PERI In Focus Full Version-April 2018

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April 2018

Toxic Names Top Climate, Air, and Water Polluters
Green New Deal for U.S. States
There's Gotta' Be Something Better than "A Better Deal"
Investment, Consumption, or Public Good? Unpaid Work and Intra-Family Transfers
Structural Adjustment Programs in Developing Countries
The U.S. Net Social Wage in the 21st Century
Migration, Crises, and Social Transformation in India
Austerity Versus Green Growth for Puerto Rico

PERI Welcomes New Economists, Staff

Noam Chomsky and Robert Pollin in Conversation
Gerald Epstein Presents Keynote Talk on "The Finance Curse"
PERI Commentary

Toxic 100 Names Top Climate, Air, and Water Polluters


PERI economists Michael Ash and James Boyce released new indexes of the top corporate air and water polluters and top greenhouse gas emitters in the U.S., using the latest data from the Environmental Protection Agency.  The Greenhouse 100 Index ranks Southern Company, Duke Energy and American Electric Power as top greenhouse gas emitters. Topping the list of air polluters are DowDuPont, Berkshire Hathaway, and General Electric. Topping the list of water polluters are DowDuPont, American Electric Power and Honeywell International. The Toxic 100 Air Index includes an environmental justice report card which shows the extent to which air pollution burdens are imposed disproportionately on minority and low-income communities.
 
>> View Indexes
>> Listen to interview with Michael Ash

 

Green New Deal for U.S. States


In support of a global project to fight climate change, two new studies by PERI researchers Robert Pollin, Heidi Garrett-Peltier, and Jeannette Wicks-Lim show how state-level policies can achieve three critical goals within both Washington and New York States:  sharp declines in CO2 emissions; an expansion of good jobs; and a Just Transition for workers and communities currently dependent on the fossil fuel industry.  The two studies show how Green New Deal programs for both Washington and New York States are achievable even without the support of federal-level policies.   For both states, the centerpiece of the Green New Deal are large-scale investments to dramatically improve energy efficiency standards and equally dramatically expand the supply of energy provided by wind, solar, and geothermal sources.
 
>> Read “A Green New Deal for Washington State”
>> Read “Clean Energy Investments for New York State”
 

Author Interviews and Commentary

>> Interview with Robert Pollin by CJ Polychroniou for Truthout
>> Interview with Robert Pollin and Jeffrey Johnson, president of Washington State Labor Council, AFL-CIO
>> Interview with Robert Pollin on Clean Energy Investments for New York State
>> Commentary by Robert Pollin in Albany Times Union


 

There's Gotta' Be Something Better than "A Better Deal"


According to PERI Co-Director Gerald Epstein's essay in Challenge magazine, the Democrats' response to President Trump's plan to raise wages, called "A Better Deal," contains some valuable proposals. But Epstein finds that, on balance, it is badly inadequate for the task. It has little on health care, poverty, financial regulation, or full-employment policies, and even its infrastructure investment program is skimpy on details.  Epstein also analyzes alternatives offered by the Congressional Progressive Caucus and an offshoot of Bernie Sanders' campaign. He thinks these alternative proposals provide a blueprint, at least in part, for a more robust progressive economic policy program. 
 
>> Read essay


 

Investment, Consumption, or Public Good? Unpaid Work and Intra-Family Transfers


Nancy Folbre and James Heintz outline some preliminary steps toward a more satisfactory integration of family and market dynamics. They examine distinctive characteristics of the family economy that deserve consideration. They then develop critical assessment of three different types of models: accounting frameworks, neoclassical growth models that assume joint utility, and neoclassical growth models that problematize family decision making between the generations, often dubbed overlapping generation models. They argue that overlapping generation models provide a starting point for more satisfactory models. The paper concludes by outlining ways in which this approach could be fruitfully extended.
 
>> Read paper


 

How Structural Adjustment Programs Impact Bureaucratic Quality in Developing Countries


toxic100The administrative ability of the state to design and implement effective policy is an essential condition for economic development. In this paper, PERI researcher Lawrence King and his co-authors examine the impact of policy reforms mandated by the International Monetary Fund (IMF) on the bureaucratic quality of borrowing countries. They scrutinize the IMF’s practice of ‘conditionality’—far-reaching policy reforms borrowing countries must implement as a precondition for access to loans.  In particular, they show how ‘structural conditions’ increase the risk that bureaucrats fall prey to special interests and reduce the range of policy instruments available to bureaucrats to steer the economy.
 
>> Read paper
>> Watch author interview


 

The U.S. Net Social Wage in the 21st Century


In this paper, PERI Research Associate Katherine Moos examines the trends of fiscal transfers between the state and workers during 1959 - 2012 to understand the net impact of redistributive policy in the U.S. The paper investigates the appearance of an increase in the net social wage beginning in 2001. This positive net social wage since 2001 is the result of a combination of factors, including the growth of income support; healthcare inflation; neoliberal tax reforms; and macroeconomic instability.
 
>> Read paper
>> Watch author interview


Migration, Crises, and Social Transformation in India


Since liberalization, urban migration in India has increased in quantity, but also changed in quality, with permanent marriage migration and temporary, circular employment migration rising, even as permanent economic migration remains stagnant. In this new paper, Smriti  Rao and Vamsi Vakulabharanam understand internal migration in India to be a re-ordering of productive and reproductive labor that signifies a deep transformation of society. This transformation is a response to the combination of agrarian, employment, and social reproduction crises.  The migration patterns support capital accumulation, but create major burdens for a majority of Indians, who are seeking stable, rooted livelihoods.
 
>> Read paper


 

Austerity Versus Green Growth for Puerto Rico


Puerto Rico is experiencing a severe economic, social, and debt crisis. But the predominant idea guiding discussions for resolving the crisis is an austerity agenda that will only worsen conditions. This paper by Amanda Page-Hoongrajok, Shouvik Chakraborty and Robert Pollin of PERI develops a “green growth” program for Puerto Rico as an alternative to austerity. This program is capable of delivering much lower energy costs, expanding job opportunities, eliminating dependence on fossil fuel imports, and creating openings for small-scale business ventures. But major debt write-downs will be necessary to enable the green growth program to move forward at a significant scale.
 
>> Read paper
>> Read The Nation article detailing study

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PERI Welcomes New Economists, Staff


PERI is pleased to welcome two economists, Lawrence King and Katherine Moos.  Larry and Katherine recently joined the UMass Economics Dept. as well. PERI also welcomes Nicole Dunham as the new Director of Administration & Operations. Nicole joins PERI with over 15 years of administrative and managerial experience.

>> Read more about Lawrence King
>> Read more about Katherine Moos
>> Read more about Nicole Dunham


 

Noam Chomsky and Robert Pollin in Conversation


Noam Chomsky and Robert Pollin participate in a three-part conversation with CJ Polychroniou for Truthout. In this dialogue, they discuss the most pressing social, economic, and political issues facing the United States today.

>> Read Interview


 

PERI's Gerald Epstein Gives Keynote Talk on "The Finance Curse"


Co-Director Gerald Epstein presents his work on the high cost of finance at a research workshop co-organized by the Tax Justice Network and the Sheffield Political Research Institute.
 
>> View presentation

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Additional Research

 
Community-Driven Development and Collective Action: Overcoming Clientelism, Elite Capture, and Free Riding
Jessica Carrick-Hagenbarth / PERI Working Paper

When Things Don't Fall Apart: Global Financial Governance and Developmental Finance in an Age of Productive Incoherence
Ilene Grabel / Book: MIT Press

Giovanni Arrighi in Beijing: Rethinking the Transformation of the Labor Supply in Rural China During the Reform Era
Hao Qi, Zhongjin Li  / PERI Working Paper

On the Social Efficiency of Finance
Gerald Epstein / Journal Article: Development and Change

Is It Merely A Labor Supply Shock? Impacts of Syrian Migrants on Local Economies in Turkey
Doruk Cengiz, Hasan Tekguc / PERI Working Paper

The Global Financial Governance Architecture, Developmental Finance, and the Hirschmanian Mindset
Ilene Grabel / PERI Working Paper

Environmental Destruction in the New Economy: Offshore Finance and Mangrove Forest Clearance in Grand Cayman
Katrina Jurn, Joseph Lavallee, Lawrence King / PERI Working Paper

The Cost of Paid Sick Leave
Amanda Page-Hoongrajok /PERI Working Paper

Re-Conceptualizing Processes of Post-Colonial Development in Pakistan: The Interplay of Institutions and Class
Danish Khan / PERI Working Paper

Does Greater Public Ownership in the Financial System Promote Superior Performance?
Devika Dutt / PERI Working Paper

Revisiting the Gender Wage Gap in Korea: Focusing on Working Hours by Occupation
Nayeon Lim, Minsik Choi / PERI Working Paper

The Costs of Exclusion: Gender Job Segregation, Structural Change, and the Labour Share of Income
Stephanie Seguino, Elissa Braunstein / PERI Working Paper

Workers and Technological Change in the United States
Mark Stelzner, Enzo Cerrutti / PERI Working Paper

Punishment or Forgiveness? Loan Modifications in Private Label Residential Mortgage Backed Securities from 2008-2014
Thomas Herndon / PERI Working Paper

Competing Economic Paradigms in China: The Co-Evolution of Economic Events, Economic Theory and Economics Education 1976-2016
Steve Cohn / Book: Routledge Press

The Revenue Potential of a Financial Transaction Tax for U.S. Financial Markets (Update)
Robert Pollin, James Heintz, Thomas Herndon / PERI Working Paper

Liar’s Loans, Mortgage Fraud, and the Great Recession
Thomas Herndon / PERI Working Paper

Renewable Energy Investment and Employment in China
Ying Chen / PERI Working Paper


PERI Commentary and News Coverage


Toxic Profit: Meet the Top Super Polluters in the U.S.
Michael Ash on The Real News Network

Mitch McConnell's Big Gift to the Banks
Jennifer Taub on CNN

IMF's Structural Adjustment Programs Weaken States They Aim to Strengthen
Lawrence King on The Real News Network

Capital Flight From Africa: How the Poor Finance the Rich
Leonce Ndikumana on The Real News Network

Electric Power Companies Top the List of Greenhouse Gas Emitters
Michael Ash on The Real News Network

Neoliberalism and the Rise of the Net Social Wage
Katherine Moos on The Real News Network

Trump Budget: Reaganomics Plus Military Keynesianism Equals Deficit Boom
Robert Pollin on The Real News Network

Trump's Economic Nationalism: Who's It Good For?
Robert Pollin on The Real News Network

How to Achieve Zero Emissions, Even if the Federal Government Won't Help
Robert Pollin in Truthout

Nancy Folbre's Feminist Unorthodox Economics
Interview with Institute for New Economic Thinking

Is Greece on the Road to Recovery?
C.J. Polychroniou in Truthout

India Must Adopt Greener Forms of Energy to Curb Pollution
Shouvik Chakraborty on The Real News Network

The Cost of Exclusion: Gender Job Segregation Hurts the Working Class
Stephanie Seguino on The Real News Network

For Clean Air, India Needs a Policy Leap
Rohit Azad, Shouvik Chakraborty in The Hindu

In America and Around the World, the Poor Will Pay for the GOP Tax Plan
Leonce Ndikumana in Common Dreams

Investing in Clean Energy Would Boost New York's Economy
Robert Pollin on The Real News Network

Africa Severely Handicapped by Capital Flight
Leonce Ndikumana on The Real News Network

Is Waiting for Coal Jobs a Mistake?
Robert Pollin on The Real News Network

Trump's Tax Plan Won't Boost Economy or Create Jobs
Gerald Epstein on The Real News Network

Clean Energy Is a "Powerful Engine of Job Opportunity"
Robert Pollin on The Real News Network

Military Spending Ineffective for Creating Jobs
Heidi Garrett-Peltier on The Real News Network

U.S. Pharma Industry Converts Monopoly Power into Political Power
Lawrence King on The Real News Network

Will Brexit Destroy the UK's Economy? An Interview With Malcolm Sawyer
C.J. Polychroniou, Marcus Rolle in Truthout

Bannon Fired from White House
Gerald Epstein on The Real News Network

Trump and the Infrastructure of Fascism
Gerald Epstein in TripleCrisis Blog

Financial Globalization Can Wreck Societies and the World Economy
Gerald Epstein in Truthout and Rozenberg Quarterly

If Yellen Is Out, What's Next for the Fed?
Gerald Epstein on The Real News Network

Why Current Definitions of Family Income Are Misleading, and Why this Matters
Nancy Folbre for Washington Center for Equitable Growth

Why Single Payer, Now, Is for Real
Robert Pollin in The Intercept

 
Contact: Kim Weinstein, 703-229-2146

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