World Economics Journal Archive

The contents of all previous issues of World Economics are listed below. Subscribers have access to the complete back issue archive: click on titles to view abstracts and full text of articles (PDF). If you are not a subscriber please visit our online store to order a subscription.


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Goods and Bads Goods and Bads
Ralph Turvey, World Economics, December 2000
There is a high degree of symmetry between economic goods and economic bads. Snow, litter and street mud are cited as examples. Economic growth obviously results in an increase in the supply of bads as well as goods. In addition, however, because it raises the value o ... More


Sending the Herd off the Cliff Edge Sending the Herd off the Cliff Edge: The disturbing interaction between herding and market-sensitive risk management practices
Avinash Persaud, World Economics, December 2000
In the international financial arena, policy makers chant three things: market-sensitive risk-management, transparency and prudential standards. The message is we do not need a new world order, just to improve the workings of the existing one. While many believe this is ... More


Demographic Risk in Industrial Societies Demographic Risk in Industrial Societies: Independent population forecasts for the G-7 countries
Sylvester J. Schieber & Paul S. Hewitt, World Economics, December 2000
There is a growing awareness of the aging of populations around the world and the implications for national retirement programs. In most cases, estimates of population aging are based on fixed assumptions about fertility, improvements in life expectancy, and immigratio ... More


Hardship and Happiness Hardship and Happiness: Mobility and public perceptions during market reforms
Carol Graham & Stefano Pettinato, World Economics, December 2000
This paper focuses on an age-old puzzle: why some societies peacefully tolerate high levels of inequality and others do not. The authors posit that opportunity and mobility over time are as important as current distributions are to the explanation. Assessments of past ... More


From Rags to Riches From Rags to Riches: Ireland’s economic boom
Brendan Walsh, World Economics, December 2000
This article explores the factors behind the Irish economic renaissance of the 1990s. These include the fiscal correction of the 1980s, the availability of an ample supply of well-educated labour, a competitive exchange rate, and the inflow of EU aid. The reintroducti ... More


Why Did the Protected Areas Fail the Giant Panda? Why Did the Protected Areas Fail the Giant Panda?: The economics of conserving endangered species in developing countries
Timothy M. Swanson & Andreas Kontoleon, World Economics, December 2000
Most biodiversity lies within the developing world, and much of it is under threat because of forces for change within these countries. In order to be effective, biodiversity conservation must be viewed as a development opportunity, rather than as a constraint on devel ... More


Biodiversity in the Marketplace Biodiversity in the Marketplace
Geoffrey Heal , World Economics, December 2000
What is the nature of biodiversity as an economic commodity and why does it matter? How would its conservation contribute economically to our well-being? In this article, Geoffrey Heal considers three issues: Why is biodiversity important from an economic perspective? W ... More


How Much Damage Will Climate Change Do? How Much Damage Will Climate Change Do?: Recent estimates
Richard S.J. Tol, Samuel Fankhauser, Richard G. Richels & Joel B. Smith, World Economics, December 2000
Two reasons to be concerned about climate change are its unjust distributional impact and its negative aggregate effect on economic growth and welfare. Although our knowledge of the impact of climate change is incomplete and uncertain, economic valuation is difficult an ... More


The Market for Olympic Gold Medals The Market for Olympic Gold Medals
Stefan Szymanski, World Economics, December 2000
From a national perspective the Sydney Olympics were almost completely predictable. Statistical modelling shows that population size and income per head provide an almost faultless method for identifying medal totals. However, it is probably the discrepancies that are ... More


False Attack False Attack: Misrepresenting the Human Development Report and misunderstanding the need for rethinking global governance
Richard Jolly, World Economics, September 2000
In this rejoinder to David Henderson’s article "False Perspective: the UNDP view of the world" (World Economics Vol 1 No 1 January-March 2000), Richard Jolly, former special adviser to the Administrator of the United Nations Development Programme, argues that Hen ... More


Sins of the Commission Sins of the Commission: The Meltzer Report on international financial institutions
Graham Bird, World Economics, September 2000
In the aftermath of the East Asian financial crisis there has been much discussion of a new international financial architecture. A significant contribution to this debate is the Report of the International Financial Institution Advisory Commission, sponsored by the US ... More


Response to Professor Bird Response to Professor Bird
Allan Meltzer, World Economics, September 2000
Allan Meltzer responds to Graham Bird’s article "Sins Of The Commission: The Meltzer Report On International Financial Institutions" [World Economics, Vol.1, No.3, July-September 2000]. In that article, Bird argued that the International Financial Institutions Ad ... More


The International Economic System in the Twentieth Century The International Economic System in the Twentieth Century: An interview with Barry Eichengreen
Brian Snowdon, World Economics, September 2000
This wide-ranging discussion takes in globalisation, the causes of the Great Depression (and the likelihood of future recurrences), the Marshall Plan and post-war European recovery, growth in the 1950s and 60s followed by the problems of the 70s, and the strengths and w ... More


Save the Planet: Sell Carbon Save the Planet: Sell Carbon
David Pearce, World Economics, September 2000
This article examines the political economy of agreements on global greenhouse emissions reduction. The author explains the complex emissions trading mechanisms set up under the 1997 Kyoto Protocol and considers the likely size and structure of a future market for emiss ... More


Technical Progress and Global Warming Technical Progress and Global Warming: The case for a technology policy
Dennis Anderson, World Economics, September 2000
The case is argued for a larger and more explicit role for technology policies in responding to climate change. Policies and institutions set up during the Cold War arms race could be reformed and redirected towards the goal of making renewable energy a viable competito ... More


Market-based Instruments Market-based Instruments: If they’re so good, why aren’t they the norm?
Tannis Seccombe-Hett, World Economics, September 2000
Economists have long recommended market-based instruments for efficient environmental policy-making – taxes, tradable permits, auctions of property rights, etc. So why is progress on them so slow? The reality is that any environmental policy faces many political, insti ... More


Can Agriculture Become an Environmental Asset? Can Agriculture Become an Environmental Asset?
Daniel W. Bromley, World Economics, September 2000
Traditional treatments see agricultural practices as inimical to many environmental attributes in rural areas. In the policy arena, farmers and environmentalists often clash over land-use practices, crop monoculture, animal wastes, and the application of chemicals – th ... More


A Multi-coloured GDP -or No New GDP at All? A Multi-coloured GDP -or No New GDP at All?
Horst Zimmermann, World Economics, September 2000
This is a reply to Giles Atkinson’s article ‘Re-thinking Economic Progress’ that appeared in the first issue of World Economics (Vol. 1, No. 1, January – March 2000). Atkinson discussed proposals for the construction of ‘green’ alternatives to Gross Domestic Product (GD ... More


Reply to Professor Zimmermann Reply to Professor Zimmermann
Giles Atkinson, World Economics, September 2000
Giles Atkinson replies to Professor Zimmermann’s "A Multi-coloured GDP -or No New GDP at All?"[World Economics, Vol 1 No 3 July-September 2000] ... More


Owner-occupiers and the Price Index Owner-occupiers and the Price Index
Ralph Turvey, World Economics, September 2000
The treatment of owner-occupied dwellings in Consumer Price Indexes varies between countries and is the subject of continuing controversy. Ralph Turvey explains the alternative possible treatments and reasons for disagreement.

... More


Housing in the South East of England Housing in the South East of England: Some issues raised by the Government’s plans
David Miles, World Economics, June 2000
Plans recently unveiled by the UK government will, if implemented, generate a
major increase in new housebuilding in one of the most crowded and congested
parts of the UK. The plans fail to take account of the impact on people living in
London and the Sou ... More


An Economic Analysis of Campaign Finance An Economic Analysis of Campaign Finance
Andrea Prat, World Economics, June 2000
Electoral campaign finance is an important, and much debated, phenomenon in
democracies throughout the world. This article discusses a possible economic
model of campaign finance, which could be used for policy evaluation. At the
core of the model lies an ... More


Welfare-to-work and the New Deal Welfare-to-work and the New Deal
Richard Layard, World Economics, June 2000
Welfare-to-work is on trial in many countries. In Britain it has become the
government’s most important policy for lowering unemployment and expanding
labour supply. But can it work? And what lessons does Britain’s experience
provide for other countries? ... More


The Thirty-five Hour Working Week The Thirty-five Hour Working Week: Flexibilité, compétitivité, productivité-a French Revolution
Alan Kirman, World Economics, June 2000
The introduction of a reduced working week (RWW) in France has been widely condemned as an arbitrary additional constraint in an already rigid labour market. This article explores the origins of the law, and the reasons for the negative appreciation by economists of thi ... More


Poles Apart Poles Apart: Labour market performance and the distribution of work across households
Paul Gregg, Kirstine Hansen & Jonathan Wadsworth, World Economics, June 2000
Analysis of labour market performance using individual level data can reach radically different conclusions to those provided by a household-based analysis, using the same source of information. In Britain and other OECD countries the number of households without access ... More


Understanding Labour Market Institutions Understanding Labour Market Institutions
Gilles Saint-Paul, World Economics, June 2000
Labour market rigidities are often considered to be responsible for high unemployment in Europe. This paper outlines a theory explaining why they may be supported by the political system, and where their support comes from. Labour market rigidities are likely to arise ... More


The US “Underclass” in a Booming Economy The US “Underclass” in a Booming Economy
Richard B. Freeman, World Economics, June 2000
The main failure in the US economy in the 1980s through the mid 1990s was its inability to distribute the gains of economic growth to the bulk of the population. The traditional “rising tide lifts all boats” link between economic growth and poverty seemed broken, creati ... More


The Political Economy of Sport The Political Economy of Sport
Stefan Szymanski, World Economics, June 2000
The political constitutions of both the US and Europe provide no guidance on the role of organised sport in society. Without a proper set of rules politicians are finding sports issues increasingly hard to handle. In the US there is widespread concern at the commercia ... More


Proposals for a better International Financial System Proposals for a better International Financial System
Stephany Griffith-Jones, World Economics, June 2000
This paper analyses three essential functions of global financial market management that currently are not properly met, and could best be met by new institutional developments: 1. prudential regulation; 2. provision of official liquidity to countries or markets in cris ... More


Is there a Case for an Asian Monetary Fund? Is there a Case for an Asian Monetary Fund?
Graham Bird & Ramkishen Rajan, World Economics, June 2000
The East Asian financial crisis has spawned a number of proposals for institutional reform. Some envisage reforming existing institutions, particularly the International Monetary Fund (IMF), while others suggest that new institutions are needed. Amongst them is the idea ... More


A Non-technical Introduction to Bargaining Theory A Non-technical Introduction to Bargaining Theory
Abhinay Muthoo, World Economics, June 2000
This article presents some principles of bargaining theory in a non-technical language in order to make them accessible to people outside the academic community. These principles are presented keeping in view several real-life situations confronting Presidents and Pri ... More


From Big Macs to iMacs From Big Macs to iMacs: What do international price comparisons tell us?
Jonathan Haskel & Holger Wolf, World Economics, June 2000
The authors review recent international price comparisons to examine the veracity of claims about “rip-off Britain”. They reach three conclusions. First, methodologically, the data requirements for a meaningful price comparison are very demanding and most of the evidenc ... More


False Perspective: The UNDP View of the World False Perspective: The UNDP View of the World
David Henderson, World Economics, March 2000
Despite some searching and unanswered criticisms of its treatment of statistical evidence, the UNDP Human Development Report has become established as a widely-quoted and influential survey of the world scene. The 1999 Report, reviewed here, focuses on ‘globalization’. ... More


Prophesies of Doom at the Turn of the Millennium Prophesies of Doom at the Turn of the Millennium: A critical review of the fallacies about the end of work
Mauricio Rojas, World Economics, March 2000
Predictions about the "end of work" are widespread. A growing body of literature argues that growth is destroying more jobs than it created. New technology and globalisation are syndicated as the causes of this development that in the long run will condemn the majority ... More


Values Matter Values Matter
Avner Ben-Ner & Louis Putterman, World Economics, March 2000
Human beings display a complex set of behavioural predispositions, including a strong inclination to pursue self-interest but also empathy, receptivity to norms of reciprocity, and an inclination to punish violators of such norms. Not only are workable economic arrange ... More


Achieving the goals of UK Pension Reform Achieving the goals of UK Pension Reform
Frank Field, World Economics, March 2000
There is an inevitable tension between the aim of providing enough income in retirement for those genuinely unable to build up a sufficiently large fund of their own and the aim of preserving people’s incentives to save for their own retirement. The author argues that ... More


The Public/Private Mix in UK Pension Policy The Public/Private Mix in UK Pension Policy
Phil Agulnik & Nicholas Barr, World Economics, March 2000
The UK government aims to shift the balance between public (Pay-As-You-Go) and private (funded) pensions from 60:40 today to 40:60 by 2050 (UK DSS 1998). What is the economic rationale for this shift? Funding pensions may have a positive effect on economic growth and th ... More


Pension Reform in Germany Pension Reform in Germany: To fund or not to fund
Axel Börsch-Supan, World Economics, March 2000
German public retirement insurance is in many respects an extreme example of the typical European pay-as-you-go pension system because almost 85% of retirement income stems from this system and only 15% comes from private sources such as funded pensions, labour income, ... More


European Pension Reforms European Pension Reforms: A study by Merrill Lynch
Jan Mantel & David Bowers, World Economics, March 2000
Are the present pension systems in Europe substainable? Can the pensions time bomb caused by demographic changes be defused? This study describes developments in Europe, but the theory, the problems and the solutions are similar for most developed nations in the rest of ... More


Extending the UK National Accounts Extending the UK National Accounts: What can be done?
Amanda Rowlatt, World Economics, March 2000
The national accounts measure economic activity. The UK is developing "satellite accounts" which use the framework of the national accounts but aim to quantify other aspects of living standards. This article starts by comparing satellite accounts with the use of indic ... More


Re-thinking Economic Progress Re-thinking Economic Progress
Giles Atkinson, World Economics, March 2000
Most national governments have pledged a commitment to sustainable development. The transformation of these pledges into policy is a formidable challenge. Of particular interest are proposals for the construction of green alternatives to Gross Domestic Product (GDP), ... More


The Black Economy - Benefit frauds or tax evaders? The Black Economy - Benefit frauds or tax evaders?
Jim Thomas, World Economics, March 2000
One answer to the question "How Rich are We?" is to compare levels of National Income either across countries or for a single country over time. However, the relevance of this approach depends on how accurately National Income measures the output of goods and services ... More