ISET

ISET Economist Blog

A blog about economics in the South Caucasus.
Dec
07

If You Are So Smart, Why Are You Stuck in Kutaisi?

Rachvelis, the natives of a beautiful highland region in western Georgia, have a reputation for being slow but thorough in speaking and behavior. Whether slow or not, Rachvelis are certainly not dumb. At least according to their performance in the national General Ability Test (GAT). In 2012, students from Racha-Lechkhumi and Kvemo Svaneti (R-L-KS) were 2nd (!) after Tbilisi on the average GAT performance (Chart 1). Yet, not as many Rachvelis as one would expect end up in the best Georgian universities (Chart 2), which, judging by the average GAT perform...
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Guest — Nino
Thanks for dedicating such an interesting post! Indeed, distance appears to play a role in choosing the university. However, I wou... Read More
Monday, 24 June 2013 1:01 PM
Guest — RT
Is there a link to Chanqseliani, 2012 ranking?
Monday, 24 June 2013 8:08 PM
Guest — Eric Livny
http://css.ge/index.php?lang_id=ENG&sec_id=56&info_id=498 This is the link to her paper
Monday, 24 June 2013 8:08 PM
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Dec
06

How Can Georgia Raise a Creative Generation

BRAIN DEVELOPMENT IN CHILDREN  Every human is born with billions of neurons or nerve cells, which form networks to process and transmit information. The structure of neuron networks constitutes the foundation for learning, memory and other cognitive abilities.  At birth, a baby’s brain is in an unfinished state with connections between the neurons minimally determined by genes. In other words, a newborn’s brain contains mostly isolated or unconnected neurons.  After birth, the brain undergoes extraordinary changes and starts forming networ...
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Guest — estern
This is really innovative ideas and it was helping to improve your education system. With the help of this new idea's you can impr... Read More
Saturday, 12 December 2015 5:05 AM
Guest — NinoMaghradze
Really good article!!! I loved especially the part of the role of music and I am really concerned that lots of musical schools hav... Read More
Tuesday, 12 January 2016 6:06 AM
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Oct
01

On Innovation, Coffeehouses and Georgian Supras

According to Steve Johnson (a popular American science writer and media theorist, the author of Where Good Ideas Come From), coffee and coffeehouses were a significant contributor to Europe’s scientific and industrial revolution. The first coffeehouses opened in London in 1650, and quickly mushroomed all over Europe. The coffeehouse had two major positive effects. First, it provided a healthy alternative to water (heavily contaminated) and alcohol (heavily abused at the time). And, second, as more and more intellectuals switched to coffee, the coffe...
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Lasha Lanchava
If physical distance reduces knowledge diffusion why not use the internet that would eliminate the former? In general, over relian... Read More
Thursday, 01 October 2015 3:03 PM
Eric Livny
The internet and face-to-face interactions are not substitutes but complements. I agree that kids and youth are glued to the same ... Read More
Thursday, 01 October 2015 4:04 PM
Lasha Lanchava
Not a bad idea. Especially in remote villages, where the (old) monasteries are built over beautiful landscapes, is a big potential... Read More
Thursday, 01 October 2015 4:04 PM
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May
25

The Proposed Examination Reform: Don’t Change a Winning Concept!

Studying at Georgian universities in the 1990’s was ludicrous. The students or their parents negotiated with the heads of the exam committees and/or the deans of the faculties about the “terms and conditions”, i.e. the bribes that would have to be paid and the “services” that would be delivered in exchange. One could choose from a broad menu of different corruptive services, covering admissions, grades, and scholarships, and the price one had to pay varied according to what one had chosen. The law of supply and demand caused highly demanded professions l...
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Apr
27

The US and Georgia: Finding the Common Denominator

At ISET we teach graduate economics, which uses the mathematical language to analyze economic behavior (“microeconomics”) and macroeconomic systems. Being based in Tbilisi, we heavily depend on “upstream” Georgian educational institutions, such as schools and undergraduate departments at TSU and elsewhere. Unfortunately, the level of quantitative literacy among the Georgian youth leaves much to be desired, which says something about the quality of educational programs they go through before arriving to ISET. The vast majority of our future students come ...
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Guest — mfmsm
The challenge is very interesting. It is due to the arrogance of systems that this has come about.
Tuesday, 28 April 2015 8:08 AM
Guest — megiddo02
This article touches on a painful issue. Georgians prefer to study law, international relations, psychology, or humanities -- all ... Read More
Tuesday, 28 April 2015 11:11 PM
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Apr
24

Let Tourists Arrive and Georgia Thrive!

After the collapse of the Soviet Union it was believed that tourism might become one of Georgia’s “locomotive” sectors. While the Shevardnadze government failed to develop this potential, after the Rose Revolution, tourism became a top priority. Each year since 2005, the direct effect of tourism (i.e. the money spent by tourists) alone has contributed 6-7% of Georgia’s total GDP. Georgia is a net exporter of services, and tourism accounts for about 60% of these service exports. This is important income for the country, helping to finance the country’s la...
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