Social and Economic Affairs

24 posts

Social and economic consequences of the corona crisis

End of the neoliberal era?

Adam Tooze: Has Covid ended the neoliberal era?, in: The Guardian Online (September 2, 2021), online in: https://www.theguardian.com/news/2021/sep/02/covid-and-the-crisis-of-neoliberalism.

According to Adam Tooze, the year 2020 revealed the risks and weaknesses of the market-oriented global system as never before. For him, it gave the impression that a turning point had been reached.

Link to the article on the website of The Guardian newspaper

World Happiness Report 2021

John F. Helliwell, Richard Layard, Jeffrey D. Sachs, Jan-Emmanuel De Neve (eds.): World Happiness Report 2021, New York: Sustainable Development Solutions Network (2021).

The World Happiness Report 2021 focuses on the effects of COVID-19 and how people all over the world have fared. Continue reading

Impact on the Italian demographic structure

Giacomo Caracciolo, Salvatore Lo Bello, Dario Pellegrino: An assessment on the potential impact of COVID-19 on the Italian demographic structure; in Bank of Italy, Economic Research and International Relations Area (ed.): Questioni di Economia e Finanza (Occasional Papers) 622 (June 2021).

Relative to past pandemics, the mortality effects of Covid-19 on the demographic structure are likely smaller. However, the behavioural effects of the economic crisis on the decisions to have children and to migrate may be substantial. The literature on the relationship between the economic cycle and demographics uncovers the potential of the unemployment rate to predict fertility and migrations. Continue reading

Surge in cash demand

Jonathan Ashworth, Charles Goodhart: Coronavirus panic fuels a surge in cash demand, in: VOX, CEPR Policy Portal, online in:https://voxeu.org/article/coronavirus-panic-fuels-surge-cash-demand, July 17, 2020.

Despite regular reports in the media over the past decade on the imminent death of cash amid rapid innovation in payment technologies, cash in circulation has actually been growing strongly in many countries. Perhaps unsurprisingly given coronavirus-related health concerns, there have recently been renewed calls to abandon cash and some observers have argued the virus will accelerate its demise. Continue reading

Epidemics in modern economies

Torsten Heinrich: Epidemics in modern economies, in: arXiv:2105.02387v2 [econ.GN] (May 13, 2021).

How are economies in a modern age impacted by epidemics? In what ways is economic life disrupted? How can pandemics be modeled? What can be done to mitigate and manage the danger? Does the threat of pandemics increase or decrease in the modern world? The Covid-19 pandemic has demonstrated the importance of these questions and the potential of complex systems science to provide answers. This article offers a broad overview of the history of pandemics, of established facts, and of models of infection diffusion, mitigation strategies, and economic impact. The example of the Covid-19 pandemic is used to illustrate the theoretical aspects, but the article also includes considerations concerning other historic epidemics and the danger of more infectious and less controllable outbreaks in the future.

Link to the article on the Cornell University page

Download link to the PDF file of the article on the Cornell University page

Crisis politics and US farm labor

Nezahualcoyotl Xiuhtecutli, Annie Shattuck: Crisis politics and US farm labor: health justice and Florida farmworkers amid a pandemic, in: The Journal of Peasent Studies 48 (2021) No. 1, pp. 73-98, DOI: 10.1080/03066150.2020.1856089

Globally, farmworkers are among the most affected by the COVID-19 pandemic and its economic fallout. Longstanding social and spatial inequalities allowed COVID-19 to spread unchecked, propelling a surge in farmworker activism, while the state uses the crisis to rollback worker protections. Continue reading

The crisis and the food system

Jan Douwe van der Ploeg: From biomedical to politico-economic crisis: the food system in times of Covid-19, in: The Journal of Peasant Studies 47 (2020) No. 5, pp. 944-972, DOI: 10.1080/03066150.2020.1794843

Covid-19 is quickly developing into a deep, global and enduring politico-economic crisis that involves a rapid disarticulation of the production, processing, distribution and consumption of food. The badly balanced world market and the high degree of financialization of both primary agricultural production and food chains are decisive factors in this. Continue reading

Post-Covid-19 Agriculture

Miguel A. Altieri, Clara I. Nicholls: Agroecology and the reconstruction of a post-COVID-19 agriculture, in: The Journal of Peasant Studies 47 (2020) No. 5, pp. 881-898, DOI:10.1080/03066150.2020.1782891.

The COVID-19 crisis has created a moment where existing calls for agroecology acquire new relevance. Agroecology provides a path to reconstruct a post-COVID-19 agriculture, one that is able to avoid widespread disruptions of food supplies in the future by territorializing food production and consumption. Continue reading

Influenza Pandemics and Macroeconomic Fluctuations

Fraser Summerfield, Livio Di Matteo: Influenza Pandemics and Macroeconomic Fluctuations in Recent Economic History, in: CCHE/CCES Working Paper No. 210,002 (March, 2021).

COVID-19 and the associated economic disruption is not a unique pairing. Catastrophic health events including the ‘Black Death’ and the ‘Spanish Flu’ also featured major economic disruptions. This paper focuses on significant health shocks during 1870-2016 from a singular virus: influenza. Continue reading

De-Globalisation?

Pol Antràs: De-Globalisation? Global Value Chains in the Post-COVID-19 Age, in: NBER Working Paper Series, Working Paper Nr. 28115 (November 2020).

This paper evaluates the extent to which the world economy has entered a phase of de-globalisation, and it offers some speculative thoughts on the future of global value chains in the post-COVID-19 age. Continue reading

IMF: World Economic Outlook

International Monetary Fund (ed.): World Economic Outlook Update. Policy Support and Vaccines Expected to Lift Activity (January 2021).

Policy Support and Vaccines Expected to Lift Activity

From the report:

“Although recent vaccine approvals have raised hopes of a turnaround in the pandemic later this year, renewed waves and new variants of the virus pose concerns for the outlook. Continue reading

Civil Liberties in Times of Crisis

Marcella Alsan, Luca Braghieri, Sarah Eichmeyer, Minjeong Joyce Kim, Stefanie Stantcheva, David Y. Yang: Civil Liberties in Times of Crisis, in: NBER Working Paper Series, Working Paper Nr. 27972 (October 2020).

Civil liberties are sometimes considered non-tradable and “sacred,” and their protection a hallmark of democracies. Using representative surveys of 480,000 respondents from 15 countries, the Authors found that citizens demonstrate a clear willingness to trade off civil liberties for improved public health conditions during the COVID-19 pandemic. Continue reading

Globalization and Pandemics

Pol Antràs, Stephen J. Redding, Esteban Rossi-Hansberg: Globalization and Pandemics, in. NBER Working Paper Series, Working Paper No. 27840 (September 2020).

The authors develop a model of human interaction to analyze the relationship between globalization and pandemics. Their framework provides joint microfoundations for the gravity equation for international trade and the Susceptible-Infected-Recovered (SIR) model of disease dynamics. The authors show that there are cross-country epidemiological externalities, such that whether a global pandemic breaks out depends critically on the disease environment in the country with the highest rates of domestic infection. Continue reading

Affects on inequality

Davide Furceri, Prakash Loungani, Jonathan D. Ostry and Pietro Pizzuto: Will Covid-19 affect inequality? Evidence from past pandemics, in: CEPR Press, Issue 12, Mai 1, 2020, p. 138-157.

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Effects on payment

Loretta J. Mester: Payments and the Pandemic. Keynote Speech: 20th Anniversary Chicago Payments Symposium – Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago,  September 23, 2020.

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Economic Impact of the Black Death

Remi Jedwab, Noel D. Johnson, Mark Koyama: The Economic Impact of the Black Death, in: IIEP-WP-2020-14, August 2020.

The “Black Death” was the biggest demographic shock in European history. The authors of this paper review the origin, spread and mortality of the disease. They document that it was an plausibly exogenous shock for the European economy and trace its aggregate and local impacts in both the short and long term.

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