Lant Pritchett once said to me “Thanks for the comments. As usual they are all very smart and well-informed and I disagree with most.” I feel similarly regarding his very popular piece posted here last week (already one of the top 10 most popular posts in our blog's short history) on how CCTs are forcing children in developing countries into terrible schools. So, here goes a reply…
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The story of Nelta is not uncommon in present-day Haiti. A few months ago, she gave birth to her second child, Jasmine, at her modest home, in the town of Jacmel, 30 miles south of Port-au-Prince.
Unexpectedly, she went into labor when she was 7 months pregnant, but lived too far from the health center to be able to get there in time for delivery. Jasmine was born prematurely and with a low birth weight.
|This traditional Vietnamese print depicts corruption in the form of rats bribing a cat in order to celebrate a wedding.|
Cũng có ở Tiếng việt
As Vietnam sits on the cusp of becoming a middle income country, reflections on achievements and emerging challenges is inevitable. Like a runner with tremendous stamina, Vietnam has made great strides in reducing poverty and in maintaining economic growth even through a global downturn. At the same time, we know that Vietnam continues to face formidable challenges, among them corruption.
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Việt Nam đã trở thành một quốc gia có thu nhập trung bình và cùng với đó phải là quá trình nhìn lại những thành tựu cũng như nhận diện được những thách thức mới. Cũng giống như một vận động viên với sức chịu đựng dẻo dai, Việt Nam đã có những bước tiến lớn trong việc giảm nghèo và duy trì tăng trưởng kinh tế, thậm chí qua cả thời kỳ suy thoái toàn cầu. Nhưng chúng ta cũng biết rằng, Việt Nam đang tiếp tục phải đối mặt với những thách thức lớn, trong đó có tham nhũng.
For many African countries, one important way to create productive jobs is to grow the labor-intensive light manufacturing sector, which would accelerate economic progress and lift workers from low-productivity agriculture and informal sectors into higher productivity activities.
Sub-Saharan Africa’s low wage costs and abundant material base have the potential to allow light manufacturing to jump-start the region’s long-delayed structural transformation and over-reliance on low-productivity agriculture. Moreover, as globalization advances and China evolves away from a comparative advantage in labor-intensive manufactured products toward more advanced industrial production, African economies such as Ethiopia and Tanzania are uniquely positioned to take advantage of this opportunity.
A few weeks ago, the Economist provided an interesting take on social media, the Arab Spring, and the Reformation era. The article, How Luther Went Viral, claims that centuries before Facebook and the Arab Spring, social media helped bring about the Reformation era. Led by Martin Luther, the Reformation was a period of religious revolt that led to the division of Western Christianity and the start of Protestantism. The developments of this period were propelled by the advent of the printing press, which the article describes in rich detail. But it begins by making an interesting claim about how Luther and his allies promoted the message of religious reform with the social media of their day—pamphlets, ballads and woodcuts. So basically, the central argument of the piece states that what happened in the Arab Spring is what happened in the Reformation era: a new form of media provided the opponents of an authoritarian regime an opportunity to voice their concerns, affirm their discontent, and mobilize their actions.
Worker job satisfaction has been linked to salient measures of performance such as productivity, absenteeism, and workforce turnover. As such it is a construct that economists care about. I’ve recently reviewed research on the determinants of job satisfaction in order to prepare for a study on pay-for-performance reforms in the health sector. And I’ve found a few surprises…
Perhaps it should not have been surprising that given the rolling thunder of multitudes that the world witnessed throughout 2011, the global news media would end the year with reflections on the fact that citizens massed, marched and yelled at the powerful. If you are English-speaking, you would have noticed that TIME Magazine’s person of the year was The Protester. Kurt Andersen’s cover story is beautifully written; so too are the photographs and illustrations that accompany the piece. If you have not read it, try to do so.