Speaker Series – Liz Jellema, Director of Research of World Business Chicago

imagesLiz Jellema, Director of Research of World Business Chicago (WBC) visited The Harris School of Public Policy yesterday (Tuesday, October 27th).

Liz talked about her career and current role at WBC, the city’s economic strengths, and what’s ahead in terms of economic development from WBC’s perspective.

She also addressed the opportunity for a summer internship at WBC.

Find her presentation here.

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Student Speaker Series (#1) – IADB’s Rethinking Productive Development (2014)

Today we had the first event of GROWTH at UChicago, with the Student Speaker Series.

Our first Student Speaker was Santiago Matallana, 2nd year MPP student, and a Colombian Economist. Santiago presented the latest flagship publication of the Inter-American Development Bank: Rethinking Productive Development.

See the presentation here.

Angus Deaton wins Nobel prize in economics | Business | The Guardian

Angus Deaton is the 2015 winner of the Nobel prize in economics. The Scottish-born economist is best known for his work on health, wellbeing, and economic development.

Source: Angus Deaton wins Nobel prize in economics | Business | The Guardian

Economists vs. Economics by Dani Rodrik – Project Syndicate

“(…) understanding requires simplification. The best way to respond to the complexity of social life is not to devise ever-more elaborate models, but to learn how different causal mechanisms work, one at a time, and then figure out which ones are most relevant in a particular setting.
(…)
Let us cherish economics in all its diversity – rational and behavioral, Keynesian and Classical, first-best and second-best, orthodox and heterodox – and devote our energy to becoming wiser at picking which framework to apply when.”

Source: Economists vs. Economics by Dani Rodrik – Project Syndicate

Patent trolls

Santiago Matallana

Innovation is a key driver of economic growth and progress, but the incentives to innovate are just not always there. Occasionally, there are high invention costs and no barriers for other players in the market to copy such creations. When that is the case, otherwise successful inventors might not only see how the extraordinary rewards of innovation vanish; they can lose money.

To prevent competitors from benefiting from an invention while avoiding its costs, patent law offers exclusive ownership rights to the inventor for a given period. This solves the problem of potential free-rider competitors, hence providing ex ante incentives for investment in innovation.

The solution is far from perfect. Ownership rights not only provide incentives to innovate. They also induce the rent-seeking behavior displayed by the so called “patent trolls”. These are companies that own patents, do not actually produce goods or services related to them, but do enforce…

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Does better education really drive economic growth?

“Make no mistake: education presumably does raise productivity. But to say that education is your growth strategy means that you are giving up on everyone that has already gone through the school system…”

By Ricardo Hausmann

Jun 1 2015

via Does better education really drive economic growth? – Agenda – The World Economic Forum.

A quote to grow

[…] industrial policy never went out of fashion. Economists enamored of the neo-liberal Washington Consensus may have written it off, but successful economies have always relied on government policies that promote growth by accelerating structural transformation.

– Dani Rodrik