Those of you who attended the Bookshop Barnie at the London School of Economics last Thursday may be interested in a side argument we had on the intellectual origins of London’s traffic congestion charge. Some described it as “state socialist” while I said I thought I remember that Milton Friedman, a free market economics guru, […]
I have added to and updated the list of useful links on the left hand bar at the side of this site. New links include China Digital Daily, Climate Debate Daily, Culture Wars’ world development pages, the Future Cities Project and Indur Goklany’s papers. Any suggestions for further links or material for posts please email […]
Andrew Marr’s Britain From Above documentary series on BBC television was a pleasant surprise. His aerial perspective of Britain, although impressionistic in some respects, enabled him to make some useful thematic points. In particular the episode on “Manmade Britain” argued that Britain’s landscape is entirely shaped by human beings. The patchwork quilt of different coloured […]
Time magazine’s cover story (in the Asia and Europe editions) on “China’s short march” gives a vivid description of China in the midst of transformation from a rural nation to an urban one. In addition to the move from countryside to cities many millions of the newly affluent are moving to suburbs that surround China’s […]
The current Economist (19 December) has an article savaging those who romanticise hunter-gatherer societies. It argues against the view put forward by the likes of Jared Diamond that the development of agriculture was the worst mistake in human history. Evidently in the 1970s some experts began to argue that the advent of agriculture led to […]
The World Bank’s World Development Report 2009 will focus on the economic geography of development. To quote the World Bank’s page on the report: “The objective of the World Development Report (WDR) 2009 is to identify and understand the interactions between geography, economic activities, and living standards, and to draw the implications of these interactions […]
My comment in the latest issue of Fund Strategy argues that the long-term economic growth of developing countries is far more important than short-term market volatility. In the midst of the anxiety about a global credit crunch it is worth dwelling on some good news. The gap between the developed countries and the developing world […]
The September 2007 issue of Finance & Development, a quarterly publication from the International Monetary Fund, includes some interesting articles on the global trend towards urbanisation. Highlights include Martin Ravallion, the director of the development research group of the World Bank, arguing that, if anything, an even faster pace of urbanisation is needed. There are […]
London’s Tate Modern gallery has a fascinating exhibition on 10 of the world leading global mega-cities: Cairo, Istanbul, Johannesburg, London, Los Angeles, Mexico City, Mumbai, Sao Paulo and Tokyo. It looks at the cities from five perspectives: size, speed, form, density and diversity. Even the basic statistics on cities are worth knowing. For example, in […]
The Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) is organising a substantial conference in Istanbul this coming week on “measuring and fostering the progress of societies”. It is an important step in a trend to move away from economic indicators such as GDP as measures of progress towards well-being indicators (see, for example, posts of […]
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