In 3,500 years of recorded history, the world has undergone innumerable changes for the better. This has never been more evident than in the past two decades: life expectancy has increased exponentially, hundreds of millions of people have been lifted out of extreme poverty, Democracy has become the norm, and we are interconnected in ways our ancestors could never have even imagined. However, how do we best describe and quantify this progress?

At a special IVY Ideas Night, Dr. Steven Radelet guided DC members through the turbulent eddies of global change in the 21st century. Dr. Radelet is the former Deputy Assistant Secretary of the Treasury, Chief Economist to USAID and Senior Adviser for Development for Secretary of State Hillary Clinton. Currently, he holds the position of Professor and Director of the Global Human Development Program at Georgetown University’s School of Foreign Service. Dr. Radelet has spent the past two decades of his life studying ways in which we can address the changing tides of climate change, resource demand, economic and political mismanagement, and demographic pressures so as to accelerate the political, economic, and social development that has been helping the poorest of the poor around the world. His work has been critical to initiatives ranging from the United Nations Millennium Development Goals to US foreign policy under both the Clinton and Obama administrations.

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