Understanding Venezuela's Collapse

February 12, 2019

Ricardo Hausmann - Harvard Gazette

Thousands of angry demonstrators in Venezuela took to the streets again this week to protest the government of President Nicolás Maduro, two weeks after he was sworn in for a second term following an election that many critics say was rigged. The protests were organized by opposition leader Juan Guaidó, president of the National Assembly, who has declared himself acting president.

Once one of the richest countries in Latin America with the world’s largest oil reserves, Venezuela has been in political, economic, and...

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The knowhow path to Sri Lankan development

September 5, 2018

Ricardo Hausmann - DailyFT

When Adam Smith wrote ‘The Wealth of Nations’ in 1776, the richest country in the world was four times richer than the poorest one. Today, Singapore is over 110 times richer than Burundi. What could possibly explain such an extreme divergence of the wealth of nations? 

Economists have shown that these differences are too large to be explained by differences in the availability of land or capital – including human capital. So, they ascribe it to differences in the productivity with which land and capital are used,...

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Planet Money: The Measure Of A Tragedy

June 19, 2018

Ricardo Hausmann on NPR's Planet Money: The Indicator podcast

The Venezuelan economy has collapsed. Years of economic mismanagement and a deepening political crisis have led to a recession that has almost no parallel in recent memory.

But explaining just how bad things have gotten is also really hard because the normal economic indicators that we use to measure a country's economy have started to sound so so unfathomable — 25,000% inflation, for example — that it feels impossible to get our heads around them.

Ricardo Hausmann, a Harvard-based...

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Immigration key catalyst for development

May 17, 2018

Daily FT

Reforming immigration law to allow free movement of people through progressive laws could tackle Sri Lanka’s chronic economic challenges of narrow exports, low Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) and limited innovation, a top expert said yesterday, outlining many examples of countries that have experienced growth spurts by opening up their labour markets.   

Prof. Ricardo Hausmann is Director of Harvard’s Center for International Development and Professor of the Practice of Economic Development at the Kennedy School of Government. Delivering...

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Authers’ Note: Turning and turning in the widening gyre

May 7, 2018

2026 Growth Projections in the Financial Times

Some parts of the world do not follow a cycle, but may actually enjoy secular growth over the next decade or so. The only problem is that you will need courage and a lot of due diligence to take advantage.

The latest edition of the Atlas of Economic Complexity by Harvard’s Center for International Development was published last week. It shows the countries best positioned to grow thanks to their networks of diverse and transferable skills. Their projected winners might provide some:

I strongly...

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Harvard offers hope on SA economy

May 4, 2018

The Sunday Times

Researchers at Harvard’s Center for International Development are predicting that South Africa's economy will grow at 4.9% annually until 2026. This‚ says banking's Michael Jordaan‚ "would be radically transformative".

It's also optimistic‚ as the International Monetary Fund recently forecast SA economic growth to strengthen to 1.5% in 2018 and to 1.7% in 2019.

Harvard's CID report ranks South Africa in 66th place.

With projected growth of 7.9%, India tops list of fastest growing economies for coming decade

May 4, 2018

India TV News

India tops the list of the fastest growing economies in the world for the coming decade and is projected to grow at 7.9 per cent annually, ahead of China and the US, according to a Harvard University report. 

The Centre for International Development at Harvard University (CID) said in new growth projections on Thursday that countries that have diversified their economies into more complex sectors, like India and Vietnam, are those that will grow the fastest in the coming decade. 

Here Are the Countries Safest From a Robot Job Revolution

April 2, 2018

Ljubica Nedelkoska - Fortune Magazine

Automation may render millions of jobs obsolete—but some countries may be in a better position to face the robots than others.

That’s based on research from the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development, a symposium of largely wealthier nations, using 2012 data from 32 of its members to gauge the risk...

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Harvard economist calls for tariff reforms to increase exports

February 9, 2018

Robert Lawrence/Sri Lanka project - Daily FT

Making a compelling case against tariff regimes, renowned Harvard economist Dr. Robert Lawrence yesterday called for a simpler system with significantly lower tariffs in order to increase Sri Lanka’s exports.

Delivering a lecture on protectionism organised by the Advocata Institute in Colombo, Prof. Lawrence, who is the Faculty Chair of the Practice of Trade Policy program at Harvard University’s Kennedy School, said that imposing tariffs is the wrong way to raise revenue, highlighting the need for tax reforms with...

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