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Achieving Access: Professional Movements And The Politics Of Health Universalism, Joseph Harris Jan 2017

Achieving Access: Professional Movements And The Politics Of Health Universalism, Joseph Harris

Book Samples

[Excerpt] This book examines efforts to expand access to health care and AIDS medicine in Thailand, Brazil, and South Africa. Although these countries are geographi­cally far apart, they share many similarities as newly industrializing countries engaged in processes of democratic opening. Scholars have often suggested that expansionary social policy is the product of left-wing parties and labor unions or bottom-up people’s movements. From a strictly rational perspective, that these groups would be at the forefront of such change makes perfect sense. After all, expanding access to health care and medicine would seem to be in their interest, and ...


Self-Employment And Poverty In Developing Countries, Gary S. Fields Jul 2016

Self-Employment And Poverty In Developing Countries, Gary S. Fields

Gary S Fields

A key way for the world’s poor—nearly half of humanity—to escape poverty is to earn more for their labor. Most of the world’s poor people are self-employed, but because there are few opportunities in most developing countries for them to earn enough to escape poverty, they are working hard but working poor. Two key policy planks in the fight against poverty should be: raising the returns to self-employment and creating more opportunities to move from self-employment into higher paying wage employment.


Challenges And Policy Lessons For The Growth-Employment-Poverty Nexus In Developing Countries, Gary S. Fields Jul 2016

Challenges And Policy Lessons For The Growth-Employment-Poverty Nexus In Developing Countries, Gary S. Fields

Gary S Fields

Productivity growth and structural change are generally considered to be important determinants of economic growth. However recent research revealed that they do not necessarily lead to higher growth and employment rates. Recent studies, drawing on data from developing countries, showed that only the “right” kind of productivity growth resulted in higher employment rates. Enterprises in Africa and Latin America caught up in matters of technology; however, this process resulted in a substitution of employment by technology. The same is true for structural change; only the “right” kind of structural change caused more growth and employment. Whereas in Asia, labour shifted ...


Aid, Growth And Jobs, Gary S. Fields Jul 2016

Aid, Growth And Jobs, Gary S. Fields

Gary S Fields

Various development objectives are worthy, but one objective merits special attention: reducing the scourge of absolute economic misery in the world. This study focuses on an important but relatively underemphasized approach to poverty reduction: helping the poor earn more in the labour market for the work they do, so that they can buy the goods and services they need to move up out of poverty. The core of the study is divided into three sections: defining the global poverty challenge and the world’s employment problem, presenting policy options for improving employment outcomes for the poor, and suggesting ways of ...


Changing Labor Market Conditions And Economic Development In Hong Kong, The Republic Of Korea, Singapore, And Taiwan, China, Gary S. Fields Sep 2015

Changing Labor Market Conditions And Economic Development In Hong Kong, The Republic Of Korea, Singapore, And Taiwan, China, Gary S. Fields

Gary S Fields

In the newly industrializing economies (NIEs) of Hong Kong, the Republic of Korea, Singapore, and Taiwan (China), the entire working population has benefited from labor market institutions. The East Asian NIEs attained and maintained generally full employment, improved their job mixes, raised real earnings, and lowered their rates of poverty. This article reaches two principal conclusions. First, labor market conditions continued to improve in all four economies in the 1980s at rates remarkably similar to their rates of aggregate economic growth. Second, labor market repression was not a major factor in the growth experiences of these economies in the 1980s ...


The Dynamics Of Poverty, Inequality And Economic Well-Being: African Economic Growth In Comparative Perspective, Gary S. Fields Sep 2015

The Dynamics Of Poverty, Inequality And Economic Well-Being: African Economic Growth In Comparative Perspective, Gary S. Fields

Gary S Fields

Two hundred and fifty million Africans (about 45% of the population) are poor. In rural areas, where most Africans live, there is, alas, a 'poor majority'. Rural poverty rates range from 37% in Madagascar and 41% in Kenya to 88% in Zambia and 94% in Ghana (Table 1). It is hard to imagine an issue in development economics that is of greater importance to humankind than the effects of economic growth on poverty and economic well-being. Yet there is remarkably little consensus on this vitally important issue, as illustrated by the following two polar positions: New patterns of growth will ...


Changes In Poverty And Inequality In Developing Countries, Gary S. Fields Sep 2015

Changes In Poverty And Inequality In Developing Countries, Gary S. Fields

Gary S Fields

This paper presents new data on poverty, inequality, and growth in those developing countries of the world for which the requisite statistics are available. Economic growth is found generally but not always to reduce poverty. Growth, however, is found to have very little to do with income inequality. Thus the "economic laws" linking the rate of growth and the distribution of benefits receive only very tenuous empirical support here.


Income Distribution In Developing Economies: Conceptual, Data, And Policy Issues In Broad-Based Growth, Gary S. Fields Sep 2015

Income Distribution In Developing Economies: Conceptual, Data, And Policy Issues In Broad-Based Growth, Gary S. Fields

Gary S Fields

[Excerpt] The aim of economic development is to raise the standard of living of a country's people, especially its poor. Economic growth, particularly when broadly based, is a means to that end. 'Underdevelopment' can be defined as a state of severely constrained choices. When one is choosing from among an undesirable set of alternatives, the outcome will itself be undesirable. Standards of living will be low. If standards of living are to be improved, people must have a better set of alternatives from which to choose. 'Economic development' is the process by which the constraints on choices are relaxed ...


Aid, Growth And Jobs, Gary S. Fields Jan 2015

Aid, Growth And Jobs, Gary S. Fields

Articles and Chapters

Various development objectives are worthy, but one objective merits special attention: reducing the scourge of absolute economic misery in the world. This study focuses on an important but relatively underemphasized approach to poverty reduction: helping the poor earn more in the labour market for the work they do, so that they can buy the goods and services they need to move up out of poverty. The core of the study is divided into three sections: defining the global poverty challenge and the world’s employment problem, presenting policy options for improving employment outcomes for the poor, and suggesting ways of ...


Self-Employment And Poverty In Developing Countries, Gary S. Fields May 2014

Self-Employment And Poverty In Developing Countries, Gary S. Fields

Articles and Chapters

A key way for the world’s poor—nearly half of humanity—to escape poverty is to earn more for their labor. Most of the world’s poor people are self-employed, but because there are few opportunities in most developing countries for them to earn enough to escape poverty, they are working hard but working poor. Two key policy planks in the fight against poverty should be: raising the returns to self-employment and creating more opportunities to move from self-employment into higher paying wage employment.


Review Of The Book Unemployment Insurance: The Second Half-Century, Ronald G. Ehrenberg Jun 2013

Review Of The Book Unemployment Insurance: The Second Half-Century, Ronald G. Ehrenberg

Ronald G. Ehrenberg

[Excerpt] This extraordinary volume is one that all people interested in the unemployment insurance (Ul) system will want to read. Although research on a wide variety of aspects of the Ul system has been published in many articles and monographs in recent years, this volume represents an attempt to summarize what is known about many aspects of the subject in one place, to provide some new findings, and to speculate about future research and policy directions. The thirteen included papers, written by a mix of scholars and practitioners, are revisions of a set of papers that were originally presented at ...


Review Of The Book Minimum Wage Regulation In The United States, Ronald G. Ehrenberg Jun 2013

Review Of The Book Minimum Wage Regulation In The United States, Ronald G. Ehrenberg

Ronald G. Ehrenberg

[Excerpt] Why yet another book on minimum wages in the United States, especially one that follows so closely on the heels of the 1981 Report of the Minimum Wage Study Commission and parallel studies (including another one by Fleisher) sponsored by the American Enterprise Institute? The author's goal here is to evaluate minimum-wage regulation in light of its benefits and costs as an antipoverty device; and most of his book is based on his interpretation and evaluation of the existing literature, including the large body of recent research. The book is written in a nontechnical fashion for nonspecialists (frustrated ...


Unauthorized Migration And Border “Control”: Three Regional Views, Maria Cook Jan 2013

Unauthorized Migration And Border “Control”: Three Regional Views, Maria Cook

Maria Lorena Cook

This is a revised transcript of a talk given at the Latin American and Iberian Institute at the University of New Mexico, Albuquerque, New Mexico, on February 29, 2008.


[Review Of The Book The Idea Of Poverty: England In The Early Industrial Age], George R. Boyer Jan 2012

[Review Of The Book The Idea Of Poverty: England In The Early Industrial Age], George R. Boyer

George R. Boyer

[Excerpt] One must have some knowledge of a society's conception of poverty in order to understand the existence of differing methods of poor relief over time and place. In The Idea of Poverty, Gertrude Himmelfarb presents a detailed account of England's poverty problem during the years 1750 to 1850 as seen by contemporary English economists, politicians, journalists, and novelists. She attempts to determine why the image of poverty, and of the poor, changed over those years and how the popular image of the poor influenced society's methods of relieving poverty. The result is a book that anyone ...


Challenges And Policy Lessons For The Growth-Employment-Poverty Nexus In Developing Countries, Gary S. Fields Jan 2012

Challenges And Policy Lessons For The Growth-Employment-Poverty Nexus In Developing Countries, Gary S. Fields

Articles and Chapters

Productivity growth and structural change are generally considered to be important determinants of economic growth. However recent research revealed that they do not necessarily lead to higher growth and employment rates. Recent studies, drawing on data from developing countries, showed that only the “right” kind of productivity growth resulted in higher employment rates. Enterprises in Africa and Latin America caught up in matters of technology; however, this process resulted in a substitution of employment by technology. The same is true for structural change; only the “right” kind of structural change caused more growth and employment. Whereas in Asia, labour shifted ...


[Review Of The Book Successes In Anti-Poverty], Gary S. Fields Nov 2011

[Review Of The Book Successes In Anti-Poverty], Gary S. Fields

Gary S Fields

[Excerpt] Michael Lipton has devoted a long career to studying and fighting poverty in the developing world. In this volume he talks about how to make anti-poverty programs work.


Who Benefits From Economic Development? Reply, Gary S. Fields Nov 2011

Who Benefits From Economic Development? Reply, Gary S. Fields

Gary S Fields

[Excerpt] Before the appearance of my 1977 paper in this Review, it was widely thought that the income distribution worsened during the economic growth which took place in Brazil during the 1960's. My paper demonstrated that the familiar data, when analyzed from an absolute perspective, could show that the poor had benefited from growth. I found that the entire income distribution shifted, benefiting every income class; that the proportion of the economically active population with incomes below the poverty level (as defined by Brazilian standards) declined during the decade; that those who remained poor were less poor than before ...


The Potential Role Of An Employment Guarantee Scheme In Korea's Social Safety Net, Gary S. Fields Nov 2011

The Potential Role Of An Employment Guarantee Scheme In Korea's Social Safety Net, Gary S. Fields

Gary S Fields

[Excerpt] Beginning in November 1997, the Republic of Korea underwent a devastating economic crisis. Declining macroeconomic conditions brought about major labor market disruptions in 1998: a quadrupling of unemployment, a fall of 9% in real wages, informalization of the remaining jobs, increased job insecurity, and rising poverty and inequality. Disadvantaged groups suffered a disproportionate impact. The result was not only economic misery but also social pain: increased homelessness, rising crime, heightened school dropouts, an accelerating divorce rate, and an overwhelming sense of social malaise. 1999 marked a major turnaround for Korea. GDP grew by 10.7%, and real wages are ...


Assessing Progress Toward Greater Equality Of Income Distribution, Gary S. Fields Nov 2011

Assessing Progress Toward Greater Equality Of Income Distribution, Gary S. Fields

Gary S Fields

[Excerpt] Income distribution is only one indicator of economic well-being useful in gauging improvements in the economic position of the poor; change in income distribution, appropriately conceived and measured, is as good a criterion as any for assessing progress toward the alleviation of poverty. Income is intimately bound up with a family's command over economic resources. Rising modern-sector employment or reduced infant mortality might be suggestive of improvements in the economic position of the poor; gains in real income among low-income groups provide direct evidence that poverty is being alleviated. This chapter answers the following questions: What are the ...


Education And Income Distribution In Developing Countries: A Review Of The Literature, Gary S. Fields Oct 2011

Education And Income Distribution In Developing Countries: A Review Of The Literature, Gary S. Fields

Gary S Fields

[Excerpt] This paper is a survey of the available literature on education and income distribution in developing countries. Education may affect the distribution of income in a variety of ways: by raising the level of income; by changing, for better or worse, the dispersion of income; by opening up new opportunities for the children of the poor and thereby serving as a vehicle for social mobility and/or, by limiting participation to the children of the well-to-do, transmitting intergenerational inequality; by offering greater access to favored segments of the population (boys, city-dwellers, certain racial groups); by rewarding differently the education ...


Poverty Changes In Developing Countries, Gary S. Fields Oct 2011

Poverty Changes In Developing Countries, Gary S. Fields

Gary S Fields

[Excerpt] This chapter is concerned with measuring how the extent of poverty changes in a country over time. 'Poverty', as the term is used here, denotes the inability of an individual or a family to command sufficient resources to satisfy basic needs. The poverty line is a constant real amount below which people are said to be poor. The extent of poverty in a country is then based on variables such as the number who are poor and the extent of their resource shortfall. This chapter treats three topics: how poverty is defined, how much poverty there is, and how ...


Poverty Measures And Anti-Poverty Policy, Francois Bourguignon, Gary S. Fields Oct 2011

Poverty Measures And Anti-Poverty Policy, Francois Bourguignon, Gary S. Fields

Gary S Fields

[Excerpt] Amartya Sen has made fundamental contributions to the study of distributional aspects of economic growth and decline. Among his pathbreaking works are his lectures on the economics of inequality (Sen, 1973), his article on the axiomatics of poverty measurement (Sen, 1976), and his book on anti-poverty policy in the context of famines (Sen, 1981). This paper is concerned with one of these areas, namely, the measurement of poverty and the implications for anti-poverty policy. In the 1960's and 1970's those who were working in the poverty field held a number of somewhat incompletely articulated views as to ...


Trade Strategies And The Poor: Adjusting To New Realities, Gary S. Fields Oct 2011

Trade Strategies And The Poor: Adjusting To New Realities, Gary S. Fields

Gary S Fields

[Excerpt] The major policy issue examined in this paper is that of a country's choice of a trade strategy in the context of helping the poor. As the end of the 1980s approaches, developing countries face a much more difficult economic situation than that which they confronted at the end of the 1970s. The paper begins by reviewing these new realities and the need for adjusting to them. After mentioning some non-policies, I proceed to consider both successful and unsuccessful country experiences and draw lessons from them. One policy singled out for special attention is wage policy and its ...


Employment Generation And Poverty Alleviation In Developing Economies, Gary S. Fields Sep 2011

Employment Generation And Poverty Alleviation In Developing Economies, Gary S. Fields

Gary S Fields

[Excerpt] We know well that the East Asian economies have achieved higher economic growth rates than those in any other region of the world and that production for world markets has featured as a hallmark of the East Asian successes. This paper has three purposes: first, to present comparative data showing that the rates at which employment opportunities improve and poverty is reduced mirror countries' differential growth experiences; second, to examine differences in labour market institutions, demonstrating that those in East Asia have similarities more likely to lead to higher output performance and shared improvements in living conditions; and third ...


The Impact Of Government Policies On Urban Employment In Small Economies, Gary S. Fields Sep 2011

The Impact Of Government Policies On Urban Employment In Small Economies, Gary S. Fields

Gary S Fields

[Excerpt] Most of the policies intended to affect urban employment are not specifically employment policies nor are they specifically urban. Rather, the amount of urban employment, the composition of that employment, and the returns from it are determined by a whole host of policies. To review them all in a short paper is an impossible undertaking. The criterion by which I decided which policies to consider is policy-relevance, asking which set of policies is apt to have the largest impact on employment.


Long-Term Economic Mobility And The Private Sector In Developing Countries: New Evidence, Gary S. Fields, Walter S. Bagg Aug 2011

Long-Term Economic Mobility And The Private Sector In Developing Countries: New Evidence, Gary S. Fields, Walter S. Bagg

Gary S Fields

[Excerpt] Consistent with the mainstream view of economic growth as a factor promoting long-term economic mobility, we hypothesize that those economies in which economic growth has been most rapid are precisely the ones that have achieved the greatest progress toward poverty reduction through improved labor market conditions, especially in private employment. We also hypothesize that the positive relationship running from economic growth through the labor market to poverty reduction continued to hold in the 1990s in essentially the same way as in earlier years when globalization was less intense. Both hypotheses are confirmed by our data. Our results therefore cast ...


Reducing Poverty: The Overall Framework, Guy Pfeffermann, Gary S. Fields Aug 2011

Reducing Poverty: The Overall Framework, Guy Pfeffermann, Gary S. Fields

Gary S Fields

[Excerpt] How private firms contribute to economic mobility and poverty reduction and what governments can do to enhance their contribution is the theme of this book. We look first at the positive role the private sector plays in economic development, a role that has received less emphasis that that of other players. We then focus on the labor market and how various mechanisms in the economy interact to affect conditions for people as workers and as consumers. The volume examines the links among the business environment, private sector development, economic growth, poverty reduction, and economic mobility. Until recently, development economists ...


Employment In Low-Income Countries: Beyond Labor Market Segmentation?, Gary S. Fields Aug 2011

Employment In Low-Income Countries: Beyond Labor Market Segmentation?, Gary S. Fields

Gary S Fields

[Excerpt] Throughout the world, there are fundamentally two, and only two, ways that people can escape from poverty. One is by earning their way out of poverty. The other is by receiving socially-provided goods and services that lift them out of poverty. Even with multilateral and bilateral assistance, low-income countries are too poor to be able to make a significant dent in poverty by the social services route alone. This means that creating more and better earning opportunities for the poor is the only other option available. In policy discussions, two mistakes are often made. One is to assume that ...


Escaping From Poverty: Household Income Dynamics In Indonesia, South Africa, Spain, And Venezuela, Gary S. Fields, Paul L. Cichello, Samuel Freije, Marta Menéndez, David Newhouse Aug 2011

Escaping From Poverty: Household Income Dynamics In Indonesia, South Africa, Spain, And Venezuela, Gary S. Fields, Paul L. Cichello, Samuel Freije, Marta Menéndez, David Newhouse

Gary S Fields

[Excerpt] This study presents the main results of a larger, more technical report (Fields and others 2001) and subsequent work (Fields and others 2002) that analyzes income mobility in Indonesia, South Africa, Spain, and Venezuela. These economies were selected on the basis of the availability of panel data with which to analyze household income dynamics in the 1990s. By following households over time, we are able to investigate how households that were poor initially fared economically, relative to their richer counterparts. We can learn more about how and why households exit—and enter—poverty. To gauge income mobility, this study ...


Do Inequality Measures Measure Inequality?, Gary S. Fields Aug 2011

Do Inequality Measures Measure Inequality?, Gary S. Fields

Gary S Fields

[Excerpt] In the literature, much attention has been paid to a number of aspects of inequality including the distinction between relative and absolute inequality, axiomatization of inequality, the Lorenz criterion for inequality comparisons, properties of various inequality measures, and inequality decomposition. In no way do I wish to argue with the main results derived in these areas. Rather, my purpose here is to add to the theory of inequality measurement by dealing with one aspect of inequality which has been largely ignored by economists and by others. This is the question of how inequality changes - in particular, whether it increases ...