nep-ara New Economics Papers
on MENA - Middle East and North Africa
Issue of 2023‒03‒20
ten papers chosen by
Paul Makdissi
Université d’Ottawa

  1. The Decision to Emigrate in Six MENA Countries: The Role of Post-Revolutionary Stress By Fakih, Ali; El Baba, Malak
  2. Growth models, power blocs and authoritarianisms in Turkey and Egypt in the 21st century By Güngen, Ali Rıza; Akçay, Ümit
  3. The association between women’s economic participation and physical and/or sexual domestic violence against women: A case study for Turkey By Angela Greulich; Aurélien Dasré
  4. Ensuring Accountability in Reconstruction and Reform Efforts in Lebanon: Phase Two Field Survey Findings Report By Dagher, Leila; tabsh, ghina; sidani, ola; Abi Younes, Oussama
  5. Revisiting fertility regulation and family ties in Tunisia By Olfa Frini; Christophe Muller
  6. Does War Foster Cooperation or Parochialism? Evidence from a Natural Experiment among Turkish Conscripts By Kıbrıs, Arzu; Cesur, Resul
  7. Mass Valuation of Real Estate Using GIS-based Nominal Valuation and Machine Learning Methods By Muhammed Oguzhan Mete; Tahsin Yomralioglu
  8. Iraq's quest for a social contract: An approach to promoting social cohesion and state resilience By Mühlberger, Wolfgang
  9. Self-Undermining Policy Feedback and Social Policy Making in Iraq By Cerami, Alfio
  10. Die Rolle des Humankapitals bei der Verbesserung der Organisationse robustheit von Dienstleistungsbetrieben: Eine Fallstudie zu Hotelunternehmen in Marrakesch. By M'HAMED ELGHOZAIL; RKIA EL IDRISSI

  1. By: Fakih, Ali (Lebanese American University); El Baba, Malak (Lebanese American University)
    Abstract: This paper studies the determinants of emigration from six Middle East and North Africa (MENA) countries in light of the Arab Spring of 2011. The aim is to determine if the economically depressing events which occurred as a result of the Arab Spring, resulted in brain drain for many countries. The paper's analysis is conducted using the Arab Transformation Project dataset of the year 2014 by employing an ordered probit model. The main conclusion of the paper is that sentiments of unhappiness appear to be the main determinant of the decision to emigrate. Other post-revolutionary feelings include lack of trust and political and democratic discontent, which highly encourage emigration decisions. In addition, socio-economic factors, such as being young, being male, and being highly educated are all contributing factors to the willingness to emigrate. However, married individuals are less likely to consider emigration.
    Keywords: Arab Spring, emigration, unhappiness, attitude
    JEL: C25 J60 O15
    Date: 2023–02
  2. By: Güngen, Ali Rıza; Akçay, Ümit
    Abstract: Analysis of the growth patterns in the global South in the 21st century suggests there is room for authoritarian states to search for new growth models. Authoritarian states, such as Turkey and Egypt, benefited from global financial circumstances in the early 21st century and opted for new growth models in the 2010s, suppressing political space further. To explain the changes in growth models amid the strength of reinforced authoritarianisms in these two countries, we employ a hybrid research strategy consisting of critical macroeconomic analysis and a critical political economy approach, tying growth model changes to conflicts within the power bloc. Peripheral goods producers gained the upper hand in Turkey in this period, while a military takeover in Egypt was followed by the promotion of exports and new investments in the mid-to-late 2010s. We contend that power bloc reconfigurations and the rise of new growth strategies led to the change in Turkey's growth model during the Covid-19 pandemic and the quasi-shift in Egypt's growth model in the late 2010s.
    Keywords: Comparative political economy, growth models, growth strategies, Turkey, Egypt
    JEL: B52 E65 E66 F43 O43 P52
    Date: 2023
  3. By: Angela Greulich (CRIS - Centre de recherche sur les inégalités sociales (Sciences Po, CNRS) - Sciences Po - Sciences Po - CNRS - Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique, IUF - Institut Universitaire de France - M.E.N.E.S.R. - Ministère de l'Education nationale, de l’Enseignement supérieur et de la Recherche); Aurélien Dasré (CRESPPA - Centre de recherches sociologiques et politiques de Paris - UP8 - Université Paris 8 Vincennes-Saint-Denis - UPN - Université Paris Nanterre - CNRS - Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique)
    Abstract: We test in how far women's economic participation can be associated with physical and/or sexual domestic violence against women in Turkey, by mobilizing the Survey "National Research on Domestic Violence against Women in Turkey" (wave 2014). Several studies found that economically active women have a similar, if not a higher risk of experiencing domestic violence than inactive women in Turkey, as well as in other emerging countries. We challenge these findings for Turkey by distinguishing between formal and informal labor market activities as well as between women who do not work because their partner does not allow them to and women who are inactive for other reasons. To increase the control for endogeneity in this cross-sectional setting, we apply an IV-approach based on cluster averages. We find that, while overall employment for women cannot be associated with a lower risk of experiencing domestic violence for women in Turkey, those women who participate in the formal labor market and those women who contribute at least the same as their partner to household income are less exposed to physical and/or sexual domestic violence than their counterparts. Distinguishing between formal and informal employment is thus important when it comes to investigate the association between women's economic activity and domestic violence. This is especially the case in a country like Turkey, which currently undergoes important socioeconomic changes and where women in formal and informal employment have therefore very different socioeconomic backgrounds.
    Date: 2022–11–16
  4. By: Dagher, Leila; tabsh, ghina; sidani, ola; Abi Younes, Oussama
    Abstract: The project aims to ensure greater accountability and transparency of humanitarian aid and reconstructions efforts, particularly for those most affected by the Beirut port explosion. It will do so by better equipping local civil society and journalist networks in their roles as watchdogs, by supporting state actors to improve government reforms and manage crisis in transparency, and by equipping citizens to monitor and report corruption, particularly in areas of Beirut most affected by the explosion. Several recent reports and documentaries have questioned the transparency and accountability of international assistance related to the Port of Beirut (PoB) explosion. There are claims that millions of dollars have been misused or wasted to corruption. “Ensuring Accountability in Reconstruction and Reform Efforts in Lebanon (EARREL)” intends to fill this information gap. EARREL is led by the American University of Beirut (AUB) and the Lebanese Transparency Association (LTA) and funded by Transparency International. This report builds on an exhaustive literature review conducted by the team as well as a data collection exercise that included (1) field surveys of 650 aid beneficiaries in the PoB area, and (2) Key Informant Interviews (KIIs) with 50 experts in the field.
    Keywords: transparency; international aid; port of beirut explosion; Lebanon
    JEL: F35
    Date: 2022
  5. By: Olfa Frini (ISCAE - Institut Supérieur de Comptabilité et d'Administration des Entreprises [Manouba] - UMA - Université de la Manouba [Tunisie]); Christophe Muller (AMSE - Aix-Marseille Sciences Economiques - EHESS - École des hautes études en sciences sociales - AMU - Aix Marseille Université - ECM - École Centrale de Marseille - CNRS - Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique)
    Abstract: Background We revisit fertility regulation in Tunisia by examining the role of the extended family. As marriage is the exclusive acknowledged childbearing context, we examine fertility analysis in Tunisia through the sequence: woman's marriage age, post-marriage delay in the first use of contraception, and past and current contraceptive use. We trace the family socioeconomic influences that operate through these decisions. Methods Using data from the 2001 PAP-FAM Tunisian survey, we estimate the duration and probability models of these birth control decisions. Results In Tunisia, family ties and socio-cultural environment appear to hamper fertility regulation that operates through the above decisions. This is notably the case for couples whose marriages are arranged by the extended family or who benefit from financial support from both parental families. Conclusion This calls for family planning policies that address more the extended families.
    Keywords: Fertility regulation, Age at marriage, Birth control, Family influence, Contraception, Tunisia
    Date: 2023–02
  6. By: Kıbrıs, Arzu (University of Warwick); Cesur, Resul (University of Connecticut)
    Abstract: Exploiting a natural experiment and an innovative survey design, we study the social and political legacies of armed conflict exposure (ACE) among Turkish conscripts. Our empirical framework identifies the causal impact and isolates the mediating pathways for the average male randomly picked from the population. Contrary to the arguments that war fosters prosociality and posttraumatic growth, we find little evidence that ACE promotes cooperative behaviors. Instead, we document evidence that ACE fosters parochialism, measured by increased opposition to peaceful means of conflict resolution, animosity towards minorities, and the tendency to support right-wing political parties. As the study design eliminates the need for social insurance, security concerns, and community-level paradigm shifts, and our analysis rules out labor market outcomes, human capital formation, and military socialization from the list of the usual suspects, we conclude that, in the absence of favorable neoclassical mediating pathways boosting demand for cohesion, violence exposure, in and of itself, is not sufficient foster cooperative behaviors but promotes parochialism. Further analyses show war-driven grievances, the normalization of violence in everyday life, and changes in parochial norms and preferences as the transmitting pathways.
    Keywords: war exposure, cooperation, parochialism, conflict resolution, grievances, conflict trap
    JEL: D74 O17 Z13
    Date: 2023–02
  7. By: Muhammed Oguzhan Mete; Tahsin Yomralioglu
    Abstract: Geographic Information Systems (GIS) and Machine Learning methods are widely used in mass real estate valuation practices. Focusing on the physical attributes of properties, locational criteria are insufficiently used during the price prediction process. Whereas, locational criteria like proximity to important places, sea or forest views, flat topography are some of the spatial factors that extremely affect the real estate value. In this study, a hybrid approach is developed by integrating GIS and Machine Learning for automated mass valuation of residential properties in Turkey and the United Kingdom. GIS-based Nominal Valuation Method was applied to produce a land value map by carrying out proximity, terrain, and visibility analyses. Besides, ensemble regression methods like XGBoost, CatBoost, LightGBM, and Random Forest are built for price prediction. Spatial criteria scores obtained from GIS analyses were included in the price prediction data for feature enrichment purpose. Results showed that adding locational factors to the real estate price data increased the prediction accuracy dramatically. It also demonstrated that Random Forest was the most successful regression model compared to other ensemble methods.
    Keywords: GIS; Machine Learning; Mass Valuation; Real Estate Valuation
    JEL: R3
    Date: 2022–01–01
  8. By: Mühlberger, Wolfgang
    Abstract: This study sets out to examine state-society relations in Iraq through the conceptual lens of the social contract and also provides a starting point for deriving potential areas of activity for external actors, such as German development cooperation (DC) and technical cooperation (TC). These players could provide support for the re-negotiation of this fraught mesh of relationships. This analysis is founded on a concept of the social contract in which the relationship between the government and those it governs is viewed primarily as a process of negotiation and can be operationalised, for instance, on the basis of the three Ps (participation, provision and protection). As such, the concept is informed both by contemporary approaches and by traditional reflections of French and Anglo-Saxon thinkers, who focus on the restriction of individual freedoms in return for the provision of legal certainty by the state. This study is divided into three sections. The first section explores weak statehood and the breakdown of society in the heuristic context of the social contract. The role of external actors in Iraq's post-2003 development is then examined in the next section, which takes a closer look at the political system of proportional representation and its socio-political implications. Finally, the third section synthesises the first two by considering how external actors from the development cooperation sector might contribute to the peaceful negotiation of Iraq's dysfunctional social contract. These reflections are made against the systemic backdrop of a rentier state with a hybrid form of governance and take account of the extremely fragile government-society relationship on the one hand, and external interventions, which have largely failed to date, on the other. In this context, the shortcomings of the largely dysfunctional Iraqi social contract become apparent and at the same time provide starting points for its improvement and renegotiation.
    Keywords: development cooperation (DC), external actors, financial cooperation (FC), fragile statehood, hybrid governance, post-conflict, social contract, social division, technical cooperation (TC)
    Date: 2023
  9. By: Cerami, Alfio
    Abstract: This article examines self-undermining policy feedback and social policy making in Iraq. It discusses Jacobs and Weaver's (2015), self-undermining feedback mechanisms which include: Mechanism 1) Self-undermining-feedback through emergent losses for individuals and for organized groups (eg. emergent costs); Mechanism 2) Policy losses in mass cognition for individuals and for organized groups (eg. negativity bias, framing effects, informational conditions); and Mechanism 3) Expanding menus of alternatives/menu effects of policies for individuals and for organized groups (eg. windows of political opportunity). In Iraq, governments implemented both policies of blame avoidance and of credit claiming that became “self-undermining over time” (Weaver 1986; Jacobs and Weaver 2015). In patronage and exclusionary politics associated with civil war or the war against terror, new pension entitlements, health care, protection against unemployment and social safety nets, which tend to reward special privileged categories or loyal ethnic groups, such as state officials and corrupt members of the security apparatuses might intentionally escalate tensions to increase their own profits. This have led in an increase in expenses for those programs that can become self-undermining over time and could block their dismissal, whilst decreasing the scope for later development and social policy improvements. Politics and policies have become in this way without dignity for the beneficiaries, since they became part of a clannish exclusionary tribal politics that rises expenses without resolving the conflict resolution problem.
    Keywords: Iraq, self-undermining policy feedback, political economy, ISIL (Da’esh), social policy
    JEL: H2 H24 H41 H5 I3 J4 O1 O5 P16
    Date: 2023–02–17
  10. By: M'HAMED ELGHOZAIL (UCA - Université Cadi Ayyad [Marrakech]); RKIA EL IDRISSI (UCA - Université Cadi Ayyad [Marrakech])
    Abstract: Der Luxushotelsektor in Marrakesch ist eine wichtige Branche, die eine bedeutende Rolle in der lokalen Wirtschaft spielt. Der Erfolg dieser Hotels hängt von verschiedenen Faktoren ab, einschließlich der Qualität ihrer Dienstleistungen, der Zufriedenheit ihrer Kunden und der Effizienz ihrer Betriebsabläufe. Ein Faktor, der bisher in Bezug auf die marokkanische Hotelleriebranche nicht ausführlich untersucht wurde, ist die Rolle des Humankapitals bei der Organisationse robustheit. Diese Forschung will diese Lücke schließen, indem sie den Einfluss des Humankapitals auf die Organisationse robustheit im Luxushotelsektor in Marrakesch untersucht. Hierfür hat der Autor eine Literaturübersicht durchgeführt und Hypothesen über die Beziehung zwischen Humankapital und Organisationse robustheit formuliert. Darüber hinaus hat der Autor einen halbstrukturierten Interviewleitfaden entwickelt, der in einer qualitativen Studie zu diesem Thema verwendet wird. Das Ziel dieser Forschung ist zu bestimmen, inwieweit Humankapital die Organisationse robustheit in der marokkanischen Hotelleriebranche verbessern kann. Es ist wichtig, diese Forschung durchzuführen, da sie zu unserem Verständnis beitragen wird, wie Humankapital die Organisationse robustheit in der Hotelbranche beeinflussen kann. Humankapital wird oft in der Hotelbranche unterschätzt und Mitarbeiter werden nicht immer für ihren tatsächlichen Wert anerkannt. Trotzdem spielt Humankapital eine zentrale Rolle bei der Schaffung eines qualitativen Erlebnisses für Kunden und die Kundenzufriedenheit ist ein bestimmender Faktor für den Erfolg eines Hotelgeschäfts. Durch die Untersuchung der Beziehung zwischen Humankapital und Organisationse robustheit wird diese Forschung wertvolle Einblicke in die Bedeutung des Berücksichtigens von Humankapital zur Optimierung der Organisationse robustheit liefern. Es gibt ein paar Einschränkungen für diese Studie. Eine Einschränkung bezieht sich auf die Literaturübersicht, die aufgrund der Neuheit des Themas begrenzt ist. Eine weitere Einschränkung ist, dass die qualitative Studie dieses Themas herausfordernd sein kann. Trotz dieser Einschränkungen hat diese Forschung das Potenzial,
    Abstract: The luxury hotel sector in Marrakech is an important industry that plays a significant role in the local economy. The success of these hotels depends on various factors, including the quality of their services, the satisfaction of their customers, and the efficiency of their operations. One factor that has not been extensively studied in the context of the Moroccan hotel industry is the role of human capital in organizational resilience. This research aims to fill this gap by examining the influence of human capital on organizational resilience in the luxury hotel sector in Marrakech. To do this, the author has conducted a literature review and formulated hypotheses about the relationship between human capital and organizational resilience. In addition, the author has developed a semi-structured interview guide to be used in a qualitative study of this issue. The aim of this research is to determine to what extent human capital can enhance organizational resilience in the Moroccan hotel industry. It is important to conduct this research because it will contribute to our understanding of how human capital can impact organizational resilience in the hotel industry. Human capital is often underestimated in the hotel business, and employees are not always recognized for their true value. However, human capital plays a central role in creating a quality experience for customers, and customer satisfaction is a determining factor in the success of a hotel business. By studying the relationship between human capital and organizational resilience, this research will provide valuable insights into the importance of considering human capital in order to optimize organizational resilience. There are a few limitations to this study. One limitation is related to the literature review, which is limited due to the novelty of the subject. Another limitation is that the qualitative study of this issue may be challenging. However, despite these limitations, this research has the potential to provide valuable insights into the role of human capital in organizational resilience in the Moroccan hotel industry.
    Abstract: Le secteur de l'hôtellerie de luxe à Marrakech est une industrie importante qui joue un rôle significatif dans l'économie locale. Le succès de ces hôtels dépend de plusieurs facteurs, tels que la qualité de leurs services, la satisfaction de leurs clients et l'efficacité de leurs opérations. Un facteur qui n'a pas été étudié en détail dans le contexte de l'industrie hôtelière marocaine est le rôle du capital humain dans la résilience organisationnelle. Cette recherche vise à combler cette lacune en examinant l'influence du capital humain sur la résilience organisationnelle dans le secteur de l'hôtellerie de luxe à Marrakech. Pour ce faire, l'auteur a réalisé une revue de la littérature et formulé des hypothèses sur la relation entre le capital humain et la résilience organisationnelle. De plus, l'auteur a élaboré un guide d'entretien semi-structuré à utiliser dans une étude qualitative sur ce sujet. Le but de cette recherche est de déterminer dans quelle mesure le capital humain peut renforcer la résilience organisationnelle dans l'industrie hôtelière marocaine. Il est important de mener cette recherche car elle contribuera à notre compréhension de la façon dont le capital humain peut affecter la résilience organisationnelle dans l'industrie hôtelière. Le capital humain est souvent sous-estimé dans les affaires hôtelières et les employés ne sont pas toujours reconnus pour leur vraie valeur. Cependant, le capital humain joue un rôle central dans la création d'une expérience de qualité pour les clients et la satisfaction des clients est un facteur déterminant dans le succès d'une entreprise hôtelière. En étudiant la relation entre le capital humain et la résilience organisationnelle, cette recherche fournira des informations précieuses sur l'importance de prendre en compte le capital humain pour optimiser la résilience organisationnelle. Il y a quelques limites à cette étude. Une limitation concerne la revue de la littérature, qui est limitée en raison de la nouveauté du sujet. Une autre limitation est que l'étude qualitative sur ce sujet peut être difficile. Cependant, malgré ces limites, cette recherche a le potentiel de fournir des informations précieuses sur le rôle du capital humain dans la résilience organisationnelle dans l'industrie hôtelière marocaine.
    Keywords: Human capital organizational resilience Hospitality JEL Classification: M54 Paper type: Empirical research, Human capital, organizational resilience, Hospitality JEL Classification: M54 Paper type: Empirical research
    Date: 2023–02–05

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