spaces left by the removal of three-dimensional shapes from an architectural design. The more attractive looking minimalist home designs are not truly minimalist, because these use more expensive building materials and finishes, and are relatively larger.

Contemporary architects working in this tradition include John Pawson, Eduardo Souto de Moura, Álvaro Siza Vieira, Tadao Ando, Alberto Campo Baeza, Yoshio Taniguchi, Peter Zumthor, Hugh Newell Jacobsen, Vincent Van Duysen, Claudio Silvestrin, Michael Gabellini, and Richard Gluckman.