New evidence on the durability of social norms

John Helliwell, Shun Wang, Jinwen Xu, 12 March 2014



Recent studies find that individuals’ social norms – as evidenced by their opinions and behaviour – can be transmitted from one generation to the next within the same cultural setting (Algan and Cahuc 2010, Bjørnskov 2012, Dohmen et al. 2012, Guiso et al. 2006, Rainer and Siedler 2009, Rice and Feldman 1997).

Topics: Frontiers of economic research, Migration
Tags: Culture, immigration, institutions, migration, social attitudes, social norms, trust

Unemployment, labour-market flexibility and IMF advice: Moving beyond mantras

Olivier Blanchard, Florence Jaumotte, Prakash Loungani, 18 October 2013



Growth in advanced economies is gaining some speed. The IMF projects these economies will grow 2% next year, up from an expected 1.2% this year. The average unemployment rate in advanced economies is expected to inch down from its peak of 8.3% in 2010 to 8% next year. This is progress, but it is clearly not enough. The state of labour markets remains dismal for a number of reasons.

Topics: Labour markets, Welfare state and social Europe
Tags: collective bargaining, EZ crisis, IMF, institutions, labour-market flexibility, trust, unemployment, Unemployment insurance

National institutions and subnational development in Africa

Stelios Michalopoulos, Elias Papaioannou, 11 October 2013



Few issues have received more inquiry in the social sciences than "what are the fundamental determinants of comparative development?" The institutional view asserts that the ultimate causes of underdevelopment are poorly performing institutional structures, such as lack of constraints on the executive, poor property-rights protection, as well as inefficient legal and court systems (s

Topics: Development, Economic history, Institutions and economics
Tags: Africa, Culture, institutions, politics and economics

Finding his own way: Ronald Coase (1910-2013)

Steven Medema, 18 September 2013



Ronald Coase, who passed away last week at the age of 102, left an indelible mark on both economics and law. In 1991 he was awarded the Nobel Memorial Prize in Economic Sciences in recognition of his work on transaction costs and property rights.

Topics: Institutions and economics
Tags: case studies, history of economic thought, institutions, methodology, transaction costs

Unleashing growth: The decline of innovation-blocking institutions

Klaus Desmet, Stephen L. Parente, 18 May 2013



Two hundred years ago, during the Napoleonic Wars, the Luddite movement rocked the English industrial landscape. Dissatisfied with falling wages and increased competition from mills employing cheap rural labour, the Luddites broke into factories at night, smashing spinning frames and power looms.

Topics: Economic history, Productivity and Innovation
Tags: growth, guilds, institutions

What explains political institutions? Evidence from colonial British America

Elena Nikolova, 17 August 2012



Under what circumstances do democratic as opposed to authoritarian institutions emerge? Although a large literature has tackled this question (see Acemoglu et al. 2001, Acemoglu and Robinson 2012, Engerman and Sokoloff 2000), we still have an imperfect knowledge of how representative institutions originate and change.

Topics: Labour markets, Politics and economics
Tags: colonisation, democracy, economic history, institutions, US

De Jure and de Facto Determinants of Power: Evidence from Mississippi

Graziella Bertocchi, Arcangelo Dimico, 22 July 2012

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Topics: Politics and economics
Tags: education, institutions, race, voting restrictions

Power sharing and institutional stability

Bernardo Guimaraes, Kevin D Sheedy, 5 July 2012



Economic activity is influenced by institutions that determine the rules prevailing in a society. Examples include how much income is taxed; what firms can and cannot do; whether contracts are enforced and disputes quickly and correctly resolved; and limits on the arbitrary exercise of government power.

Topics: Development, Institutions and economics, Politics and economics
Tags: development, institutions, power, rents

Interest groups and government capabilities matter for financial development

Eduardo Cavallo, Carlos Scartascini, 12 May 2012



The debate on the benefits and limits of financial development has come to the fore with the global financial crisis. The fact that the epicentre of the global financial crisis was in countries with developed credit markets has led some commentators to argue that financial development may have gone too far.

Topics: Development, International finance, Politics and economics
Tags: developing countries, emerging markets, financial development, institutions

Public-debt crises and bad equilibria: Lessons from the GIIPS Countries

Maurizio Bovi, 2 December 2011



All the GIIPS countries (Greece, Italy, Ireland, Portugal and Spain) have been hit by the current government debt crisis (see eg Manasse and Trigilia 2011).

Topics: Institutions and economics
Tags: institutions, public debt, tax evasion

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