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Better civil justice systems can boost investment, competition, innovation and growth, OECD says

Well-functioning judicial systems play a crucial role in determining economic performance – notably by guaranteeing the security of property rights and the enforcement of contracts – but not all countries’ judiciaries operate at the same level of efficiency.


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Policy determinants of school outcomes under model uncertainty: evidence from South Africa

In this paper we assess the determinants of secondary school outcomes in South Africa. We use Bayesian Averaging Model techniques to account for uncertainty in the set of underlying factors that are chosen among a very large pool of explanatory variables in order to minimize the risk of omitted variable bias.


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Improving education quality in South Africa

South Africa has achieved remarkable progress in educational attainment relative to other emerging countries, but the quality of basic education for a large fraction of the Black African population is still very low.


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Challenges to sustain Poland’s growth model

Notwithstanding a very strong economic performance over the past decade or so, Poland’s per capita income is substantially lower in comparison with the United States and per capita income growth will be sharply slowing down over the coming decades under the scenario of gradual policy changes mostly because of population ageing.


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Reforming agriculture and promoting Japan's integration in the world economy

The problems of Japanese agriculture – in particular low productivity and the prevalence of part-time farmers and small plots have been evident for the past 50 years.


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Inequality and poverty in the United States: public policies for inclusive growth

Income inequality and relative poverty in the United States are among the highest in the OECD and have substantially increased over the past decades. These developments have been associated with a number of other worrying statistics, including low intergenerational social mobility and weak real income growth for many households.


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Global economy advancing but pace of recovery varies, says OECD Economic Outlook

The global economy is moving forward, but divergence between countries and regions reflects the uneven progress made toward recovery from the economic crisis, according to the OECD’s latest Economic Outlook. Historically high unemployment remains the most serious challenge facing governments.


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Knowledge-based capital, innovation and resource allocation

Investment in knowledge-based capital (KBC) – assets that lack physical embodiment, such as computerised information, innovative property and economic competencies – has been rising significantly. This has implications for innovation and productivity growth and requires new thinking on policy.


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New approach to globalisation and global value chains needed to boost growth and jobs, says OECD

Technological advances, less costly shipping and trade liberalisation have transformed the way in which companies make products and distribute them worldwide. Governments that become more open to trade and investment, and encourage innovation will help firms better integrate the global value chains that are driving growth in increasingly interconnected economies, according to new OECD research.


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Raising the returns to innovation: structural policies for a knowledge-based economy

Innovation-based growth, underpinned by investments in a broad range of knowledge-based capital (KBC), is central to raising long-term living standards.


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Measuring total factor productivity at the firm level using OECD-ORBIS

Recent OECD research has utilised harmonised cross-country firm level data to explore the contribution of public policies to cross-country differences in productivity, innovation and resource allocation.


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R&D, patenting and growth: the role of public policy

This paper uses panel regression techniques to assess the policy determinants of private sector innovative Activity – proxied by R&D expenditure and the number of new patents – across 19 OECD countries. The relationship between innovation indicators and multifactor productivity (MFP) growth is also examined with a particular focus on the role of public policies in influencing the returns to new knowledge.


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Portugal: Reforming the State to promote growth

After two decades of strong economic growth and convergence in living standards towards the levels of more prosperous OECD countries, Portugal’s performance weakened in the 2000s, productivity growth slowed and competitiveness deteriorated. Restoring Portugal’s potential for strong, inclusive growth calls for a comprehensive reform of the State.


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Speech delivered to the OECD Council by the Prime Minister of Portugal, HE. Pedro Passos Coelho

Today the OECD is publishing a report on Portugal's challenges as far as structural reform is concerned. The OECD is an outstanding reference for policy-makers all around the world and I wanted my country to benefit from your skills, experience, and insights, especially on the question of structural reform, said the Portuguese Prime Minister.


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Italy: Stay on Course and Focus on the Future

Italy took courageous decisions and engaged reforms to address the crisis and create the necessary conditions to ensure economic recovery. The economic situation remains fragile but you are making visible progress and it is crucial to maintain the reform momentum, said OECd Secretary-General.


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Italy: New government must build on recent reforms

Italy has made considerable progress in strengthening its public finances and adopting wide-ranging reforms to boost economic growth. The new government must build on past achievements and ensure that they are sustained and reinforced, says a new OECD report.


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Homo Economicus: an uncertain guide

As humans, we face a constant internal conflict between immediate gratification and more prudent living. This conflict is also apparent in society. How can we ensure that the homo economicus within us takes the decisions that best affect our lives, and economies?


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Return from the dead?

Old ways of thinking won’t bring developed countries back to economic life. Weighed down by the legacy of the crisis, they also face deep challenges like a faltering labour supply and slowing innovation. And growth itself won’t be enough–it must also be stable, inclusive and green. The need for structural reforms has never been greater, but they will require difficult trade-offs.


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A recipe for trust

Have the policy errors that contributed to the global economic crisis been rectified? Sharan Burrow shares her vision for building trust and restoring confidence in the countries still suffering from the crisis.


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Asia’s Challenges

The forces driving Asia’s rapid growth–new technology, globalisation, and market-oriented reform–are also fuelling rising inequality. Some income divergence is inevitable in times of fast economic development, but that shouldn’t make for complacency, especially in the face of rising inequality in people’s opportunities to develop their human capital and income-earning capacity.


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Reforms for a cleaner, healthier environment in China

China’s exceptional economic expansion has led to rising energy demand and pollution as well as other environmental pressures. Strong efforts by the government have moderated emissions of some types of air and water pollution from high levels but others, including greenhouse gas emissions, continue to rise. Poor air and water quality threaten human health, create other costs and reduce well-being.


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How to get it right: government balances, growth and income inequality

Austerity programmes to restore order to public finances can add to the woes of already struggling economies, leading to more job losses and social hardship. But there are ways for governments to put their fiscal houses in order, while supporting growth and reducing income inequality at the same time.


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Japan is poised for expansion but must curb government debt

Japan is poised for an economic expansion, but long-term growth prospects remain contingent on additional efforts to revitalise the economy and reduce unsustainable levels of public debt, according to the OECD’s latest Economic Survey of Japan.


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Written Statement to the International Monetary and Financial Committee - April 2013

The OECD provides an update on global economy in this statement to the International Monetary and Financial Committee - April 2013.


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Slovak Republic: Fostering an inclusive job-rich recovery - OECD Better Policies Series

The Slovak Republic is one of the most dynamic economies in the euro area. The country has continued to converge rapidly towards the living standards of advanced OECD economies. However, the Slovak Republic should continue on its path of reform to achieve balanced, fair and sustainable growth, according to a new OECD report.


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The determinants of informality in Mexico’s states

Informality has important implications for productivity, economic growth, and the inequality of income. In recent years, the extent of informal employment has increased in many of Mexico's states, though highly heterogeneously.


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Legal reform, contract enforcement and firm size in Mexico

Legal systems provide the basic institutions for firms and markets to operate. Their quality can have important consequences on the size distribution of firms, who rely on them for contract enforcement. This paper uses the variation in legal system quality across states in Mexico to examine the relationship between judicial quality and firm size.


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Improving the economic situation of young people in France

The economic situation of young people is unsatisfactory. Educational inequalities have been widening for over a decade, due to a sharp decline in the results of the most highly disadvantaged students. The unemployment rate for the 20-24 age bracket has not dropped below 16% for nearly 30 years.


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Green Growth Knowledge Platform 2013 annual conference

The GGKP’s second annual conference will be held at the OECD Headquarters in Paris on 4-5 April 2013. The discussion will be framed around two headline themes: Greening global value chains and Measurement and reporting for green growth.


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Improving employment prospects for young workers in Spain

The unemployment rate among young people has reached painfully high levels, in particular among those young people with low levels of education.


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Youth labour market performance in Spain and its determinants - a micro-level perspective

This paper provides both descriptive and empirical evidence about the main youth labour market problems in Spain. Using the experiences of other EU economies as a benchmark, we document the performance of Spain as regards a wide set of youth labour market dimensions.


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Income inequality and poverty in Colombia. Part 2. The redistributive impact of taxes and transfers

Income inequality in Colombia has declined since the early 2000s but remains very high by international standards. While most of the inequality originates from the labour market, wealth – and thus capital income – is also highly concentrated and the tax and transfer system has little redistributive impact.


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Income inequality and poverty in Colombia. Part 1. The role of the labour market

Income inequality in Colombia has declined since the early 2000s but remains very high by international standards. Income dispersion largely originates from the labour market, which is characterised by a still high unemployment rate, a pervasive informal sector and a wide wage dispersion reflecting a large education premium for those with higher education.


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Together We Stand: Inclusive Growth

Our economic growth models have not equitably distribute benefits. Inequalities were brewing under the surface prior to 2007 and increased almost everywhere even during periods of sustained economic growth. We need to reverse this trend, said OECD Secretary-General.


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Global economy is improving but Europe lags behind, says OECD

Global economic activity is picking up, but the continuing crisis in the euro area is delaying a meaningful recovery, the OECD said in its latest Interim Economic Assessment.


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Stepping up the pace of reform and fostering greener and more inclusive growth in China

China’s new leadership has signalled that it is time to step up the pace of reform, building on the remarkable economic and social achievements to date while recognising the pressing need for deep structural changes. Indeed, far-reaching reforms are necessary for continuing to raise living standards and well-being, even as China is poised to become the world’s largest economy by around 2016.


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Speeding up reforms will foster more inclusive and greener growth in China

China has made tremendous progress toward achieving inclusive growth, but major reforms are needed to ensure a fourth decade of rapidly converging living standards and a greener economy, according to the OECD’s latest Economic Survey of China.


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经合组织称加快改革进程必将促进中国经济增长更加包容更加绿色

经合组织最新一期的《中国经济调查》指出,尽管中国在实现包容性增长方面成效显著,但为确保第四个十年更快地向更高生活水平靠拢,并使经济更加“绿色”,中国仍需采取重大措施深入改革。


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France must do more to boost competitiveness and create jobs

France has avoided the most severe impacts of the global economic crisis and turmoil in the euro area, but must now take action to boost competitiveness and create jobs, according to the OECD’s latest Economic Survey of France.


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Strengthening social cohesion in Luxembourg: making efficiency and equity go hand in hand

Luxembourg is a rich and fast-growing country. However, inequality of disposable incomes has trended up modestly over the past decades and relative poverty has risen reflecting mainly the rapid growth of high incomes.


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Labour market, welfare reform and inequality in the United Kingdom

Employment has risen by more and unemployment has risen less than expected, given the path of output. Nevertheless, long-term and youth unemployment and involuntary part-time work are high. A polarised labour market risks worsening income inequality, which is high by OECD standards, despite a recent and likely temporary decline.


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Work incentives and Universal Credit – reform of the benefit system in the United Kingdom

Under the Universal Credit reform, the main means-tested benefits except the Council Tax Benefit will be pooled into one single benefit with one single taper rate. The reform will give people better incentives to work, reduce complexity and contribute to reducing poverty.


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Policy options to durably resolve euro area imbalances

A simple econometric framework is presented linking current account balances of euro area countries to intra and extra euro area competitiveness, cyclical positions, fiscal positions and the oil price.


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Mineral Resource Trade in Chile: Contribution to Development and Policy Implications

Instead of resorting to trade measures such as export restrictions, Chile manages its minerals sector through a combination of balanced taxation, stable investment measures, good management of tax revenue, exchange rate policy and initiatives aimed at producing a multiplier effect of economy-wide development, according to this study.


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The price of oil – will it start rising again?

Following a sharp drop amidst the global economic crisis and a subsequent recovery, the spot price of crude oil has been broadly stable for the past couple of years. This paper discusses the factors that drive oil demand and supply and, hence, the price of the resource.


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The system of revenue sharing and fiscal transfers in China

The main features of China’s current sub-national finance arrangements date back to the 1994 tax reform. China has a multi-level government structure that shares national tax revenues through a system of tax sharing and transfers, and divides spending assignments and responsibilities.


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A clean energy economy - Lessons from Iceland

In his speech to OECD Ambassadors, the President of Iceland discussed how Iceland could offer lessons on the nature of a clean energy economy; and presented some insights from Iceland's recent challenges in dealing with the financial crisis.


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OECD government borrowing set to rise slightly in 2013

The gross borrowing needs of OECD governments are projected to increase slightly to around USD 10.9 trillion in 2013, up from the already high level of USD 10.8 trillion in 2012, according to a new OECD report.


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Do the average level and dispersion of socio-economic background measures explain France’s gap in PISA scores?

OECD’s PISA publications highlight the impact of economic, social and cultural status (ESCS) on students’ results within countries. The focus here is to investigate whether ESCS measures could contribute to differences in aggregate educational outcomes between countries.


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Measuring Fiscal Decentralisation, Concepts and Policies

This book deals with two issues. The first concerns the various measurement of fiscal decentralization in general and their usefulness for policy analysis. The second and more specific issue concerns the taxonomy of intergovernmental grants and the limits of the current classifications.


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