In 1981 poverty rate in China was 64% of the population, in 2004 the rate was 10%: it means that 500 million people stepped out of poverty (look here and here). China and South-East Asia economies were propelled by export demand and by someone else’s debt. What now? In the words of FT columnist Michael Pettis
The assumption that implicitly underlay the Asian development model – that US households had an infinite ability to borrow and spend – has been shown to be false. This spells the end of this model as an engine of growth.
It seams like bad news for economists pointing at free trade and export-led growth as a practical receipt for development. It seams like bad news for everybody. People in developing countries need to increase their income, and it is difficult to think how they could find the money in their neighborhoods.
Tuesday, 19 May 2009
In this post Dani Rodrik explains why trade theories suggest that the U.S. should liberalize trade for agricultural products (especially cotton and sugar) and abolish visa restrictions on on highly-skilled foreign workers. This will produce gains for the U.S. society as a whole and probably for the poorest part of the world population, that happens to be made up of farmers. (Of course India will probably see some of its engineers flee the country, but that is not exactly a win-win game).
But countries are not ruled by trade theories. Usually they are ruled by people seeking to keep power as long as possible. And sometimes people rely on minority groups within their society to keep themselves in power. Have a look at this paper, “The Diminishing Effect of Democracy in Diverse Societies” by Gilat Levy and Oriana Bandiera (London School of Economics and Political Science). Indeed, this can explain why western Europe heavily defends its farmers (4-5% of the population) sacrificing the common good.
An interesting theory should consider not how much a single group benefit or not from trade liberalization but how much influence the group affected by the new policy has on the decision making process. A reduction of trade barriers can help to tackle chronic poverty (have a look at the “Industrial Development Report” by the United Nations Industrial Development Organization). But barriers are not where they are because governments think they are irrational from a political (not economic) point of view.
Wednesday, 13 May 2009
The Kosovo Liberation Army (Albanian acronym UÇK) supposedly run, during the conflict of 1999, torture camps in northern Albania. According to an investigation conducted by Altin Raxhimi, Michael Montgomery and Vladimir Karaj and published (here) by the Balkan Investigative Journalism Network at least 18 people were killed in one of those, a factory compound in Kukës, Albania. Eyewitnesses say prisoner were mainly alleged Kosovo Albanian collaborationist. But as well Serbs and Roma were held in the camp. And women.
Kosovo’s Prime Minister, Hashim Thaçi, who was then the political director of the KLA, and Agim Çeku, former Prime Minister and former chief of the KLA headquarters, told the BBC they were not aware of any KLA prisons where captives were abused or where civilians were held.
The same sources that witnessed the base in Kukës, told us that the interrogators in Kukës were KLA officers who had been involved in the capture of suspected collaborators.
Both our sources concerning the base, identified several KLA officers involved in the abuses at Kukës.
One of them is currently in a top position in the judicial system in Kosovo.
After ten years, the history of the ex-Yugoslavia conflicts (so far mainly written by journalists) is still incomplete. Because the people who fought those wars are now ruling that very same land (nationalism is still an effective language to speak). And because the Balkans are the very same mirror and unconscious of Europe (Rada Iveković, 1999). The 1990s wars tell Europe where its own states are coming from: murders and deportations. And Dorian does not like portraits.
Monday, 11 May 2009
- RT @LanceBennett1: Just out: #TheStrengthofPeripheralNetworks. Tracking information and attention flows in multimedia ecologies. How does n…
- RT @MaxGroemping: New article using @ElectIntegrity data to map #ElectoralIntegrity in #Asia. https://t.co/aCw4kIgB3a. Recommend: (1) curb…
- RT @mtracey: Trump’s preference to pull out of Afghanistan is depicted in the Woodward book as yet another crazy impulse that the “adults i…
- RT @prof_nch: Please RT if you have ever conducted a manuscript review for a journal while not employed in a tenure-track/permanent academi…
- .@ManfredWeber, leader of the European People's Party, will vote in favour of sanctioning the Hungarian government… https://t.co/FoWdX1Ot5F
- To file under @Google failure + reflections on why the Age of Machines is still far away. This is what Google retur… https://t.co/dJS6BxVI5d
- @PSA_IPSG @FilippoTronconi For color figures, see the replication package: https://t.co/bDpKDe4frZ
- My paper with G Abbondanza on Lega, in which with a longitudinal analysis we find significant association between v… https://t.co/m959Zb5aCX
- https://t.co/zBcssrIpEm Mmm… Interesting, but: It doesn’t really seem to tap into the Humanitarian Data Exchange f… https://t.co/hOAaXTF8xH
- @giannigipi Per lo meno le password sono salted, é un passo avanti.
- November 8th & 9th in Munich: Workshop on Deep Learning with Keras and TensorFlow in RRegistration is now open for my 1.5-day workshop on deep learning with Keras and TensorFlow using R. It will take place on November 8th & 9th in Munich, Germany. You can read about one participant’s experience in my workshop: Big Data – ...
- I’ll be talking about ‘Decoding The Black Box’ at the Frankfurt Data Science MeetupI have yet another Meetup talk to announce: On Wednesday, October 26th, I’ll be talking about ‘Decoding The Black Box’ at the Frankfurt Data Science Meetup. Particularly cool with this meetup is that they will livestream the event at www.youtube....
- Le Monde puzzle [#1066]The second Le Monde mathematical puzzle in the new competition is sheer trigonometry: When in the above figures both triangles ABC are isosceles and the brown segments are all of length 25cm, find the angle in A and the value of DC², respectively. This could have been solved by R coding the various possible angles […]
- «smooth» package for R. Intermittent state-space model. Part I. Introducing the modelIntro One of the features of functions of smooth package is the ability to work with intermittent data and the data with periodically occurring zeroes. Intermittent time series is a series that has non-zero values occurring at irregular frequency (Svetuknov and Boylan, 2017). Imagine retailer who sells green leap sticks. The demand on such a […]
- Not Hotdog: A Shiny app using the Custom Vision APII had a great time at the EARL Conference in London last week, and as always came away invigorated by all of the applications of R that were presented there. I'll do a full writeup of the conference later this week, but in the meantime I wanted to share the materials from my own presentation […]
- Divergent and Convergent Phases of Data AnalysisThere are often discussions within the data science community about which tools are best for doing data science. The most recent iteration of this discussion is the so-called “First Notebook War”, which is well-summarized by Yihui Xie in his blog post (it is a great read). One thing that I have found missing from many […]
- Being at the CenterHilary Parker and I just released part 2 of our book club discussion of Nigel Cross’s book Design Thinking and it centers around a profile of designer Gordan Murray, who spent his career designing Formula One race cars. One of the aspects of his job as a designer is taking a “systems approach” to solving […]
- Constructing a Data AnalysisThis week Hilary Parker and I have started our “Book Club” on Not So Standard Deviations where we will be discussing Nigel Cross’s book Design Thinking: Understanding How Designers Think and Work. We will be talking about how the work of designers parallels the work of data scientists and how many of the principles developed […]
- A couple more papers on genetic diversity as an explanation for why Africa and remote Andean countries are so poor while Europe and North America are so wealthyBack in 2013, I wrote a post regarding a controversial claim that high genetic diversity, or low genetic diversity, is bad for the economy: Two economics professors, Quamrul Ashraf and Oded Galor, wrote a paper, “The Out of Africa Hypothesis, Human Genetic Diversity, and Comparative Economic Development,” that is scheduled to appear in the American […]
- The hot hand—in darts!Roland Langrock writes: Since on your blog you’ve regularly been discussing hot hand literature – which we closely followed – I’m writing to share with you a new working paper we wrote on a potential hot hand pattern in professional darts. We use state-space models in which a continuous-valued latent “hotness” variable, modeled as an […]
- Why, oh why, do so many people embrace the Pacific Garbage Cleanup nonsense? (I have a theory).This post is by Phil, not Andrew. Over the couple of months I have seen quite a few people celebrating the long-awaited launch of a big device that will remove plastic garbage from the Pacific ocean. I find this frustrating because this project makes no sense even if the device works as intended: at best […]