ISET

ISET Economist Blog

A blog about economics in the South Caucasus.
Apr
11

The Samtredia Redemption

Nino Kakulia was born in Samtredia on 15 October 1991, in the last days of the Georgian Soviet Socialist Republic. By the time Nino and independent Georgia were celebrating their 13th birthdays, the Georgian government embarked on a series of long overdue reforms, one of which was about cleansing the country’s higher education system from corruption.  This was undoubtedly an excellent and timely reform for Nino, an ambitious student in Samtredia’s school. Until then, to get admitted into a public university, Nino or, rather, her family, would have h...
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Eric Livny
Nino is certainly a romantic idealist, but I dont think there is anything idealist or romantic about the article. I dont claim tha... Read More
Monday, 11 April 2016 10:10 AM
Florian Biermann
The article is very idealistic, not to say romantic, about young people’s desire to acquire EDUCATION. I do not doubt that there a... Read More
Monday, 11 April 2016 7:07 AM
Florian Biermann
I got your point. Critical thinking should indeed be encouraged in Georgian schools, that is also my impression, even if the stude... Read More
Monday, 11 April 2016 10:10 AM
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Feb
27

Don’t Talk about Georgia’s Future!

According to Micklewright (Macroeconomics and Data on Children, UNICEF 2000), a share of 7% of the Georgian gross domestic product of the year 1991 accounted for education. In 1994, this number had fallen to 1%. As Micklewright comments, such a dramatic decrease of educational expenditures was never seen before nor afterwards in the history of any country. Recovery after the crisis was a long process. Until 1998, spending on education had only increased to 2.1% (World Bank Development Indicators), and in 2002, wages in the educational sector were still r...
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Ruediger Heining
Why claiming to double the salary of teachers? To avoid corruption in education or the rank growth of parallel teaching system, wh... Read More
Monday, 07 March 2016 9:09 AM
Florian Biermann
I agree with most of your remarks, though I am wondering why you question the importance of salaries. As you write: (quote) The mo... Read More
Sunday, 01 May 2016 11:11 AM
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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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