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Policy Briefs

Financing the Blue Economy in Small States

May 16, 2016
CIGI Policy Brief No. 78
The blue economy approach offers small developing states — countries with populations of 1.5 million or less — the opportunity to diversify from a narrow production base; invest in and develop growth and employment opportunities in a wide range of both existing and new sectors and industries; and shift away from predominantly land-based industries toward those that integrate and sustainably develop a broader range of land-based, coastal and ocean-based sectors.

Definitional Issues in the Sustainability Analysis Framework: A Proposal

May 2, 2016
CIGI Policy Brief No. 77
The definition of public debt sustainability in the International Monetary Fund debt sustainability analysis framework refers to fiscal adjustment and primary balance as the central elements of the policy course that is most likely to ensure debt sustainability; the induced policy approach is not contributing to the recovery of economies in distress, and instead it is contributing to delays in sovereign debt restructuring, as well as to insufficient debt relief (when the restructuring occurs) for distressed sovereign debtors. The definition needs to be revised to be in tune with macroeconomic theory that is overwhelmingly supported by evidence.

Does the Level of Public Debt Matter?

April 4, 2016
CIGI Policy Brief No. 76
After years of heated debate, the academic literature has seriously questioned whether the level of public debt matters to economic growth or to early warning indicators of potential crisis. Nevertheless, the International Monetary Fund, in its lending and surveillance activities, has a central, although appropriately nuanced, place for the level of public debt relative to GDP in its analysis.

Developing the Blue Economy in Caribbean and Other Small States

March 21, 2016
CIGI Policy Brief No. 75
Ecosystems and other services provided by oceans are vast, offering opportunities for growth and sustainable development. Small developing states lag behind others in accessing and benefiting from these opportunities. The blue economy approach, combining conservation and growth in the context of oceans, provides a sustainable and integrated development strategy.

Growth, Innovation and COP 21: The Case for New Investment In Innovation Infrastructure

March 2, 2016
Policy Brief No. 73
Forged by private and public sector cooperation, Mission Innovation was announced at the twenty-first Conference of the Parties (COP21) to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change as a commitment to doubling, by 2020, the investment in energy innovation by participating countries. Mission Innovation heralds a new period of active private-public sector engagement on energy, climate and innovation policy.

Have Macroeconomic Rules of the Game Changed? Some Clues from the Phillips Curve

February 22, 2016
CIGI Policy Brief No. 74
This policy brief explores in more detail the enduring importance of the Phillips curve relationship and the challenges central bankers face in convincing the public that following this line of thought promotes best practice. The brief concludes with some recommendations concerning the usefulness of the Phillips curve as a paradigm for communicating monetary policy actions.

Uncovering the Implications of the Paris Agreement: Climate Change as a Catalyst for Transformative Sustainability in Cities

January 15, 2016
CIGI Policy Brief No. 72
This policy brief examines the power of exploring synergies between responding to climate change and other development priorities in cities: in other words, can decision makers devise response strategies that are both adaptive and mitigative, while simultaneously creating healthy, vibrant, innovative communities? Using examples from communities around the world that take a holistic approach to sustainability rather than addressing climate change in isolation, this brief uncovers the roots of climate change co-benefits, and possible governance strategies for achieving them.

Assessing the Governance Practices of Sustainability Reporting

January 8, 2016
Policy Brief No. 71
Jason Thistlethwaite and Melissa Menzies
To promote climate change risk mitigation in financial markets, the Financial Stability Board recently proposed the creation of a Climate Disclosure Task Force, coordinated through the G20, to develop standards for companies to disclose their exposure to climate change risks. With more than 400 existing disclosure schemes, this task will be challenging. This brief identifies the key categories of governance practices that must be addressed, how these divergent practices challenge end-users, and how the establishment of criteria that define effective and efficient reporting is a critical first step for the Climate Disclosure Task Force.

The Case for Intellectual Property Rights: Should Patents Be Strengthened, Weakened or Abolished Altogether?

November 25, 2015
CIGI Policy Brief No. 70
This policy brief recommends that to diminish the potential for holdup, uncertainty around patent rights should be reduced. Patents should be easily searchable and more easily understood by non-legal experts. In addition, patents should be narrower and more clearly demarcated. To the extent that the welfare costs of patents appear to outweigh their benefits, the requirements for obtaining a patent should be tightened. Further, patents should be made less broad and, concomitant with the reduction in the length of the product cycle, the length of patents should also be reduced.

The 2015 Survey of Progress in International Economic Governance

November 13, 2015
CIGI Policy Brief No. 69
The annual CIGI Survey of Progress in International Economic Governance assesses progress in five areas of international economic governance: macroeconomic and financial cooperation; cooperation on financial regulation; cooperation on development; cooperation on trade; and cooperation on climate change.
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