Showing posts from February, 2015

NEW PAPER: "Russian Political Economy from Utopia to Social Engineering: An Introduction" [AKHABBAR & ALLISON]

ABSTRACT: "In September 2009, the editors of this special issue organized at Lausanne University a Workshop on the History of Russian Political Economy and Statistics at the turn of the 20th century. When preparing a call for paper for this journal, the editors realized that papers presented at the Lausanne Workshop addressed implicitly or explicitly questions about how to combine Economic Theory, Social Engineering and Utopia. The contributions contained in this issue suggest various possible configurations between these three categories of scientific inquiry." By: Amanar Akhabbar and Francois Allisson (ESSCA, University of Lausanne) Source:

NEW PAPER: "The Political Economy of Macroeconomic Policymaking: Economic Crises and Technocratic Governance"

ABSTRACT: "How do economic crisis a§ect national-level policy choices? Are technocratic advisors more likely to enter government during periods of severe economic volatility? If so, how does such governance a§ect economic policymaking and social responsiveness? In this paper, I evaluate the role of technocratic advisors on Latin American reforms. Building on the political psychology literature, I argue that collective crisis memories in technocratic communities have a disproportionate ináuence on elite-level policymaking. Employing an originally constructed data index, the Index of Economic Advisors, I conduct a large-N cross-national test from 1960-2011 to examine whether economic crises lead to more technocrats serving in presidential cabinets, and Önd that crises often professionalize presidential teams. The statistical results also show that technocratsígovernance approaches are conditioned by the nature of past shocks. An in- áationary crisis history makes budget austerity mo

NEW PAPER: "The political economy of inclusive rural growth" [CARTER & MORROW]

ABSTRACT: "Abstract Commentators on the `East Asian Miracle' of inclusive growth have often pointed toward shared rural growth policies. But why were these policies not chosen elsewhere? This paper models voters who invest in either subsistence or a complex technology in which public goods complement private capital. Investment and technology choices vary with wealth and the level of public goods enforced by political lobbies. Outcomes depend on the strength of the incipient middle class who bolster political incentives through contributions. Economies with a stronger middle class due to lower inequality or lower risk may thereby sustain higher productivity through public good provision."   Michael Carter & John Morrow. (Center for Economic Performane, CEP, LSE, UK)..  

NEW PAPER "The Political Economy of Sovereign Borrowing"

ABSTRACT: "Political economy theory expects politicians to use budget deÖcits to engineer an electiontimed boom, known as the political business cycle. We challenge and contextualize this view by incorporating the Önancial constraints faced by governments into an electoral framework. Employing a formal model, we show theoretically that the extent of ownership dispersion among creditors has important e§ects for governmentsí policy autonomy. Based on our theoretical results, we argue when highly-indebted governments become more reliant on international bond markets ñ as opposed to traditional bank lending ñ politicians alter the way they respond to domestic constituents. In an econometric test of 16 Latin American countries from 1961 to 2011, we show that Önancial decentralization breeds austerity. More speciÖcally, we Önd that politicians exhibit more Öscal discipline when they fund a greater share of their spending through decentralized bond markets. Furthermore, we Önd this disci