The Advance Market Commitment for vaccines launched on friday. Under the commitment a group of developed nations (Canada, Italy, Norway, Russia, the United Kingdom) and Bill Gates! (The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation) promises to pay for a pneumococcal vaccine suitable in price and effectiveness for the developing world. The idea, the brain child of economist Michael Kremer, could save millions of lives over the next several decades. Kremer deserves a Prize for his Prize – in Peace or Economics.
Owen, who played a part in the project, has more background and musings.