More in Global Economy


8 months

Some US Social Indicators Since 1960

The Office of Management and Budget released President Trump's  proposed budget for fiscal year 2020 a few weeks ago. I confess that when the budget comes out I don't pay much attention to the spending numbers for this year or the five-year projections. Those numbers are often build on sand and political wishfulness, and there's plenty of time to dig into them later, if necessary. Instead, I head for the "Analytical Perspectives" and "Historical Tables" volumes that always accompany the budget. For example, Chapter 5 of the "Analytical Perspectives" is about "Social Indicators": 

8 months

Can Undergraduates Be Taught to Think Like Economists?

A common goal for principles of economics courses is to teach students to "think like economists." I've always been a little skeptical of that high-sounding goal. It seems like a lot to accomplish in a semester or two. I'm reminded of an essay written by Deirdre McCloskey back in 1992, which argued that while undergraduates can be taught about economics, thinking like an economist is a much larger step that will only in very rare cases happen in the principles class. Here's Mc Closkey ("Other Things Equal: The Natural," Eastern Economic Journal, Spring 1992):

8 months

Child Care and Working Mothers

During the 1990s, a social and legal expectation arose in the United States that single mothers would usually be in the workforce, even when their children were young. In turn, this immediately raised a question of how child care would be provided. The 2019 Economic Report of the President from the White House Council of Economic Advisers, offers some useful graphs and analysis of this subject.

9 months

China in Transition - From Manufacturer to Consumer

China is evolving from a current account surplus to deficit country Increased domestic consumption and dis-saving by an ageing population drives the trend  Lower investment in developed countries may be assuaged by major central banks Emerging and Frontier markets will struggle to replace China's long-term investment

9 months

Geoengineering: The Governance Problem

Solar geoengineering refers to putting stuff in the atmosphere that would have the effect of counteracting greenhouse gases. Yes, there would be risks in undertaking geoengineering. However, those who argue that substantial dangers of climate change are fairly near-term must be willing to consider potentially unpleasant answers. Even if the risks of geoengineering are too substantial right now, given the present state of climate change, if the world as a whole doesn't move forward with steps to hold down emissions of greenhouse gases, then perhaps the risks of geoengineering will look more acceptable in a decade or two? 

9 months

Should We Abolish Statistical Significance?

The idea of "statistical significance" has been a basic concept in introductory statistics courses for decades. If you spend any time looking at quantitative research, you will often see in tables of results that certain numbers are marked with an asterisk or some other symbol to show that they are "statistically significant."

9 months

The New Green Deal Is Not New

No, it is not a new deal, and it should not be.