ISET

ISET Economist Blog

A blog about economics in the South Caucasus.
Jan
18

On Inequality, Growth and the Kuznets Curve in Georgia

Is inequality bad for economic development? There has been a lively debate on this issue. Some economists argue that inequality is necessary for economic growth, while others are against it. Relatively recent empirical studies have found that in countries with relatively low per capita income inequality hampers growth. One of the main ways in which high inequality negatively affects economic growth is social turmoil. Social discontent is translated into socio-political instability, raising political and economic uncertainty in a country, which in turn im...
Rate this blog entry:
Recent comment in this post
Guest — Giorgi Mekerishvili
Interesting piece Givi. Figure 2 shows country level Gini Index as far as I understand. So, it catches urban/rural inequality (to ... Read More
Friday, 18 January 2013 4:04 PM
Continue reading
3183
1 Comment
Write a Comment
Jan
11

Institutions, Politics, and Development

How can a society become more prosperous? This question has been on the minds of economists and policymakers for centuries. More than two hundred years ago, Adam Smith wrote that “little else is requisite to carry a state to the highest degree of opulence from the lowest barbarism but peace, easy taxes, and a tolerable administration of justice, all the rest being brought about by the natural course of things.” Yet, still today, many societies around the world are characterized not by peace, easy taxes, and a tolerable administration of justice, but by c...
Rate this blog entry:
Recent Comments
Guest — Vusal Mammadrzayev
Adam, you mentioned that the weak institutions, less transparency and political instability is the main constraint in the economic... Read More
Tuesday, 15 January 2013 9:09 PM
Guest — NP
I like a lot this piece. Actually, I believe Georgia went through a very active process of modernization in many areas under the p... Read More
Thursday, 17 January 2013 11:11 AM
Continue reading
2169
2 Comments
Write a Comment
Dec
03

Roads and Rural Development: the Case of Samtskhe Javakheti

A few days after the beginning of the August 2008 war with Russia, I found myself on an epic journey through Kvemo Kartli and the volcanic plateau of Samtkhe-Javakheti to Turkey. In an effort to take my family to safety, I was driving a fully-loaded off-road vehicle on what was marked on my map as a “road” from Tbilisi via Tetri Tskharo and Tsalka to Akhatsikhe. This journey of 270 km took about 36 hours, including one hard-to-forget night at a “hotel” in Tsalka (yes, there was and still is such an establishment in Tsalka!). Ok, I admit to taking a littl...
Tags:
Rate this blog entry:
Recent Comments
Guest — Vusal Mammadrzayev
Thank you for post. I have two questions. 1) Which part of this increasing income comes from agriculture? 2) Does there actually ... Read More
Monday, 03 December 2012 9:09 PM
Guest — Eric
Vusal, there are detailed micro-level data on income components. The question you are asking is exactly the kind of question you c... Read More
Tuesday, 04 December 2012 8:08 AM
Guest — Florian
You found time for sightseeing while being on the escape from the 2008 war hostilities. That's a truly Israeli attitude! ;-)
Saturday, 08 December 2012 2:02 PM
Continue reading
2296
5 Comments
Write a Comment
Nov
30

Does Georgia Need More and Larger Cities?

We may recall that the Lazika city project has been proposed by the Saakashvili administration to accelerate the process of urbanization. A new city was suggested as a means of absorbing surplus rural population and thus paving the way for land consolidation and greater productivity in agriculture. No country, it was claimed, was able to modernize itself while maintaining almost 50% in rural employment. Yet, if we look at the global statistics, Georgia is reasonably urbanized. With 53.2% of urban dwellers, Georgia is ranked 107 in the world, slightly beh...
Tags:
Rate this blog entry:
Recent comment in this post
Guest — Zak
As you are stressing the importance of the smaller cities it would have been more informative if you presented your Zipf plot on l... Read More
Friday, 30 November 2012 4:04 PM
Continue reading
3135
1 Comment
Write a Comment
Nov
23

Math Education – an Engine of Economic Growth in the 21st Century

  MATH EDUCATION AND GROWTH: RECENT EVIDENCE Mathematical literacy has always been a key factor in improving a country’s productivity and competitiveness. Stanford University’s Eric Hanushek has shown that there is a positive relationship between students’ performance in mathematics tests and economic growth. This is not at all surprising. Proficiency in math implies a high-level of cognitive skills among the labour force, in other words a high quality of human capital, which leads to technological innovation and productivity gains. Another more re...
Rate this blog entry:
Recent Comments
Guest — Archil
Givi, Good review! I do agree with you that we need to prioritize mathematics; There is a myth in the west that Georgians are good... Read More
Friday, 23 November 2012 8:08 PM
Guest — Maka
Nice post and interesting relationship. I hope new government will joint PISA again and we will be able to monitor changes in Geor... Read More
Friday, 23 November 2012 8:08 PM
Guest — Michael
How do you control for endogeneity in these kinds of studies?
Friday, 23 November 2012 10:10 PM
Continue reading
4556
18 Comments
Write a Comment
Sep
29

Aviation and Agriculture

  The YFN Georgia blog offers an interesting angle to the opening of the new Kutaisi airport: A major hindrance to the development of high-value horticulture exports from western Georgia is the limited availabity of air freight capacity from Batumi Airport. Most flights from Batumi are oriented towards Ukraine; only one service to the Persian Gulf is available, to Kuwait City. Hopefully Kutaisi will offer airfreight routes to Dubai and Qatar, which will provide new markets for high value cut flowers, citrus and fresh herbs. Check out the othe...
Rate this blog entry:
Recent comment in this post
Guest — Eric
Thanks for posting. A very interesting angle. Relevant for the "hub economy" discussion
Sunday, 30 September 2012 11:11 AM
Continue reading
1888
1 Comment
Write a Comment

Our Partners