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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Economists and Sustainable Development Economists and Sustainable Development: The OECD Report on Policies for Sustainable Development
Wilfred Beckerman, World Economics, December 2001
The OECD report is almost exclusively about environmental policy (on which it contains a mass of useful data and discussion). There is, commendably, hardly any discussion of the implications of the usual core condition in consensus definitions of sustainable developm ... More


What Do We Know About the Shadow Economy? What Do We Know About the Shadow Economy?: Evidence from 21 OECD countries
Friedrich Schneider, World Economics, December 2001
Estimates of the size of the shadow economy in 21 OECD countries are presented. The average size of the shadow economy (as a percentage of ‘official’ GDP) over 1999/2000 in these countries is 16.7%. The author concludes that it is the increasing burden of taxation an ... More


What Happened to the Washington Consensus? What Happened to the Washington Consensus?
Graham Bird, World Economics, December 2001
At the beginning of the 1990s it appeared that there was considerable agreement about the kind of economic policies that countries turning to the IMF and the World Bank should pursue. These included macroeconomic stabilisation, microeconomic liberalisation and openne ... More


Championing Free Trade in the Second Age of Globalisation Championing Free Trade in the Second Age of Globalisation: Jagdish Bhagwati on trade, democracy and growth
An interview with introduction by Brian Snowdon
World Economics, December 2001
Professor Jagdish Bhagwati is without question one of the world’s leading economists and an authority on the principles and practice of foreign trade. In his extensive research over the past forty years he has made seminal contributions to trade theory and policy, publ ... More


Cohabiting with Goliath Cohabiting with Goliath: How small equity exchanges will survive in the future
Avinash Persaud, World Economics, December 2001
The surviving legacy of the Long Term Capital debacle of October 1998 is an increased preference for liquidity among international investors. This process has a self-fulfilling element with liquidity following investors out of the less liquid markets and into the mor ... More


Why is There No AIDS Vaccine? Why is There No AIDS Vaccine?: A new economic explanation
Pedro Rey Biel, World Economics, December 2001
This paper provides an economic explanation for the non-existence of a vaccine against AIDS. It comments on previously claimed economic reasons why private laboratories do not have incentives to invest in an AIDS vaccine and provides a new one: private companies alre ... More


Prohibition and the Market for Illegal Drugs Prohibition and the Market for Illegal Drugs: An overview of recent history
Suren Basov , Mireille Jacobson & Jeffrey A. Miron, World Economics, December 2001
Over the past 25 years in the United States, enforcement of drug prohibition has expanded dramatically. Over the same period, however, the trends in drug production and consumption have been essentially flat, and the real, purityadjusted prices of both cocaine and her ... More


Measuring Global Drug Markets Measuring Global Drug Markets: How good are the numbers and why should we care about them?
Peter Reuter & Victoria Greenfield , World Economics, December 2001
The continuing demand for measures of the size of global drug revenues has produced a supply of numbers that consistently overstate international financial flows. This paper shows that, rather than $500 billion, the annual figure in trade terms may be about $25 billi ... More


Up for the Cup Up for the Cup
Stefan Szymanski, World Economics, December 2001
Measured by attendance of football fans, the FA Cup is in decline. This paper reviews the evidence of this decline and suggests that the underlying cause may be the growing imbalance of competition in the Cup. The paper considers the drastic innovation that the FA in ... More


Economic Globalisation Economic Globalisation: How far and how much further?
Ramkishen Rajan & Graham Bird, World Economics, September 2001
The concept of globalisation has received a great deal of popular attention in recent years. However, the term is often used quite loosely. When defined to mean closer international economic integration, the evidence shows that the extent of globalisation may easily ... More


Wealth as a Criterion for Sustainable Development Wealth as a Criterion for Sustainable Development
Partha Dasgupta & Karl-Göran Mäler, World Economics, September 2001
In this article the authors define sustainable development as an economic programme along which social well-being does not decline over time. It can be shown that the requirement is equivalent to the maintenance of a comprehensive measure of wealth, where an economy’ ... More


Redefining the Role of the State Redefining the Role of the State: Joseph Stiglitz on building a ‘post-Washington consensus’
An interview with introduction by Brian Snowdon
World Economics, September 2001
An interview with introduction by Brian Snowdon
Professor Joseph Stiglitz is without question one of the world’s leading economists. In his extensive research he has made seminal contributions to the analysis of the economic consequences of incomplete informa ... More


Global Income Inequality Global Income Inequality: Beliefs, facts and unresolved issues
Arne Melchior, World Economics, September 2001
While several international organisations have argued that income gaps between countries have increased during the last decades, the opposite conclusion is obtained if countries are weighted according to their population size, and if price-level-adjusted income data a ... More


The Debt-Relief Initiative for Poor Countries The Debt-Relief Initiative for Poor Countries: Good news for the poor?
Gustav Ranis & Frances Stewart, World Economics, September 2001
This paper reviews the new debt-relief initiative for Highly-Indebted Poor Countries (HIPCs) designed to reduce the debt burden of potentially 36 poor countries. It finds that the HIPC initiative is not likely to make a major contribution to the problems of the world ... More


NGOs and International Economic Policy-Making NGOs and International Economic Policy-Making: Rights and responsibilities in the global arena
Michael Edwards, World Economics, September 2001
NGOs and other citizens’ groups are enjoying an unprecedented upsurge in their profile and influence in global debates over international economic policy. Public opinion polls show this to be a popular trend, but the outcome of greater civil society involvement depen ... More


Policy-Making in Resource-Rich Countries Policy-Making in Resource-Rich Countries: Lessons from Zambia
Arne Bigsten, World Economics, September 2001
Economic development depends upon resource availability, resource allocation, and the efficiency of resource use. One would presume that countries with an abundance of natural resources would stand a better chance of developing than resource-poor countries. Recent ex ... More


The International Arms Industry Since the End of the Cold War The International Arms Industry Since the End of the Cold War
Ron Smith, World Economics, September 2001
This article surveys the evolution of the international arms market since the end of the Cold War. It begins with the policy context, the choices made by the national Ministries of Defence and the constraints they faced. It then looks at the choices available to the ar ... More


A Night at the Opera A Night at the Opera: Subsidies, prices and repertoire at London’s opera houses
Jeff Frank & Philip Wrigley, World Economics, September 2001
This paper considers how the behaviour of the two London opera houses differs from profit-maximisation, possibly in response to the high level of government funding and private donations. The opera houses put on more innovative and artistically rewarding operas than ... More


Bad Market Days Bad Market Days: Lessons from the stock market crashes of 1929 & 1987
Harold Bierman, World Economics, September 2001
There are a large number of misconceptions regarding the great stock market crash of 1929 and the crash of 1987. Both crashes occurred when the general level of business was good and getting better. In 1929 there were very few hints that the great depression was two ye ... More


Is Public Spending Good for You? Is Public Spending Good for You?
Yew-Kwang Ng, World Economics, June 2001
Studies by psychologists, sociologists and economists indicate that increases in incomes beyond about US$4,000 are not related to happiness nor significantly with the objective quality-of-life indicators (which increase with scientific and technological breakthroughs at ... More


Negotiating Trade Negotiating Trade
David Flath, World Economics, June 2001
If unilateral free trade is the best policy, then why are international treaties needed to achieve it? The reason may be found in the Becker theory of competition among political pressure groups. By entering wide-ranging negotiations, nations shift the political ques ... More


IMF Programmes: Is there a conditionality Laffer Curve? IMF Programmes: Is there a conditionality Laffer Curve?
Graham Bird, World Economics, June 2001
The long-standing debate over IMF conditionality has received a new lease of life in the context of the debate over a new international financial architecture. Conditionality has increased in recent years and some proposals for reform envisage a continuation of this t ... More


Is the Internet Better than Electricity? Is the Internet Better than Electricity?
Martin Brookes & Zaki Wahhaj, World Economics, June 2001
This article looks at the economic impact of electrification in the United States to gain insights about the possible consequences of today’s information technologies. A close study reveals that electrification significantly raised productivity growth by spurring a r ... More


The Rebirth of the Corporate Bond Market The Rebirth of the Corporate Bond Market
Bill Robinson, John Raven & Christopher Chua , World Economics, June 2001
There has been a major switch from equity to debt finance in recent years, associated with a fall in the long-term rate of interest. The paper explores the macro-economic causes of the sea change in interest rates (lower budget deficits, independent central banks, lo ... More


Keeping the Keynesian Faith Keeping the Keynesian Faith: Alan Blinder on the evolution of macroeconomics
An interview with introduction by Brian Snowdon
World Economics, June 2001
This wide-ranging discussion takes in the development of macroeconomics and the influence of ideas and events on that development, the nature and causes of the Great Depression, Keynesianism, lessons from the high-inflation period of the 1970s, the role of macroeconomic ... More


Latin America: The Long and Winding Road to Growth Latin America: The Long and Winding Road to Growth
Federico Foders , World Economics, June 2001
This paper reviews recent economic reforms carried out in Latin America and relates them to the long-run economic trends in the region. After a brief overview of growth and income distribution patterns of Latin American countries in the nineteenth and twentieth centu ... More


Revisiting The Death of Economics Revisiting The Death of Economics
Paul Ormerod , World Economics, June 2001
Paul Ormerod achieved notoriety, even opprobrium among orthodox economists, with the publication in 1994 of his best-selling book The Death of Economics. Ormerod’s aim was to provide a critique of conventional economics which was accessible to general readers. He des ... More


Promotion and Relegation Promotion and Relegation
Stefan Szymanski & Stephen Ross, World Economics, June 2001
One of the most distinctive differences between team sports in Europe and North America is the institution of promotion and relegation. This paper looks into the history of why this institution developed in Europe but not North America, and considers what effects it ... More


Wanted: Measures of Economic Change Wanted: Measures of Economic Change
Ralph Turvey, World Economics, June 2001
Economic growth may involve change, but there can be change without economic growth insofar as outputs of some products or employment in some regions or industries grows while there are equal decreases elsewhere. National accounts data do not reveal such shifts, yet ... More


How Clear is the Crystal Ball? How Clear is the Crystal Ball?: Reflections on the accuracy of growth forecasts
Prakash Loungani, World Economics, March 2001
Two salie nt features of growth forecasts are discussed. First, recessions generally arrive before the forecast. Slowdowns are predicted but forecasters are unable or unwilling to call recessions. Second, private sector forecasts tend to be similar to those of official ... More


The Modern Motor Industry The Modern Motor Industry: Nowhere for the inefficient to hide
Garel Rhys, World Economics, March 2001
The motor industry is experiencing one of its periods of massive change. This involves considerable micro- and macroeconomic effects, reflecting the structure and behaviour of the industry and its scale of operations within an economy. The industry is a highly rivalr ... More


Can Bettors Win? Can Bettors Win?: A perspective on the economics of betting
Leighton Vaughan Williams, World Economics, March 2001
In this paper, a survey is undertaken of studies that examines the extent to which systematic patterns of behaviour in betting markets can generate above-average or even abnormal returns, the latter being most conveniently defined for these purposes as a profit. The p ... More


Eastern Enlargement and EU Labour Markets Eastern Enlargement and EU Labour Markets: Perceptions, challenges and opportunities
Tito Boeri & Herbert Brücker, World Economics, March 2001
This paper summarises the key findings of a recent study on the impact of Eastern Enlargement of the European Union (EU) on labour markets in the current Member States. The study focuses on three main channels along which enlargement may affect labour markets in the ... More


Child Labour Child Labour: Theory, policy and evidence
Saqib Jafarey & Sajal Lahiri, World Economics, March 2001
The purpose of this paper is to pull together the emerging theoretical and empirical literature on the economics of child labour, and to draw out the underlying commonalities between various contributions in this field. In doing so, the authors also identify various ... More


On Understanding Money On Understanding Money
Martin Shubik, World Economics, March 2001
Fiat money is a creation of both the state and society. Its value is supported by expectations which are conditioned by the dynamics of trust in government, the socio-economic structure and by outside events such as wars, plagues or political unrest. The micro-manageme ... More


E-money: Will it Take Off? E-money: Will it Take Off?
Peter Spencer, World Economics, March 2001
The growth of the Internet and e-commerce raises some interesting questions for those interested in the monetary system. Is a new Internet-based digital transactions medium likely to evolve and what would the consequences of this be for taxation, monetary and financia ... More


Is Dollarisation a Viable Option for Latin America? Is Dollarisation a Viable Option for Latin America?
Graham Bird, World Economics, March 2001
In the aftermath of the East Asian financial crisis there has been much discussion of exchange rate policy in developing countries. Some observers have suggested that they should opt either for flexible exchange rates or for firmly fixed rates. Adopting the US dollar as ... More


Russia’s Post-Communist Economy Russia’s Post-Communist Economy
Peter Oppenheimer & Brigitte Granville, World Economics, March 2001
Ten years after the break-up of the Soviet Union, Russia’s measured output was still showing a net decline of around 40 per cent – but with no comparable decline in average living standards, both because the output drop affected mainly the defence sectors and because R ... More


The Emerging Northeast–Southeast Asia Divide and Policy Implications The Emerging Northeast–Southeast Asia Divide and Policy Implications
Friedrich Wu, World Economics, March 2001
Since the outbreak of the Asian financial crisis in mid-1997, the gulf between the Northeast Asian economies and Southeast Asian economies has widened as measured by GDP growth rates and size, direct and portfolio investment flows, stock market capitalisation and tradi ... More