Found 37 article(s) for author 'Development'

Using Randomized Controlled Trials to Estimate Long-Run Impacts in Development Economics

Using Randomized Controlled Trials to Estimate Long-Run Impacts in Development Economics. Michael Kremer, May 13, 2019, Paper, “We assess evidence from randomized controlled trials (RCTs) on long-run economic productivity and living standards in poor countries. We first document that several studies estimate large positive long-run impacts, but that relatively few existing RCTs have been evaluated over the long run. We next present evidence from a systematic survey of existing RCTs, with a focus on cash transfer and child health programs, and show that a meaningful subset can realistically be evaluated for long-run effects. We discuss ways to bridge the gap between the burgeoning number of development RCTs and the limited number that have been followed up to date, including through new panel (longitudinal) data; improved participant tracking methods; alternative research designs; and access to administrative, remote sensing, and cell phone data. We conclude that the rise of development economics RCTs since roughly 2000 provides a novel opportunity to generate high-quality evidence on the long-run drivers of living standards.Link

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Can Free Markets Revive Brazil?

Can Free Markets Revive Brazil? Lawrence Summers, April 25, 2019, Audio, “Will a dose of free-market policies — from a populist politician, no less — finally bring Latin America’s biggest economy back to life? On this week’s episode of Stephanomics, Bruce Douglas visits the region’s busiest port to get a taste of what’s ailing Brazil — and the possible cure.  Host Stephanie Flanders also brings you the second part of her interview with Harvard University economist Larry Summers — the former U.S. Treasury secretary and Obama adviser — with his comments on Brazil’s economy and the new thinking on progressive U.S. fiscal policy. Finally, Stephanie talks with editor Catarina Saraiva about Bloomberg’s dreaded Misery Index.Link



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Is Oil Wealth Good for Private Sector Development?

Is Oil Wealth Good for Private Sector Development? Melani Cammett, Ishac Diwan, 2019, Paper, “When do autocratic rulers in oil-producing countries support private sector development? We argue that the size of oil rents per capita has an important effect on ruler support for the rule of law, respect for private property rights, and other factors that promote private investment. However, the effect is not linear, but instead resembles a U-curve: Only in countries with middle levels of per capita oil wealth would we expect the state to repress the private sector. At both low and high levels of oil wealth, autocrats interested in regime preservation would support and promote the private sector. Descriptive analyses of governance measures in Middle Eastern oil producers situated in comparative perspective offer empirical support for these propositions. These arguments and findings contradict some of the key claims in the resource curse literature but also differ from arguments that offer historically grounded explanations for development among oil exporters.Link

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Why Trust Is the Gold Standard in Developing Countries

Why Trust Is the Gold Standard in Developing Countries. Tarun Khanna, April 18, 2019, Audio, “Entrepreneurs in the developing world face a distinct disadvantage over their Western counterparts – a widespread lack of trust. Western nations have spent centuries putting in place customs, institutions and regulations to support new companies. But those structures don’t necessarily exist in places like India, South America, Africa or China. Harvard Business School professor Tarun Khanna believes smart entrepreneurs who want to succeed in places with “rampant mistrust” must build their own microcosm of trust with employees, partners and customers. Khanna, who is also director of the Lakshmi Mittal and Family South Asia Institute at Harvard, details this approach in his new book, Trust: Creating the Foundation for Entrepreneurship in Developing Countries. He spoke on the Knowledge@Wharton radio show on SiriusXM about why a conventional strategy doesn’t work wherever societal mistrust is the norm.Link

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Smart Development Banks

Smart Development Banks. Ricardo Hausmann, 2019, Paper, “The conventional paradigm about development banks is that these institutions exist to target well-identified market failures. However, market failures are not directly observable and can only be ascertained with a suitable learning process. Hence, the question is how do the policymakers know what activities should be promoted, how do they learn about the obstacles to the creation of new activities? Rather than assuming that the government has arrived at the right list of market failures and uses development banks to close some well-identified market gaps, we suggest that development banks can be in charge of identifying these market failures through their loan-screening and lending activities to guide their operations and provide critical inputs for the design of productive development policies. In fact, they can also identify government failures that stand in the way of development and call for needed public inputs. This intelligence role of development banks is similar to the role that modern theories of financial intermediation assign to banks as institutions with a comparative advantage in producing and processing information. However, while private banks focus on information on private returns, development banks would potentially produce and organize information about social returns.Link

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To Serve the People: Income, Region and Citizen Attitudes towards Governance in China (2003–2016)

To Serve the People: Income, Region and Citizen Attitudes towards Governance in China (2003–2016). Edward Cunningham, Anthony Saich, April 11, 2019, Paper, “Through use of a unique, multi-year public opinion survey, this paper seeks to measure changes in self-reported governmental satisfaction among Chinese citizens between 2003 and 2016. Despite the persistence of vast socio-economic and regional inequalities, we find evidence that low-income citizens and residents living in China’s less-developed inland provinces have actually reported comparatively greater increases in satisfaction since 2003. These results, which we term the “income effect” and “region effect” respectively, are more pronounced at the county and township levels of government, which are most responsible for public service provision. Our findings also show that the satisfaction gap between privileged and more marginalized populations in China is beginning to close, in large part owing to efforts by the Hu Jintao and Xi Jinping administrations to rebalance the gains of economic growth and shift resources towards the populations most overlooked during China’s first few decades of reform.Link

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Why Does Hirschmanian Development Remain Mired on the Margins? Because Implementation (and Reform) Really is ‘a Long Voyage of Discovery’

Why Does Hirschmanian Development Remain Mired on the Margins? Because Implementation (and Reform) Really is ‘a Long Voyage of Discovery’. Michael Woolcock, 2019, Paper, “A defining task of development is enhancing a state’s capability for policy implementation. In most low- income countries, alas, such capabilities seem to be stagnant or declining, in no small part because dominant reform strategies are ill-suited to addressing complex non-technical aspects. This has been recognized for at least six decades – indeed, it was a centerpiece of Albert Hirschman’s understanding of the development process – yet this critique, and the significance of its implications, remain on the margins of scholarship and policy. Why? I consider three options, concluding that, paradoxically, followers of Hirschman’s approach inadequately appreciated that gaining more operational traction for their approach was itself a type of problem requiring their ideas to embark on ‘a long voyage of discovery’, a task best accomplished, in this instance, by building – and tapping into the distinctive insights of – a diverse community of development practitioners.Link

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Conducting Benefit-Cost Analysis in Low- and Middle-Income Countries: Introduction to the Special Issue

Conducting Benefit-Cost Analysis in Low- and Middle-Income Countries: Introduction to the Special Issue. Lisa Robinson, James Hammitt, 2019, Paper, “Investing in global health and development requires making difficult choices about what policies to pursue and what level of resources to devote to different initiatives. Methods of economic evaluation are well established and widely used to quantify and compare the impacts of alternative investments. However, if not well conducted and clearly reported, these evaluations can lead to erroneous conclusions. Differences in analytic methods and assumptions can obscure important differences in impacts. To increase the comparability of these evaluations, improve their quality, and expand their use, this special issue includes a series of papers developed to support reference case guidance for benefit-cost analysis.Link

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Clayton Christensen on what it would take to develop Africa

Clayton Christensen on what it would take to develop Africa. Clayton Christensen, January 23, 2019, Video, “Gearing up for prosperity requires a change of thinking, CNBC Africa spoke with one of New York’s best sellers Clayton Christensen, a professor of business administration and Harvard University’s Business School about what it would take to develop Africa.Link

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