At rush hour it is virtually impossible to get a cab ride in Bogota or Lima. The last time I went to Bogotá, the line for taxis at the airport was even longer than the queue for immigration. I was tired, it was 10:30 pm and it drizzled. I would have given my kingdom for an Uber, which does charge more if demand is higher. Finally, and after an hour long wait, I got into a dirty … [Read more...] about An informal Uber?
Beyond development effectiveness
In some of the development literature, the informal sector is seen as a locked source of capital and growth. Find the key to unlock it and the dam of repressed innovation will water the fertile fields of formal capitalism. In the opposite view, the informal sector is outright a dangerous parasite that sucks life from the formal sector and hinders economic growth. This is not a … [Read more...] about Informal sector: hidden capital or vampire?
From the abstract and conclusions of this paper on civil conflict and deforestation in Colombia: Despite a growing body of literature on how environmental degradation can fuel civil war, the reverse effect, namely that of conflict on environmental outcomes, is relatively understudied. [....] We study this relationship in the case of Colombia. [....] Our results are … [Read more...] about Deforestation and conflict in Colombia
In 2012, President Enrique Peña Nieto set the very ambitious goal of increasing Mexico’s investment in Science and Technology from the current 0.4 percent to 1 percent of GDP by the end of his mandate in 2018. This commitment has generated a strong debate on what policies should be adopted to support such an extraordinary effort. In this framework, the question on … [Read more...] about Can Mexico make the leap in Innovation?
By Graham Watkins* A month ago I was bumping along a dusty road in the Beni (Bolivia) from San Borja to San Ignacio de Moxos. Someone in the car said that this road had been named as the “worst road in the world.” That reminded me of a 36 hours trip on the Georgetown-Lethem road (Guyana). We only had to travel 60 kilometers in an old British Army Bedford truck, but the … [Read more...] about How to avoid building more bad roads?