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The Poverty Impacts and Policy Implications of Liberalization
This thoughtful volume assesses the likely impact of reformed trade policies on the poorest of the poor those on the bottom economic rungs in developing nations. The focus on a spectrum of poor nations across different regions provides some helpful and hopeful guidelines regarding the likely impacts of a global trade reform, agreed upon under the auspices of the World Trade Organization, as well as the impact of such reforms on economic development. In order to facilitate lesson-drawing across different regions, each country study utilizes a similar methodology. They combine information on trade policy at the product level with income and consumption data at the household level, thus capturing effects both on the macro level and in individual households where development policies ideally should improve day-to-day life. This uniformity of research approach across the country studies allows for a deeper and more robust comparison of results.
Looking Beyond Kyoto
The latest report from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) reflects the growing international consensus that the earth's climate is being changed by anthropogenic greenhouse gasses. Evidence presented by the IPCC and others points to the potential for increasingly dangerous weather, new disease outbreaks, regional water shortages, the loss of habitat and species, and other disturbing developments that could have profound social and economic impacts. Opinions on what should be done, however, remain sharply divided within and among countries. Though monumental in its efforts, the Kyoto Protocol has left much to be agreed upon and achieved, with the world's largest emitter of carbon dioxide the United States rejecting it. In G lobal Warming: Looking Beyond Kyoto , some of the best-known and respected authorities in climate policy provide a comprehensive agenda for global collective action. Representing both industrialized and developing nations, the contributors present a thought-provoking examination of the economic, social, and political context of climate policy within their countries. With Kyoto's emissions targets set to expire in 2012, these authors call for a multilateral approach that goes beyond the mitigation-focused Kyoto policies, balancing them with strategies for adaptation. They also stress the importance of generating policies that work within a time frame commensurate with that of climate change itself. Informed, insightful, and even-handed, this book gives a new impetus to the increasingly important global climate policy debate. Contributors include R.K. Pachauri (Energy Resources Institute and the IPCC), Richard S. Lindzen (Massachusetts Institute of Technology), Stefan Rahmstorf (Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research), Stephen H. Schneider and Thomas Heller (Stanford University), Robert Mendelsohn and William D. Nordhaus (Yale University), Gernot Klepper and Sonja Peterson (Kiel Institute for World Economics), Robert N. Stavins (Harvard University), Alexander Golub (Environmental Defense), Howard Dalton (U.K. Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs), John Stone (Carleton University, Ottawa), Jyoti Parikh (Integrated Research and Action for Development), and Shen Longhai (China Energy Conservation Association)
Congress, Presidents, and the Search for Answers, 19452012
Paul C. Light examines and evaluates the 100 most significant investigations of policy failures, bureaucratic mistakes, and personal misconduct undertaken by the U.S. federal government between 1945 and 2012. Launched by Congress or the president, sometimes by both at the same time, the investigations at the core of this book were driven by the search for answers about significant breakdowns in government performance. Light reveals which investigations were most effective, and why.
From Exit to Recovery?
Two Greek economic analysts explain the Greek financial crisis—from beginning to end.
The first section of Greece: From Exit to Recovery? explores the lead up to to Greece's adoption of the euro. Authors Theodore Pelagidis and Michael Mitsopoulos believe that the ensuing challenges were foreseeable. In fact, the authors posit that it was Greece's difficultly in dealing with those challenges that sparked the euro crisis.
Section II analyzes discrete sectors of the economy, paying special attention to labor and finance—and the mistakes creditors made in focusing on reducing Greek incomes—rather than increasing competitiveness on non-labor costs.
Section III investigates why Greek companies spend relatively little on research and development.? The authors' analysis indicates that policy decisions largely determine R&D performance in the private sector, and they advance a number of specific policy proposals to improve the situation.
Maintaining Military Preeminence while Cutting the Defense Budget
President Barack Obama survived a tenuous economy and a toxic political environment to win re-election in 2012, but the bitter partisan divide in Washington survived as well. So did the country's huge fiscal deficit. in this, the latest in a long line of Brookings Institution analyses of the defense budget, Michael O'Hanlon considers how best to balance national security and fiscal responsibility during a period of prolonged economic stress and political acrimony even as the world remains unsettled, from Afghanistan to Iran to Syria to the western Pacific region.
O'Hanlon explains why the large defense cuts that would result from prolonged sequestration or from deficit-reduction projects such as the Bowles-Simpson plan are too deep. But the bulk of his book represents an effort to look for greater savings than the Obama administration's 2012 proposals would allow.
Praise for the work of Michael O'Hanlon
The Opportunity: "A practical and hard-headed analysis of how another Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty might be achieved" Financial Times The Science of War: "Timely, thoughtful, and full of insight. A signal contribution to the field." General David S. Petraeus, U.S. Army
A Skeptic's Case for Nuclear Disarmament: "O'Hanlon expertly unravels the myriad threads of the often abstruse disputes about nuclear weapons and disarmament." New York Times Book Review
How States, Nations, and Conflicts Are Shaping the 21st Century
This translation of the French bestseller Continuer l’Histoire brings the powerful, articulate message of Hubert Védrine to an even wider audience. With the astute analysis and acerbic wit for which he is famous, the former French foreign minister offers an overview of world politics since the fall of the Berlin Wall. Critical of both the United States and Europe, he calls for a return to a more realist foreign policy, rejecting the ideological notions of recent years. In story Strikes Back: How States, Nations, and Conflicts Are Shaping the 21st Century, , Védrine takes issue with idealists who believe that states are no longer necessary and that globalization and free markets will automatically make a better world for all. Far from having ended, history continues to present major challenges. When the Eastern bloc collapsed, the West was quick to believe that it had won the battle of history and that its values would prevail everywhere. The ensuing years have belied that faith, however. In dealing with a newly multipolar world, Americans have been too bellicose and Europeans naïve. Védrine shows why Westerners need to discard the illusions that have guided their international relations for more than twenty years. He presents a realistic vision for building a better world and spells out what Europeans expect from the U.S. administration to come. The United States and Europe must partner for a new form of “smart Realpolitik” to guide their relations with emerging powers, manage globalization, and deal with environmental challenges.
Balancing Access, Affordability, and Risk after the Housing Crisis
The ups and downs in housing markets over the past two decades are without precedent, and the costs—financial, psychological, and social—have been enormous. Yet Americans overwhelmingly still aspire to homeownership, and many still view access to homeownership as an important ingredient for building wealth among historically disadvantaged groups.
This timely volume reexamines the goals, risks, and rewards of homeownership in the wake of the housing bubble and subprime lending crisis. Housing, real estate, and finance experts explore the role of government in supporting homeownership, deliberate how homeownership can be made more sustainable, and discuss how best to balance affordability, access, and risk, particularly for minorities and lowincome families.
Contributors: Eric S. Belsky (JCHS); Raphael W. Bostic (University of Southern California); Mark Calabria (Cato Institute); Kaloma Cardwell (University of California, Berkeley); Mark Cole (Hope LoanPort); J. Michael Collins (University of Wisconsin– Madison); Marsha J. Courchane (Charles River Associates); Andrew Davidson (Andrew Davidson and Co.); Christopher E. Herbert (JCHS); Leonard C. Kiefer (Freddie Mac); Alex Levin (Andrew Davidson and Co.); Adam J. Levitin (Georgetown University Law Center); Mark R. Lindblad (University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill); Jeffrey Lubell (Abt Associates); Patricia A. McCoy (University of Connecticut School of Law); Daniel T. McCue (JCHS); Jennifer H. Molinsky (JCHS); Stephanie Moulton (Ohio State University); john a. powell (University of California–Berkeley); Roberto G. Quercia (University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill); Janneke H. Ratcliffe (University of North Carolina); Carolina Reid (University of California–Berkeley); William M. Rohe (University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill); Rocio Sanchez-Moyano (JCHS); Susan Wachter (University of Pennsylvania); Peter M. Zorn (Freddie Mac)
Over the past twenty years, many low- and middle-income countries have experimented with health insurance options. While their plans have varied widely in scale and ambition, their goals are the same: to make health services more affordable through the use of public subsidies while also moving care providers partially or fully into competitive markets.
Colombia embarked in 1993 on a fifteen-year effort to cover its entire population with insurance, in combination with greater freedom to choose among providers. A decade later Mexico followed suit with a program tailored to its federal system. Several African nations have introduced new programs in the past decade, and many are testing options for reform. For the past twenty years, Eastern Europe has been shifting from government-run care to insurance-based competitive systems, and both China and India have experimental programs to expand coverage. These nations are betting that insurance-based health care financing can increase the accessibility of services, increase providers' productivity, and change the population's health care use patterns, mirroring the development of health systems in most OECD countries.
Until now, however, we have known little about the actual effects of these dramatic policy changes. Understanding the impact of health insurancebased care is key to the public policy debate of whether to extend insurance to low-income populations and if so, how to do it or to serve them through other means.
Using recent household data, this book presents evidence of the impact of insurance programs in China, Colombia, Costa Rica, Ghana, Indonesia, Namibia, and Peru. The contributors also discuss potential design improvements that could increase impact. They provide innovative insights on improving the evaluation of health insurance reforms and on building a robust knowledge base to guide policy as other countries tackle the health insurance challenge.
Striving for the Rule of Law in China
Of all the issues presented by China's ongoing economic and sociopolitical transformation, none may ultimately prove as consequential as the development of the Chinese legal system. Even as public demand for the rule of law grows, the Chinese Communist Party still interferes in legal affairs and continues in its harsh treatment of human rights lawyers and activists. Both the frequent occurrences of social unrest in recent years and the growing tension between China's various interest groups underline the urgency of developing a sound and sustainable legal system.
As one of China's most influential law professors, He Weifang has been at the forefront of the country's treacherous path toward justice and judicial independence for over a decade. Among his many remarkable endeavors was a successful petition in 2003 that abolished China's controversial regulations permitting the internment and deportation of urban "vagrants," bringing to an end two decades of legal discrimination against migrant workers. His bold remarks at the famous New Western Hills Symposium in 2006, including his assertion that "China's party-state structure violates the PRC Constitution," are considered a watershed moment in the century-long movement for a constitutional China. With In the Name of Justice, He presents his critical assessment of the state of Chinese legal reform.
In addition to a selection of his academic writings, this unique book also includes many of He Weifang's public speeches, media interviews, and open letters, providing additional insight into his dual roles as thinker and practitioner in the Chinese legal world. Among the topics covered are judicial independence, judicial review, legal education, capital punishment, and the legal protection of free speech and human rights. The volume also offers a historical review of the evolution of Chinese traditional legal thought, enhanced by cross-country comparisons.
A proponent of reform rather than revolution, He believes only true constitutionalism can guarantee social justice and enduring stability for China.
"He Weifang has argued for two decades that rule of law, however inconvenient at times to some of those who govern, must be embraced because it is ultimately the most reliable protector of the interests of the country, of the average citizen, and, in fact, even of those who govern."--from the Foreword by John L. Thornton, chairman, Brookings Institution Board of Trustees and Professor and Director of Global Leadership at Tsinghua University
"What struck me--and shocked me as a foreign visitor--was not only that the entire discussion was explicitly critical of the Chinese Communist Party for its resistance to any meaningful judicial reform, but also that the atmosphere was calm, reasonable, and marked by a sense of humor and sophistication in the expression of ideas."--from the Introduction by Cheng Li, director of research and senior fellow at the John L. Thornton China Center at Brookings
Local Politics Go Global
For the last decade, China and India have grown at an amazing rate particularly considering the greatest downturn in the U.S. and Europe since the Great Depression. As a result, both countries are forecast to have larger economies than the U.S. or EU in the years ahead. Still, in the last year, signs of a slowdown have hit these two giants. Which way will these giants go? And how will that affect the global economy? Any Western corporation, investor, or entrepreneur serious about competing internationally must understand what makes them tick. Unfortunately, many in the West still look at the two Asian giants as monoliths, closely controlled mainly by their national governments. Inside Out, India and China makes clear how and why this notion is outdated.
William Antholis a former White House and State Department official, and the managing director at Brookings spent five months in India and China, travelling to over 20 states and provinces in both countries. He explored the enormously diversity in business, governance, and culture of these nations, temporarily relocating his entire family to Asia. His travels, research, and interviews with key stakeholders make the unmistakable point that these nations are not the immobile, centrally directed economies and structures of the past.
More and more, key policy decisions in India and China are formulated and implemented by local governments states, provinces, and fast-growing cities. Both economies have promoted entrepreneurship, both by private sector and also local government officials. Some strategies work. Others are fatally flawed. Antholis's detailed narratives of local innovation in governance and business as well as local failures prove the point that simply maintaining a presence in Beijing and New Delhi or even Shanghai and Mumbai is not enough to ensure success in China or India, just as one cannot expect to succeed in America simply by setting up in Washington or New York. Each nation is as large, vibrant, innovative, diverse, and increasingly decentralized as are the United States, Europe and all of Latin America combined. China and India each have their own agricultural heartlands, high-tech corridors, resource-rich areas, and powerhouse manufacturing regions. They also have major economic, social, environmental challenges facing them. But few people outside these countries can name those places, or have a mental map of how the local parts of these countries are shaping their global futures. Organizations, businesses, and other governments that do not recognize and plan for this evolution may miss that the most important changes in these emerging giants are coming from the inside out.
"This book is for people who wonder about the inside of China and India, and how different local perspectives inside those countries shape actions outside their borders. Though my family and I spent five months traveling in both countries to do research, this book is not a travelogue. Rather, it is an attempt to sketch how a few of China's and India's many component parts are being shaped by global forces and in turn are shaping those forces and what that means for Americans and Europeans conducting diplomacy and doing business there." from the Introduction