CEAMeS published two new Discussion Papers

You can find two new Discussion Papers by Linda Glawe and Prof. Helmut Wagner on our website. The CEAMeS Discussion Paper No. 10: “The Deep Determinants of the Middle-Income Trap” is available here; and the CEAMeS Discussion Paper No. 11: “The Deep Determinants at More Subtle Stages of Development – The Example of the Middle-Income Trap Phenomenon” is available here.

[CEAMeS DP11] – “The Deep Determinants at More Subtle Stages of Development – The Example of the Middle-Income Trap Phenomenon”

CEAMeS Discussion Paper No11 | 2017

Linda Glawe and Helmut Wagner

The so-called ‘deep determinants’ of economic growth and development (namely, geography, institutions, and integration) have been found to be decisive for the break out of stagnation and for explaining cross-country income differences by many empirical studies. However, so far, very little has been done to examine to which extent they are also crucial at more subtle stages of economic development. Our paper aims to close this gap by focusing on the phenomenon of the middle-income trap (MIT) which has reached increasing attention in the last 15 years. In particular, we test whether the results of the empirical studies conducted by Acemoglu et al. (2001), Rodrik et al. (2004), and Easterly and Levine (2016) also remain valid when analyzing the MIT. We are the first to analyze the relationship between the deep determinants and the MIT, especially regarding the causal effect of institutional quality on the probability of experiencing a growth slowdown at the middle-income range. Our analysis reveals that while, in general, the deep determinants also seem to play an important role for the middle-income transition (and the question of whether a country falls into an MIT), some differences compared to the results of the standard literature become apparent.

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[CEAMeS DP10] – “The Deep Determinants of the Middle-Income Trap”

CEAMeS Discussion Paper No 10 | 2017

Linda Glawe and Helmut Wagner

The fundamental, underlying factors of development are often neglected when analyzing the question why countries experience a growth slowdown at the middle-income range. Although these so-called ‘deep determinants’ such as geography and institutions have been found to be decisive for the break out of stagnation and for explaining cross-country income differences by many empirical studies, so far, very little has been done to examine to which extent they are also crucial at more subtle stages of economic development. Our paper aims to contribute to close this gap by focusing on the phenomenon of the middle-income trap (MIT) which has reached increasing attention in the last 15 years. In particular, we are interested in whether the deep determinants have positive or negative impacts on the possibility of a country to experience a prolonged stay within the middle-income range. We focus especially on exogenous variables to avoid endogeneity/reverse causality problems. By using simple statistical hypothesis testing, we show that not all findings of the deep determinants literature can be easily transferred to the MIT phenomenon, especially regarding institutional variables. This may raise the question whether we need new deep determinants of growth for the MIT or at least a modified version taking into account the specific circumstances and characteristics of middle-income countries.

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Prof. Wagner was Keynote Speaker at ECB-Conference

On the 22nd of March Prof. Wagner gave, at invitation of the European Central Bank (ECB), the Keynote Speech at the annual workshop of the China Expert Network (CEN) in Helsinki, Finland. The CEN is a network of experts on economic questions of China that contains members of the 28 national central banks in europe, the IMF, the OECD, the BIS and the Chinese and American central banks. The talk held by Prof. Wagner was titled: „Growth impact of structural change and the danger of an MIT in China“.