How much do remittances promote growth in Sub-Saharan Africa? How big is the citation-impact gap between the Global South and North? How much should users be able to shape ICT innovation policy? These are just a few of the questions tackled by our researchers in January 2017 — in six working papers, six journal articles, and two research reports, among many others. Click here for the full list of our most recent publications.
‘India: Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme‘ is a chapter in the book Social Protection Floors. Volume 2: Innovations to extend coverage, published by the International Labour Organization. The book presents a series on successful experiences in building social protection floors, showcasing 13 experiences from 11 countries and one region which have developed innovative solutions to extend social protection coverage. These experiences can serve as a source of inspiration to all countries that have prioritised the development of nationally appropriate social protection systems and measures for all, including floors, as part of their SDG implementation plans. The diversity of examples shows that there is no “one-size-fits-all” approach to the development of universal social protection. By Dr. Cheng Ong Boon et al.
‘Do remittances not promote growth? A finite mixture-of-regressions approach’ re-examines the impact of remittance inflows on growth using data for developing countries over the period 1970–2010. The article provides an analysis of the determinants of the probability of being in the remittances growth-enhancing regime showing that being a Sub-Saharan African country increases significantly this probability, while financial development moderately reduces this probability but with strong reservations on the statistical significance of the estimates on the different indicators of financial development. By Dr. Maty Konte.
‘Determinants of citation impact: A comparative analysis of the Global South versus the Global North‘ studies how citation impact varies across countries, with a special focus is given to the Global South, as countries in this group have been converging with the Global North recently. This article finds that previous citation impact, level of international collaboration and total publications in a specific scientific field are important determinants of citation impact among all nations. However, specialisation in particular scientific fields seems significantly more important in the Global South than in the Global North. These findings imply that most lower- and middle-income countries would better concentrate their resources in generating higher critical masses in specific fields, while pursuing long-lasting international collaboration partnerships — as these actions may lead to higher impact research. By PhD fellow Hugo Confraria, Dr. Lili Wang et al.
‘China’s family planning policies and their labor market consequences‘ systematically examines the labour market consequences of China’s family planning policies. The article also gives special attention to regional differences in the demographic structure resulting from the interaction of the family planning policies and internal migration, and discusses ongoing and prospective policy changes and their potential consequences. The analysis shows that although urban areas and coastal provinces have implemented stricter family planning policies, the aging problem is more severe in rural areas and in inland provinces because of internal migration. Simulation results further indicate that the new two-child policy might fall short of pulling China out of its aging situation. By Prof. Zhao Zong et al.
‘Ethnic diversity and well-being‘ investigates how ethnic diversity, measured by immigrants’ nationalities, influences the well-being of the host country. Using panel data from Germany from 1998 to 2012, the authors find a positive effect of ethnic diversity on the well-being of German natives. The finding is robust to alternative definitions of ethnic diversity and to the non-random selection of natives and immigrants into regions. The positive effect of ethnic diversity is stronger for immigrant groups that are culturally and economically closer to Germany. Consistent with this result, the article documents the existence of two mechanisms explaining the influence of ethnic diversity on well-being: productivity—as captured by immigrants’ skills and assimilation—and social capital—particularly in relation to the creation of a multicultural environment. By Dr. Alpaslan Akay, Prof. Amelie Constant, Dr. Corrado Giulietti et al.
‘Three decades of publishing research in population economics’ summarises key developments in the editorial process, thematic orientation, international reach and successes of The Journal of Population Economics. Furthermore, the article discusses the benefits of working papers in economics and investigate the impacts of the present working paper culture on journal citations. Finally, they try to identify the citation impacts in the Journal itself. The Journal of Population Economics has established itself as the leader in its field. Publishing in working papers and in the Journal seem to be complementary activities. By Dr. Alessio J.G. Brown and Prof. Klaus F. Zimmermann.
‘On Diarrhoea in Adolescents and School Toilets: Insights from an Indian Village School Study‘ studies the determinants of diarrhoea on school going adolescents. Based on a survey in an Indian village school, the article argues that sanitation, defecation practices at home and school, and the degree of crowding of living space at home are all significant determinants of diarrhoeal incidence for adolescents. Usage of toilets at school varies as a function of gender and existence of a toilet in student’s home. Access to toilets is not sufficient to guarantee their usage. To eliminate open defecation: toilets installation, behavioural change, and sustainable mechanisms to maintain school toilets seem necessary. By Prof. Shyama V. Ramani et al.
‘On the Measurement of Multidimensional Poverty as a Policy Tool: Empirical Applications to Chile, Colombia, Ecuador and Peru’ argues that if composite indexes on the measuring of well-being are here to stay, the best solution is to understand and transparently perform the tests that will certify that at least all the possible scenarios are being considered, and that choices are made with a full understanding of the consequences of normative decisions. Regardless of the method, the measurement of poverty will be full of normative decisions about what constitutes poverty, by whom and under which circumstances it is considered poverty. The goal of this dissertation consists in understanding the effect of those normative decisions, with empirical applications to the particular contexts of Chile, Colombia, Ecuador and Peru. By Dr. Andrea Franco-Correa.
‘Governance and Adaptation to Innovative Modes of Higher Education Provision’ examines innovative modes of higher education provision, as well as ways in which the management and governance of higher education are changing in support of innovations in higher education provision. As such, this research report ties in with the European Commission’s objectives to enhance the quality of higher education in an environment where globalisation and the attractiveness of the European higher education area need to be reinforced. The authors also issue policy recommendations regarding the governance and management of new modes of higher education provision in order to enhance the attractiveness and relevance of European higher education and to increase the strategic capacities of HEIs to manage resources efficiently and effectively. Finally, it also promotes an awareness of the importance of cultural and linguistic diversity within Europe by bringing together a team of researchers representing varied backgrounds, organisational cultures and experiences. By PhD fellow Simone Sasso et al.
‘Systems and Modes of ICT Innovation’ focuses on modes of ICT innovation at the meso level of systems and the micro level of firms. The research report argues that ICT innovation policy has become (and should be addressed as) a horizontal policy field which maintains systemic linkages with other policy fields. At both the system and firm level, there are several modes of ICT innovation. Policy makers should not reduce diversity by favouring only one mode. As an extension to Lundvalls’ theory on interactive learning between producers and users of knowledge, the authors add that policy for ICT innovation should be produced in interaction with its users. By Dr. René Wintjes.
‘How development aid explains (or not) the rise and fall of insurgent attacks in Iraq’ describes how local political dynamics can complicate the causal effect of development assistance on insurgent attacks and estimates the effect of small development projects on attacks targeting foreign donors. The analysis of dynamic panel data of the US Commander’s Emergency Response Program (CERP) in Iraq and Afghanistan shows that development assistance induced more attacks against the Coalition forces than reduced them. While the US military buys down violence against them, discontented leaders contract violence out to third-party, most likely foreign fighters, to initiate attacks against the Coalition forces on behalf of them. The paper recommends that future counterinsurgency efforts need to mind the ties between aid recipients and other actors, provide better security to contractors, or try to allocate aid more strategically. By PhD fellow Pui-hang Wong.
‘Country risk, FDI flows and convergence trends in the context of the Investment Development Path‘ explores the relationship between country risk and foreign direct investment (FDI) over time and in relation to the process of economic convergence between emerging and developed economies. The findings suggest that both economic – and business environment risk factors are closely related to FDI flows. Furthermore, the paper finds that as countries progress through the various stages of the IDP, economic convergence comes together with similar trends of convergence in economic – and business environment risk exposure. These simultaneous long-term developments plausibly contribute to the convergence of countries in terms of in- and outward FDI flows during the later stages of the IDP. By Dr. Dorcas Mbuvi et al.
‘Labour mobility through business visits as a way to foster productivity‘ aims to investigate the productivity impact of business visits, relative to traditional drivers of productivity enhancement, namely capital formation and R&D. To carry out the analysis, the authors combine unique and novel data on business visits sourced from the U.S. National Business Travel Association with OECD data on R&D and capital formation. The resulting unbalanced panel covers on average 16 sectors per year in 10 countries during the period 1998-2011 (2,262 observations). The results suggest that mobility through business visits is an effective mechanism to improve productivity. In a nutshell, the paper‘s findings support the need to recognise the private and social value of business mobility. By Prof. Marco Vivarelli et al.
‘Impact of the Great Recession on industry unemployment: a 1976-2011 comparison‘ studies the mechanisms driving the persistently high unemployment rate during the last recession and mild recovery. While previous studies have examined the demographic aspect of the recession, this paper focuses on specific industries and proposes a methodology to decompose changes in the unemployment rate into worker inflows and outflows across industry groups and outline the unique characteristics of the latest recession (including examining cyclical and structural forces). By Dr. Eva Sierminska et al.
‘Fostering social mobility: The case of the ‘Bono de Desarrollo Humano’ in Ecuador‘ analyses the determinants of social mobility in Ecuador using a multivariate welfare index, and evaluates the effect of the Ecuadorian social transfer programme Bono de Desarrollo Humano (BDH). Results show that social policies should focus on vulnerabilities related to household composition and the accumulation of both human capital and durable goods. Complementary policies must address gender, ethnic and geographical equity, as well as reproductive health. Finally, the paper finds that the BDH does foster social mobility, especially for higher per capita amounts and if the transfer is complemented with economic inclusion programmes. By PhD fellow Andrés Mideros Mora and Prof. Franziska Gassmann.
‘The economic impact of East-West migration on the European Union‘ contributes to the literature on destination‐country consequences of international migration with investigations on the effects of immigration from new EU member states and Eastern Partnership countries on the economies of old EU member states over the years 1995‐2010. The paper finds positive and significant effects of post‐enlargement migration flows from new EU member states on old member states’ GDP, GDP per capita, and employment rate and a negative effect on output per worker. It also finds small, but statistically significant negative effects of migration from Eastern Partnership countries on receiving countries’ GDP, GDP per capita, employment rate, and capital stock, but a positive significant effect on capital‐to‐labour ratio. These results mark an economic success of the EU enlargements and EU’s free movement of workers. By Dr. Martin Kahanec et al.
MEDIA CREDITSDominic Chavez/World Bank