zaki wahhaj 120x120by Harounan Kazianga, Oklahoma State University and Zaki Wahhaj, University of Kent. Discussion paper KDPE 1803, March 2018.

Non-technical summary:

Large segments of the population in developing countries, especially in rural areas, have a high level of vulnerability to weather-related shocks, but have limited means to insure themselves against them. In recent years, microfinance institutions have experimented with insurance products, in particular rainfall index insurance, to address this need in different parts of the world. But the uptake of these products has generally been very low because of liquidity constraints and unfamiliarity with formal financial products.

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iain fraser 120x120On Friday 6 April, Professor Iain Fraser (School of Economics), Professor Ben Lowe (Kent Business School) and Dr Diogo Souza-Monteiro (Natural and Environmental Sciences, Newcastle University) are hosting a one-day inter-disciplinary workshop on consumer choice and food. The workshop brings together an exciting group of researchers from a range of disciplinary areas (eg marketing, environmental economics, agribusiness, psychology, development and social policy) who will examine various aspects of consumer choice as it relates to food. Based on the presentations the forum will cover themes from Consumer Food Security and Nutrition, Economics and Food Choice and Framing of Information and Consumer Choice. The keynote address is to be given by Professor Klaus Grunert (Aarhus University).

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keynes collegeby María D. C. García-Alonso and Zaki Wahhaj, University of Kent. Discussion paper KDPE 1802, February 2018.

Non-technical summary:

A shared social identity is potentially an important element in ensuring cooperation and the coordination of actions among individuals when formal institutions for achieving these ends are weak. But the construction of group identity also leads to the creation of in-groups and out-groups and thus, the possibility of conflict as people born and raised with diverse identities are compelled to interact due to resource competition, market forces, etc.

These contrasting ideas lead to the following question: Under what conditions do increased social diversity within a population – e.g. due to migration, market penetration – raise the potential for conflict as opposed to harmonious social diversity? If ‘group identity’ plays a key role in shaping conflict and cooperation, a related question that requires consideration is as follows: How does increased social diversity affect identity?

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christian siegel 120x120by Zsófia L. Bárány, Sciences Po and CEPR and Christian Siegel, University of Kent. Discussion paper KDPE 1801, February 2018.

Non-technical summary:

It is well known that technological change is not only one of the key drivers of overall economic growth, but also has implications for inequality.

Developed economies have seen a large reallocation from goods to the service sector. In the US for example, while the goods sector accounted for about 44% of total hours worked in 1960, by 2010 this was down to just 21%. The economic literature on structural transformation typically explains these changes by pointing to differences in productivity growth across sectors. As goods and services tend to be complements in consumption and labor productivity grows faster in goods than in other sectors, supply outgrows demand for goods, leading to a reduction of employment in the goods sector and a rise in service employment.

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matloob pirachaThe Journal of Ethnic and Migration Studies has featured a research paper by Dr Matloob Piracha. The paper entitled ‘Integration of humanitarian migrants into the host country labour market: Evidence from Australia’ (with Isaure Delaporte) was published on 6 February. You can read the full article here.

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