Topic: Economics

Protectionism – good or bad? It depends……

I wrote this for the ‘Development and the Crisis‘ website I plugged recently, but thought I’d recycle it here: It’s official. Protectionism is the Great Satan. Gordon Brown decries it in Davos; William Easterly crows over what he sees as Dani Rodrik’s conversion to the cause. All countries must eschew protectionism or risk a disastrous return to […]

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A Promising new debate on the financial crisis

Take a look at Development and the Crisis, a new online debate moderated by Dani Rodrik, which has kicked off with contributions from Nancy Birdsall, Jose Antonio Ocampo, Arvind Subramanian, and Yung Chul Park. Here are some excerpted highlights from Dani’s opening pitch ‘Let developing nations rule’:

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Greed, Fear, Deregulation and previous crashes: the origins of the meltdown

Rich pickings in this week’s Economist with a special report on the future of finance, and a nice briefing on ‘global economic imbalances’ that ties together the East Asian crisis of the late 90s with the current mess. The story runs like this, (allowing for my non-Economist spin) The East Asian financial crisis of the […]

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Links I liked: mobiles v coke; Obama’s Mandela moment etc

Are mobiles the new Coca Cola? Mobile phones are held up as the most promising aspect of new technology in terms of helping poor people improve their lives, but some new research suggests people are cutting back on food and other essentials to pay for the all important status symbol. See here for a summary […]

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Brazil is top of the world on an environmental issue – recycling

I’m mugging up on green jobs as part of the research for a forthcoming paper on the need for a ‘global green new deal’ and came across this great and (to me) unexpected example from Brazil. It’s drawn from UNEP’s ‘Green Jobs’ paper. Brazil is the global leader in aluminium can recycling — some 10.3 billion […]

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Ah, so that’s how you sell books…..

Identifying and promoting the writings of brilliant dissidents like Ha-Joon Chang, the Cambridge economist, has always struck me as a particularly useful role for NGOs. In 2001 Ha-Joon published ‘Kicking Away the Ladder‘, which had a significant impact in the Doha trade negotiations, helping to demonstrate the double standards being employed by rich countries who used […]

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Illicit Financial Flows from Developing Countries now around $1 trillion a year

According to a new paper from the Global Financial Integrity watchdog. The paper defines illicit financial flows as ‘the proceeds from both illicit activities such as corruption (bribery and embezzlement of national wealth), criminal activity, and the proceeds of licit business that become illicit when transported across borders in contravention of applicable laws and regulatory frameworks (most […]

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Financial Crisis: Calvin and Hobbes called it 15 years ago

thanks to an unlikely source for this. the World Bank’s Crisis Talk website.  

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Financial crises at a glance: bank crashes, geopolitics and how long til the rebound?

Here are two illuminating graphics from the Financial Times and Economist. First up is a figure from Martin Wolf’s latest column in the FT, itself based on a new paper by Carmen Reinhart and Kenneth Rogoff, showing the proportion of the world economy affected by banking crises, from 1900-2008. Its main features are a spike around […]

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Final thought on Complexity Economics

This week, I’ve been mulling over Eric Beinhocker’s book, ‘The Origin of Wealth: Evolution, Complexity and the Radical Remaking of Economics’ (see previous posts – an overview and a discussion of the implications for our models of change). One question that remains is ‘why aren’t there more books like this?’ The initial idea of  ‘Complexity Economics’ […]

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Complexity Economics, Evolution and How Change Happens

Eric Beinhocker’s book, ‘The Origin of Wealth: Evolution, Complexity and the Radical Remaking of Economics’ (for review see previous post) challenges our understanding of how change happens and the role of would-be ‘change agents’ like Oxfam.

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Complexity Economics and Evolution – a Truly Big Idea

I spent much of the Christmas break sneaking off to read chapters of Eric Beinhocker’s path-breaking 2006 book ‘The Origin of Wealth: Evolution, Complexity and the Radical Remaking of Economics’. There’s probably too much to cover in one post, so I’ll follow up this overview with some more specific reflections in the days to come.

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