Latin America

W(h)ither Democracy; Latin American progress; China’s tobacco problem and poor world cancer; climate change progress: a Developmentista’s Guide to this week’s Economist

Duncan Green - March 5, 2014

Should I be worried about how much I enjoy The Economist? I get some stick from colleagues, who reckons it is surreptitiously dripping neoliberal poison into my formerly socialist soul. But it’s just so good! On a good week, there are half a dozen must-read articles on development-related issues, which I try to tweet. But based on last week’s issue, that may not be enough. …

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Why has economic crisis produced a new left in Latin America, but not elsewhere?

admin - April 16, 2013

For a wonk parent it’s hard to beat the heart-warming experience of seeing your book referenced in your son’s university essay. In this case, junior had the task of trying to understand the link between neoliberalism and the rise of a new left in Latin America, so he cited Silent Revolution, a book I first published in 1995, when he was 3 years old. But …

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'It’s the share of the rich, stupid': brilliant inequality stats + politics from Gabriel Palma

admin - May 10, 2012

A while back I reposted Andy Sumner’s blog on new research on inequality from the Chilean economist Gabriel Palma (right). But I’ve now read the paper, catchily titled ‘Homogeneous middles vs. heterogeneous tails, and the end of the ‘Inverted-U’: the share of the rich is what it’s all about’ and am so blown away, that I have to come back for another go – it really …

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Deja vu, role reversal or schadenfreude? The view of Europe's crisis from Latin America

admin - September 23, 2011

I experienced an odd and simultaneous sensation of déjà vu, role reversal and schadenfreude when reading a recent briefing from the UN Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean. Here is their description of current events in Europe, under the title ‘Various countries in the Eurozone need deep adjustments to achieve the established targets for fiscal sustainability’. The graph shows fiscal deficits on the …

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We love road blocks; flushing toilets and murder rates: random facts about Latin America

admin - September 16, 2010

The Economist has a big report on Latin America this week, to coincide with the 200th anniversary of the start of its struggle for independence (unfinished business, some would say). Here are some of the more striking statistical nuggets and other bits and pieces. The region has 15% of the world’s oil reserves, a large stock of its minerals, a quarter of its arable land …

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Venezuela: Latin America's inequality success story

admin - August 6, 2010

Hugo Chavez, Venezuela’s President, has plenty of critics, who often focus on his style (not least his interminable unscripted chat show, Alo Presidente), and in many ways he does fit into the tradition of the Latin American caudillo (the ‘strong man on horseback’). But Venezuela certainly seems to be getting something right on inequality. According to the highly reputable UN Economic Commission for Latin America …

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How the global crisis is affecting Latin America and the Caribbean, and which governments are responding well

admin - April 1, 2009

Here are the main findings of a new paper of mine on the impact of the global economic downturn on Latin America and the Caribbean. It’s part of Oxfam’s series of studies of the development impact of the global crisis (for an overview click here). Top line message, how governments are responding to the crisis is to a large part determined by how well they …

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Want to reduce inequality? Look at Latin America!

admin - March 19, 2009

I was at DFID again this week (I should be on a retainer) , presenting a paper on the impact of the global crisis on Latin America (it should be on the Oxfam website by the middle of next week). One interesting glass-half-full v glass-half-empty discussion was over income inequality: I said the region was doing well in reducing the gulf between haves and have-nots, but another …

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