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Weekly wire: The global forum

Roxanne Bauer's picture
These are some of the views and reports relevant to our readers that caught our attention this week.
 

Doing Business 2018 : Reforming to Create Jobs
World Bank Development Economics

Fifteen in a series of annual reports comparing business regulation in 190 economies, Doing Business 2018 measures aspects of regulation affecting 10 areas of everyday business activity: • Starting a business • Dealing with construction permits • Getting electricity • Registering property • Getting credit • Protecting minority investors • Paying taxes • Trading across borders • Enforcing contracts • Resolving insolvency These areas are included in the distance to frontier score and ease of doing business ranking. Doing Business also measures features of labor market regulation, which is not included in these two measures. The report updates all indicators as of June 1, 2017, ranks economies on their overall “ease of doing business”, and analyzes reforms to business regulation – identifying which economies are strengthening their business environment the most. Doing Business illustrates how reforms in business regulations are being used to analyze economic outcomes for domestic entrepreneurs and for the wider economy. It is a flagship product produced in partnership by the World Bank Group that garners worldwide attention on regulatory barriers to entrepreneurship. More than 137 economies have used the Doing Business indicators to shape reform agendas and monitor improvements on the ground. In addition, the Doing Business data has generated over 2,182 articles in peer-reviewed academic journals since its inception.
 
Navigating the digital future: The disruption of capital projects
McKinsey & Company

Productivity in the construction sector has stagnated for decades, with the average capital project reaching completion 20 months behind schedule and 80 percent over budget. Some overruns result from increased project complexity and scale, but another factor also looms large: all stakeholders in the capital-projects ecosystem—project owners, contractors, and subcontractors—have resisted adopting digital tools and platforms. These include advanced analytics, automation, robotics, 5-D building information modeling (BIM), and online document-management or data-collection systems. Meanwhile, companies in sectors ranging from government to manufacturing have significantly reduced costs and schedules by aggressively pursuing digital solutions.


Women, Peace, and Security Index
Georgetown Institute for Women, Peace, and Security

The WPS Index offers a more comprehensive measure of women's wellbeing by capturing both peace and security—and women’s inclusion and justice—for the first time ever. In partnership with the Peace Research Institute of Oslo, we draw on recognized international data sources to rank 153 countries, covering more than 98 percent of the world’s population. The associated tools and analysis highlight key achievements and deficits from each country.
 
Digital Solutions Can Help Even the Poorest Nations Prosper
Wired

AMONG THE SPENDING choices for governments of poorer nations, kick-starting the technological revolution may at first seem like a low priority. Compared with critical infrastructure, healthcare, or schools, improved digital access and less waiting times for birth certificates feel like luxuries that should come further down the road, or perhaps be left to private enterprise. But there is reason to rethink this. Fast economic growth is the best way to reduce poverty. A recent Tufts University study found that digitization is one of the biggest drivers of a nation’s economic success. The report argues that that economic growth is mostly achieved by careful policy-setting—in other words, it’s best driven by government.
 
Trade and Development Report 2017
UNCTAD

The global economy appears stuck on its path to recovery. A new UNCTAD report, the Trade and Development Report, 2017: Beyond Austerity – Towards a Global New Deal, sets out an ambitious alternative policy route to build more inclusive and caring economies. Launching the report, UNCTAD Secretary-General Mukhisa Kituyi said, “A combination of too much debt and too little demand at the global level has hampered sustained expansion of the world economy”.  The report states that people should be put before profits, calling for a twenty-first century makeover to offer a global “new deal”. Ending austerity, clamping down on corporate rent seeking and harnessing finance to support job creation and infrastructure investment will be key to such a makeover.


Photo credit: Flickr user fdecomit

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