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  • Author: Tito Bianchi
  • Publication Date: 10-1999
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: United Nations University
  • Abstract: The development literature considers associations an important economic development tool that allows producers to pursue their economic welfare collectively and through participatory means. This paper comparatively analyses the experience of three associations of agricultural producers in the underdeveloped regions of Brazil and Italy that were successful in this economic development task. Their experience, however, challenges a commonly held view about the participatory nature of associations.
  • Topic: Development, Economics
  • Political Geography: Europe, Brazil, South America, Latin America
  • Author: Manfred J. Holler
  • Publication Date: 08-1999
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: United Nations University
  • Abstract: This paper discusses the theoretical concepts underlying recent developments in the regulation of telecommunications in Europe, the USA and developing countries with respect to efficiency and welfare. It focuses on analysing standardization problems, pricing rules and entry condition related to networks and network effects and derives preliminary policy recommendations for the telecommunications industry through a discussion of network models and related empirical evidence.
  • Topic: Emerging Markets, International Political Economy, Science and Technology
  • Political Geography: United States, Europe
  • Author: Ronald Findlay, Mats Lundahl
  • Publication Date: 07-1999
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: United Nations University
  • Abstract: Resource-Led Growth – A Long-Term Perspective surveys the 1870-1914 experience of growth in resource-rich economies: the so-called regions of recent settlement, some tropical countries and some mineral-based export economies. First, three contrasting stylized views of resource-led development are presented. Thereafter the picture of international trade in primary products and the migration of production factors between 1870 and 1914 is sketched. The third section presents some models that may be used to analyse trade and factor movements in the context of resource-rich (staples) economies and provides some details of the experience of fifteen countries: Canada, the United States, Australia and Argentina among the regions of recent settlement, Brazil, Costa Rica, Colombia, Ceylon, Malaya, Burma, Siam and the Gold Coast in the tropical group, and Bolivia, Chile and South Africa among the mineral exporters.
  • Topic: Economics, Environment, International Political Economy
  • Political Geography: United States, Canada, South Africa, Burma, Chile, Bolivia
  • Author: Frances Stewart, Judith Heyer, Rosemary Thorp
  • Publication Date: 06-1999
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: United Nations University
  • Abstract: A very large amount of activity occurs within groups (that is within families, firms, co-operatives, communities or governments). Yet most economic analysis focuses on market transactions between these agents. The purpose of the study is to analyse within group behaviour. Evidence suggests some groups perform well from the perspective of efficiency, equity and well-being, while others perform poorly. The study aims to identify the main causes for these different outcomes, developing a preliminary analysis of modes of group behaviour, and influences on them.
  • Topic: Economics, Education, Emerging Markets
  • Author: Päivi Mattila-Wiro
  • Publication Date: 04-1999
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: United Nations University
  • Abstract: The aim of this paper is to review the principal assumptions and aspects of the unitary household model and collective models of household behaviour. Empirical studies are presented to assess whether the theories can offer adequate descriptions of household behaviour and to examine the types of policy implications that can be drawn from these. The paper concludes that the models reviewed lack the analytical tools to provide an understanding of the reality of households. Theories are unrealistic and therefore are of little use in the design of policies or projects which endeavour to help people
  • Topic: Economics, Education, Emerging Markets
  • Author: Daniele Checchi
  • Publication Date: 04-1999
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: United Nations University
  • Abstract: In the current debate on the relationship between inequality in income distribution and growth one of the possible link works through the access to education. After reviewing this debate, a formal model shows how the imperfection of financial markets makes educational choices dependent on the distribution of family incomes. This leads to two testable predictions in the analysis of aggregate data on school enrolments: a negative (linear) relation with the Gini coefficient on incomes distribution; and a positive dependence on public resources invested in education and/or on skill premium in the labour market. These predictions are then tested on a (unbalanced) panel of 102 countries for the period 1960-90. The main findings of this analysis are that, once we control for the degree of development with the (log of) per capita output, financial constraints seem mainly relevant in limiting the access to secondary education. However, when considering gender differences, there is evidence that female participation in education is more strongly conditioned by family wealth, starting from primary education. On the contrary there is no clear evidence of a relevant impact of invested resources, but at the tertiary level.
  • Topic: Economics, Education, Emerging Markets
  • Author: Giovanni Andrea Cornia
  • Publication Date: 03-1999
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: United Nations University
  • Abstract: Recent mainstream analyses of changes in income distribution over the post World War II period have concluded that income inequality within countries tends to be stable, that there is no strong association between growth and inequality and that, therefore, poverty is best reduced through growth-oriented, rather than distributive, policies.
  • Topic: Economics, Globalization, International Political Economy
  • Author: Jian Sun
  • Publication Date: 02-1999
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: United Nations University
  • Abstract: Since the beginning of the Chinese economic reforms in 1978, there has been a series of effort to reform the labour compensation practice in state-owned enterprises to strengthen the link between pay and productivity. Despite the reforms, however, rapid increases in wage rates occurred in state-owned enterprises. Moreover, although state-owned enterprises have much lower productivity gains than non-state enterprises, they pay substantially higher wages and have faster wage growth.
  • Topic: Economics, Globalization, Industrial Policy, International Political Economy
  • Political Geography: China, Asia
  • Author: Abdur Chowdhury
  • Publication Date: 02-1999
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: United Nations University
  • Abstract: What started in the summer of 1997 as a regional economic and financial crisis in East and Southeast Asia had developed into a global financial crisis within the span of a year. This crisis followed the crisis in the European Monetary System in 1992–3 and the Mexican peso crisis in 1994–5. However, unlike the previous two crises, the scale and depth of the Asian crisis surprised everyone. One obvious reason for this is East and Southeast Asia's track record of economic success. Since the 1960s, no other group of countries in the world has produced more rapid economic growth or such a dramatic reduction in poverty. Given so many years of sustained economic performance the obvious question is: how could events in Asia unfold as they did?
  • Topic: Economics, International Political Economy
  • Political Geography: Europe, Asia, Southeast Asia
  • Author: Danny Quah
  • Publication Date: 01-1999
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: United Nations University
  • Abstract: Can the increasing significance of knowledge-products in national income—the growing weightless economy—influence economic development? Those technologies reduce "distance" between consumers and knowledge production. This paper analyzes a model embodying such a reduction. The model shows how demand-side attributes—consumer attitudes on complex goods; training, education, and skills for consumption (rather than production)—can importantly affect patterns of economic growth and development. Evidence from the failed Industrial Revolution in 14th-century China illustrates the empirical relevance of the analysis.
  • Topic: Development, Economics, Science and Technology
  • Political Geography: China