nep-his New Economics Papers
on Business, Economic and Financial History
Issue of 2021‒03‒01
34 papers chosen by

  1. Institutional Change and Institutional Persistence By Daron Acemoglu; Georgy Egorov; Konstantin Sonin
  2. Homoploutia: Top Labor and Capital Incomes in the United States, 1950-2020 By Yonatan Berman; Branko Milanovic
  3. Imported or Home Grown? The 1992-3 EMS Crisis By Eichengreen, Barry; Naef, Alain
  4. The loss of human capital after the Spanish civil war By Santiago Caballero, Carlos; Sanchez Alonso, Blanca
  5. Reassessing Ireland’s Economic Development through the Lens of Sustainable Development By McGrath, Luke; Hynes, Stephen; McHale, John
  6. The Making and Unmaking of Opportunity: Educational Mobility in 20th Century-Denmark By Kristian Karlson; Rasmus Landersø
  7. Information in the First Globalization: News Agencies and Trade By Pierre Cotterlaz; Etienne Fize
  8. Energising Mexico: Historical Energy Consumption, Transitions and Economic Growth 1880-2015 By Castañeda Garza, Diego
  9. Introduction to city planning: A historical perspective By Kauffman, Howel
  10. Speculations on infrastructure: from colonial public works to a postcolonial global asset class on the Indian Railways 1840-2017 By Bear, Laura
  11. The Great Transition: Kuznets Facts for Family-Economists By Jeremy Greenwood; Nezih Guner; Ricardo Marto
  12. The Institutionalization of the Fight against White-Collar Crime in Switzerland, 1970-1990 By Thibaud Giddey
  13. Cash and crises: No surprises by the virus By Rösl, Gerhard; Seitz, Franz
  14. Book Review of Ryan Patrick Stanley’s 'Our Great Purpose: Adam Smith on Living a Better Life By Carrasco, Maria; Assistant, JHET
  15. Dirty float or clean intervention? The Bank of England in the foreign exchange market By Naef, Alain
  16. Comercio exterior mexicano según la intensidad tecnológica en el periodo 1986-2018 By Carlos Galindo; David Guío; Salvador Padilla
  17. Economics and politics sculpting the Colombian economy: the case of national accounts By Diego Alejandro Almonacid Lovera
  18. Persecution and Escape: Professional Networks and High-Skilled Emigration from Nazi Germany By Sascha O. Becker; Volker Lindenthal; Sharun Mukand; Fabian Waldinger
  19. How Powerful Is Unannounced, Sterilized Foreign Exchange Intervention? By Naef, Alain; Weber, Jacob
  20. The Historical Perspective on the Trump Puzzle: A Review of Barry Eichengreen’s “The Populist Temptation: Economic Grievance and Political Reaction in the Modern Era†By Konstantin Sonin
  21. JHET Interviews: Robert F. Hébert By Mosca, Manuela; Assistant, JHET
  22. Forschungsperspektiven der Geschichte des regionalen Genossenschaftswesens am Beispiel der Provinz Posen By Bormann, Patrick
  23. Herbert Spencer's Case for Free Banking By Bragues, George; Assistant, JHET
  24. Persecution and Escape: Professional Networks and High-Skilled Emigration from Nazi Germany By Sascha O. Becker; Volker Lindenthal; Sharun Mukand; Fabian Waldinger
  25. The Twin Endogeneities Hypothesis: A Theory of Central Bank Evolution By Daniyal Khan
  26. The Historical Gender Gap Index: A Longitudinal and Spatial Assessment of Sweden, 1870-1990 By Karlsson, Tobias; Kok, Joris; Perrin, Faustine
  27. Dust Bowl Migrants: Identifying an Archetype By Richard Hornbeck
  28. Culture, Institutions & the Long Divergence By Alberto Bisin; Jared Rubin; Avner Seror; Thierry Verdier
  29. Ce pourquoi les clubs de football paient : Talent ou date de naissance ? Une étude sur la France de 1970 à 2019 By Jérôme Ballet; Damien Bazin
  30. Forced Migration, Staying Minorities, and New Societies: Evidence from Post-war Czechoslovakia By Jakub Grossmann; Stepan Jurajda; Felix Roesel
  31. Unequal mortality during the Spanish Flu By Basco, Sergi; Domenech, Jordi; Roses, Joan R.
  32. Covid-19 and the Political Economy of Mass Hysteria By Bagus, Philipp; Peña Ramos, José Antonio; Sánchez Bayón, Antonio
  33. La llegada del economista colombiano a Colombia By Sara Isabel Caicedo Silva
  34. Security Transitions By Thiemo Fetzer; Pedro CL Souza; Oliver Vanden Eynde; Austin L. Wright

  1. By: Daron Acemoglu (Massachusetts Institute of Technology - Department of Economics; CEPR; NBER); Georgy Egorov (Northwestern University - Kellogg School of Management; NBER); Konstantin Sonin (University of Chicago - Harris School of Public Policy; Higher School of Economics; CEPR)
    Abstract: In this essay, we provide a simple conceptual framework to elucidate the forces that lead to institutional persistence and change. Our framework is based on a dynamic game between different groups, who care both about current policies and institutions and future policies, which are themselves determined by current institutional choices, and clarifies the forces that lead to the most extreme form of institutional persistence (“institutional stasis†) and the potential drivers of institutional change. We further study the strategic stability of institutions, which arises when institutions persist because of fear of subsequent, less beneficial changes that would follow initial reforms. More importantly, we emphasize that, despite the popularity of ideas based on institutional stasis in the economics and political science literatures, most institutions are in a constant state of flux, but their trajectory may still be shaped by past institutional choices, thus exhibiting “path-dependent change†, so that initial conditions determine both the subsequent trajectories of institutions and how they respond to shocks. We conclude the essay by discussing how institutions can be designed to bolster stability, the relationship between social mobility and institutions, and the interplay between culture and institutions.
    Keywords: Conflict, constitutions, democracy, institutions, institutional change, persistence, stability
    JEL: P16 D72 D74 C73 N10 N40
    Date: 2020
  2. By: Yonatan Berman (London Mathematical Laboratory, Stone Center on Socio-Economic Inequality, The Graduate Center - CUNY Graduate Center - CUNY - City University of New York [New York]); Branko Milanovic (The Graduate Center - CUNY Graduate Center - CUNY - City University of New York [New York], Stone Center on Socio-Economic Inequality, International Inequalities Institute)
    Abstract: Homoploutia describes the situation in which the same people (homo) are wealthy (ploutia) in the space of capital and labor income in some country. It can be quantified by the share of capital-income rich who are also labor-income rich. In this paper we combine several datasets covering different time periods to document the evolution of homoploutia in the United States from 1950 to 2020. We find that homoploutia was low after World War II, has increased by the early 1960s, and then decreased until the mid-1980s. Since 1985 it has been sharply increasing: In 1985, about 17% of adults in the top decile of capital-income earners were also in the top decile of labor-income earners. In 2018 this indicator was about 30%. This makes the traditional division to capitalists and laborers less relevant today. It makes periods characterized by high interpersonal inequality, high capital-income ratio and high capital share of income in the past fundamentally different from the current situation. High homoploutia has far-reaching implications for social mobility and equality of opportunity. We also study how homoploutia is related to total income inequality. We find that rising homoploutia accounts for about 20% of the increase in total income inequality in the United States since 1986.
    Keywords: income inequality,homoploutia,political economy
    Date: 2020–12
  3. By: Eichengreen, Barry; Naef, Alain
    Abstract: Using newly assembled data on foreign exchange market intervention, we construct a daily index of exchange market pressure during the 1992-3 crisis in the European Monetary System. Using this index, we pinpoint when and where the crisis was most severe. Our analysis focuses on a neglected factor in the crisis: the role of the weak dollar in intra-EMS tensions. We provide new evidence of the contribution of a falling dollar-Deutschmark exchange rate to pressure on EMS currencies.
    Date: 2021–02–23
  4. By: Santiago Caballero, Carlos; Sanchez Alonso, Blanca
    Abstract: Forced migrations and exiles are shocks that affect to the lives of millions of individuals. Among the consequences of this non-voluntary migration, the loss of a significant stock of human capital is of particular importance. The Republican exile in post-civil war Spain is an excellent case study since the traditional representation is that Spain lost highly qualified population. However, not that much has been said about the quantification of this loss or the measurement of the quality of the human capital that left Spain after the end of the civil war. This paper tries to fill this gap offering an estimation of the quality of the human capital that left Spain comparing it with the years that preceded and followed it and with economic migrants who were moving at the same time. Mexico was the major destination for Spanish refugees since the beginning of the Civil War and produced a unique primary source for analysing economic immigrants and refugees. We use multivariable regression models to estimate the existence of a skill premium in Republican refugees, analysing proxies of human capital like occupations, heights, and foreign languages spoken. Our results suggest that Spanish Republican refugees presented a skill premium compared to economic migrants. This result is particularly relevant because traditional economic migrants from Spain to Mexico have been considered a "privileged migration" given their high levels of human capital. The quality of the source allows us to extend the analysis to women human capital, an important contribution given the traditional invisibility of women in recorded economic history.
    Keywords: Spanish Civil War; Refugees; Human Capital
    JEL: J61 J24 N36
    Date: 2021–02–22
  5. By: McGrath, Luke; Hynes, Stephen; McHale, John
    Abstract: Economic historians have examined economic development in terms of growth for decades. However, only limited research has examined historical economic development from the vantage of sustainable development. Genuine Savings (GS) has emerged as a leading economic indicator of sustainable development. This study reassesses Ireland’s economic development by analysing GS estimates that span the entire history of the Irish Free State from 1922-2017 as well as notional estimates back to 1851, just after Ireland’s “Great Famine”. The findings provide empirical support for the view that Ireland’s economic performance was held back by an archaic institutional framework that prevented a convergence to modern living standards during the European Golden Age. The results amplify the sharp contrast between pre1960s and post-1960s economic performance noted in the traditional literature on Ireland’s economic history. The study shows that Ireland might be viewed as “a land of missed opportunities” before it underwent a “great transition” driven by an improved institutional framework. Ireland’s great transition paved the way for the sharp relative welfare improvement during the Celtic Tiger period of the 1990s. Ireland offers novelty in relation to the GS literature having undergone two distinct development phases before economic convergence. The first phase from 1960-80 represented a typical weakly sustainable path. The second phase from 1987-2007 represented an Environmental Kuznets Curve type path.
    Keywords: Environmental Economics and Policy
    Date: 2020
  6. By: Kristian Karlson (University of Copenhagen); Rasmus Landersø (Rockwool Foundation Research Unit)
    Abstract: We study intergenerational educational mobility in Denmark over the 20th century during which the comprehensive Danish welfare state was rolled out. While mobility initially was low, schooling reforms benefiting children from disadvantaged backgrounds led to dramatic increases in mobility for cohorts born between 1940 and 1960. However, the college expansion affecting cohorts born from 1970 onward has mainly benefited children from affluent backgrounds, resulting in rapidly declining mobility. Comparisons to educational mobility trends in the U.S. reveal that the two countries converge in mobility levels for the most recent cohorts despite the dramatically different welfare policies in place.
    Keywords: educational mobility, Inequality, schooling reforms, skill
    JEL: H00 I00 J00
    Date: 2021–02
  7. By: Pierre Cotterlaz; Etienne Fize
    Abstract: This paper documents the effect of information frictions on trade using a historical large-scale improvement in the transmission of news: the emergence of global news agencies. The information available to potential traders became more abundant, was delivered faster and at a cheaper price between countries covered by a news agency. Exploiting differences in the timing of telegraph openings and news agency coverage across pairs of countries, we are able to disentangle the pure effect of information from the effect of a reduction in communication costs. Panel gravity estimates reveal that bilateral trade increased by 30\% more for pairs of countries covered by a news agency and connected by a telegraph than for pairs of countries simply connected by a telegraph.
    Keywords: Information;International Trade;Economic History;News Agency;First Globalization
    JEL: N70 F14 F15 F10
    Date: 2021–02
  8. By: Castañeda Garza, Diego
    Abstract: This paper employs archival data to reconstruct the historical pattern of primary energy consumption in Mexico during the 1880-2015 period. The study highlights the characteristics of the energy transitions between different primary energy sources and offers the first account of both traditional and modern energy carriers. It performs a trend and level analysis to explain how the economic structure, population and economic growth have impacted energy intensity and productivity. Thus, the paper provides a first approximation to the long-term relationship between economic growth and energy utilisation in Mexico. The period 1880- 1920 saw both growths in population and income increase energy consumption, the period 1921-1960 is mostly driven by income growth, 1961-2000, both growths in population and income drive consumption, and finally, between 2001 and 2015, population growth is the dominant force.
    Date: 2021–02–20
  9. By: Kauffman, Howel
    Abstract: This study is an introduction to the world's history of urban planning from its beginnings in the mid-19th Century until today. The work looks at significant planning historical issues. Why did town design go the way it did? How did it work and how did it change the goals? What was the prosperity of preparation, and who were its leaders? What were the core concepts and their relation to thought and social progress in the planning process? This essay gives a summary of the vast literature of urban planning and history by addressing certain queries. This work is divided into three phases of history: an initial era of separate but increasingly converging principles of a designated city; a second phase of national organisation, innovation and development; and a third period in which the planning concepts were applied at almost all levels and areas of urban policy. The roots of modern planning are discovered in community care campaigns, civil sculpture, and embellishment, classically resurrected urban architecture, and neighborhood settlements, and the reform of housing. A second portion deals with institutionalizing the profession, the advancement of zoning and comprehensive planning, significant time statistics and the New Deal initiative for new cities.
    Date: 2021–02–07
  10. By: Bear, Laura
    Abstract: This paper issues a challenge to examine the current emergence of infrastructure as a global asset class against a longer-term colonial history of speculation. Taking the case of the Indian railways, it shows that their current financialization and transformation into a logistical network emerges from colonial techniques of calculations of risky frontiers, state guarantees and debt accounting. Historical forms built from racial and national inequalities have been incorporated into a new era of the financialization of public works led globally by the World Bank. This new moment erases the distinctive political histories of public works, while also capitalizing on these. Overall this leads to two theoretical claims: firstly, that we should only use the term ‘infrastructure’ self-consciously as a mode of critique of such contemporary moves. Secondly, that our theories derived from Marx, Foucault and Callon place too much emphasis on ‘economization’ and that we need to replace this with attention to speculation. Speculation is affective, intellectual and physical labour that aims to direct capital towards various ends. It involves the ethical imagination of social differences and places distinctions of race, nation and gender at the core of calculative regimes. This labour is governed by key nodal contracts between the market and the state and associated accounting and legal regimes or treaties for accumulation.
    Keywords: infrastructure; speculation; debt; railways; public good
    JEL: N0 R14 J01
    Date: 2020–02–21
  11. By: Jeremy Greenwood (University of Pennsylvania); Nezih Guner (Centro de Estudios Monetarios y Financieros (CEMFI)); Ricardo Marto (University of Pennsylvania)
    Abstract: The 20th century beheld a dramatic transformation of the family. Some Kuznets style facts regarding structural change in the family are presented. Over the course of the 20th century in the United States fertility declined, educational attainment waxed, housework fell, leisure increased, and marriage waned. These trends are also observed in the cross-country data. A model is developed, and then calibrated, to address the trends in the US data. The calibration procedure is closely connected to the underlying economic logic. Three drivers of the great transition are considered: neutral technological progress, skilled-biased technological change, and drops in the price of labor-saving household durables.
    Keywords: average weekly hours, blue-collar jobs, calibration, college premium, education, family economics, fertility, housework. Kuznets, leisure, market work, marriage, neutral technological progress, price of labor-saving household durables, skilled-biased technological change, white-collar jobs
    JEL: D10 E13 J10 O10
    Date: 2021–03
  12. By: Thibaud Giddey (Uppsala Universitet [Uppsala])
    Abstract: During the 1970s and 1980s, economic and financial crime turned into a societal issue in Switzerland. The perpetrators of white-collar crime often enjoyed total impunity: legal proceedings were very time consuming, authorities in charge of judicial investigation were under-resourced. This paper investigates how the political and judicial authorities responded to this challenge. By the end of the 1980s, a strong shift towards a more specialized handling of financial crime by public prosecutors occurred. Specialized departments were set up and judges were trained in commercial matters. This transformation breached with a long tradition of leniency and inefficient judicial handling of economic crime. Based on archival evidence, this paper sheds new light on the drivers of an institutionalization process which affected not only the Swiss financial centre, but also all the global judicial proceedings which relied on it. Professionalizing the response to financial crime also aimed at restoring the corporate reputation of Swiss financial firms, in a context of growing competition among offshore financial centers. Secrecy and subterfuge are the white collar criminal's best friends. The surest invitation to illegal conduct that man can devise is a hidden conduit for transmission of funds safe from the eyes of law enforcement officials. That is exactly what secret foreign bank accounts do. Although such accounts may be used with perfect innocence by some depositors, they are too tempting a lure for the tax evader, the securities swindler, the corrupter of public employees, the fraud and the cheat. The 'little tin box' of the 1930's has been replaced by the Swiss bank account of the 1970's.
    Date: 2020–12–27
  13. By: Rösl, Gerhard; Seitz, Franz
    Abstract: Despite the increasing use of cashless payment instruments, the notion that cash loses importance over time can be unambiguously refuted. In contrast, the authors show that cash demand increased steeply over the past 30 years. This is not only true on a global scale, but also for the most important currencies in advanced countries (USD, EUR, CHF, GBP and JPY). In this paper, they focus especially on the role of different crises (technological crises, financial market crises, natural disasters) and analyse the demand for small and large banknote denominations since the 1990s in an international perspective. It is evident that cash demand always increases in times of crises, independent of the nature of the crisis itself. However, largely unaffected from crises we observe a trend increase in global cash aligned with a shift from transaction balances towards more hoarding, especially in the form of large denomination banknotes.
    Keywords: Cash,banknotes,crises,Corona
    JEL: E41 E51 E58
    Date: 2021
  14. By: Carrasco, Maria; Assistant, JHET
    Abstract: Review of 'Our Great Purpose: Adam Smith on Living a Better Life' by by Ryan Patrick Stanley
    Date: 2021–02–12
  15. By: Naef, Alain
    Abstract: The effectiveness of central bank intervention is debated and despite literature showing mixed results, central banks regularly intervene in the foreign exchange market, both in developing and developed economies. Does foreign exchange intervention work? Using over 60,000 new daily observations on intervention and exchange rates, this paper is the first study of the Bank of England’s foreign exchange intervention between 1952 and 1972. The main finding is that the Bank of England was unsuccessful in managing a credible exchange rate over that period. Running an event study, I demonstrate that betting systematically against the Bank of England would have been a profitable trading strategy. Pressures increased in the 1960s and the Bank eventually manipulated the publication of its reserve figures to avoid a run on sterling.
    Date: 2020–07–28
  16. By: Carlos Galindo; David Guío; Salvador Padilla
    Abstract: Con el propósito de evaluar la calidad de la inserción de México al mundo globalizado a través del comercio exterior, en el presente documento se analiza el grado de dependencia tecnológica de los sectores industriales y la transferencia de la tecnología vía comercio exterior desde 1986 hasta 2018, reconociendo el cambio estructural generado tras la entrada en vigor del Tratado de Libre Comercio de América del Norte (TLCAN) en 1994. Para ello, se utilizó la variable de importaciones como indicador de inaptitud tecnológica y la variable de exportaciones para indicar la aptitud tecnológica del país en determinado sector industrial. Se estableció como hipótesis que el país es superavitario en tecnología baja y deficitario en tecnología alta. No obstante, al analizar los datos, se encontró que México pasó de ser deficitario en todos los sectores industriales a ser superavitario en el sector de tecnología media en el periodo analizado. Luego, para alcanzar y mantener un superávit en el sector de tecnología alta se deben impulsar políticas públicas que permitan el aumento de la productividad y el tamaño de industrias locales que faciliten el acceso a nuevos mercados que demanden este tipo de bienes. Se debe involucrar la industria local en la cadena productiva de las firmas con enfoque al mercado externo, de forma que se transmitan los beneficios a la economía en general. *** In order to evaluate the quality of Mexico's insertion into the globalized world through foreign trade, this document will analyse the degree of technological dependence of the industrial sectors and the transfer of technology via foreign trade from 1986 to 2018, recognizing the structural change generated after the entry into force of the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) in 1994. For this purpose, the imports variable was used as an indicator of lack of technological capability and the exports variable to indicate the technological capability of the country in a certain industrial sector. It was established as a hypothesis that the country is surplus in low technology and deficit in high technology. However, when analysing the data, it was found that Mexico went from being in deficit in all industrial sectors to being in surplus in the medium technology sector in the period analysed. Therefore, in order to achieve and maintain a surplus in the high technology sector, public policies must be promoted to increase productivity and the size of local industries, facilitating access to new markets that demand this type of goods. Local industry must be involved in the production chain of firms with a focus on the external market, so that the benefits are transmitted to the economy in general.
    Keywords: intensidad tecnológica, exportaciones, importaciones, industria, apertura comercial, TLCAN
    JEL: F14 F13 O14 O33
    Date: 2020–12–23
  17. By: Diego Alejandro Almonacid Lovera
    Abstract: History is a non-linear process, full of contingent events that set the conditions which brought us, and our institutions, to where we are today. This paper examines two possible conditions in Colombia that may have influenced the creation of the National Administrative Department of Statistics: a concentrated centralist political power and a growing participation of economists in state positions. This work provides a historical and theoretical framework grounded on Alain Desrosières’ analysis of the implication of an autocratic political power and the need for national accounts on the interaction of economists with the real world, based on abstract concepts. Likewise, I examine some historical events in the light of Desrosières’ analysis that occurred in the early years of Colombia’s National Administrative Department of Statistics, specifically, the ‘50s and ‘60s decades. This paper concludes that both a concentrated centralist political power and a growing economists’ enrolment in positions of power may have served as conditions fostering the appearance of the department in charge of the Colombian national accounts. *** La historia es un proceso no lineal lleno de eventos contingentes que establecen las condiciones que nos llevaron a nosotros, y a nuestras instituciones, al lugar donde nos encontramos actualmente. Este artículo examina dos posibles condiciones que en Colombia pueden haber influido a la creación del Departamento Administrativo Nacional de Estadística (DANE): un poder político centralista concentrado y una creciente participación de economistas en puestos estatales. Este trabajo ofrece un marco histórico y teórico basado en el análisis de Alain Desrosières sobre la implicación de un poder político autocrático y la necesidad de cifras nacionales en la interacción que tienen los economistas con el mundo real, a partir de conceptos abstractos. Asimismo, examino algunos hechos de la historia colombiana a la luz del análisis de Desrosières ocurridos en los primeros años de existencia del DANE, específicamente en las décadas de los 50 y 60. Este trabajo concluye que tanto un poder político centralista concentrado como una creciente participación de economistas en posiciones de poder podrían haber servido como condiciones que propiciaron la aparición del departamento encargado de las cuentas nacionales colombianas.
    Keywords: DANE, Colombia, Autocracy, Economic discipline, Technocracy
    JEL: B25 B4 D02 D73 N01 N46
    Date: 2021–02–19
  18. By: Sascha O. Becker (SoDa Laboratories, Monash University); Volker Lindenthal (SoDa Laboratories, Monash University); Sharun Mukand (SoDa Laboratories, Monash University); Fabian Waldinger (SoDa Laboratories, Monash University)
    Abstract: We study the role of professional networks in facilitating the escape of persecuted academics from Nazi Germany. From 1933, the Nazi regime started to dismiss academics of Jewish origin from their positions. The timing of dismissals created individual-level exogenous variation in the timing of emigration from Nazi Germany, allowing us to estimate the causal effect of networks for emigration decisions. Academics with ties to more colleagues who had emigrated in 1933 or 1934 (early émigrés) were more likely to emigrate. The early émigrés functioned as "bridging nodes" that helped other academics cross over to their destination. Furthermore, we provide some of the first empirical evidence of decay in social ties over time. The strength of ties also decays across space, even within cities. Finally, for high-skilled migrants, professional networks are more important than community networks.
    Keywords: Nazi Germany, Networks, Antisemitism, Jewish academics, Emigration
    JEL: I20 I23 I28 J15 J24 N34 N44
    Date: 2021–02
  19. By: Naef, Alain; Weber, Jacob
    Abstract: Though most central banks actively intervene on the foreign exchange market, the literature offers mixed evidence on their effectiveness: particularly for unannounced interventions. We use new, declassified data from the archives of the Bank of England and the institutional features of the Bretton Woods era to estimate the effects of intervention on the exchange rate. We find that a purchase of pounds equivalent to 1% of the money supply causes a statistically significant, 4-5 basis point appreciation in the pound.
    Date: 2021–02–23
  20. By: Konstantin Sonin (University of Chicago - Harris School of Public Policy; Higher School of Economics; CEPR)
    Abstract: In “The Populist Temptation: Economic Grievance and Political Reaction in the Modern Era†, Barry Eichengreen relies on historical and contemporary evidence to analyze major episodes of populism in the 21st century, the Trump election in the U.S. and Brexit in Europe. Populism, an anti-elite, authoritarian, and nativist movement, rises in times of economic and political discontent because elites, the winners of the preceding period, are unwilling or unable to share their winnings with the losers. The review asks for a model, which would allow to differentiate a destructive populism wave and a constructive adjustment of political system to changing circumstances.
    Date: 2020
  21. By: Mosca, Manuela; Assistant, JHET
    Abstract: Robert F. Hébert was the eighteenth President of the History of Economics Society, from 1991 to 1992. He studied at Louisiana State University at Baton Rouge from his undergraduate degree (completed in 1965) to his PhD (obtained in 1970). During his academic career he taught economics in the U.S. at Clemson University (South Carolina; 1970-1974), Auburn University (Alabama; 1974-2000), and the University of Louisiana at Lafayette (2000-2005); and in France at Université de Paris 1 (Sorbonne; 1995) and at the University of Caen (2004). Currently Professor Hébert is Emeritus Russell Foundation Professor of Entrepreneurial Studies at Auburn University, and he resides in Baton Rouge, Louisiana. This interview was done in writing from November 6 to December 18, 2019.
    Date: 2021–02–12
  22. By: Bormann, Patrick
    Abstract: Despite the recent increase in research on the history of the system of German cooperative banks, the middle tier of the three-level cooperative system has remained a blind spot. The lack of sources has been alleviated by the discovery of the long forgotten archive collection I. HA, Rep. 177 of the Geheimes Staatsarchiv Preußischer Kulturbesitz, which contains the business files of the Preußische Zentralgenossenschaftskasse (Preußenkasse), as well as records of the Prussian Ministry of Agriculture, which had previously gone unnoticed. Using the Poznan cooperative system as an example, the following article shows the potential that lies in a more intensive analysis of the regional cooperative organizations. Such analyses would not only provide new insights into the creation, development and competition of regional associations. They would also enable new insights into the networking of cooperatives with other organizations and movements, into conflicts arising from the development of a new economic infrastructure and into the social profile of the actors involved, about whom little is known at present. The study of the cooperative system in Poznan shows how important a history of the influence of the Preußenkasse as the central agricultural instrument of Prussia would be. The bank derived its influence not only from its founding motives or business policy, but also to a large extent from local circumstances and local actors.
    JEL: N23 N24
    Date: 2020
  23. By: Bragues, George; Assistant, JHET
    Abstract: Though now almost entirely forgotten, Herbert Spencer was among the most widely read thinkers during the late 19th century. As part of his system of synthetic philosophy, Herbert Spencer addressed the topics of money and banking. This philosophic system articulates a concept of justice based on the principle of equal freedom. Invoking this principle, Spencer rejected a government superintended regime of money and banking as unjust. Instead, he morally favored a system of free banking. Spencer also defended this system on economic grounds. His argument is that banks could be self-regulating in their management of the money supply, on the condition that the government limit its activities in the financial sphere to the enforcement of contracts. While Spencer’s case is not beyond questioning on philosophic and political grounds, he offers a distinctive and forceful analysis.
    Date: 2021–02–12
  24. By: Sascha O. Becker (Monash U and U Warwick); Volker Lindenthal (University of Munich); Sharun Mukand (University of Warwick); Fabian Waldinger (University of Munich)
    Abstract: We study the role of professional networks in facilitating the escape of persecuted academics from Nazi Germany. From 1933, the Nazi regime started to dismiss academics of Jewish origin from their positions. The timing of dismissals created individual-level exogenous variation in the timing of emigration from Nazi Germany, allowing us to estimate the causal effect of networks for emigration decisions. Academics with ties to more colleagues who had emigrated in 1933 or 1934 (early émigrés) were more likely to emigrate. The early émigrés functioned as “bridging nodes†that helped other academics cross over to their destination. Furthermore, we provide some of the rst empirical evidence of decay in social ties over time. The strength of ties also decays across space, even within cities. Finally, for high-skilled migrants, professional networks are more important than community networks.
    Date: 2021–02
  25. By: Daniyal Khan (Department of Economics, New School for Social Research)
    Abstract: The paper outlines a theory according to which central banking evolves as the result of an interaction between endogenous money and endogenous institutions. This theory is called the twin endogeneities hypothesis and forms the basis for two models which are developed and used to explain two stylized facts of central bank evolution. These models are examples of operationalization of the hypothesis. The first model, combining endogenous money and hysteresis, explains the first stylized fact, namely that there are two different origin tendencies in the history of central banking. The second model is a heuristic model which combines the swings of the Polanyi pendulum (or the Polanyian double movement) with swings in long run central bank independence to explain the latter. These examples serve to demonstrate how the twin endogeneities hypothesis, a theory in the tradition of institutionalist Post Keynesianism, can be used to develop models which help us unpack and address the evolution of central banking from a theoretical point of view.
    Keywords: Endogeneity, evolution, money, institutions, central banking
    JEL: B52 E02 E5
    Date: 2021–02
  26. By: Karlsson, Tobias (Department of Economic History, Lund University); Kok, Joris (International Institute of Social History); Perrin, Faustine (Department of Economic History, Lund University)
    Abstract: Our knowledge of the long-run evolution of gender equality is limited. We currently lack quantitative indicators capable of capturing the variations on and changes in the individual dimensions of gender equality. This paper seeks to assess the long-run evolution of gender roles and relations in Sweden. To this end, we build a database with quantitative indicators of gender equality. These indicators allow us to construct a Historical Gender Gap Index (HGGI), which isused to describe and analyze the evolution of gender equality in Sweden during a phase characterized by industrialization, urbanization and demographic transition. We find that after a period of stagnation, Sweden from the 1940s onwards made significant progress in closing the gender gap to reach the high level of gender equality that it is now famous for. All counties have made substantial improvements in closing the gap over time, although some counties have been quicker than others. Our investigation reveals the existence of a convergence pattern between counties.
    Keywords: Gender Equality; Index; Development Process; Sweden
    JEL: J16 N33 O11
    Date: 2021–02–03
  27. By: Richard Hornbeck (University of Chicago - Booth School of Business; NBER)
    Abstract: The 1930’s American Dust Bowl created archetypal “Dust Bowl migrants,†refugees from environmental collapse and economic upheaval. I examine this archetype, comparing migration from more-eroded counties and less-eroded counties to distinguish Dust Bowl migrants from other migrants in this era. Migrants from more-eroded counties were more “negatively selected,†in years of education, than other migrants who were “positively selected.†These Dust Bowl migrants struggled economically, especially in California. Despite migrants’ struggles, however, I estimate strikingly modest impacts of the Dust Bowl on average incomes that contrast with its enduring impacts on agricultural land.
    JEL: N32 N52
    Date: 2020
  28. By: Alberto Bisin (NYU, NBER, and CEPR); Jared Rubin (Chapman University); Avner Seror (Aix-Marseille School of Economics); Thierry Verdier (PSE, Ecole des Ponts-Paris Tech, PUC-Rio, and CEPR)
    Abstract: Recent theories of the Long Divergence between Middle Eastern and Western European economies focus on Middle Eastern (over-)reliance on religious legitimacy, use of slave soldiers, and persistence of restrictive proscriptions of religious (Islamic) law. These theories take as exogenous the cultural values that complement the prevailing institutions. As a result, they miss the role of cultural values in either supporting the persistence of or inducing change in the economic and institutional environment. In this paper, we address these issues by modeling the joint evolution of institutions and culture. In doing so, we place the various hypotheses of economic divergence into one, unifying framework. We highlight the role that cultural transmission plays in reinforcing institutional evolution toward either theocratic or secular states. We extend the model to shed light on political decentralization and technological change in the two regions.
    Keywords: Long Divergence; cultural transmission; institutions; legitimacy; religion
    JEL: O10 P16 P48 N34 N35 Z12 O33
    Date: 2021
  29. By: Jérôme Ballet (Université de Bordeaux; GREThA, CNRS); Damien Bazin (Université Côte d'Azur; GREDEG CNRS)
    Keywords: biais de sélection, date de naissance, football, talent
    JEL: J13 J24 Z13 Z20 Z23
    Date: 2021–02
  30. By: Jakub Grossmann; Stepan Jurajda; Felix Roesel
    Abstract: Forced migration traumatizes millions displaced from their homes, but little is known about the few who manage to stay and become a minority in a new society. We study the case of German stayers in Sudetenland, a region from which Czechoslovakia expelled ethnic Germans after World War Two. The unexpected presence of the US Army in parts of 1945 Czechoslovakia resulted in more anti-fascist Germans avoiding displacement compared to regions liberated by the Red Army. We study the long-run impacts of this local variation in the presence of left-leaning stayers and find that Communist party support and local party cell frequencies, as well as far-left values and social policies are more pronounced today where anti-fascist Germans stayed in larger numbers. Our findings also suggest that political identity supplanted German ethnic identity among anti-fascist stayers. The German staying minority shaped the political identity of newly formed local societies after ethnic cleansing by providing the ‘small seed’ of political development.
    Keywords: forced migration; displacement; ethnic cleansing; stayers; minorities; identity; Communist party; Czechoslovakia; Sudetenland;
    JEL: J15 F22 D72 D74 N34
    Date: 2021–01
  31. By: Basco, Sergi; Domenech, Jordi; Roses, Joan R.
    Abstract: The outburst of deaths and cases of Covid-19 around the world has renewed the interest to understand the mortality effects of pandemics across regions, occupations, age and gender. The Spanish Flu is the closest pandemic to Covid-19. Mortality rates in Spain were among the largest in today’s developed countries. Our research documents a substantial heterogeneity on mortality rates across occupations. The highest mortality was on low-income workers. We also record a rural mortality penalty that reversed the historical urban penalty temporally. The higher capacity of certain social groups to isolate themselves from social contact could explain these mortality differentials. However, adjusting mortality evidence by these two factors, there were still large mortality inter-provincial differences for the same occupation and location, suggesting the existence of a regional component in rates of flu contagion possibly related to climatic differences.
    Keywords: pandemics; health inequality; socio-economic mortality differences; urban penalty
    JEL: N0
    Date: 2021–02
  32. By: Bagus, Philipp; Peña Ramos, José Antonio; Sánchez Bayón, Antonio
    Abstract: In this article, we aim to develop a political economy of mass hysteria. Using the background of COVID-19, we study past mass hysteria. Negative information which is spread through mass media repetitively can affect public health negatively in the form of nocebo effects and mass hysteria. We argue that mass and digital media in connection with the state may have had adverse consequences during the COVID-19 crisis. The resulting collective hysteria may have contributed to policy errors by governments not in line with health recommendations. While mass hysteria can occur in societies with a minimal state, we show that there exist certain self-corrective mechanisms and limits to the harm inflicted, such as sacrosanct private property rights. However, mass hysteria can be exacerbated and self-reinforcing when the negative information comes from an authoritative source, when the media are politicized, and social networks make the negative information omnipresent. We conclude that the negative long-term effects of mass hysteria are exacerbated by the size of the state.
    Keywords: mass hysteria; nocebo effects; contagion; mass media; social media; public health; law and economics; political economy; groupthink; culture of fear; emotional contagion; anxiety; policy error; COVID-19
    JEL: A10 B53 I10
    Date: 2020–12–26
  33. By: Sara Isabel Caicedo Silva
    Abstract: Este trabajo analiza la institucionalización de la economía como disciplina en Colombia durante el siglo XX. Con un enfoque en historia económica, se recopila brevemente la creación de escuelas y facultades de economía en el país, la llegada del programa del Banco Mundial, y con ella, la llegada de Launchlin Currie y Alfred Hirschman en la década de 1950. Además, se examina cómo ha sido el ensamble de la disciplina, la creación de centros de pensamiento, sus enfoques, objetivos y su integración con la política pública. Se concluye que hubo un proceso de democratización en la enseñanza de las ciencias económicas durante la primera mitad del siglo XX, pero que la tecnocracia se mantuvo bajo el poder de un puñado de hombres. *** This paper analyses the institutionalisation of economics as a discipline in Colombia during the 20th century. The establishment of economics departments and schools, the arrival of Lauchlin Currie and Alfred Hirschman among the World Bank's program and recommendations in the 50's is briefly compiled under a historical approach. In addition, the study examines how the discipline has been assembled, the creation of think tanks, their approaches, objectives and their integration with public policy. It concludes that there was a process of democratisation in economics education during the first half of the 20th century, but that the technocracy remained under the power of a handful of men.
    Keywords: historia económica, historia económica latinoamericana, Desarrollo, tecnocracia
    JEL: B29 N00 N16
    Date: 2021–02–20
  34. By: Thiemo Fetzer (University of Warwick - Department of Economics); Pedro CL Souza (University of Warwick - Department of Economics); Oliver Vanden Eynde (Paris School of Economics; CNRS); Austin L. Wright (University of Chicago - Harris School of Public Policy)
    Abstract: How do foreign powers disengage from a conflict? We study this issue by examining the recent, large-scale security transition from international troops to local forces in the ongoing civil conflict in Afghanistan. We construct a new dataset that combines information on this transition process with declassified conflict outcomes and previously unreleased quarterly survey data of residents’ perceptions of local security. Our empirical design leverages the staggered roll-out of the transition, and employs a novel instrumental variables approach to estimate the impact. We find a significant, sharp, and timely decline of insurgent violence in the initial phase – the security transfer to Afghan forces; we find that this is followed by a significant surge in violence in the second phase – the actual physical withdrawal of foreign troops. We argue that this pattern is consistent with a signaling model, in which the insurgents reduce violence strategically to facilitate the foreign military withdrawal to capitalize on the reduced foreign military presence afterwards. Our findings clarify the destabilizing consequences of withdrawal in one of the costliest conflicts in modern history, and yield potentially actionable insights for designing future security transitions.
    Keywords: Counterinsurgency, civil conflict, public goods provision
    JEL: D72 D74 L23
    Date: 2020

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NEP’s infrastructure is sponsored by the School of Economics and Finance of Massey University in New Zealand.