Search

You searched for: Content Type Working Paper Remove constraint Content Type: Working Paper Publishing Institution The Brookings Institution Remove constraint Publishing Institution: The Brookings Institution Topic Development Remove constraint Topic: Development
Number of results to display per page

Search Results

  • Author: Xanthe Ackerman
  • Publication Date: 03-2015
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: The Brookings Institution
  • Abstract: Many more girls are going to school than ever before, thanks in large part to the Education for All movement (EFA),14 the Millennium Development Goals and international and national programs that have increased access to school for all children. Legislation to make primary education free of charge in many African and Asian countries has greatly contributed to the decrease in the number of primary-school-age girls who are out of school, even as the population of schoolage children has continued to increase. At the primary level, the share of girls in the out-of-school population dropped from 58 percent in 2000 to 53 percent in 2012.15
  • Topic: Development
  • Political Geography: Africa
  • Author: Hafez Ghanem
  • Publication Date: 02-2015
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: The Brookings Institution
  • Abstract: Morocco has so far been a success story in the Arab world. It has followed a gradual approach to political reforms and democratization, which led to the adoption of a new constitution and the holding of free parliamentary elections in 2011. At the same time, economic growth averaged 4.5 percent between 2000 and 2010, reached 5.0 percent in 2011, 2.7 percent in 2012, and 4.4 percent in 2013. That is, Morocco has avoided the political upheavals and economic meltdowns that plagued other Arab Countries in Transition (ACTs). Maintaining this record of success will require continued political and economic reforms.
  • Topic: Development, Economics
  • Political Geography: Arabia, Morocco
  • Author: Joshua Meltzer
  • Publication Date: 02-2015
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: The Brookings Institution
  • Abstract: SMEs are the main drivers of U.S. employment, and the majority of the employment is in SME services firms. Services are also a growing portion of U.S. exports. U.S. services exports are 34 percent of total exports. Including services used in the production of goods for export increases services exports to 50 percent of total U.S. exports. The U.S. runs a services trade surplus and has a competitive advantage in high-skill, high-paying services. The U.S. trade surplus in 2013 was $213 billion. Services exports supported 4.2 million jobs in the U.S. in 2013. Services SMEs are under-represented in U.S. exports. Only 5 percent of high-skilled services companies export, compared to 25 percent in the manufacturing sector. The global growth in Internet access is providing new opportunities for SMEs to export services to customers globally. The Internet also gives SMEs access to services as inputs, which increases the productivity of all SMEs and their ability to compete in overseas markets. Export Promotion Agencies (EPAs) assist SMEs to export. However, EPAs have not developed a comprehensive approach that takes full advantage of the opportunities the Internet provides for growing SME services exports. Some countries have developed new ways to use the Internet to assist SME exports. For example, in the U.S., businessusa.gov collects on a single website relevant trade data and provides information on the export assistance provided by various government agencies. In the U.K., opentoexport.com provides trade data, information on exporting and opportunities to blog and interact with experts. Matchsme.com in Denmark goes further and connects local businesses with local service suppliers. Connectamericas.com is also focused on Latin America and uses the Internet to match customers and suppliers. These different approaches and their successes provide insights into how to scale up an online program that could have a significant impact on SME services exports. The following are the main elements of such a program: Develop an Internet platform. Such a platform would connect services SMEs with overseas buyers and facilitate the transaction through to the export and payment. Build public-private partnerships. The Internet platform should involve the government and the private sector, drawing on their respective expertise. Develop trust in the Internet platform. This is needed if the platform is to succeed. There are various ways to build trust. This could include developing a rating system that is accepted across borders and incorporates into the platform existing trust-building mechanisms. Give services SMEs access to better information. The Internet platform should include all relevant information for services SMEs, including trade data, timely and relevant information on markets, barriers and regulations. Develop online networking opportunities. The Internet platform should allow services SMEs to meet customers and suppliers online. This would also increase the flow of timely information amongst participants on the platform. Such networks can also be used to vet potential business partners, thereby building trust in the Internet platform. Improve access to finance. A lack of finance is a barrier for services SMEs going global. An Internet platform should include information on financing opportunities and innovative financing approaches such as crowd funding. Create opportunities for soft landing in export markets. The ability for services SMEs to have face time with potential customers remains important for achieving export success. An Internet platform could build on the approach of CDMN in Canada and give SMEs opportunities to spend time overseas in start-up incubators or building contacts.
  • Topic: Development
  • Political Geography: Latin America
  • Author: Vidya Putcha, Jacques van der Gaag
  • Publication Date: 02-2015
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: The Brookings Institution
  • Abstract: In the developing world, more than 200 million children under the age of five years are at risk of not reaching their full human potential because they suffer from the negative consequences of poverty, nutritional deficiencies and inadequate learning opportunities. Given these risks, there is a strong case for early childhood development (ECD) interventions in nutrition, health, education and social protection, which can produce long-lasting benefits throughout the life cycle. The results from the 2012 round of the Program for International Student Assessment (PISA)—an international, large-scale assessment that measures 15-year-olds\' performance in mathematics, reading and science literacy—demonstrate the benefits of ECD: Students in the countries that belong to the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) who had the benefit of being enrolled for more than one year in preprimary school scored 53 points higher in mathematics (the equivalent of more than one year of schooling), compared with students who had not attended preprimary school. Although there is much evidence that ECD programs have a great impact and are less costly than educational interventions later in life, very few ECD initiatives are being scaled up in developing countries. For example, in 2010, only 15 percent of children in low-income countries—compared with 48 percent worldwide—were enrolled in preprimary education programs. Furthermore, even though the literature points to larger beneficial effects of ECD for poorer children, within developing countries, disadvantaged families are even less likely to be among those enrolled in ECD programs. For instance, in Ghana, children from wealthy families are four times more likely than children from poor households to be enrolled in preschool programs.
  • Topic: Development, Economics
  • Author: Homi Kharas
  • Publication Date: 09-2015
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: The Brookings Institution
  • Abstract: The Addis Ababa Action Agenda reaffirms the central role of development banks in providing concessional and non-concessional long-term financing, countercyclical financing, guarantees and leverage, policy advice, capacity building, and other support to the post-2015 agenda. "We recognize the significant potential of multilateral development banks and other international development banks in financing sustainable development and providing know-how. We stress that development banks should make optimal use of their resources and balance sheets, consistent with maintaining their financial integrity, and should update and develop their policies in support of the post-2015 development agenda, including the sustainable development goals (SDGs)."
  • Topic: Development, International Trade and Finance, Treaties and Agreements, United Nations, World Bank
  • Political Geography: Global Focus
  • Author: Lord Nicholas Stern, Jeremy Oppenheim, Amar Bhattacharya
  • Publication Date: 07-2015
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: The Brookings Institution
  • Abstract: The agendas of accelerating sustainable development and eradicating poverty and that of climate change are deeply intertwined. Growth strategies that fail to tackle poverty and/or climate change will prove to be unsustainable, and vice versa. A common denominator to the success of both agendas is infrastructure development. Infrastructure is an essential component of growth, development, poverty reduction, and environmental sustainability.
  • Topic: Climate Change, Development, Economics, Poverty, Infrastructure
  • Political Geography: Global Focus
  • Author: Elizabeth King, Rebecca Winthrop
  • Publication Date: 06-2015
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: The Brookings Institution
  • Abstract: Educating a girl is one of the best investments her family, community, and country can make. We know that a good quality education can be life-changing for girls, boys, young women, and men, helping them develop to their full potential and putting them on a path for success in their life. We also know that educating a girl in particular can kick-start a virtuous circle of development. More educated girls, for example, marry later, have healthier children, earn more money that they invest back into their families and communities, and play more active roles in leading their communities and countries.
  • Topic: Development, Education, Gender Issues, Human Welfare
  • Political Geography: Global Focus
  • Author: Carol Graham, Shaojie Zhou, Junyi Zhang
  • Publication Date: 06-2015
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: The Brookings Institution
  • Abstract: The past two decades in China brought unprecedented rates of economic growth, development, and poverty reduction. Indeed, much of the reduction in the world’s extreme poverty rates during that time can be explained by the millions of people in China who exited poverty. GDP per capita and household consumption increased fourfold between the years 1990 and 2005.1 China jumped 10 places forward on the Human Development Index from 2008 until 2013, moving up to 93 of 187 countries, and life expectancy climbed to 75.3 years, compared to 67 years in 1980.
  • Topic: Development, Economics, Health, Human Welfare
  • Political Geography: China
  • Author: Christine Zhang, Jeffrey Gutman
  • Publication Date: 06-2015
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: The Brookings Institution
  • Abstract: Economic development is often tied to the evolution of local industry. One way to assess a country’s emergence as a major player in the global economy is by examining the ability of its domestic firms to compete on the global market. Public procurement—the purchase of goods, works, and services by governments—represents a significant portion of this market, making up an estimated average of 15 to 30 percent of a country’s GDP. Procurement in the developing world is especially noteworthy, since large projects are often partially or wholly financed by external donors such as the World Bank and other international financial institutions (IFIs), which encourage developing country governments to internationally advertise the goods, works, or services they require and to select the most competitive bid they receive. Yet the role of IFI-funded procurement in the emergence of global markets, particularly for and among developing countries, is seldom a topic of empirical study, despite its linkages to global growth.
  • Topic: Development, Economics, Emerging Markets, World Bank, Developing World
  • Political Geography: Global Focus
  • Author: Jeffrey Gutman, Claire Horton
  • Publication Date: 05-2015
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: The Brookings Institution
  • Abstract: Although the progress of the last decade in the disclosure of aid information has been unprecedented, the ultimate impact of that disclosure is dependent on the specific type of information being disclosed and its accessibility by those who can make use of it. What is evident is that there remains a critical gap, especially when it comes to the timely and accessible disclosure of information during project implementation. If the donor community is sincere in wanting to effectively engage stakeholders, not just during project preparation but throughout the project’s implementation, then it is essential that this gap be filled. Until this is addressed, the promise and potential of transparency and its impact on the governance of aid remain unfulfilled. There has been significant progress in transparency and the accessibility of aid information with regard to the upstream aspects of project design, including project identification, project appraisal, and safeguards. There has also been progress in the reporting of what aid projects have achieved and their impacts after completion. What is still less evident, though, is the transparency of information during the course of project implementation. This critical period—when even the best designed projects can go wrong—has been a relative foundling in terms of available timely information on how a project is progressing, what changes have been made to contract terms and amounts, and whether projects are being executed in accordance with their design and safeguard specifications, leaving a major governance gap in monitoring aid.
  • Topic: Development, Humanitarian Aid, Reform, Budget
  • Political Geography: Global Focus
  • Author: Timmons Roberts, Guy Edwards
  • Publication Date: 03-2014
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: The Brookings Institution
  • Abstract: China's rapidly increasing investment, trade and loans in Latin America may be entrenching high-carbon development pathways in the region, a trend scarcely mentioned in policy circles. High-carbon activities include the extraction of fossil fuels and other natural resources, expansion of large-scale agriculture and the energy-intensive stages of processing natural resources into intermediate goods. This paper addresses three examples, including Chinese investments in Venezuela's oil sector and a Costa Rican oil refinery, and Chinese investment in and purchases of Brazilian soybeans. We pose the question of whether there is a tie between China's role in opening up vast resources in Latin America and the way those nations make national climate policy and how they behave at the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) negotiations. We focus on the period between the 2009 Copenhagen round of negotiations and the run-up to the Paris negotiations scheduled for 2015, when the UNFCCC will attempt to finalize a successor agreement to the Kyoto Protocol.
  • Topic: Agriculture, Development, International Trade and Finance, Oil, Natural Resources, Foreign Direct Investment
  • Political Geography: China, Latin America
  • Author: Mongi Boughzala, Mohamed Tlili Hamdi
  • Publication Date: 02-2014
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: The Brookings Institution
  • Abstract: Regional disparities and inequality between the rural and the urban areas in Tunisia have been persistently large and perceived as a big injustice. The main regions that did not receive an equitable share from the country's economic growth, as compared to the coastal regions that are highly urbanized, are the predominantly rural western regions. Their youth often have to migrate to the cities to look for work and most of them end up with low-paying and frustrating jobs in the informal sector. The more educated among them face a very uncertain outlook and the highest rate of unemployment. This bias is strongest for female workers and university graduates living in the poor rural regions. The purpose of this paper is to study the underlying causes and factors of these disparities and to discuss policies and measures that may allow these regions to benefit from faster and more inclusive growth.
  • Topic: Democratization, Development, Poverty, Social Stratification
  • Political Geography: Africa, Arabia, Tunisia
  • Author: Hafez Ghanem
  • Publication Date: 01-2014
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: The Brookings Institution
  • Abstract: This paper examines how economic growth in Egypt can be made more inclusive through a focus on rural development and reducing regional disparities. Nearly all of the extremely poor in Egypt live in rural areas and 83 percent of them live in Upper Egypt. The youth in those rural areas feel particularly excluded.
  • Topic: Agriculture, Development, Economics, Poverty
  • Political Geography: Africa, Arabia
  • Author: Hafez Ghanem
  • Publication Date: 01-2014
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: The Brookings Institution
  • Abstract: This paper presents a political-economy analysis of the Egyptian transition experience from the fall of President Hosni Mubarak in February 2011 until the end of 2013, and considers options for the future. Establishing a stable democracy in a country with weak institutions and no democratic culture will take years or even decades. With the benefit of hindsight, most observers were too optimistic in 2011 when they predicted that the “Arab Spring” would quickly lead to democracy. They are probably too pessimistic today when they declare the failure of Egypt's democratic transition. The millions of Egyptians who swarmed into Tahrir Square in January 2011 demanding that Mubarak step down, and then again in June 2013 asking for the overthrow of President Mohammed Morsi, have learned how to use “people power.” A wall of fear has been broken, and it would be difficult for another autocratic regime to succeed in ruling Egypt for an extended period of time.
  • Topic: Democratization, Development, Islam, Political Economy
  • Political Geography: Arabia, North Africa, Egypt
  • Author: Homi Kharas, Raj M. Desai
  • Publication Date: 01-2014
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: The Brookings Institution
  • Abstract: The rapid growth in crowd-funded private development aid allows an examination of the preferences of philanthropic individuals with respect to international causes. Using survival analysis, we analyze the rate at which loan requests are funded through an internet-based nonprofit organization that bundles contributions from individuals and transfers them as loans to borrowers in developing countries. We find little evidence for the view that crowd-funders behave as either official aid donors or as selfish aid-givers. Rather, our results show that private aid contributions are motivated by associational communities that link citizens in donor countries to those in recipient countries - in particular, through migrant and diaspora networks - and that, as a result, their giving may be considered a complement to official aid.
  • Topic: Development, Non-Governmental Organization, Foreign Aid, Foreign Direct Investment
  • Political Geography: United States
  • Author: John McArthur
  • Publication Date: 09-2014
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: The Brookings Institution
  • Abstract: To what extent have developing countries' patterns in reducing under-5 mortality rates (U5MR) changed since the advent of the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs)? This paper investigates that question across multiple time horizons, with attention to the fact that countries' progress had already begun to accelerate during the late 1990s compared to the early 1990s. The paper gives special consideration to countries the MDGs were primarily intended to support, including initially “Off Track” and low-income countries. Although only 21 percent of originally Off Track countries and 34 percent of originally low-income countries are now on a path to achieve the MDG target by 2015, at least 80 percent of each group has seen accelerated progress since 2001. Approximately 90 percent of countries in sub-Saharan Africa have accelerated. Most importantly, regression analysis indicates that cross-country trends since 2000 differ considerably from previous decades. The years since the launch of the MDGs include the first extended period in at least four decades during which rates of U5MR decline have not been negatively correlated with U5MR levels. Compared to a conservative counterfactual trend from 1996 to 2001, at least 7.5 million additional children's lives are estimated to have been saved between 2002 and 2013. The results suggest that much of the greatest structural progress has been achieved by countries not likely to achieve the formal MDG targets, even if their progress might be linked to the pursuit of those targets. Implications are considered for setting U5MR targets through to 2030.
  • Topic: Development, Health, Human Welfare, Health Care Policy
  • Political Geography: Africa
  • Author: George Ingram
  • Publication Date: 07-2014
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: The Brookings Institution
  • Abstract: A decade of reform of U.S. development assistance programs has brought significant and important improvement in the nature and delivery of U.S. assistance. But the 21st century world is witnessing constant change in development. More developing countries are ascending to middle income status and gaining the capability, resources, and desire to finance and direct their own development. The rapid expansion of private capital flows, remittances, and domestic resources has significantly reduced the relative role of donor assistance in financing development. Donors are becoming more numerous and varied. There is growing recognition that the private sector, both nationally and internationally, is an indispensable component of sustainable development.
  • Topic: Development, Foreign Aid, Reform
  • Political Geography: United States
  • Author: Rebecca Winthrop, Elena Matsui
  • Publication Date: 08-2013
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: The Brookings Institution
  • Abstract: In the 13 years since the dawn of the new millennium, significant progress has been made in addressing some of the world's most important problems. One billion fewer people live in extreme poverty, 3 million children's lives are saved annually and 610 million children in developing countries are enrolled in primary school, more than ever before. However, this progress has not been shared evenly around the globe. Populations affected by weak systems of governance and that suffer violence and disasters have systematically been left behind. They are much less likely to enjoy progress vis-à-vis any of the United Nations' Millennium Development Goals (MDGs), which include eradicating extreme poverty and hunger, improving children and women's health, and enrolling children in school. No country classified as a “fragile state,” for example, has met all eight of the MDGs. Children born in low-income, conflict-affected countries are twice as likely to die before the age of five years, twice as likely to lack access to clean water and more than three times as likely to not attend school than children living in peaceful, low-income countries. People living in poverty, many of whom are affected by conflict, are more vulnerable to the effects of climate change and disasters. Children are especially affected, and those from the poorest families are up to 10 times more likely to bear the brunt of environmental disasters linked to climate change.
  • Topic: Conflict Resolution, Development, International Political Economy, Peace Studies, Foreign Aid, Peacekeeping
  • Political Geography: United Nations
  • Author: Johannes F. Linn
  • Publication Date: 02-2012
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: The Brookings Institution
  • Abstract: This study reports on a review of the United Nations Development Programmed' s (UNDP) country program in Tajikistan in terms of how it addresses the opportunities and challenges to scale up successful development interventions. It assesses to what extent the UNDP pursued well-articulated scaling up pathways in its overall program and in specific project areas, including its communities development program, its AIDS/HIV, tubercu¬losis and anti-malaria program, its support for aid coordination, its disaster risk management program and its energy and environment program. The study concludes that UNDP has incorporated key elements of a scaling up approach in its Tajikistan program, but also identifies additional ways to develop a more systematic approach to scaling up. This study is part of a broader program of research and analysis carried out under the auspices of the Brookings Global Economy and Development Program.
  • Topic: Development, United Nations, Foreign Aid
  • Political Geography: Central Asia, Tajikistan
  • Author: Urjit R. Patel, Gangadhar Darbha
  • Publication Date: 01-2012
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: The Brookings Institution
  • Abstract: Compared to immediately preceding years, that is, its own recent history, India's inflation became unhinged (thereby reversing creditable performance) from as far back as 2006. The paper puts forward an empirical framework to analyze the time series and cross-sectional dynamics of inflation in India using a large panel of disaggregated sector prices for the time period, 1994/95 to 2010/11. This allows us to rigorously explore issues that have been, at best, loosely posed in policy debates such as diffusion or comovement of inflation across sectors, role of common and idiosyncratic factors in explaining variation, persistence, importance of food and energy price changes to the overall inflation process, and contrast the recent experience with the past. We find, interalia, that the current period of high inflation is more cross-sectionally diffused, and driven by increasingly persistent common factors in non-food and non-energy sectors compared to that in the 1990s; this is likely to make it more difficult for anti-inflationary policy to gain traction this time round compared to the past. The paper has also introduced a novel measure of inflation, viz., Pure Inflation Gauges (PIGs) in the Indian context by decomposing price movements into those on account of: (1) aggregate shocks that have equiproportional effects on all sector prices; (2) aggregated relative price effects; and (3) sector-specific and idiosyncratic shocks. If PIGs, in conjunction with our other findings, for example, on persistence had been used as a measure of underlying (pure) inflationary pressures, the monetary authorities may not have been sanguine regarding the timeliness of initiating anti-inflationary policies.
  • Topic: Development, Economics, Industrial Policy, International Trade and Finance, Monetary Policy
  • Political Geography: South Asia, India
  • Author: Raj M. Desai, Shareen Joshi
  • Publication Date: 01-2012
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: The Brookings Institution
  • Abstract: This paper evaluates the impact of the Self- Employed Women's Association's (SEWA) farmer development center (FDC) initiative across five farming districts in Gujarat, India. The initiative provided a mix of training, information provisions, access to farming inputs, risk mitigation, and output. Controlling for a range of individual-specific, household, and village level factors, we find that SEWA membership primarily raised awareness of available opportunities among its participants, linked women to the financial sector and to diversified employment opportunities, including non-farm work. There is also evidence that the program's impact varied depending on the participants' socio-economic background. The poorest members experienced higher farm and non-farm incomes, increased food consumption, improved household and farm productivity, more self-employment opportunities, a greater likelihood of opening a bank account, higher crop harvests, and greater food security. These estimates suggest that the major comparative advantage of FDCs lies in improving access to credit and in expanding access to useful information.
  • Topic: Agriculture, Development, Economics, International Trade and Finance, Markets
  • Political Geography: India, Gujarat
  • Author: Johannes F. Linn, Laurence Chandy
  • Publication Date: 09-2011
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: The Brookings Institution
  • Abstract: Fragile states present one of the greatest challenges to global development and poverty reduction. Despite much new learning that has emerged from within the development community in recent years, understanding of how to address fragility remains modest. There is growing recognition that donor engagement in fragile states must look beyond the confines of the traditional aid effectiveness agenda if it is to achieve its intended objectives, which include state building, meeting the needs of citizens, and managing risk more effectively. Current approaches are constrained by relying heavily on small-scale interventions, are weakened by poor coordination and volatility, and struggle to promote an appropriate role for the recipient state.</p
  • Topic: Development, Poverty, Foreign Aid
  • Author: Robert Mosbacher, Jr.
  • Publication Date: 05-2010
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: The Brookings Institution
  • Abstract: To tackle global poverty, it is essential to craft a new and dynamic approach to economic development that refl ects the realities of a 21st century global economy and incorporates the participation of a wide variety of new players, particularly from the private sector. While investment, trade and innovation all represent basic components of building healthy economies, this paper focuses primarily on strategies to increase both in-country and international private capital investment in order to create jobs. To that end, it concentrates on two areas: strengthening and reforming the existing structures, coordinating mechanisms and policies that support U. S. economic development efforts; and improving public-private partnership models to promote broader fi nancing to local businesses, greater human capital support and technical assistance and improved physical and ICT infrastructure.
  • Topic: Foreign Policy, Development, Economics, Emerging Markets, Poverty, Third World
  • Political Geography: United States
  • Author: Johannes F. Linn, Richard Kohl, Homi Kharas, Arntraud Hartmann, Barbara Massler
  • Publication Date: 10-2010
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: The Brookings Institution
  • Abstract: The International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD) has for many years stressed innovation, knowledge and scaling up as essential ingredients of its strategy to combat rural poverty in developing countries. This institutional review of IFAD's approach to scaling up is the first of its kind: A team of development experts were funded by a small grant from IFAD to assess IFAD's track record in scaling up successful interventions, its operational policies and processes, instruments, resources and incentives, and to provide recommendations to management for how to turn IFAD into a scaling-up institution. Beyond IFAD, this institutional scaling up review is a pilot exercise that can serve as an example for other development institutions.
  • Topic: Agriculture, Development, Humanitarian Aid, Poverty, Food
  • Author: Peter Blair Henry, Conrad Miller
  • Publication Date: 01-2009
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: The Brookings Institution
  • Abstract: Recent work emphasizes the primacy of differences in countries' colonially-bequeathed property rights and legal systems for explaining differences in their subsequent economic development. Barbados and Jamaica provide a striking counter example to this long-run view of income determination. Both countries inherited property rights and legal institutions from their English colonial masters yet experienced starkly different growth trajectories in the aftermath of independence. From 1960 to 2002, Barbados' Gross Domestic Product (GDP) per capita grew roughly three times as fast as Jamaica's. Consequently, the income gap between Barbados and Jamaica is now almost five times larger than at the time of independence. Since their property rights and legal systems are virtually identical, recent theories of development cannot explain the divergence between Barbados and Jamaica. Differences in macroeconomic policy choices, not differences in institutions, account for the heterogeneous growth experiences of these two Caribbean nations.
  • Topic: Development, Economics, International Trade and Finance, Political Economy, Poverty
  • Political Geography: Caribbean
  • Author: Marco E. Terrones, Eswar Prasad, Ayhan Kose
  • Publication Date: 01-2009
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: The Brookings Institution
  • Abstract: Economic theory has identified a number of channels through which openness to international financial flows could raise productivity growth. However, while there is a vast empirical literature analyzing the impact of financial openness on output growth, far less attention has been paid to its effects on productivity growth. This paper provides a comprehensive analysis of the relationship between financial openness and total factor productivity (TFP) growth using an extensive dataset that includes various measures of productivity and financial openness for a large sample of countries. We find that de jure capital account openness has a robust positive effect on TFP growth. The effect of de facto financial integration on TFP growth is less clear, but this masks an important and novel result. We find strong evidence that FDI and portfolio equity liabilities boost TFP growth while external debt is actually negatively correlated with TFP growth. The negative relationship between external debt liabilities and TFP growth is attenuated in economies with higher levels of financial development and better institutions.
  • Topic: Debt, Development, Economics, Foreign Direct Investment
  • Author: Francis M. Mwega
  • Publication Date: 01-2009
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: The Brookings Institution
  • Abstract: In September 2000, 149 heads of state and government endorsed the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs). With this endorsement they set themselves eight goals to be reached by 2015 (from the 1990 base), foremost of which is to halve the proportion of the world's people who were absolutely poor. The MDGs provide a departure from past approaches in addressing poverty. By focusing attention on a core set of interrelated goals and measurable targets, it is now easier to track progress and measure the impact of development interventions.
  • Topic: Development, Humanitarian Aid
  • Political Geography: Kenya, Africa
  • Author: Shang-Jin Wei, Eswar Prasad, M. Ayhan Kose, Kenneth Rogoff
  • Publication Date: 04-2009
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: The Brookings Institution
  • Abstract: We review the large literature on various economic policies that could help developing economies effectively manage the process of financial globalization. Our central findings indicate that policies promoting financial sector development, institutional quality and trade openness appear to help developing countries derive the benefits of globalization. Similarly, sound macroeconomic policies are an important prerequisite for ensuring that financial integration is beneficial. However, our analysis also suggests that the relationship between financial integration and economic policies is a complex one and that there are unavoidable tensions inherent in evaluating the risks and benefits associated with financial globalization. In light of these tensions, structural and macroeconomic policies often need to be tailored to take into account country specific circumstances to improve the risk-benefit tradeoffs of financial integration. Ultimately, it is essential to see financial integration not just as an isolated policy goal but as part of a broader package of reforms and supportive macro- economic policies.
  • Topic: Development, Economics, Globalization, Political Economy
  • Author: Eswar Prasad, M. Ayhan Kose, Ashley D. Taylor
  • Publication Date: 05-2009
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: The Brookings Institution
  • Abstract: The financial crisis has re-ignited the fierce debate about the merits of financial globalization and its implications for growth, especially for developing countries. The empirical literature has not been able to conclusively establish the presumed growth benefits of financial integration. Indeed, a new literature proposes that the indirect benefits of financial integration may be more important than the traditional financing channel emphasized in previous analyses. A major complication, however, is that there seem to be certain “threshold” levels of financial and institutional development that an economy needs to attain before it can derive the indirect benefits and reduce the risks of financial openness. In this paper, we develop a unified empirical framework for characterizing such threshold conditions. We find that there are clearly identifiable thresholds in variables such as financial depth and institutional quality—the cost-benefit trade- off from financial openness improves significantly once these threshold conditions are satisfied. We also find that the thresholds are lower for foreign direct investment and portfolio equity liabilities compared to those for debt liabilities.
  • Topic: Development, Economics, Globalization, International Political Economy, International Trade and Finance
  • Author: Rachel McCulloch, Chad P. Bown
  • Publication Date: 12-2009
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: The Brookings Institution
  • Abstract: Critical appraisals of the current and potential benefits from developing country engagement in the WTO focus mainly on the Doha Round of negotiations. This paper examines a different aspect of developing country participation in the WTO: use of the WTO dispute settlement system to enforce foreign market access rights already negotiated in earlier rounds of multilateral negotiations. We examine data on developing country use from 1995 through 2008 of the WTO Dispute Settlement Understanding (DSU) to enforce foreign market access. The data reveal three notable trends: developing countries' sustained rate of self-enforcement actions despite declining use of the DSU by developed countries, developing countries' increased use of the DSU to self-enforce their access to the markets of developing as well as developed country markets, and the prevalence of disputes targeting highly observable causes of lost foreign market access, such as antidumping, countervailing duties, and safeguards. The paper also examines how introduction of the Advisory Centre on WTO Law (ACWL) into the WTO system in 2001 has affected developing countries' use of the DSU to self-enforce their foreign market access rights. A first pass at the data indicates that developing country use of the ACWL mirrors their use of the DSU more broadly; the ACWL has had little effect in terms of introducing new countries to DSU self-enforcement. A closer look at the data reveals evidence on at least three channels through which the ACWL may be enhancing developing countries' ability to self-enforce foreign market access: increased initiation of sole-complainant cases, more extensive pursuit of the DSU legal process for any given case, and initiation of disputes over smaller values of lost trade.
  • Topic: Development, Economics, International Trade and Finance, Markets
  • Author: Eswar Prasad, Kenneth Rogoff, M. Ayhan Kose, Shang-Jin Wei
  • Publication Date: 04-2009
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: The Brookings Institution
  • Abstract: We review the large literature on various economic policies that could help developing economies effectively manage the process of financial globalization. Our central findings indicate that policies promoting financial sector development, institutional quality and trade openness appear to help developing countries derive the benefits of globalization. Similarly, sound macroeconomic policies are an important prerequisite for ensuring that financial integration is beneficial. However, our analysis also suggests that the relationship between financial integration and economic policies is a complex one and that there are unavoidable tensions inherent in evaluating the risks and benefits associated with financial globalization. In light of these tensions, structural and macroeconomic policies often need to be tailored to take into account country specific circumstances to improve the risk-benefit tradeoffs of financial integration. Ultimately, it is essential to see financial integration not just as an isolated policy goal but as part of a broader package of reforms and supportive macroeconomic policies.
  • Topic: Development, Economics, Globalization, International Trade and Finance
  • Political Geography: Global Focus
  • Author: Lael Brainard, Vinca LaFleur
  • Publication Date: 02-2008
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: The Brookings Institution
  • Abstract: The international development community as we have known it for sixty years is undergoing an extreme makeover. If its roots go back to the Marshall Plan and the founding of the Bretton Woods institutions, its modern incarnation has branched both up and out— dramatically altering the landscape of humanity's efforts to alleviate poverty.
  • Topic: International Relations, Development, Poverty
  • Political Geography: United States
  • Author: Ralph C. Bryant
  • Publication Date: 01-2008
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: The Brookings Institution
  • Abstract: A prosperous, stable world economy is in the self interest of every nation—large or small, rich or poor. The International Monetary Fund (IMF) is a worldwide intergovernmental institution that can facilitate that prosperity and stability. Because every nation has a stake, each should participate in the IMF's governance and operations. The value to each nation of an effective IMF increases as the world economy and financial system become more integrated.
  • Topic: Development, Economics, International Organization, International Political Economy
  • Author: William Easterly
  • Publication Date: 10-2008
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: The Brookings Institution
  • Abstract: The last few years have seen unprecedented attention to an attempt by Western governments to rapidly develop Africa. British Prime Minister Tony Blair called at the World Economic Forum in Davos in January 2005 for "a big, big push forward" in Africa to end poverty, financed by an increase in foreign aid. Tony Blair commissioned a Report on Africa, which released its findings in March 2005, likewise calling for a "big push." Gordon Brown and Tony Blair put the cause of ending poverty in Africa at the top of the agenda of the G-8 Summit in Gleneagles, Scotland in July 2005. In the 2005 summit at Gleneagles, Scotland, the G-8 agreed to double foreign aid to Africa, from $25 billion a year to $50 billion to finance the big push, as well as to forgive the African aid loans contracted during previous attempts at a "big push." Two years later, Germany again made Africa an important item on the agenda of the G-8 summit it hosted in Heiligendamm in June 2007. There, the G-8 again reiterated the promises made in 2005. Japan pledged to double its own aid to Africa in May 2008 over the next five years. Most recently, the G8 Summit in Japan in July 2008 agreed: "We are firmly committed to working to fulfill our commitments on Official Development Assistance made at Gleneagles, and reaffirmed at Heiligendamm, including increasing...ODA to Africa by US$ 25 billion a year by 2010."
  • Topic: Development, Emerging Markets
  • Political Geography: Africa, Japan, United Kingdom, Germany
  • Author: Warwick J. McKibbin, Adele Morris, Peter J. Wilcoxen
  • Publication Date: 11-2008
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: The Brookings Institution
  • Abstract: To estimate the emissions reductions and costs of a climate policy, analysts usually compare a policy scenario with a baseline scenario of future economic conditions without the policy. Both scenarios require assumptions about the future course of numerous factors such as population growth, technical change, and non-climate policies like taxes. The results are only reliable to the extent that the future turns out to be reasonably close to the assumptions that went into the model.
  • Topic: Climate Change, Development, Economics, Energy Policy
  • Author: Johannes F. Linn, Oksana Pidufala
  • Publication Date: 10-2008
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: The Brookings Institution
  • Abstract: Since the collapse of the Soviet Union, Central Asia has witnessed repeated efforts to strengthen regional integration through cooperation with the establishment of a number of regional organizations with Central Asian participation. In this paper, we review the experience with regional cooperation initiatives and organizations in Central Asia and the rest of the world. Using a typology of regional organizations that we have developed for this paper, we review the functions and performance of selected regional organizations and compile evidence more generally on the experience with regional cooperation around the globe. Based on this we draw some lessons to help Central Asian countries, their partners and their regional organizations respond effectively to the opportunities and challenges of regional cooperation and integration. Central Asian countries need to realize that effective cooperation is not easy. It takes time and requires a flexible, constructive approach of all major partners. It also requires effective leadership by key countries, institutions and individuals and a careful selectivity for membership and for the mandate of the organization. Where multiple regional organizations overlap in membership and mandate, it is essential to address the risk of costly duplication. The paper concludes with an assessment of the specific implications for the Central Asia Regional Economic Cooperation Program.
  • Topic: Development, Regional Cooperation
  • Political Geography: Central Asia, Asia, Soviet Union
  • Author: Harry Masyrafah, Jock MJA McKeon
  • Publication Date: 11-2008
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: The Brookings Institution
  • Abstract: On December 26, 2004, an earthquake measuring 9.0 on the Richter scale struck off the northeast coast of Nanggroe Aceh Darussalam (Aceh) on the island of Sumatra, Indonesia. In the subsequent tsunami that followed, over 150,000 people lost their lives, while an estimated 700,000 people were displaced. The scale of the damage to the local economy, infrastructure and administration was unprecedented. The magnitude of these events triggered a huge outpouring of compassion and generosity from around the world. The influx of aid and assistance into the province of Aceh in the weeks and months that followed was unprecedented and surpassed all expectations. This paper seeks to provide some insight into the effects of such an influx whilst also exploring some of the coordination mechanisms put in place to manage what was the largest reconstruction program in the developing world at the time.
  • Topic: Development, Government, Human Welfare, Humanitarian Aid, International Cooperation
  • Political Geography: Indonesia
  • Author: John Page
  • Publication Date: 12-2008
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: The Brookings Institution
  • Abstract: For a growing number of countries in Africa the current commodity boom is a huge opportunity. But if the economic history of resource-rich, poor countries-especially in Africa-is any guide, rather than bringing prosperity, the resource boom may drive them into what Paul Collier (2007) in his influential book The Bottom Billion terms the "Natural Resources Trap." In Africa, countries dependent on oil, gas, and mining have tended to have weaker long-run growth, higher rates of poverty, and higher inequality than Non mineral-dependent economies at similar levels of income.
  • Topic: Development, Economics, Political Economy, Poverty
  • Political Geography: Africa
  • Author: Jessica Cohen
  • Publication Date: 12-2007
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: The Brookings Institution
  • Abstract: It is widely believed that cost-sharing—charging a subsidized, positive price—for a health product is necessary to avoid wasting resources on those who will not use or do not need the product. We explore this argument in the context of a field experiment in Kenya, in which we randomized the price at which pregnant women could buy long lasting anti-malarial insecticide-treated nets (ITNs) at prenatal clinics. We find no evidence that cost-sharing reduces wastage on those that will not use the product: women who received free ITNs are not less likely to use them than those who paid subsidized positive prices. We also find no evidence that cost-sharing induces selection of women who need the net more: those who pay higher prices appear no sicker than the prenatal clients in the control group in terms of measured anemia (an important indicator of malaria). Cost-sharing does, however, considerably dampen demand. We find that uptake drops by 75 percent when the price of ITNs increases from 0 to $0.75, the price at which ITNs are currently sold to pregnant women in Kenya. We combine our estimates in a cost-effectiveness analysis of ITN prices on infant mortality that incorporates both private and social returns to ITN usage. Overall, given the large positive externality associated with widespread usage of insecticide-treated nets, our results suggest that free distribution to pregnant women is both more effective and more cost-effective than cost-sharing.
  • Topic: Development, Globalization, Health, World Health Organization
  • Political Geography: Kenya
  • Author: Sara Burr, Virginia Carlson
  • Publication Date: 03-2007
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: The Brookings Institution
  • Abstract: Access to credit is one of the cornerstones of wealth-building in the United States. Yet, between 35 million and 54 million persons are not participating in the credit market. Many individuals outside the credit mainstream are unable to access credit, or credit at competitive rates, because of the lack of traditional information, such as mortgage and credit card payments, available on their credit files. However, there is evidence that the inclusion of alternative data on credit-like payments, such as utility payments, in credit reporting can help bridge this information gap. The first step toward filling this gap requires utility companies to systematically report these data to the major credit bureaus.
  • Topic: Civil Society, Demographics, Development, Economics
  • Political Geography: United States
  • Author: Joel Kotkin, William H. Frey
  • Publication Date: 03-2007
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: The Brookings Institution
  • Abstract: For most Americans, California evokes coastal images, the sunny beaches of south or the spectacular urban vistas of San Francisco Bay. Yet within California itself, the state's focus is shifting increasingly beyond the narrow strip of land between the coast- line and its first line of mountain ranges.
  • Topic: Development, Economics, Environment
  • Political Geography: United States, America, California
  • Publication Date: 03-2007
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: The Brookings Institution
  • Abstract: Pennsylvania is at once the same and different, three years after the release of the 2003 Brookings Institution report “Back to Prosperity,” which proposed a new vision for how Pennsylvania might revitalize its cities, towns, and regions in order to compete more energetically in today's global economy.
  • Topic: Development, Economics, Government
  • Political Geography: United States, Pennsylvania
  • Author: Alice M. Rivlin, Brooke DeRenzis
  • Publication Date: 04-2007
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: The Brookings Institution
  • Abstract: The Washington area is growing and decentralizing. From 1990 to 2000, the District of Columbia's population declined while the number of people living in surrounding suburbs increased. Prince George's County was among the suburban jurisdictions that experienced population growth, increasing by 10 percent from about 729,000 residents in 1990 to over 800,000 in 2000. Prince George's continues to grow, with an estimated 840,000 residents in 2005.
  • Topic: Demographics, Development, Economics, Migration
  • Political Geography: Washington
  • Author: Elizabeth Kneebone
  • Publication Date: 04-2007
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: The Brookings Institution
  • Abstract: The first half of this decade brought with it a range of economic challenges, including increased unemployment, stagnant family incomes, and rising poverty.
  • Topic: Demographics, Development, Economics, Government
  • Author: Cynthia M. Taeuber, Daniel W. Gillman, Laura Smith
  • Publication Date: 03-2007
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: The Brookings Institution
  • Abstract: Statistical metadata is commonly defined as data about data. Metadata documents information about a statistical dataset's background, purpose, content, collection, processing, quality, and related information that an analyst needs to find, understand, and manipulate statistical data. As such, the metadata for a statistical dataset broadens the number and diversity of people who can successfully use a data source once it is released. It is the purpose of this paper to discuss issues related to the development and use of statistical metadata and to describe resources to standardize and automate statistical metadata. While there are many types of metadata – this paper is concerned only with statistical metadata.
  • Topic: Development, Government, Science and Technology
  • Political Geography: Europe
  • Publication Date: 05-2007
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: The Brookings Institution
  • Abstract: On the eve of its second Mardi Gras since Katrina, New Orleans stands poised to gain a larger economic benefit from the event than in did in 2006. Twenty additional hotels have opened since last year's Mardi Gras, and the New Orleans airport is now accommodating 100,000 more arriving passengers each month.
  • Topic: Development, Economics, Environment
  • Political Geography: United States
  • Author: Jennifer S. Vey
  • Publication Date: 05-2007
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: The Brookings Institution
  • Abstract: The evidence is clear. On the whole, America's central cities are coming back. Employment is up, populations are growing, and many urban real estate markets are hotter than ever, with increasing numbers of young people, empty-nesters, and others choosing city life over the suburbs.
  • Topic: Development, Economics, Globalization, Government
  • Political Geography: America
  • Author: Alyssa Stewart Lee
  • Publication Date: 05-2007
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: The Brookings Institution
  • Abstract: While many developers and investors intuitively believe in the potential for profitable returns in American cities, there is a lack of visibility into what works and what does not work in urban markets. This week the Urban Markets Initiative at the Brookings Institution honors Urban Market Pathfinders who have demonstrated excellence capturing market potential by investing in communities.
  • Topic: Civil Society, Demographics, Development, Markets
  • Political Geography: America
  • Author: Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, Philip Osafo-Kwaako
  • Publication Date: 03-2007
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: The Brookings Institution
  • Abstract: Following years of economic stagnation, Nigeria embarked on a comprehensive reform program during the second term of the Obasanjo administration. The program was based on the National Economic Empowerment and Development Strategy (NEEDS) and focused on four main areas: improving the macroeconomic environment, pursuing structural reforms, strengthening public expenditure management, and implementing institutional and governance reforms. This paper reviews Nigeria's recent experience with economic reforms and outlines major policy measures that have been implemented. Although there have been notable achievements under the program, significant challenges exist, particularly in translating the benefits of reforms into welfare improvements for citizens, in improving the domestic business environment, and in extending reform policies to states and local governments. Consequently, we argue that the recent reform program must be viewed as the initial steps of a much longer journey of economic recovery and sustained growth. This paper concludes by outlining a number of outstanding issues that future Nigerian administrations must address.
  • Topic: Development, Economics, Government
  • Political Geography: Africa, Nigeria
  • Author: Bernard Hoekman, Chad Brown
  • Publication Date: 02-2007
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: The Brookings Institution
  • Abstract: Poor countries are rarely challenged in formal WTO trade disputes for failing to live up to commitments, reducing the benefits of their participation in international trade agreements. This paper examines the political-economic causes of the failure to challenge poor countries and discusses the static and dynamic costs and externality implications of this failure. Given the weak incentives to enforce WTO rules and disciplines against small and poor members, bolstering the transparency function of the WTO is important to make trade agreements more relevant to trade constituencies in developing countries. While our focus is on the WTO system, our arguments also apply to reciprocal North-South trade agreements.
  • Topic: Development, Economics, Government, International Trade and Finance
  • Author: Brooke DeRenzis, Martha Ross
  • Publication Date: 03-2007
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: The Brookings Institution
  • Abstract: Washington's future as a vibrant, inclusive city depends on its commitment to rebuilding the middle class from within. The District has experienced job growth, big increases in city revenues, and remarkable commercial and residential development over the past several years. Still, one out of every three DC residents is low-income, and many residents live in areas of concentrated poverty. More than most cities, Washington is a city of high and low incomes, with a small and declining middle class.
  • Topic: Civil Society, Development, Economics
  • Political Geography: United States, Washington
  • Author: Benjamin Forman, Rebecca Sohmer, Eric McLean-Shinaman, David Warren, John Schneider, Mark Muro
  • Publication Date: 02-2007
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: The Brookings Institution
  • Abstract: Could it be? Could it be that at least some of Massachusetts' long-suffering “Gateway Cities”—the state's once-humming mill and manufacturing towns—are ready to rejoin the state's economic mainstream? Yes, it could. Despite the latest blows of deindustrialization, signs of life are animating parts of the state's faded urban hubs beyond Boston.
  • Topic: Development, Economics, Markets
  • Author: Christopher B. Leinberger
  • Publication Date: 01-2007
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: The Brookings Institution
  • Abstract: Over the past decade, the real estate field has begun applying many of the development strategies employed by a number of iconic developers active before 1940. J.C. Nichols (Country Club Plaza in Kansas City), George Merrick (Coral Gables, Florida), the Rockefeller family (Rockefeller Center), and others have become role models, their major developments emulated in recently revived downtowns, suburban town centers, New Urbanism projects, and transit oriented developments. But while nearly all of the attention today has been on the urban design lessons of these developers and their projects, there are financing lessons they can teach us as well.
  • Topic: Demographics, Development, Economics, Markets
  • Political Geography: United States, Florida
  • Author: Tanvi Madan
  • Publication Date: 11-2006
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: The Brookings Institution
  • Abstract: Growth demands energy. It is no wonder that India — with an economy expected to grow at over 5 percent a year for the next twenty-five years — has developed a ravenous appetite for energy. India is the world's fifth largest consumer of energy, and by 2030 it is expected to become the third largest, overtaking Japan and Russia.
  • Topic: Security, Development, Energy Policy
  • Political Geography: Russia, Japan, India, Asia
  • Author: Norman J. Ornstein, Thomas E. Mann
  • Publication Date: 11-2006
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: The Brookings Institution
  • Abstract: The Framers of our nation created a political system built upon three vibrant, assertive, and active branches of government, with a series of checks and balances in place to make sure that no single branch or individual could accumulate too much power and threaten the rights and freedoms of citizens, and to create a deliberative process to make good public policy. Congress, the first branch of government, was designed to be the linchpin of this system, the body closest to the people, with the most robust specified powers.
  • Topic: Development, Economics, Politics
  • Political Geography: United States
  • Author: Royce Hanson, Hal Wolman, David Connolly, Katherine Pearson
  • Publication Date: 09-2006
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: The Brookings Institution
  • Abstract: Business-led civic organizations have historically played an important role in urban policymaking, planning, and renewal. These elite organizations of CEOs of the area's largest employers could quickly mobilize their members' personal devotion to the community, their deal making talent, and their ability to commit corporate financial resources to their city's emerging needs.
  • Topic: Development, Economics, Emerging Markets, Industrial Policy
  • Political Geography: America
  • Author: Amy Liu
  • Publication Date: 08-2006
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: The Brookings Institution
  • Abstract: It has been one year since Hurricane Katrina struck the New Orleans area and the surrounding Gulf Coast. While longtime residents of these communities can easily rattle off the names of past hurricanes, “Katrina” will be emblazoned like no other. And for good reason: After accounting for all households and structures, Hurricane Katrina is the deadliest and costliest storm this country has ever seen, causing over 1,800 deaths to date and approximately $81.2 billion in total damage.
  • Topic: Development, Disaster Relief, Environment
  • Political Geography: United States
  • Author: Amy Liu, Matt Fellowes
  • Publication Date: 08-2006
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: The Brookings Institution
  • Abstract: Federal allocations in response to hurricanes Katrina, Rita, and Wilma now total $109 billion. Additionally, over $8 billion in tax relief is available. While these numbers appear quite large, widespread uncertainty exists over how much of this money has been spent and where.
  • Topic: Development, Disaster Relief, Environment
  • Political Geography: United States
  • Author: Sean Fremstad, Margy Waller
  • Publication Date: 08-2006
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: The Brookings Institution
  • Abstract: State officials are spending Temporary Assistance funds quite differently from the early years after welfare reform. States now spend a majority of Temporary Assistance funds on benefits and services other than cash assistance, and the beneficiaries of these benefits and services include a substantial number of families who do not receive cash assistance.
  • Topic: Development, Economics, Humanitarian Aid
  • Political Geography: United States
  • Author: Jonathan Martin, Robert Puentes, Rolf Pendall
  • Publication Date: 08-2006
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: The Brookings Institution
  • Abstract: A key component of the struggle for prosperity in American metropolitan areas is development patterns, which define everything from density to the socioeconomic make up of residents. Development patterns are partly a consequence of decisions by local governments—often with very little coordination, oversight, or even guidance from state or regional entities—about the physical character of new growth. Among the most important of these decisions is how to regulate land; a prerogative that local governments guard jealously.
  • Topic: Demographics, Development, Environment
  • Political Geography: United States, America
  • Author: Amy Liu, Matt Fellowes, Mia Mabanta
  • Publication Date: 08-2006
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: The Brookings Institution
  • Abstract: A review of dozens of key social and economic indicators on the progress of recovery in the New Orleans region since the impact of Hurricane Katrina finds that: Housing rehabilitation, and demolition, are well underway while the housing market tightens, raising rent and home prices. Across the most hard-hit parishes in the New Orleans area, the pace of demolitions has accelerated in the last six months while the number of permits issued for rehab has nearly doubled in the city. Yet, housing is less affordable as rent prices in the region have increased by 39 percent over the year and home sale prices have spiked in suburban parishes. Across the city, public services and infrastructure remain thin and slow to rebound. Approximately half of all bus and streetcar routes are back up and running, while only 17 percent of buses are in use, a level of service that has not changed since January. Gas and electricity service is reaching only 41 and 60 percent of the pre-Katrina customer base, respectively. The labor force in the New Orleans region is 30 percent smaller today than one year ago and has grown slowly over the last six months; meanwhile, the unemployment rate remains higher than pre-Katrina. The New Orleans metro area lost 190,000 workers over the past year, with the health and education services industries suffering the largest percentage declines. In the past six months, the region has seen 3.4 percent more jobs but much of that may reflect the rise in new job seekers. The unemployment rate is now 7.2 percent, higher than last August. Since last August, over $100 billion in federal aid has been dedicated to serving families and communities impacted by hurricanes Katrina, Rita, and Wilma. In the meantime, the number of displaced and unemployed workers remains high. To date, the federal government has approved approximately $109 billion in federal aid to the Gulf Coast states most impacted by the storms. Of these funds, nearly half has been dedicated to emergency and longer-term housing. In the meantime, an estimated 278,000 workers are still displaced by the storm, 23 percent of whom remain unemployed.
  • Topic: Development, Disaster Relief, Economics, Environment
  • Author: Michael J. Rich, Robert P. Stoker
  • Publication Date: 08-2006
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: The Brookings Institution
  • Abstract: In the wake of the devastation wrought by Hurricane Katrina, Congress enacted legislation creating Gulf Opportunity Zones (GO Zones) in localities in Alabama, Louisiana, and Missis- sippi that suffered the most extensive storm damage. Special tax incentives created in these areas are designed to encourage investment, job creation, and economic growth. While many studies have been done to evaluate the effectiveness of federal and state tax-based efforts to redevelop distressed areas, none of the learning has been reflected in policy debates about the Katrina recovery effort. The evidence suggests that tax incentives alone are not enough—they work better when combined with good planning, local capacity-building, and good governance across sectors. This paper will summarize the purpose of the Gulf Opportunity Zone tax program and explain how this latest endeavor reflects the 25-year evolution of federal efforts to use tax incentives as a core tool for revitalizing distressed areas.
  • Topic: Development, Disaster Relief, Economics, Environment
  • Political Geography: Alabama, Louisiana, Mississippi
  • Author: Cynthia Taeuber
  • Publication Date: 06-2006
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: The Brookings Institution
  • Abstract: Statistical agencies walk a fine line to meet the needs of two sets of customers: those who demand more detailed data to better understand complex policy questions, and those who demand that their responses to surveys or their use of public services be kept confidential.
  • Topic: Development, Economics, Government, Science and Technology
  • Author: William H. Frey, Audrey Singer
  • Publication Date: 06-2006
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: The Brookings Institution
  • Abstract: In the late summer of 2005, Hurricanes Katrina and Rita wrought severe damage along much of the Gulf Coast, stretching from Alabama west - ward to Texas, with perhaps the most devastating consequences for the greater New Orleans area.
  • Topic: Demographics, Development, Economics, Environment
  • Author: Pari Sabety
  • Publication Date: 05-2006
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: The Brookings Institution
  • Abstract: While some neighborhoods in American cities are resurgent, many others remain stubbornly entrenched in a cycle of underinvestment. A contributing factor is that—despite thriving immigrant populations, high volumes of cash transactions, and relatively stable housing markets—these neighborhoods are victims of an urban information gap which undervalues their commercial potential. The importance of good information for private and public investments is widely acknowledged, but fragmented funding, lack of standards, and spotty data has impeded either effective or universal use of these tools. This paper sets forth seven steps for practitioners and investors to follow in investing in local community information initiatives and, in turn, close the urban information gap and accelerate investment in these markets.
  • Topic: Development, Economics, Poverty
  • Political Geography: United States, America
  • Author: William Fulton, Linda E. Hollis, Chris Williamson, Erik Kancler
  • Publication Date: 04-2006
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: The Brookings Institution
  • Abstract: Land use, infrastructure, and open space policy play an important role in shaping metropolitan growth, and whether or not they are coordinated on the policy level, they do interact with each other in shaping those patterns. However, the exact interplay of these policies is not well understood. This paper uses two metropolitan areas—Orlando and Seattle—with differing growth management regimes to explore the effects of conscious growth policy on metropolitan form.
  • Topic: Civil Society, Development, Economics, Industrial Policy
  • Author: Alan Berube
  • Publication Date: 04-2006
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: The Brookings Institution
  • Abstract: In late 2004 and the first half of 2005, the US media elite caught the mobility bug. Within weeks of one another, three newspapers of national record – The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal , and the Los Angeles Times – each independently published a series of articles describing, by various measures, whether and how Americans are 'getting ahead' today. Collectively, the articles offered a re-examination of a powerful narrative in the United States: that of a classless society, with boundless opportunity awaiting those who choose to seize it.
  • Topic: Civil Society, Development
  • Political Geography: United States, United Kingdom, America, Europe
  • Author: Bruce Katz, Matt Fellowes, Mia Mabanta
  • Publication Date: 04-2006
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: The Brookings Institution
  • Abstract: Over the past thirty days, the number of new building perm its filed in the metro area more than quadrupled, and the first of thousands of homes destroyed by Katrina finally started being demolished in Orleans Parish. Meanwhile, the most recent population statistics released by the city of New Orleans in March showed that over 180,000 people now live in New Orleans. But, little or no progress was made in rebuilding many key components of the area's infrastructure and hospitality industry.
  • Topic: Development, Environment, Government, Industrial Policy
  • Author: Amy Liu, Matthew Fellowes
  • Publication Date: 03-2006
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: The Brookings Institution
  • Abstract: Federal allocations in response to hurricanes Katrina, Rita, and Wilma now total over $88 billion. Additionally, over $8 billion in tax relief is available, and another $19.8 billion in spending has been proposed by the Bush administration in February 2006. While these numbers appear quite large, widespread uncertainty exists over how much of this money has actually been spent and where.
  • Topic: Development, Economics, Environment, Government
  • Author: Kieran M. Killeen, John Sipple
  • Publication Date: 03-2006
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: The Brookings Institution
  • Abstract: As documented in four prior reports in this series, Upstate New York faces many common challenges, including economic decline, sprawling development, population and job loss, and concentrated poverty. The impact of these problems is not uniform across Upstate, however, as the regional landscape includes large and small cities, stable and unstable metropolitan economies, and economically isolated rural areas. The health and status of the K-12 educational systems is no exception.
  • Topic: Civil Society, Development, Education, Human Rights
  • Political Geography: New York
  • Author: Joseph Cortright
  • Publication Date: 03-2006
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: The Brookings Institution
  • Abstract: In recent years, "cluster strategies" have become a popular economic development approach among state and local policymakers and economic development practitioners. An industry cluster is a group of firms, and related economic actors and institutions, that are located near one another and that draw productive advantage from their mutual proximity and connections. Cluster analysis can help diagnose a region's economic strengths and challenges and identify realistic ways to shape the region's economic future. Yet many policymakers and practitioners have only a limited understanding of what clusters are and how to build economic development strategies around them.
  • Topic: Development, Economics, Government
  • Political Geography: United States
  • Author: William H. Frey
  • Publication Date: 03-2006
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: The Brookings Institution
  • Abstract: The idea of America as an ethnic “melting pot” gained currency at the turn of the 20th century, amid an unprecedented wave of European immigrants to the United States. At the turn of the 21st century, the melting pot ideal persists, but encompasses a more racially and ethnically diverse group of Americans, both native and foreign born. In particular, the higher growth rates of the nation's minority populations versus its white population animate this distinctly American concept.
  • Topic: Civil Society, Demographics, Development, Migration
  • Political Geography: New York, Asia, California, Chicago, Phoenix
  • Author: David Warren, Robert Puentes
  • Publication Date: 02-2006
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: The Brookings Institution
  • Abstract: One of the more encouraging metropolitan policy trends over the last several years is the increased attention on America's older, inner-ring, “first” suburbs. Beginning generally with Myron Orfield's Metropolitics in 1997, a slow but steady stream of research has started to shine a bright light on these places and begun to establish the notion that first suburbs have their own unique set of characteristics and challenges that set them apart from the rest of metropolitan America. Since then first suburbs in a few regions have assumed a small, but significant, role in advancing research and policy discussions about metropolitan growth and development.
  • Topic: Development, Economics, Migration
  • Political Geography: United States, America
  • Author: Alan Berube
  • Publication Date: 02-2006
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: The Brookings Institution
  • Abstract: The early years of the twenty- first century marked a period of change in both the labor market and in public policy for the nation's low-income working families. Most prominently, employment conditions deteriorated after 2000. The nation's unemployment rate climbed from 4 percent in 2000 to 6 percent in 2003. The unemployment rate for workers with less than a high school education rose to nearly 9 percent in 2003. Real hourly wages continued to increase slightly for most workers during this period, but the weak labor market reduced the number of hours worked, along with overall earnings and family incomes. The steady rise in labor force participation among low-income families during the 1990s, spurred in part by the 1996 welfare reform law and other policies to “make work pay,” gave way to a decline after 2000.
  • Topic: Development, Economics, Government, Human Welfare
  • Political Geography: New York
  • Author: Steve Holt
  • Publication Date: 02-2006
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: The Brookings Institution
  • Abstract: The Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC), the nation's largest antipoverty program for working families, plays an important role in the economic life of America's low- income households and communities. It increases the ability of workers in lower paying jobs to support themselves and their families. It represents a large inflow of resources into local economies. It magnifies the importance of the annual tax filing process. The federal EITC turned 30 years old in 2005. During the past 20 years, many states and localities have enacted versions of the federal credit to benefit their own residents. Meanwhile, a new generation of local leaders has emerged to publicize the availability of the EITC and related tax credits for lower-income families and neighborhoods, and to argue for progressive federal tax policies.
  • Topic: Development, Economics, Government
  • Political Geography: America
  • Author: Robert L. Axtell
  • Publication Date: 02-2006
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: The Brookings Institution
  • Abstract: Recently discovered facts concerning the size distribution of U.S. firms are recapitulated—in short, these sizes are closely approximated by the Zipf distribution, a Pareto (power law) distribution with exponent of unity. Interesting consequences of this result are then developed, having primarily to do with formulae for the distribution's moments, and difficulties of reasonably characterizing a 'typical' firm. Then, a leading candidate explanation for these data—the Kesten random growth process—is assessed in terms of its realism vis-á-vis actual firm growth. Insofar as it has fluctuations that are quite different in character from actual firm size variability, the Kesten and related stochastic growth processes qualify more as fables of firm growth than as credible explanations. Finally, new explanations of the facts are proposed by considering firms to be partitions of the set of all workers. Assuming all partitions to be equally likely, the observed distribution of firm sizes is hypothesized to be the distribution of block sizes in the most likely partitions. An alternative derivation of this distribution as a constrained optimization problem is also described. Given that these calculations involve unimaginably vast magnitudes, it seems just short of fantastic to consider them relevant empirically.
  • Topic: Development, Economics, Industrial Policy
  • Political Geography: United States
  • Author: Johannes F. Linn
  • Publication Date: 01-2006
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: The Brookings Institution
  • Abstract: Increased cooperation among the Central Asian republics stands to produce big gains for the people of the region. The benefits from reducing trade costs, increasing remittances from migrant workers, and more efficient use of water and energy resources could generate a regional economy twice as large and well off 10 years from now. The price of non-cooperation could also be large, a heavy toll extracted from the spread of disease, lost economic opportunities, natural disasters and environmental destruction, as well as conflict and insecurity. Both costs and benefits will be felt most among the region's poorer populations.
  • Topic: International Relations, Development, Economics, Government
  • Political Geography: Central Asia
  • Author: Jennifer S. Vey
  • Publication Date: 01-2006
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: The Brookings Institution
  • Abstract: In 2003, the Brookings Institution released a report on how to enhance Pennsylvania's economic competitiveness. “Back to Prosperity: A Competitive Agenda for Renewing Pennsylvania” called for the state to rejuvenate its many distinctive cities, towns, and older suburbs and to invest in the high quality service industries often located there. The Commonwealth's institutions of higher learning are among those industries.
  • Topic: Development, Economics, Education, Government
  • Political Geography: Pennsylvania
  • Author: H. Peyton Young
  • Publication Date: 12-2005
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: The Brookings Institution
  • Abstract: Innovations often spread by the communication of information among potential adopters. In the marketing literature, the standard model of new product diffusion is generated by information contagion: agents adopt once they hear about the existence of the product from someone else. In social learning models, by contrast, an agent adopts only when the perceived advantage of the innovation--”as revealed by the actions and experience of prior adopters--”exceeds a threshold determined by the agent's prior beliefs. We demonstrate that learning with heterogeneous priors generates adoption curves that have an analytically tractable, closed-form solution. Moreover there is a simple statistical test that discriminates between this type of process and a contagion model. Applied to Griliches' classic results on the adoption of hybrid corn, this test shows that learning with heterogeneous priors does a considerably better job of explaining the data than does the contagion model.
  • Topic: Civil Society, Demographics, Development, Education
  • Author: Ed Lazere, David Garrison
  • Publication Date: 11-2005
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: The Brookings Institution
  • Abstract: A 2003 report from the Government Accountability Office (GAO) found that the District of Columbia faces a large structural budget imbalance—that is, a persistent gap between its ability to raise revenues and the cost of providing basic services. DC's imbalance stems largely from its being a "city without a state" and from revenue limitations caused by the federal presence. The most logical solution to this problem would be an annual contribution from the federal government to help address the challenges that arise from DC's unique status as the nation's capital.
  • Topic: Civil Society, Development, Economics, Government
  • Political Geography: Colombia
  • Author: Lael Brainard
  • Publication Date: 08-2005
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: The Brookings Institution
  • Abstract: In recent weeks, aging rockers have reclaimed young fans by joining movie stars, faith-based groups, and leaders of developing nations in a global campaign to "Make Poverty History." World leaders have taken note: the push is on for a massive boost in official assistance flows and the cancellation of official debt. But as preparations move forward for the first heads of state stocktaking of the Millennium Development Goals at the United Nations in September, scant attention is being directed at the most powerful engine of growth and poverty alleviation: the private sector. This despite the fact that the past two decades have witnessed an enormous shift in resources away from the public sector to private hands, and private flows to developing countries are now more than twice the level of public flows.
  • Topic: Development, Economics, International Trade and Finance, Poverty
  • Political Geography: United Nations
  • Author: Lex Rieffel, James W. Fox
  • Publication Date: 08-2005
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: The Brookings Institution
  • Abstract: The Millennium Challenge Corporation (MCC) is seriously wounded. Unveiled by President Bush in March 2002 as a promising new bilateral aid instrument for tackling global poverty, the most prominent sign of the MCC's distress was the mid-summer resignation of Paul Applegarth, its first CEO. More disturbing are the cuts imposed by the Congressional committees marking up next year's budget.
  • Topic: Debt, Development, International Cooperation, Poverty
  • Author: William G. Gale, Peter R. Orszag
  • Publication Date: 07-2005
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: The Brookings Institution
  • Abstract: Under traditional formulations, lower capital income tax rates reduce the user cost of capital and stimulate investment. The traditional approach, however, implictly or explicitly considers a revenue-neutral reduction in capital income taxation. We extend the traditional approach by considering a reduction in taxes that generates an increase in the budget deficit; the expanded budget deficit raises interest rates and the opportunity cost of investment. This provides a mechanism through which tax cuts can raise the cost of capital. Representative calculations show that, even with relatively modest interest rate effects, the net effect of making the Administration's recent tax cuts permanent or a 10-percent reduction in individual income tax rates would be to raise the user cost of capital. Thus, sustained tax cuts can raise the cost of capital and reduce investment.
  • Topic: Development, Economics, Government
  • Political Geography: United States
  • Author: Lex Rieffel, James W. Fox
  • Publication Date: 07-2005
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: The Brookings Institution
  • Abstract: The Millennium Challenge Account (MCA) proposed by President George W. Bush in March 2002 is an important step toward smarter US assistance to low-income countries. While it cannot yet be said to represent a revolution in development assistance, it is a welcome experiment and merits substantial funding by the Congress.
  • Topic: International Relations, Development, Economics, Human Welfare
  • Political Geography: United States
  • Author: Paul A. Jargowsky, Rebecca Yang
  • Publication Date: 05-2005
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: The Brookings Institution
  • Abstract: No single metric can capture all the dimensions of as complex a phenomenon as poverty in an affluent society. Several different empirical strategies, each with strengths and weaknesses, may all contribute to a more complete understanding of the experience of living in poverty in a modern urban setting. The standard federal measure of poverty focuses narrowly on the income of families in comparison to a standard meant to reflect the cost of basic necessities (Orshansky 1963, 1965). The concentration of poverty adds a geographic component, by gauging the extent to which poor families are spatially isolated (Jargowsky and Bane 1991; Jargowsky 1997, 2003). Neither of these measures, however, adequately conveys the extent of social disorganization in poor neighborhoods that has figured so prominently in the political debates over public policies that address poverty and urban development.
  • Topic: Demographics, Development, Economics, Poverty
  • Author: Chad P. Bown, Bernard M. Hoekman
  • Publication Date: 05-2005
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: The Brookings Institution
  • Abstract: The poorest WTO member countries almost universally fail to engage as either complainants or interested third parties in formal dispute settlement activity related to their market access interests. This paper focuses on costs of the WTO's extended litigation process as an explanation for the potential but "missing" developing country engagement. We provide a positive examination of the current system, and we catalogue and analyze a set of proposals encouraging the private sector to provide DSU-specific legal assistance to poor countries. We investigate the role of legal service centres, non-governmental organizations, development organizations, international trade litigators, economists, consumer organizations, and even law schools to provide poor countries with the missing services needed at critical stages of the WTO's extended litigation process. In the absence of systemic rules reform, the public-private partnership model imposes a substantial cooperation burden on such groups as they organize export interests, estimate the size of improved market access payoffs, prioritize across potential cases, engage domestic governments, prepare legal briefs, assist in evidentiary discovery, and pursue the public relations effort required to induce foreign political compliance.
  • Topic: International Relations, Development, Economics, Third World
  • Author: Alice M. Rivlin, Isabel B. Sawhill
  • Publication Date: 04-2005
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: The Brookings Institution
  • Abstract: Sometimes good news poses hard choices. Over the next several decades Americans will be forced to make difficult decisions necessitated by the good news that people are living longer and that medical care has become far more effective (albeit more expensive) than ever in history. These choices will require adjustments by almost everyone—families, communities, employers, and older people themselves—but they will be most starkly evident in the federal budget.
  • Topic: Development, Economics, Government, Human Welfare
  • Author: Colin I. Bradford
  • Publication Date: 01-2005
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: The Brookings Institution
  • Abstract: Global health conditions are in a state of crisis. Not only are poor health conditions in poor countries ravaging lives and restraining development, but the HIV/AIDS pandemic is threatening to undermine progress on all other fronts in developing countries and menacing the sense of health security in industrial countries.
  • Topic: International Relations, Development, Human Welfare, Politics
  • Author: Simon Bagshaw, Diane Paul
  • Publication Date: 11-2004
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: The Brookings Institution
  • Abstract: In theory it seems quite straightforward. All United Nations humanitarian and development agencies have a role to play in ensuring respect for the human rights of persons who have become, or are at risk of becoming, displaced within the borders of their own country as a result of armed conflict and human rights violations.
  • Topic: Development, Human Welfare, Third World, United Nations
  • Author: W. Courtland Robinson
  • Publication Date: 05-2003
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: The Brookings Institution
  • Abstract: While it may have as many meanings as people who invoke its name, development generally has positive, though perhaps ambiguous, connotations. Uneven development is a bad thing and sustainable development is a good thing but, for the most part, under- developed countries and communities seek to become more developed, whether that is through improving health and livelihoods, expanding educational opportunities, or building infrastructure. But, as the citations above suggest, development does not benefit everyone equally and for some—indeed, for millions of people around the world—development has cost them their homes, their livelihoods, their health, and even their very lives. The suffering of those displaced by development projects can be as severe, and the numbers as large, as those displaced either internally or internationally by conflict and violence. What follows is an examination of the often-overlooked phenomenon of development-induced displacement, its causes, consequences and challenges for the international community.
  • Topic: Development, Human Welfare, Migration
  • Political Geography: Africa, Asia