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The Son Also Rises: Surnames and the History of Social Mobility

What’s so important about social mobility? Why should anyone care? Well, politicians have long been using social mobility as vindication for inequality. America has been striving to overcome inequality, but social mobility rates haven’t changed much over the years according to Greg Clark, the author of The Son Also Rises: Surnames and the History of Social Mobility. Clark, a Professor of Economics at the University of California – Davis, argues that social mobility and inequality are independent of each other.

Trade Liberalisation and International Co-operation: A Legal Analysis of the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement.

Recent years have seen the emergence of new so-called “mega-regional” trade agreements. The two most prominent megaregionals currently being negotiated in the Asia -Pacific region are the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) and the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP). Both these arrangements encompass countries that comprise a major share of world trade and are intended to be deep integration partnerships which will not only reduce tariffs on traded goods but also improve regulatory compatibility and provide a rules-based framework for foreign investment...

What Have We Learned: Macroeconomic Policy after the Crisis

In 2008, the global economy prepared itself for the worst economic recession since the Great Depression. After an unprecedented stimulus of $787 billion from the U.S. government and various innovations in economic and financial policy, we have only just begun to see significant recovery in some countries.

The Role of Elites in Economic Development

Why do some countries succeed in raising employment and income more than others? Why do regions with temperate climates and access to shipping routes possess better governments than those that are landlocked and dry? There are myriad theories as to what mechanisms translate a nation’s structural elements into development outcomes, but the focus of today’s literature is placed on two factors – political economy and social context of transitions...

Southeast Asia at the crossroads: Three paths to prosperity

Southeast Asia is well placed to prosper in the twenty-first century. The region is strategically located between major markets like China, Japan and India, and has a young, growing population larger than either the European Union or North America. Indeed, if ASEAN were a single country it would already be the 7 th largest economy in the world with a combined GDP of $2.4 trillion in 2013. The region already attracts significant FDI, not least from Japan, and is a central hub for many global production networks.

How Asia Works: Success and Failure in the World’s Most Dynamic Region

Joe Studwell’s study of Asia’s economic growth story offers a three-step recipe for development: increase agricultural output through household farming; boost manufacturing using protectionism tempered by export discipline; and control financial institutions so they sustain and propel the first two steps. The book breaks from existing development orthodoxy in two major respects.

Aid for Trade: What Have We Learnt? Which Way Ahead?

The Aid for Trade (AfT) initiative was launched at the conclusion of the WTO Hong Kong Ministerial Conference in December of 2005 amidst the stalled progress of the Doha Round negotiations in an attempt to boost the engagement of developing countries in global trade and increase participation in the multilateral trading system. Since then three more WTO Ministerial Conferences have taken place, and though the member economies agreed on a Bali package as an interim step, it still remains highly uncertain if they will be able to bring this round of negotiations to a close...

Nepal’s Investment Climate: Leveraging the Private Sector for Job Creation and Growth

Nepal is urgently in need of private sector investment to promote jobs and growth: 25 per cent of the population live beneath the poverty line and youth unemployment is a chronic problem. Despite the efforts of the government to boost the private sector and attract foreign investors, many barriers to investment exist and the overall business climate is poor. A lack of access to finance, political instability and weak infrastructure are all major obstacles to the development of a thriving private sector.

Prevention and Crisis Management: Lessons for Asia from the 2008 Crisis.

The financial crisis of 2008, the worst since the Great Depression, spread recession all over the world. The global economy suffered from disruptions in financial markets, the bursting of the housing bubble and rising unemployment. After the crisis, numerous commentators pointed to the house price bubble, Wall Street greed, and subprime mortgages as the key factors that triggered such a devastating crisis. Meanwhile, some critics blamed the shortcomings of existing economic models in failing to foresee the crisis.