Sleeping together: Network effects and sleep duration
Xiaodong Liu, Eleonora Patacchini, Edoardo Rainone 28 January 2014
Sleep is a key determinant of educational attainment among young adults, and carries with it longstanding health implications. This column provides evidence of network effects in adolescent sleeping decisions using a novel econometric approach. Young adults respond to the sleeping behaviour of their peer group, holding constant other observables. This compounding effect suggests a group approach to solving behavioural problems associated with sleep deprivation.
Nearly a third of a person's life is spent in slumber. In the US those with insomnia spend about $1 billion a year on prescription sleep aids, and another $1 billion on over-the-counter sleep medications (Yaniv 2004). The economic costs of sleep disorders in the US in 2004, both direct (expenditure within the health system) and indirect (absenteeism, low productivity, and work-related injuries), was estimated to be $109 billion (Hillman at el. 2006).
Education Health economics
network effects, peer groups, sleep
Multilateralising 21st-century regionalism
Richard Baldwin 20 January 2014
The global value chain revolution has changed trade and trade agreements. Trade now matters for making goods as well as selling them. Trade governance has shifted away from the WTO towards megaregional agreements. This column argues that 21st-century regionalism is not fundamentally about discrimination, and that its benefits and costs are best thought of as network externalities and harmonisation costs respectively. More research is needed to determine how the megaregional trade agreements across the Pacific and Atlantic will fit with the WTO.
Trade and trade agreements used to be relatively simple. Trade primarily meant trade in ‘made-here-sold-there’ goods, so 20th-century regional and multilateral trade agreements dealt primarily with barriers to goods crossing borders – especially tariffs. For governments, the key purpose of trade and trade agreements was to help their firms sell things.
Global governance International trade
WTO, trade, regional trade agreements, supply chains, harmonisation, global value chain, megaregionals, network effects