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  • Author: Philip I. Levy
  • Publication Date: 03-2008
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: American Enterprise Institute for Public Policy Research
  • Abstract: Contrary to the common approach in the literature, the economic and other forces that push countries toward democratization are continuous rather than discrete. This paper argues that failure to account for the latent variable of "incipient democracy" can bias estimates of democracy's determinants. The paper presents a new avenue by which economic integration can foster democracy, one that focuses on the means for democratization rather than the motive. This strengthening of civil society is identified as a necessary component of economic integration with modern distributed production, though we would not expect to see it in autocracies dependent on natural resource trade. The arguments are applied to the case of China.
  • Topic: Democratization, Development, Economics, Emerging Markets
  • Political Geography: China, Asia
  • Author: Aparna Mathur, Kevin A. Hassett, Gilbert E. Metcalf
  • Publication Date: 01-2008
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: American Enterprise Institute for Public Policy Research
  • Abstract: This paper measures the direct and indirect incidence of a carbon tax using current income and two measures of lifetime income to rank households. Our results suggest that carbon taxes are more regressive when annual income is used as a measure of economic welfare than when proxies for lifetime income are used.
  • Topic: Economics, Environment, Markets
  • Political Geography: United States
  • Author: Anthony T. Lo Sasso
  • Publication Date: 01-2008
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: American Enterprise Institute for Public Policy Research
  • Abstract: The present upswing in state-level efforts to "do something about health care," combined with presidential campaign-related rhetoric, suggests that health care is back with a vengeance on the public consciousness. Many states are proposing what appear to be new strategies to cover the uninsured when in reality the "new" strategies rely on old approaches that have not proven highly effective in the past, notably community rating and guaranteed issue regulations. Using data culled from a popular health insurance distributor and the published literature provides a compelling portrait of the predictable distortions that can result from regulations aimed at improving perceived deficiencies in the non-group and small group health insurance markets.
  • Topic: Economics, Government, Health, Politics
  • Political Geography: United States
  • Author: Aparna Mathur, Kevin A. Hassett, Gilbert E. Metcalf
  • Publication Date: 12-2008
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: American Enterprise Institute for Public Policy Research
  • Abstract: In discussions over how best to implement mandatory restrictions on carbon, the most commonly discussed option is a cap-and-trade system. One critical economic question surrounding cap-and-trade is how to distribute the permits. The two main competing mechanisms are free allocations to polluters (usually based on past emissions levels, output levels, or carbon intensity) and the auction of permits.
  • Topic: Climate Change, Economics, Environment, Markets
  • Author: Robert W. Hahn, Anna Layne-Farrar
  • Publication Date: 03-2007
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: American Enterprise Institute for Public Policy Research
  • Abstract: Security in software networks relies on technology, law, and economics. As the cost of software security breaches becomes more apparent, there has been greater interest in developing and implementing solutions for different parts of the problem.
  • Topic: Security, Economics, Government, Science and Technology
  • Author: Kevin A. Hassett, Alan D. Viard
  • Publication Date: 06-2007
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: American Enterprise Institute for Public Policy Research
  • Abstract: The statutory rate on corporate capital gains currently is equal to the statutory tax rate on ordinary corporate income. Although individual capital gains taxes have received an enormous amount of attention, both in the popular media and in the academic literature, corporate capital gains have received very sparse attention. In principle, however, the distortions that arise from corporate capital gain taxation are analogous to those that might arrive from individual capital gains taxation. Corporations might face a higher user cost of capital and they could find that their previous purchases have been “locked in” in the sense that asset sales are avoided because of their tax consequences.
  • Topic: Economics, Government, Industrial Policy, Science and Technology
  • Author: Frederick M. Hess, Bryan C. Hassel
  • Publication Date: 06-2007
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: American Enterprise Institute for Public Policy Research
  • Abstract: In October 2006, the American Enterprise Institute convened a meeting in Washington, D.C. to discuss what might be done to grow the human capital pipeline to support entrepreneurship in K–12 education. Participants included foundation officers, educational entrepreneurs, and policy analysts. While the gathering did not seek to formulate any grand consensus or blueprint, the authors hope that the following summary will spark further discussion and action on this critical issues in education reform.
  • Topic: Development, Economics, Education, Markets
  • Author: Aparna Mathur, Kevin A. Hassett
  • Publication Date: 01-2007
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: American Enterprise Institute for Public Policy Research
  • Abstract: Every year the Census Bureau reports data on income inequality and poverty, based on income estimates derived from the Current Population Survey. Our analysis suggests that the data may not be presenting an accurate picture. By under-reporting incomes, leaving out certain sources of income, and not making equivalence adjustments that are now standard among researchers, the reports present an imperfect picture of overall welfare. We develop an alternative that relies on data from the National Income and Product Accounts. Our data reveal that real median incomes have been increasing in the recent period, albeit at a slower rate than the long-term average. Using the same methodology for consumption, we find that consumption for all income groups, including the middle, has been growing robustly in recent times. This is in contrast to statistics reported by the Consumer Expenditure Survey, the most often cited data for all consumption analysis, which show middle class consumption declining.
  • Topic: Development, Economics, Human Welfare
  • Political Geography: United States
  • Author: Roger Bate
  • Publication Date: 10-2006
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: American Enterprise Institute for Public Policy Research
  • Abstract: The World Bank attempts to improve health in poor countries by providing advice in health financing and infrastructure development, as well as grants and loans to poor countries. This is a formidable mission given that the greatest difficulty poor countries have in carrying out public health programs is their lack of infrastructural, managerial and clinical capacity. Its efforts to this end have been diluted by irresponsible forays into disease control financing without a commensurate increase in institutional competence with only limited technical staff capacity. Instead of deferring to the World Health Organization for technical advice on malaria control, Bank staff members have promoted ineffectual malaria prevention and treatment, causing countries to move away from best practices in disease control. The Bank has been criticized in the Lancet medical journal, and its senior staff claim that changes have been made. This working paper reviews the most recent performance from the Bank, which demonstrates the continuing failure of its malaria work. The Bank should stick to its core mission of funding health systems and get out of the disease control business.
  • Topic: International Relations, Debt, Economics, Third World
  • Author: Roger Bate, Kathryn Boateng, Lorraine Mooney, Richard Tren
  • Publication Date: 08-2006
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: American Enterprise Institute for Public Policy Research
  • Abstract: There are many factors which hamper health care delivery in the developing world. These factors include tariffs, taxes, corruption, such as bribes and other local price inflators on medicines and medical products. Non-tariff barriers, such as lengthy registration periods for medicines and onerous requirements to clear customs, also restrict the availability of medication in the developing world. According to the World Health Organization, approximately one-third of the world's population lacks access to essential medicine and proper medical treatment. Drawing upon extensive evidence from surveys and accounts from the field, this paper examines the impact of tariffs, taxes and other markups on imported medicines and medical products provided to lesser developed countries by pharmaceutical companies, not-for-profit groups, for-profit corporations, multilateral and bilateral aid and health agencies. The paper discusses how these regulatory barriers affect access to medication. The authors conclude that although efforts to reform the current system of government revenue generation through tariffs collection may meet resistance in many developing countries, especially those featuring systemic corruption and those with domestic production, governments which take steps to eliminate tariffs could in fact expedite health care delivery and consequently improve the well-being of their people.
  • Topic: Corruption, Economics, Health, Third World