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Featuring Arindam Nandi
Center for Disease Dynamics, Economics & Policy
Paper Abstract: Despite strong recent economic growth, gender inequality remains a major concern for India. Nandi’s paper examines the effectiveness of a public policy geared towards the reduction of gender inequality. The national Pre-Conception and Pre-Natal Diagnostics Techniques (PNDT) Act of 1994, implemented in 1996, banned sex-selective abortions in the Indian states. Although demographers frequently mention the futility of the Act, this paper is among the first to evaluate the law using a treatment-effect type analysis of the pre-ban and post-ban periods. Using village-level and town-level longitudinal data from the 1991 and 2001 censuses, along with household survey data from other sources, Nandi finds a significantly positive impact of the PNDT Act on the female-to-male juvenile sex ratio. In the possible absence of the PNDT Act, Nandi finds that the juvenile sex ratio would have declined by another 16-20 points.
In this new World Bank Policy Research Report, Moving for Prosperity: Global Migration and Labor Markets, Çağlar Özden attempts to address the tension between the academic research and the public discourse on migration by focusing on the economic evidence. The report suggests a labor market–oriented, economically motivated rationale as an alternative to the political opposition to migration. Global migration patterns lead to high concentrations of immigrants in certain places, industries, and occupations. These geographic and labor market concentrations of immigrants lead to increased anxiety, insecurity, and potentially significant short-term disruptions among native-born workers.
Understanding (and empathizing with) these legitimate economic concerns is critical to informed and effective policymaking. The goal should be to ease the costs of short-term dislocations of native-born workers and distribute more widely the economic benefits generated by labor mobility. Proactive interventions to ease the pain and share the gain from immigration are essential to avoid draconian restrictions on immigration that will hurt everybody. Ignoring the massive economic gains of immigration would be akin to leaving billions of hundred-dollar bills on the sidewalk.
Industrialization was never an accident but an outcome of a well- crafted industrial policy. Analyzing the capacity and limits of the (developmental) state in the industrialization process and in economic development in general, Murat Yülek’s new book, How Nations Succeed: Manufacturing, Trade, Industrial Policy, and Economic Development, sheds light on how today’s governments can design industrial policy and how they can identify strategic sectors to break out of Low and Middle Income Traps. Explaining technical concepts in understandable terms, the book introduces a stylized industrialization process in four stages and locates different countries on the process map. He illustrates how picking-the-winner type industrial policies –a controversial issue among the economists –have worked in different countries. It also discusses how industrial policy and science, technology and innovation policies should be sequenced for best results. As trade wars and (pre-mature) de-industrialization become the zeitgeist of today, the book shows the links between global (im)balances and economic development explaining export-led growth as well as import-led slowdowns.
On the sidelines of the World Bank and IMF Spring Meetings 2019, the Center for Global Development (CGD) and the Bretton Woods Committee (BWC) will co-host this expert panel to discuss the future of the World Bank under its new president, David Malpass. What should top his agenda? What are the most important and urgent issues in the development landscape and what is the role of the World Bank in addressing these challenges? Join us to hear from this panel of global thought leaders offering recommendations for the future of the multilateral system.