NEW YORK (CBSNewYork/AP) — Hillary Rodham Clinton has helped to announce a new campaign that aims to harness science and technology to end extreme global poverty by 2030.
“We intend to try to change and better lives all over the world,” Clinton said Thursday in announcing the initiative in New York. “We intend to learn how better to scale successful efforts so they reach far more people.”
The U.S. Agency for International Development is undertaking the anti-poverty effort with 32 partners from private industry, colleges and universities, philanthropies and nongovernmental organizations. USAID Administrator Rajiv Shah said the campaign, called the U.S. Global Development Lab, will tackle issues such as the lack of clean water and access to education.
Shah said the initiative will engage academics, entrepreneurs, corporate leaders and others “to invent, test and scale the most promising and cost-effective solutions to end extreme poverty.”
The former first lady and senator from New York, who is widely seen as a potential 2016 Democratic presidential contender, said planning for the Global Development Lab started in 2011 when she was secretary of state, adding, “by government terms that is a warp-speed accomplishment.”
The partners include the University of California, Berkeley, Duke University, Johns Hopkins University, Coca-Cola Co., Microsoft Corp., DuPont and Walmart.
Clinton said she thinks it’s “possible to do good while doing well,” one of the guiding principles at the Department of State.
“We wanted more and more companies that had expertise, that had resources, to come to the forefront, to be part of our development work and to be held to standards,” she said. “It wasn’t just a one-off opportunity to get some positive attention but to really be committed for the long term.”
The announcement came as The Associated Press reported that USAID masterminded the creation of a Cuban Twitter network designed to undermine the communist government in Cuba.
Critics have said USAID’s secret involvement in the Cuban social-media network could erode international trust in the agency.
USAID said in a statement that its work was found to be “consistent with U.S. law.”
Neither Clinton nor Shah took questions at the anti-poverty event.
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