In evidenza

Public debt and the risk premium: A dangerous doom loop

The relationship between high public debt and low interest rates is once again at the forefront of debate.This column shows that countries with high debt levels pay a risk premium. This creates the potential for self-reinforcing loops of high debt and high risk premia, which can become explosive.

https://voxeu.org/article/public-debt-and-risk-premium

Cinzia Alcidi, Daniel Gros

VOX

In evidenza

The dozen things experimental economists should do (more of)

Experimental economists must tackle the generalisability and applicability of the evidence they produce. This column discusses principles to enhance these when designing and conducting experiments or reporting findings. Good practice is especially important when policy recommendations are made based on experimental results.

https://voxeu.org/article/dozen-things-experimental-economists-should-do-more

Eszter Czibor, David Jiménez-Gómez, John List

VOX

In evidenza

Challenges in decentralised implementation of centrally mandated antipoverty programmes

Even when the central government is committed to a jobs guarantee, rationing of work opportunities can arise under decentralised implementation in poor places. This column examines India’s efforts to implement such a scheme and finds that there are two main drivers of this rationing: local administrative costs and local corruption. Partial administrative reforms by the centre can have perverse effects. Deeper policy reforms are needed to assure that stipulated rights for poor people are attained in practice.

https://voxeu.org/article/decentralised-implementation-centrally-mandated-antipoverty-programmes

Martin Ravallion

VOX

In evidenza

Around a table: Social facilitators for negotiations

Pre-negotiation interactions, such as shared meals, are viewed as a valuable means to build trust and rapport so as to improve the outcomes of the negotiation. Even tax authorities acknowledge this – business meals tend to be tax-deductible, at least in part. This column puts this folk wisdom to the test using a controlled negotiation simulation experiment with MBA students. It finds that there is no difference in negotiation outcomes whether or not pre-negotiation socialising took place.

https://voxeu.org/article/social-facilitators-negotiations

Pablo Brañas, Antonio Cabrales, Guillermo Mateu, Anxo Sánchez, Angela Sutan

VOX

In evidenza

Destination of outward FDI and variation in employment in Japanese manufacturing firms

Concerns have been raised that outward foreign direct investment may reduce domestic employment and lead to the ‘hollowing-out’ of the manufacturing industries at home. This column uses a unique dataset of Japanese firms’ overseas activities to show that going abroad does not necessarily lead to a reduction of domestic employment. Investment by Japanese firms into other Asian countries has a positive impact on domestic job creation and a negative impact on job destruction, whereas the impact of investment into European and North American countries is negative for both job creation and destruction in Japan.

https://voxeu.org/article/outward-fdi-and-employment-japanese-manufacturing-firms

Liu Yang, Bin Ni

VOX

In evidenza

Chinese online retailer JD taps into group buying service for energy firms

China’s major high-quality coal producer of Shanxi Jincheng Anthracite Coal Mining Group has clinched a group buying agreement with Chinese online retailer JD for a one-stop service of office supplies and manufacturing tools.

http://www.globaltimes.cn/content/1150706.shtml

Global Times

In evidenza

How Banning Abortion Will Transform America

Across the United States, Republican-controlled legislatures are outlawing abortion, with the hope of bringing the issue before a sympathetic Supreme Court. If they succeed in revoking women’s reproductive rights, the US will quickly become a different society – one resembling communist-era Romania.

https://www.project-syndicate.org/commentary/alabama-georgia-abortion-laws-like-communist-romania-by-maria-bucur-and-kristen-r-ghodsee-2019-05

Maria Bucur is Professor of History and Gender Studies at Indiana University.

 Kristen R. Ghodsee is Professor of Russian and East European Studies at the University of Pennsylvania.
Project-Syndicate
In evidenza

A Carbon Dividend Is Better than a Carbon Tax

As a response to climate change, a carbon tax is immensely popular among economists from across the political spectrum, and it does have an important role to play. But it is far from sufficient, and putting a price on emissions won’t work if it alienates lower- and middle-income voters.

https://www.project-syndicate.org/commentary/carbon-dividend-better-than-tax-by-mark-paul-and-anthony-underwood-2019-05

Mark Paul is an assistant professor of economics at New College of Florida and a fellow at the Roosevelt Institute.

Anthony Underwood is an assistant professor of economics at Dickinson College.

In evidenza

Why the World Needs National Development Banks

By counteracting major shortcomings of the private financial sector, national and multilateral development banks play a crucial role in supporting economic growth. Countries that already have national development banks should aim to expand their role, while others should consider establishing them.

https://www.project-syndicate.org/commentary/national-development-banks-sustainable-growth-by-stephany-griffith-jones-and-jose-antonio-ocampo-2019-05

Stephany Griffith-Jones is Financial Markets Director at the Initiative for Policy Dialogue at Columbia University.

José Antonio Ocampo is a board member of Colombia’s central bank, a professor at Columbia University, Chair of the UN Economic and Social Council’s Committee for Development Policy, and Chair of the Independent Commission for the Reform of International Corporate Taxation. He was Minister of Finance of Colombia and United Nations Under-Secretary-General for Economic and Social Affairs. He is the author of Resetting the International Monetary (Non)System, and co-author (with Luis Bértola) of The Economic Development of Latin America since Independence.

In evidenza

An Intelligent Approach to Mental Health

The costs of mental illness – in the form of disability, loss of productivity, and premature death – are often underestimated. Addressing the global mental-health challenge requires not just building up traditional mental health-care capacities, but also taking advantage of cutting-edge technologies like artificial intelligence.

https://www.project-syndicate.org/commentary/global-mental-health-ai-chatbot-by-junaid-nabi-2019-05

Junaid Nabi is a public health researcher at Brigham and Women’s Hospital and Harvard Medical School, Boston.

In evidenza

China’s mixed April data shows continued downward pressure but resilience despite trade war

China on Wednesday released a set of mixed economic data for April, with slower growth seen in retail sales and fixed-asset investment but improvements in high-tech sectors and the job market, signaling that the world’s second largest economy continues to face slowing pressure despite stabilizing signs.

http://www.globaltimes.cn/content/1149940.shtml

Global Times

In evidenza

Pecuniary and non-pecuniary motivations for tax compliance: Evidence from Pakistan

Joel Slemrod, Obeid Ur Rehman, Mazhar Waseem
VOX
In evidenza

Licensing of standard essential patents: Hold-up, reverse hold-up, and ex-ante negotiation

Standard essential patents are patents that are needed in order to comply with a particular standard. Technologies protected by such patents are granted on the condition that rights holders commit to licensing the patents on fair, reasonable, and non-discriminatory terms. This column surveys three key issues that arise under these licensing agreements: hold-up, reverse hold-up, and ex-ante negotiation. The discussion highlights how patent award procedures affect the incentives for firms to invest in R&D.

https://voxeu.org/article/licensing-standard-essential-patents

Sadao Nagaoka

VOX

 

In evidenza

Dirty Floating in Emerging Markets

Central banks are supposed to use the interest rate to achieve an inflation target and let the exchange rate float freely. So why do they often intervene in currency markets by buying and selling international reserves, and use a host of other measures to limit their currencies’ volatility?

https://www.project-syndicate.org/commentary/emerging-market-central-banks-exchange-rate-intervention-by-andres-velasco-2019-05

Andrés Velasco, a former presidential candidate and finance minister of Chile, is Dean of the School of Public Policy at the London School of Economics and Political Science. He is the author of numerous books and papers on international economics and development, and has served on the faculty at Harvard, Columbia, and New York Universities.

Project-Syndicate

In evidenza

Evolution or revolution: An afterword

The changes in macroeconomic thinking prompted by the Great Depression and the Great Inflation of the 1970s were much more dramatic than have yet occurred in response to the events of the last decade. This column argues that this gap is likely to close in the next few years as a combination of low neutral rates, the re-emergence of fiscal policy as a primary stabilisation tool, difficulties in hitting inflation targets, and the financial ramifications of a low-rate environment lead to important changes in our understanding of the macroeconomy and in policy judgements about how to achieve the best performance.

https://voxeu.org/article/evolution-or-revolution-afterword

Olivier Blanchard, Lawrence H. Summers

VOX

In evidenza

The roots of health inequality and the value of intra-family expertise

Poorer people have worse health at birth, are sicker in adulthood, and die younger than richer people. Apart from socioeconomic status, exposure to informal health expertise may also affect health. Using data from Sweden, this column examines whether having a health professional in the family has an effect on health. It concludes that differences in exposure to informal health expertise can account for some of the observed patterns of health inequality, even in an environment with universal health insurance and equal formal access to healthcare.

https://voxeu.org/article/roots-health-inequality-and-value-intra-family-expertise

Yiqun Chen, Petra Persson, Maria Polyakova

VOX

In evidenza

How to design a stimulus package

Academics and policymakers alike have debated how to structure an optimal stimulus package since the Great Recession. This column revisits the arguments related to the size of the multiplier and the usefulness of public spending, and offers a blueprint for future stimulus packages. It finds that the relationship between the multiplier and stimulus spending is hump-shaped, and that a well-designed stimulus package should depend on the usefulness of public expenditure. The output multiplier is not a robust statistic to use, and instead the ‘unemployment multiplier’ should be used.

https://voxeu.org/article/how-design-stimulus-package

Pascal Michaillat, Emmanuel Saez

VOX

In evidenza

Implementation plan for national ecological civilization pilot zone unveiled

China has unveiled “the Implementation Plan for the National Ecological Civilization Pilot Zone (Hainan),” foreseeing comprehensive experiments of ecological civilization system reform to be carried out in the southern island province.

http://www.globaltimes.cn/content/1149631.shtml

Global Times

In evidenza

China not to compromise on major principles, capable to cope with challenges: think tanks

Facing US tariff hike threats, China has adhered to its bottom line, defended national dignity and people’s interests, experts with domestic think tanks said Sunday at a symposium on China-US trade relations.

http://www.globaltimes.cn/content/1149628.shtml

Global Times

In evidenza

The Second Belt and Road Summit

On April 25-27, 2019, Chinese President Xi Jinping convened a second summit of leaders and representatives from around the world to discuss his signature program, the Belt and Road Initiative. Xi’s keynote address revealed his take on Beijing’s trade struggle with the US as well as his approach to the concerns of poorer countries that lie along the initiative’s route.

https://besacenter.org/perspectives-papers/belt-and-road-summit/

By

BESA Center

In evidenza

A Memo to Jared

recent report indicates that President Trump’s son-in-law and advisor Jared Kushner suggested that then Secretary of State Rex Tillerson and other policy makers read a January 2018 Wall Street Journal piece regarding the cutoff of American funding for UNRWA, the international agency for Palestinian ‘refugees.’ As authors of the piece referenced in the leak, we are flattered. With the administration’s much discussed peace plan to be announced in June, let us offer some last minute suggestions.

https://besacenter.org/perspectives-papers/jared-kushner-palestinians-policy/

By  and 

BESA Center

In evidenza

Arab Power Struggles Are Alive and Well

Libya’s battle for Tripoli alongside ongoing mass anti-government demonstrations that toppled autocratic leaders of Algeria and Sudan demonstrate that the popular Arab protests that in 2011 forced four presidents out of office – as well as the counterrevolution it provoked – are alive and kicking.

https://besacenter.org/perspectives-papers/arab-power-struggles/

By

BESA Center

In evidenza

Commentary: Respect for core concerns prerequisite for settlement of trade disputes

During the just concluded round of China-U.S. trade talks, Washington increased additional tariffs on 200 billion U.S. dollars’ worth of Chinese imports from 10 percent to 25 percent, a move Beijing deeply regrets and will be forced to respond to with necessary countermeasures.

http://www.xinhuanet.com/english/2019-05/11/c_138050413.htm

Xinhua

In evidenza

Going the Distance with Family Planning

Lower population growth, achieved through effective family planning, translates into higher per capita GDP, leading to higher incomes, savings, and investment. If Indonesia is to reap these benefits, it will need to revitalize a family-planning program that was once one of the most effective in the world.

https://www.project-syndicate.org/commentary/indonesia-family-planning-reduce-fertility-by-jenna-dodson-2019-05

Jenna Dodson is an associate researcher in the Biological and Environmental Sciences Department at the University of Gothenburg in Sweden.

Project-Syndicate

In evidenza

Putting Growth in its Place

Despite the political turmoil engulfing the United Kingdom, there is growing evidence to suggest that the “northern powerhouse” model of regional development outside of London is working. If the government fulfills its recent commitment to support a new Northern Powerhouse Rail project, current progress could gain even more momentum.

https://www.project-syndicate.org/commentary/northern-powerhouse-community-investment-by-jim-o-neill-2019-05

Jim O’Neill, a former chairman of Goldman Sachs Asset Management and a former UK Treasury Minister, is Chairman of Chatham House.

Project-Syndicate

In evidenza

The Real Victims of China’s Trade Patterns

Many in the West, especially US President Donald Trump, have railed against China’s massive trade surpluses, which emerged after the country’s accession to the World Trade Organization in December 2001. But China’s developing-country neighbors have far more reason to be worried.

https://www.project-syndicate.org/commentary/china-growing-trade-surpluses-in-asia-by-jayati-ghosh-2019-05

Jayati Ghosh is Professor of Economics at Jawaharlal Nehru University in New Delhi, Executive Secretary of International Development Economics Associates, and a member of the Independent Commission for the Reform of International Corporate Taxation.

Project-Syndicate

In evidenza

A Confrontation from Hell

The Iranian regime has worked hard to strengthen its national security within a supportive regional framework, and would be no pushover in a conflict with the United States. On the contrary, Iran’s response to any major military assault could result in an uncontrollable regional inferno.

https://www.project-syndicate.org/commentary/united-states-iran-war-consequences-by-amin-saikal-2019-05

Amin Saikal is Professor of Political Science and Director of the Centre for Arab and Islamic Studies (the Middle East and Central Asia) at the Australian National University. He is the author of Iran Rising: The Survival and Future of the Islamic Republic.

Project-Syndicate

In evidenza

Lending cycles and real outcomes: Costs of political misalignment

Government ownership of banks can help solve credit market failures and stabilise the supply of credit over the business cycle. However, it can also end up serving political interests and lead to a misallocation of financial resources. This column provides new evidence that state-owned banks systematically engage in tactical redistribution of credit in line with the political incentives of those in power. Analysing the geographical distribution of all lending and economic activity in Turkey, it shows that the central government may use commercial lending by state-owned banks to support allies in local elections.

https://voxeu.org/article/lending-cycles-and-real-outcomes-costs-political-misalignment

Çağatay Bircan, Orkun Saka

VOX

In evidenza

Using global demand calibrations to evaluate policy: Case study of HIV pharmaceuticals

Consumers pay more for many pharmaceuticals in the US than in most other countries. This column investigates the welfare implications of such price discrimination using demand curves for HIV pharmaceuticals. A ban on price discrimination exacerbates the potentially large deadweight loss in the market for either a drug or a vaccine. However, this loss is ameliorated by a small government subsidy.

https://voxeu.org/article/using-global-demand-calibrations-evaluate-policy

Michael Kremer, Christopher Snyder, Fanele Mashwama

VOX

In evidenza

How stress tests fail

In evidenza

No Moore golden era for US monetary policy

Stephen Moore, President Trump’s pick for the Federal Reserve Board, has been pro-cyclical in his recommendations for monetary policy, opposing stimulus when the economy needed it and favouring stimulus when the economy did not. This column argues that Moore’s switch to urging monetary stimulus when Trump took officefits into a wider pattern among of pro-cyclicalpositions among leading Republicans, not just in monetary policy, but alsofiscaland regulatory policy.

https://voxeu.org/article/no-moore-golden-era-us-monetary-policy

Jeffrey Frankel

VOX

 

In evidenza

Opening the floodgates: Immigration in the aftermath of the eastern enlargement

In the aftermath of the eastern enlargement of the EU, Norway experienced one of the largest immigration shocks of the 21st century. This column uses data from the episode to examine the general equilibrium response of wages, labour costs, and industry employment to such shocks. One finding is that although real wages in some occupations decline, the aggregate welfare effects on natives are close to zero as natives switch to higher-wage occupations. The welfare effect on the existing population of immigrants, on the other hand, is negative as they have a comparative advantage in low-wage occupations.

https://voxeu.org/article/immigration-aftermath-eastern-enlargement

Bernt Bratsberg, Andreas Moxnes, Oddbjørn Raaum, Karen-Helene Ulltveit-Moe

VOX

 

In evidenza

Pompeo, the most insolent US Secretary of State in Europe

The US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, in a speech at a London conference, almost imperatively asked Britain to change its attitude toward China and its telecom equipment company Huawei. He wants Britain to treat China like the Soviet threat to the West. He also quoted the example of former prime minister Margaret Thatcher in a speech in which he mocked current Prime Minister Theresa May without naming her. He said: “Would the Iron Lady be silent when China violates the sovereignty of nations through corruption or coercion? Would she allow China to control the internet of the future?”

http://www.globaltimes.cn/content/1149313.shtml

Global Times

In evidenza

India to fill gap in China market amid trade row

This is a crucial week for the trade row between the US and China, during which their differences can be taken as a chance to forge closer economic ties between China and India. The South Asian nation is among a handful of countries that can fill gaps in the Chinese market left by US products.

http://www.globaltimes.cn/content/1149249.shtml

By Hu Weijia

Global Times

In evidenza

China deeply regrets U.S. tariff hike, vows countermeasures: Chinese delegation

China “deeply regrets” that the United States has increased additional tariffs on 200 billion U.S. dollars worth of Chinese goods from 10 percent to 25 percent, a Chinese delegation said in a statement here early Friday.

http://www.xinhuanet.com/english/2019-05/10/c_138048346.htm

In evidenza

How Japan can take the lead with an ageing workforce

Japan, like many countries around the world, faces the transformative effects of Globalization 4.0, as Fourth Industrial Revolution technologies put pressure on existing economic and social systems. According to the 2018 Future of Jobs Report, 75 million jobs are expected to be displaced in 20 major economies by 2022, creating a need for public and private solutions to meet new labor demands.

https://www.weforum.org/agenda/2019/05/japan-reskilling-aging-workforce/

Makiko Eda – Chief Representative Officer, World Economic Forum Japan, Member of the Executive Committee

In evidenza

China shows maximum sincerity, goodwill, but trade deal requires joint efforts: MOC

China has been pushing forward the trade talks with the United States with great sincerity, and hopes the U.S. side can meet China halfway and solve existing problems in a rational, pragmatic manner, a spokesperson with the Ministry of Commerce (MOC) said Thursday.

http://www.xinhuanet.com/english/2019-05/09/c_138046495.htm

Xinhua

 

In evidenza

The Case for Intelligent Industrial Policy

Although national industrial policies have a bad reputation, there is a strong case for government support to sectors that will increasingly rely on artificial intelligence. In this regard, the German government’s plan to promote production of electric-car batteries may accelerate an industrial renaissance in Europe.

 https://www.project-syndicate.org/commentary/europe-china-industrial-policy-electric-cars-by-dalia-marin-2019-05
Project-Syndicate
Dalia Marin is Professor of Economics at the Technical University of Munich and a research fellow at the Centre for Economic Policy Research (CEPR).
In evidenza

How Many Lives is Notre Dame Worth?

Barely a day after the fire that damaged the famous cathedral, France’s wealthy had pledged more than $1 billion to repair it. If the rich can so easily give hundreds of millions to restore a building, they could just as easily have spent that money elsewhere in better ways.

https://www.project-syndicate.org/commentary/notre-dame-restoration-opportunity-costs-by-peter-singer-and-michael-plant-2019-05

Project-Syndicate

Peter Singer is Professor of Bioethics at Princeton University, Laureate Professor in the School of Historical and Philosophical Studies at the University of Melbourne, and founder of the non-profit organization The Life You Can Save. His books includeAnimal LiberationPractical EthicsThe Ethics of What We Eat (with Jim Mason), Rethinking Life and DeathThe Point of View of the Universe, co-authored with Katarzyna de Lazari-Radek, The Most Good You Can DoFamine, Affluence, and MoralityOne World NowEthics in the Real World, and Utilitarianism: A Very Short Introduction, also with Katarzyna de Lazari-Radek. In 2013, he was named the world’s third “most influential contemporary thinker” by the Gottlieb Duttweiler Institute.

Michael Plant is a Ph.D. student in moral philosophy at the University of Oxford. His research centers on finding the best ways to improve worldwide happiness.

In evidenza

Europe Should Lead on Climate Action

From China’s renewables leadership to companies’ carbon-neutrality pledges, the world has come a long way on climate policy in the last decade. But if we are to have any chance of avoiding the worst consequences of climate change, Europe must take the wheel – and hit the accelerator.

https://www.project-syndicate.org/commentary/european-union-green-leadership-by-connie-hedegaard-2019-05

Project-Syndicate

Connie Hedegaard served as European Commissioner for Climate Action from 2010 to 2014.

In evidenza

The Case for Climate Tariffs

Because the United States is the world’s biggest economy, most countries have to accommodate America’s trade demands in some way. In a similar vein, a future US government could use import tariffs, or the threat of them, to push other countries to reduce their carbon dioxide emissions more sharply.

https://www.project-syndicate.org/commentary/climate-change-tariffs-reduce-emissions-by-shang-jin-wei-2019-05

Project-Syndicate

Shang-Jin Wei, former Chief Economist of the Asian Development Bank, is Professor of Finance and Economics at Columbia University and a visiting professor at the Australian National University.

In evidenza

How a Political Tug-of-War Between America and Russia Could Ruin Venezuela

If Venezuela turns into a proxy war-trap for Moscow and Washington, then the outcome promises little relief either to the beleaguered people of Caracas.

https://nationalinterest.org/feature/how-political-tug-war-between-america-and-russia-could-ruin-venezuela-56507

The National Interest

by Clay FullerRyan Berg

In evidenza

China hits back at US threats, vowing ‘necessary’ countermeasures (Global Times)

China on Wednesday night hit back at repeated threats by US officials to slap higher tariffs on billions of dollars’ worth of Chinese goods, vowing that it will take “necessary” countermeasures if forced.

http://www.globaltimes.cn/content/1149096.shtml

By Wang Cong, Chen Qingqing and Huang Ge

In evidenza

Xi stresses police loyalty, competence, discipline (Global Times)

President Xi Jinping has stressed the need to enhance the political loyalty of the country’s police force, strengthen them through reform and technology, and run them with strict discipline, at a national conference on public security.

http://www.globaltimes.cn/content/1149111.shtml

In evidenza

The next US recession is likely to be around the corner (VOX)

Franck Portier
In evidenza

The effects of trade policy might be more diverse than most economists think (VOX)

When economists model changes in tariffs, their models make assumptions about the impact of those changes. The column argues that those assumptions are often contradicted in the real world and proposes an approach that relaxes these restrictions. Estimates using this approach show that customary models may severely underestimate the impact of recent tariff increases.

https://voxeu.org/article/effects-trade-policy-might-be-more-diverse-most-economists-think

Peter Egger, Katharina Erhardt

In evidenza

Euro area architecture: What reforms are still needed, and why (VOX)

In January 2018, CEPR published a Policy Insight recommending euro area reforms which received broad support as well as some criticism. In this column, the authors argue that the problems that prompted their paper are still there, new problems are on the horizon, and the current state of the policy conversation on euro area reform is disappointing. They also identify priorities that should be at the centre of discussions on reform.

https://voxeu.org/article/euro-area-architecture-what-reforms-are-still-needed-and-why

Agnès Bénassy-Quéré, Markus K Brunnermeier, Henrik Enderlein, Emmanuel Farhi, Marcel Fratzscher, Clemens Fuest, Pierre-Olivier Gourinchas, Philippe Martin, Jean Pisani-Ferry, Hélène Rey, Isabel Schnabel, Nicolas Véron, Beatrice Weder di Mauro, Jeromin Zettelmeyer

In evidenza

The market is betting on climate change (VOX)

Wolfram Schlenker, Charles Taylor
In evidenza

Promoting temporary work as an active labour market programme (VOX)

Although temporary jobs are often characterised by lower pay, advocates of temporary work argue that taking up such jobs can increase the chances to find regular work in the long run. This column reviews evidence on the effectiveness of a labour market ‘speed date’ programme in the Netherlands, where unemployed job seekers are matched with temporary work agencies. The speed dates are effective in reducing the costs of unemployment insurance but, in the long run, temporary work does not serve as a stepping stone towards regular employment.

https://voxeu.org/article/promoting-temporary-work-active-labour-market-programme

Bas van der Klaauw, Lennart Ziegler

In evidenza

The Eastern Mediterranean and the EU Parliamentary Election (BESA Center)

The states of the Eastern Mediterranean should pay close attention to the upcoming European parliamentary election, as its outcome will influence geostrategic and economic developments in that region. Israel, Cyprus, and Greece will have a major role to play in strengthening Western relationships in the region for decades to come.     

https://besacenter.org/perspectives-papers/eu-election-eastern-mediterranean/

By

In evidenza

China and the Sudan Coup (BESA Center)

On April 11, 2019, Sudan’s long reigning president Omar Bashir was overthrown in a military coup after 30 years at the helm. China, one of his staunchest supporters, must now assess how to maintain its relationship with the African nation, which lies on a critical spot on the prospective Belt and Road route.

https://besacenter.org/perspectives-papers/china-and-sudan-coup/

By

In evidenza

The Rorschach Test of Notre Dame (Project-Syndicate)

Although the Notre Dame fire in Paris provoked universal shock and grief, its meaning has been refracted through radically different lenses. Whereas the French have focused on issues of distributive justice, Poles have locked horns in another battle in the culture war that has defined the country’s post-Cold War history.

https://www.project-syndicate.org/commentary/notre-dame-politics-of-poland-france-by-slawomir-sierakowski-2019-05

Sławomir Sierakowski, founder of the Krytyka Polityczna movement, is Director of the Institute for Advanced Study in Warsaw and a fellow at the Robert Bosch Academy in Berlin.

In evidenza

A Life in Solidarity (Project-Syndicate)

With the passing of Karol Modzelewski, the Polish historian and dissident who gave the Solidarity trade union its name, the world has lost one of Europe’s greatest public intellectuals. After the end of communism, Poland’s new capitalist political class dismissed Modzelewski’s views, but they are more relevant than ever.

https://www.project-syndicate.org/commentary/karol-modzelewski-solidarity-obituary-by-irena-grudzinska-gross-2019-05

Irena Grudzinska Gross, a 2018 Fellow at the Guggenheim Foundation, is the author of Golden Harvest (with Jan T. Gross), Czesław Miłosz and Joseph Brodsky: Fellowship of Poets and The Scar of Revolution: Custine, Tocqueville, and the Romantic Imagination. She is working on a biography of Alexander Weissberg-Cybulski.

In evidenza

China’s Selective Memory (Project-Syndicate)

This year’s anniversaries of the 1919 and 1989 student protests in China will again highlight the Chinese authorities’ contradictory attitudes toward the two movements. As the People’s Republic looks ahead to the 70th anniversary of its founding this October, the country continues to reckon with its own history.

https://www.project-syndicate.org/commentary/china-may-fourth-tiananmen-student-protest-anniversaries-by-denise-y-ho-2019-05

Denise Y. Ho, a professor of history at Yale University, is the author of Curating Revolution: Politics on Display in Mao’s China.

In evidenza

The Commercial Case for EU Solidarity (Project-Syndicate)

In the 15 years since the European Union expanded eastward, cultural, political, and historical divisions between East and West have continued to stand in the way of genuine solidarity. But the continent’s integrated industrial ecosystems – the value of which even staunch nationalists cannot ignore – still gives reason for hope.

https://www.project-syndicate.org/commentary/east-west-europe-auto-industry-overhaul-by-joschka-fischer-2019-05

Joschka Fischer was German Foreign Minister and Vice Chancellor from 1998-2005, a term marked by Germany’s strong support for NATO’s intervention in Kosovo in 1999, followed by its opposition to the war in Iraq. Fischer entered electoral politics after participating in the anti-establishment protests of the 1960s and 1970s, and played a key role in founding Germany’s Green Party, which he led for almost two decades.

In evidenza

Losing hold of the REINS: How Republicans’ attempt to cut back on regulations has impeded Congress’s ability to assert itself (Brookings)

Losing hold of the REINS: How Republicans’ attempt to cut back on regulations has impeded Congress’s ability to assert itself

Philip A. Wallach

In evidenza

Balancing Growth and Structural Adjustment in China (Project-Syndicate)

Fiscal and monetary expansion may be out of fashion among China’s mainstream economists, who insist that structural adjustment must be the priority. But it could go a long way toward bolstering China’s economic performance in 2019, without impeding structural reform.

https://www.project-syndicate.org/commentary/china-fiscal-monetary-stimulus-by-yu-yongding-2019-04

Yu Yongding, a former president of the China Society of World Economics and director of the Institute of World Economics and Politics at the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences, served on the Monetary Policy Committee of the People’s Bank of China from 2004 to 2006.

In evidenza

My Best Growth Forecast Ever (Project-Syndicate)

The Trump administration’s tax reform of 2017, which took effect in 2018, was viewed prospectively, and now retrospectively, as a contributor to US economic growth. But there was – and remains – a great deal of controversy over the size of the macroeconomic effects of the tax changes.

https://www.project-syndicate.org/commentary/trump-tax-cuts-boost-economic-growth-by-robert-j-barro-2019-04

Robert J. Barro is Professor of Economics at Harvard and a visiting scholar at the American Enterprise Institute. He is the co-author (with Rachel M. McCleary) of The Wealth of Religions, forthcoming from Princeton University Press.

In evidenza

Do household surveys face a non-response crisis? Not necessarily, according to recent experience in Jordan (World Bank blogs)

https://blogs.worldbank.org/opendata/do-household-surveys-face-non-response-crisis-not-necessarily-according-recent-experience-jordan

SUBMITTED BY NETHRA PALANISWAMY

CO-AUTHORS: TARA VISHWANATH
In evidenza

Precariously perched: Challenges in American demography and health (VOX)

As baby boomers get older, many high-income countries face challenges in the provision of pensions and healthcare. The column argues that the US has particularly acute problems arising from its ageing population, high healthcare costs, and high inequality in maternal mortality and other health indicators. It will take deep social policy and health system reforms to address these inequalities.

https://voxeu.org/article/challenges-american-demography-and-health

David Bloom, Alyssa Lubet

In evidenza

Making sanctions bite: The EU–Russian sanctions of 2014 (VOX)

The annexation of the Crimean peninsula by the Russian Federation in 2014 led to sanctions by the US and the EU, among others, and counter-sanctions by Russia. This column estimates that the value of trade lost due to Western sanctions over 2014-2016 amounts to $1.3 billion, while trade lost due to the Russian counter-sanctions amounts to $10.5 billion. There appears to be no evidence that Russian importers switched between suppliers from sanctioning countries to competitors from non-sanctioning countries.

https://voxeu.org/article/making-sanctions-bite-eu-russian-sanctions-2014

Matěj Bělín, Jan Hanousek

In evidenza

Geography, competition, and optimal multilateral trade policy (VOX)

Multilateralism in trade is currently under attack. Countries that used to be its most fervent supporters seem dissatisfied with its outcomes and think that they would be better off breaking multilateral agreements. At the same time, faced with the exorbitant market power of giant corporations, governments are increasingly active in unilateral protectionist policies. This column argues that while rising firm market power may weaken the argument in favour of laissez faire, it nonetheless reinforces the case for multilateral policy cooperation.

https://voxeu.org/article/geography-competition-and-optimal-multilateral-trade-policy

Antonella Nocco, Gianmarco Ottaviano, Matteo Salto

In evidenza

Revisiting the causal effect of democracy on long-run development (VOX)

Recent evidence suggests that a country switching to democracy achieves about 20% higher per capita GDP over subsequent decades. This column demonstrates the sensitivity of these findings to sample selection and presents an implementation which generalises the empirical approach. If we assume that the democracy–growth nexus can differ across countries and may be distorted by common shocks or network effects, the average long-run effect of democracy falls to 10%.

https://voxeu.org/article/revisiting-causal-effect-democracy-long-run-development

Markus Eberhardt

In evidenza

Outsourcing recruitment as a solution to prevent discrimination: A correspondence study (VOX)

Hiring discrimination against ethnic minorities remains an important issue in most industrialised countries, but few tools have proven their effectiveness in fighting this discrimination. Based on an original correspondence study in France, this column argues that the organisation of recruitment has a large impact on discrimination.The findings suggest that companies that centralise HR practices across establishments are less likely to discriminate against minority ethnic applicants in the first round of selection.

https://voxeu.org/article/outsourcing-recruitment-prevent-discrimination

Clémence Berson, Morgane Laouénan, Emmanuel Valat

In evidenza

Iran Must Demonize Its Enemies to Justify Itself (BESA Center)

The consolidation of revolutionary regimes through demonization of ideological and political foes is a common practice, and the Islamic Republic of Iran has been no exception to this rule. Indeed, the Islamist regime’s intense preoccupation with constructing a negative image of its adversaries has become one of its foremost defining features.

https://besacenter.org/perspectives-papers/iran-must-demonize-its-enemies-to-justify-itself/

By

In evidenza

Turkey and the EU: A Doomed Engagement (BESA Center)

The March 31 elections, which blended victory with defeat for Turkish president Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, put a further brake on Turkey’s stalled membership talks with the EU. The Islamist strongman appears to be the willing political hostage of Turkey’s Grey Wolves.

https://besacenter.org/perspectives-papers/turkey-eu-engagement/

By

In evidenza

The Future of the China-Russia Alliance (BESA Center)

Odds are that China and Russia will prove to be long-term US rivals. However, it may just as well be that their alliance will prove to be more tactical than strategic, with the China-Russia relationship resembling US-Chinese ties: cooperation in an environment of divergence rather than convergence.

https://besacenter.org/perspectives-papers/future-china-russia-alliance/

By

In evidenza

A New Era in Israel-Gulf State Relations? (BESA Center)

Many in the Gulf are beginning to grasp that their support for the Palestinians is detrimental to their own interests. In addition to practical considerations, the fact that the Palestinians have grown closer to Iran has sparked ire in many Gulf states, which see the Islamist regime as an enemy and the Palestinians’ increasingly close ties with Tehran as a betrayal.

https://besacenter.org/perspectives-papers/israel-gulf-state-relations/

By

In evidenza

School finance equalisation increases intergenerational mobility (VOX)

Rates of intergenerational mobility vary widely across the US. This column investigates the effects of reducing differences in revenues and expenditures across school districts within each state on students’ intergenerational income mobility, using school finance reforms passed in 20 US states between 1986 and 2004. Equalisation has a large effect on mobility, especially for low-income students. The effect acts through a reduction in the gap in inputs and in college attendance between low-income and high-income districts.

https://voxeu.org/article/school-finance-equalisation-increases-intergenerational-mobility

Barbara Biasi

In evidenza

Promotions and the Peter Principle (VOX)

The Peter Principle states that organisations promote people who are good at their jobs until they reach their ‘level of incompetence’, implying that all managers are incompetent. This column examines data on worker- and manager-level performance for almost 40,000 sales workers across 131 firms and finds evidence that firms systematically promote the best salespeople, even though these workers end up becoming worse managers, and even though there are other observable dimensions of sales worker performance that better predict managerial quality.

https://voxeu.org/article/promotions-and-peter-principle

Alan Benson, Danielle Li, Kelly Shue

In evidenza

The International Economic Policy Game (Project-Syndicate)

All human interaction is characterized by a mixture of competition and cooperation, and that extends to international trade and monetary policy. Which approach is preferable depends on the context, including what the other players are doing.

https://www.project-syndicate.org/commentary/game-theory-trade-tariffs-monetary-policy-by-koichi-hamada-2019-04

Koichi Hamada is Professor Emeritus at Yale University and a special adviser to Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe.

In evidenza

Bipolar Markets in the “New Mediocre” (Project-Syndicate)

After the global risk-off of late 2018, a newfound dovishness on the part of central bankers has combined with other positive developments to revive investors’ animal spirits. But with a wide array of financial and political risks clearly in view, one should not assume that the current ebullience will last the year.

https://www.project-syndicate.org/commentary/new-mediocre-bipolar-markets-by-nouriel-roubini-2019-04

Nouriel Roubini, a professor at NYU’s Stern School of Business and CEO of Roubini Macro Associates, was Senior Economist for International Affairs in the White House’s Council of Economic Advisers during the Clinton Administration. He has worked for the International Monetary Fund, the US Federal Reserve, and the World Bank.

In evidenza

No Democracy Without Peace in Israel (Project-Syndicate)

Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu’s Faustian pact with the far right may have clinched him a narrow victory in the latest election, but it has come at the expense of Israel’s democracy as well as its security. Those who still yearn for peace have no choice but to keep hope alive and await a generation of more enlightened leadership.

https://www.project-syndicate.org/commentary/netanyahu-annexation-west-bank-ends-israel-democracy-by-javier-solana-2019-04

Javier Solana was EU High Representative for Foreign and Security Policy, Secretary-General of NATO, and Foreign Minister of Spain. He is currently President of the ESADE Center for Global Economy and Geopolitics, Distinguished Fellow at the Brookings Institution, and a member of the World Economic Forum’s Global Agenda Council on Europe.

In evidenza

The West Bank’s Area C: Israel’s Eastern Line of Defense (BESA Center)

This study explores the strategic-military implications of the establishment of a Palestinian state along the pre-June 1967 lines. Its central thesis is that the creation of such a state, on the heels of the IDF’s total withdrawal from the West Bank, will not only deprive Israel of defensible borders but will almost certainly lead to the advent of a terrorist entity like the one created in the Gaza Strip – at a stone’s throw from the Israeli hinterland.

https://besacenter.org/mideast-security-and-policy-studies/west-bank-area-c-israel/

By

In evidenza

The Kremlin’s Little Green Duds (Project-Syndicate)

In the decade since the European Union forged a stronger partnership with the Eastern European countries on Russia’s doorstep, the Kremlin has tried desperately to reassert its sphere of influence, even launching illegal incursions into Ukraine. Yet it is now clear that Russia’s efforts have backfired spectacularly.

https://www.project-syndicate.org/commentary/putin-russia-failure-in-ukraine-by-carl-bildt-2019-04

Carl Bildt was Sweden’s foreign minister from 2006 to October 2014 and Prime Minister from 1991 to 1994, when he negotiated Sweden’s EU accession. A renowned international diplomat, he served as EU Special Envoy to the Former Yugoslavia, High Representative for Bosnia and Herzegovina, UN Special Envoy to the Balkans, and Co-Chairman of the Dayton Peace Conference. He is Chair of the Global Commission on Internet Governance and a member of the World Economic Forum’s Global Agenda Council on Europe.

In evidenza

Who Should Decide How Algorithms Decide? (Project-Syndicate)

Contrary to sci-fi dystopias in which the machines become conscious and take over, artificial-intelligence applications will do only what humans tell them to do. So it is in everyone’s interest to consider how technologies such as self-driving cars will navigate life-or-death ethical dilemmas in the real world.

https://www.project-syndicate.org/commentary/ai-ethics-moral-decisions-by-mark-esposito-et-al-2019-04

Mark Esposito, Professor of Business and Economics with appointments at Hult International Business School and Harvard University, is a co-founder of Nexus FrontierTech and a Fellow at the Mohammed Bin Rashid School of Government in Dubai and Judge Business School in Cambridge.

Terence Tse, Professor at ESCP Europe Business School in London, is a co-founder of Nexus FrontierTech.
Joshua Entsminger is a Researcher at Nexus FrontierTech and Senior Fellow at Ecole des Ponts Center for Policy and Competitiveness.
Aurélie Jean, a computational scientist, is founder of In Silico Veritas, an adviser for the Boston Consulting Group, and an external collaborator with France’s Ministry of Education.
In evidenza

It’s Time for a Green EU Deal (Project-Syndicate)

With the world facing increasingly serious environmental threats, European leaders should make a green Europe their number-one priority for the coming years. Such a program should focus on three main goals: carbon neutrality, responsible use of resources, and preserving biodiversity.

https://www.project-syndicate.org/commentary/europe-environment-green-new-deal-by-michel-barnier-2019-04

Michel Barnier is a former vice president of the European Commission and French Minister of Foreign Affairs. He is currently EU chief negotiator for Brexit.

In evidenza

Infrastructure Management Contracts: Improving Energy Asset Management in Displacement Settings (Chatham House)

This paper highlights a number of options for managing electricity infrastructure in refugee camps and outlines the challenges, opportunities and operational implications associated with them. It takes the Kalobeyei settlement in Kenya as a case study.

Laura Patel, Ben Good, Abishek Bharadwaj, Shahid Chaudhry