Main menu:

Posts by Author

History of RPE Thought

Posts by Tag

RSS New from the CCPA

Progressive Bloggers

Meta

Recent Blog Posts

Recent Blog Comments

The Progressive Economics Forum

Archive for 'development'

The Staple Theory @ 50: Gerry Helleiner

One remarkable and gratifying aspect of our special series of commentaries marking the 50th Anniversary of Mel Watkins’ classic 1963 article on staple theory, is the interest and input it has generated from researchers and scholars who have applied Mel’s work in various capacities, in Canada and internationally.  One such contributor is Gerry Helleiner, a […]

The Blackberry mess and what Canada needs

Another year, another dead Canadian tech giant.  Blackberry was sold yesterday for scrap to the Toronto private equity firm Fairfax.  The purchase price of $4.7 billion is essentially valued at its cash of $2.6 billion and the value of its patents.  Blackberry’s active businesses are being valued at essentially nothing.  If Fairfax can stop the […]

Is new coal export infrastrucutre in the best interest of BC and Canada

Today’s CBC Edition Business Panel focused on the proposal by Fraser Surrey Docks to build a new coal terminal on the Fraser river to export US thermal coal (if you missed it, here’s the recording starting at 1:50). This may seem like a local issue for the West Coast, but the arguments stand for most […]

Happy Crashiversary! Are you better off now than you were four years ago?

Four years after Lehman Brothers collapsed, it’s time to take stock of things by asking a stock political question: Are you better off now than you were four years ago? Where you stand on the answer depends on where you sit. Many people, businesses and communities are still struggling to regain the ground they lost […]

Meilinomics II: Income from Within

The following is another excerpt from Dr. Ryan Meili’s new book, A Healthy Society: How a Focus on Health Can Revive Canadian Democracy, which fellow blogger Greg Fingas has been discussing. The road to Tevele is red sand and sloppy in the rainy season. The pick- up truck bounces in and out of ruts as […]

What Newfoundland & Labrador Can Teach the Rest of Canada About 21st Century Globalization

A shorter version of this analysis appears at the Globe and Mail’s Economy Lab. See article and comments here. Last fall Premier Danny Williams wondered what could drive anyone to let hundreds of millions of dollars slip through their fingers. Last week he got his answer. The Roil report on the 18-month strike at Voisey’s […]

Five Economic Tests for Harper’s Majority Government

This article was first published at the Globe and Mail’s Economy Lab. As Parliament resumes after Canada’s historic 41st election, all eyes are on Prime Minister Stephen Harper and how he delivers on his campaign promises of growth and stability. With no encumbrances to its decision-making powers, the Harper majority government will be responsible — […]

On Economics, We-Think, and the Twitterverse

It took me a long time to write my first blog. It was here, and it was in response to the global economic collapse as it was occurring in real time, in late September 2008. For economists, the blogosphere is a rapid response world, and speed can kill. I worried about getting caught undone in […]

Courting the Women’s Vote in 2011

Every party is courting the women’s vote. They are The Undecided – more women than men are still parking their vote. That’s typical of most elections. Women listen for longer, decide later in an election campaign. When the time comes, they will be the kingmakers, if you’ll pardon the term. It leaps to mind because […]

What’s Canada’s Carbon Debt?

Martin Khor, of the South Centre, has done an interesting analysis for the (doomed) Cancun negotiations on climate change. The talks have broken down on north-south lines, with southern countries wanting to keep the Kyoto framework that puts the onus on northern (advanced, industrialized) countries to reduce emissions and give carbon space to southern countries […]

John Loxley’s JKG Prize Lecture

At the end of May in Quebec City at the annual Canadian Economics Association conference, the PEF awarded the second John Kenneth Galbraith Prize in Economics to John Loxley. Below is the full text of John’s Galbraith Lecture (pdf version with proper footnotes and formatting here). Congrats again to John for a lifetime of amazing […]

It’s Not What You’ve Got, It’s What You Do With It

I recently had the joy of spending a couple of weeks in Kerala, the little socialist state at the bottom tip of India.  Apart from exquisite food, friendly people, beautiful jungles, and welcoming climate, Kerala’s greatest asset of course is its astonishing record in producing a literate, healthy, politically engaged society — all on the […]

Copenhagen and carbon budgets

As Copenhagen heads into week two, most of the talk has shifted to targets and timelines, typically something like X% of emissions by 2020 or 2050, relative to 1990 levels. This dating is a legacy of the German delegation in the lead-up to the Kyoto Protocol in 1997, who wanted a base year of 1990 […]

Global CO2 emissions and inequality

Further to today’s release on ecological footprint by income decile for Canada, Stephen Pacala of Princeton has done some calculations on who is most to blame internationally for CO2 emissions (conference speech and presentation available here). An excerpt: All 3 billion of the lowest emitting people emit a total, all together, of a half a […]

Bank of the South

From the Latin Americanist: Bank of the South launched Representatives of seven South American countries met on Sunday to formally launch the Bank of the South- a new regional development bank. In a ceremony in Buenos Aires, the bank was established with an initial capital of $7 billion and with the goal of acting as […]

Cameron: Why the WTO talks have collapsed (again)

The WTO talks have collapsed. Wait, did I not report that last year? Alas, talks are never really over, the Doha Round never really “dead” as reported in the papers. Just stalled. But as Cameron points out in his rabble.ca column (thanks to Duncan and rabble for sharing columns with RPE), this recent impasse has […]

China and the end of neoliberalism?

Sachs’ article below suggests that China’s growing influence on the world stage may well signal the end of neoliberalism. That ideological framework of monetarism, liberalization, deregulation and privatization was imposed through structural adjustment programs, mostly in Latin America and Africa, with terrible results. Meanwhile, most Asian countries flouted those policy prescriptions en route to steller […]

Three Latin American countries drop foreign investor suits

A dispatch from Ellen Gould that is a bit nebulous on the surface: Bolivia, Venezuela and Nicaragua are withdrawing from the International Center for Settlement of Investment Disputes (ICSID). Ellen explains: It’s a little bit complicated to understand why this is such fantastically positive news, but this development basically means Bolivia, Nicaragua, and Venezuela are […]

Sachs: G8 reneging on Millennium Development Goals

The annual G8 meetings often result in a group hug (aka the “summit declaration). Much of the time, when the goals are laudable, they fail to achieve the desired result, as Sachs comments below on the MDGs, or they misrepresent what they are doing in the first place (remember the 2000 release that “ended” third […]

Canadian International Assistance – Dismal Performance

Canadian Aid Performance Declines in 2006: The OECD’s Development Assistance Committee (DAC) released preliminary statistics for ODA for 2006 and Canada is near the bottom, tied with Australia for 15th  position among 22 donors.   At 0.30% of our Gross National Income (GNI) in 2006,   Canada  is down from 0.34% in 2005.  In both years, […]

Stiglitz: patents and drug monopolies

We have been picking on copyright a lot recently, but we should not neglect patents, that other arm of “intellectual property”. Like copyright, patents confer monopoly power. They have little to do with a “free market” but everything to do with real-world capitalism. In his monthly column, Joseph Stiglitz makes the case against patents with […]

Meanwhile at Nairobi’s World Social Forum

I was at the very first World Social Forum in Porto Alegre, Brazil, back in 2001. My wife and I were travelling in Brazil and Argentina, fuelled by cheap passes from a relative at Air Canada, so we had to make a stop to check out the WSF. It was amazingly new and sexy (perhaps […]

Chavez to nationalize electricity and telecom

I recently read somewhere a commentary that Venezuela’s Hugo Chavez was not really that radical, that his populist rhetoric was largely limited to expanding social programs for the poor, and that behind the scenes he was still playing nice with US businesses. Unfortunately, I seem to have lost the link to that article. Perhaps Chavez’s […]

Hewers of Wood, Pumpers of Oil and Gas

The Dominion Institute has recruited twenty great Canadian thinkers to write about what the country might look like in 2020. The fourteen essays currently posted include Don Drummond’s neo-classical analysis of manufacturing and productivity and Jim Stanford’s excellent analysis of Canada’s reliance on natural resources. Jim’s main argument, that Canada’s unmanaged resource boom is damaging other […]

World distribution of wealth

The World Distribution of Household Wealth, by James B. Davies, Susanna Sandstrom, Anthony Shorrocks, and Edward N. Wolff, was released by the World Institute for Development Economics Research. A Canadian (and a former prof of mine at Western – Go Mustangs!) is the lead author. The full paper is available here. The extended press release […]

Making Sense of China

I visited China for two weeks earlier this month, at the invitation of the Capital University of Economics and Business in Beijing.  I gave a series of lectures on economics and labour relations to several classes of bright, eager, and surprisingly free-speaking graduate students. China’s economy has been growing at about 10% per year for […]

Debt relief in Latin America

A good-news story out of Latin America that the Inter-American Development Bank is forgiving the debts of five extremely poor countries, including Bolivia and Nicaragua. Debt relief under the IMF/World Bank Heavily Indebted Poor Countries (HIPC) program only relieved a portion of their debts (and they had to go through major structural adjustment program hoops […]

Oil: Can we give it back?

Every now and then you see a sad story on TV about someone who won the lottery, and then their life went to shit (they gave it all away or lost it gambling, became an alcoholic, etc.).  They invariably say at the end, “I wish I’d never won the lottery.” I kind of feel the […]

For whom the Nobel tolls (a real one)

Some econo-bloggers have been having fun with the fact that Muhammad Yunus, founder of the Grameen Bank and father of micro-credit, won the Nobel Peace Prize. Yunus, an economist who would not be shortlisted for the (kind of) Nobel Prize in Economics, wins a real one instead. I saw Yunus speak in Ottawa over ten […]

Norway to cancel illegitimate debt

Kudos to Norway, already a leader in foreign aid as a share of GDP, for cancelling the bilateral debts of five poor nations. The amount of money is not huge, so one might ask why it has taken this long – the 2000 Jubilee campaign might have been a better time. From the story below, […]