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property rights

Getting creative with Keynes

Ryan Hahn's picture

If you really want to stimulate the economy, give out gift cards, or so says Virginia Postrel in the May edition of the Atlantic. And make sure to put a short deadline on it. Otherwise, consumers tend to be "hyperopic" - they put off enjoyment too long and let the card expire. Money quote:

What microfinance really needs: women's lib

Ryan Hahn's picture

I saw Muhammad Yunus speak a few years ago, and the thing that struck me most in his speech was his insistence on the power of microfinance to help increase the opportunities available to women. That's why the findings from a recent evaluation of microfinance in Sri Lanka in which female enterprises gained little from access to finance were troubling.

Are rigid labor regulations driving greater computer usage?

Mohammad Amin's picture

A handful of studies that address this question have answered in the affirmative. In theoretical work, Alesina and Zeira (2006) and Blanchard and Philippon (2006) argue that rigid labor laws may encourage firms to substitute labor with computers. One implication is that we should find greater computer usage in countries or regions that have more rigid labor laws (other implications discussed below).

CSR++ for agribusiness

Michael Jarvis's picture

Participants from the length of the agribusiness value chain are gathered at the Bank this week for the World Bank Institute’s new Executive Program on Inclusive Agribusiness: Fighting Poverty, Hunger and Malnutrition. Chris Delgado and John Lamb from the Bank’s Agriculture and Rural Development team set the scene on Tuesday morning by laying out the scale and complexity of the challenge facing the food sector. It was not a pretty picture.

Supply and demand of property rights

Ryan Hahn's picture

Famed Peruvian economist Hernando de Soto has argued forcefully for the protection of property rights as a key ingredient in economic development. His book The Mystery of Capital became a big hit with its argument that the poor had plenty of capital but that the lack of property rights meant it was unusable.

The cost of carbon dioxide reduction

Ryan Hahn's picture

Emma Clarke, writing for, reports on the development of more environmentally friendly concrete in The truth about...cement. Don't ask me to explain the chemistry behind it - chemistry was my worst subject - but here are the basic facts. Cement accounts for some 5 percent of man-made carbon dioxide emissions. Traditional cements emits about .6 tonnes of carbon for every 1 tonne produced, and that's not counting emissions from the fuel burned to heat the kiln.