ISET

ISET Economist Blog

A blog about economics in the South Caucasus.
Jan
28

Georgia and the Gravity of Migration

Whatever Kim Jong-un’s propaganda says about the greatness of his country, it is a fact that nobody immigrates to North Korea but almost everyone wants to get out. Likewise, whatever conservative Muslims say about the depraved West – there is a huge net migration out of Muslim countries into these rotten and decadent Western societies. And also the “socialist paradises” of the past had to take great efforts to make sure their lucky populations did not leave: the Berlin Wall was built in 1961 because the large-scale drainage of labor threatened Eastern Ge...
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Nov
28

TUMORROW IS ALREADY HERE

Spending a big chunk of their precious summer vacation in Armenia was not exactly my kids’ dream. Their wish list included far more exotic destinations in Africa, the Far East and Europe’s leading capitals – Vienna, Paris or London. And, yet, it did not take too much convincing for them to go on a one-week trial at TUMO’s summer school for creativity in Yerevan. All I had to do was show a few pictures from TUMO’s website: What was supposed to be a one-week trial turned into a four-week immersion into the world of photography, 3D modeling and animation (...
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Nov
07

“Friendship Bridge” – For or Against Gravitation?

The official visit of the Armenian President last week was concluded by a splashy announcement that the building of the “Friendship Bridge,” a new infrastructure project approved by the Georgian and Armenian Governments in late 2014, will start construction in 2017, and will be completed in under two years. The Georgian Prime Minister and the Armenian President have reportedly discussed a range of other opportunities to deepen economic and trade relationship between the two countries and support business community engagement in this process. This excitem...
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Apr
25

Are Working Women Happy Women? View from the Greater Caucasus

“Happiness is the meaning and the purpose of life, the whole aim and end of human existence” – Aristotle WHY STUDY HAPPINESS? Already in ancient times philosophers debated the nature of happiness and the recipes for a happy and fulfilling life. Today this question is also hotly debated by scientists and politicians, who are particularly interested in what can be done to increase the happiness of their voters (and citizens, more generally). Happiness has become so important nowadays that four countries: Bhutan, Ecuador, UAE and Venezuela went so...
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Eric Livny
Am curious whether the same data could be used to analyze whether the husbands are happier as a result of their wives working outs... Read More
Tuesday, 26 April 2016 10:10 AM
Nino Doghonadze
This would be very interesting questions to answer. Unfortunately, however, the survey is not collecting data on happiness levels... Read More
Tuesday, 26 April 2016 1:01 PM
Eric Livny
The fact that happiness (or utility) are determined by social norms may be a problem not only for the whole economics of happiness... Read More
Wednesday, 27 April 2016 9:09 AM
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Oct
29

Nagorno-Karabakh: Peace ex Machina?

Negotiation support systems (NSS) let computers be brokers in multidimensional and highly complex negotiation problems. In the last 20 years, platforms like Smartsettle and Inspire were used in thousands of serious negotiation cases around the world, many of which were successfully resolved. Some years ago, the first author of this article was involved in an attempt to use NSS for settling a dispute between the Israeli government, which wanted to shut down one of its departments, and a labor union, which represented the employees who were affected. The m...
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Jun
29

Why Armenia Is Not (Yet) Ukraine?

  Yerevan is presently rife with protest. Dubbed “Electric Yerevan,” the protests are aptly named considering that they began as a result of Armenia’s government succumbing to demands by the country’s electricity distribution monopoly (Electric Network of Armenia (ENA)) to raise regulated tariffs by 16.7% as of 1 August, 2015. ENA is owned by Inter RAO UES, a Russian energy giant, giving rise to suggestions that Armenian officials are effectively serving Russian interests. Yet, the hike in electricity prices, which the government had initially resis...
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Guest — David Lee
I think that there is a danger of viewing all political and economic problems in the wider region, let use the Eastern Partnership... Read More
Monday, 29 June 2015 8:08 AM
Guest — Mikayel Badalyan
Thank you Eric, now I got exactly the point you mean.I would not agree with You, as the mentality of each nation is different. In ... Read More
Tuesday, 30 June 2015 11:11 AM
Guest — Eric Livny
You know, babies typically love chocolate and new iPhones, and hate school, etc. Often they need to be disciplined. Now, some moth... Read More
Tuesday, 30 June 2015 11:11 AM
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