Reforming Regulations that Harm Productivity and Worker Welfare

With the right reforms, Latin America could eliminate barriers that harm productivity and worker welfare

An uncomfortable reality lies behind Latin America’s poor growth performance: gains in productivity have been anemic over the last three decades. The costs in long-term GDP growth, as well as higher wages and living standards for Latin America’s people, are steep. Over the last decades most Latin American nations adopted a broad agenda of economic […]

Will Robots Really Harm Employment?

Employment may actually get a boost from robots and automation

In science fiction films, artificial intelligence and robots are the bogeymen of the future, replacing us and rendering us useless as they impose their mechanical will upon us. Economists, though less apocalyptic, are sounding alarms too. In a study, economist Carl Benedikt Frey and machine learning expert Michael Osborne examine more than 700 occupations in […]

Does Political Patronage Necessarily Lead to Bad Hiring?

patronage in government doesn't have to lead to incompetent employees

Patronage is among the least loved of political practices, often synonymous with malfeasance and incompetence. Civic and development organizations rail against it. Numerous studies show that merit-based career civil services, as opposed to discretionary ones, are associated with higher economic growth, lower corruption, and better bureaucratic performance. But patronage, the discretionary hiring of people to […]

IDB Offers MOOC on Social Policy

The Inter-American Development Bank is offering a Massive Open Online Course (MOOC) on social policy in Latin America and the Caribbean, including poverty and inequality, early childhood development, education, health, social protection and employment. Entitled Latin American Social Reality, the free, seven-week, introductory course is intended to give journalists, policymakers and other non-specialists a deeper […]

When Information on Higher Education Narrows the Skills Gap

Higher education in Latin America has achieved some impressive gains over the past quarter century. An elite system consisting of at most a few dozen traditional universities in each country has radically transformed to include hundreds of new professional institutes, technical and vocational schools. At the same time, enrollment has soared. Between 1992 and 2012, […]

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