nep-lam New Economics Papers
on Central and South America
Issue of 2014‒11‒01
nine papers chosen by

  1. Foreign Direct Investment in Latin America and the Caribbean, 2013 report. Briefing paper By NU. CEPAL. División de Desarrollo Productivo y Empresarial
  2. Is the Glass Half Empty or Half Full? Enrollment, Graduation, and Dropout Rates in Latin America By Marina Bassi; Matias Busso; Juan Sebastián Muñoz
  3. Credit Constraints, Technology Choice and Exports - A Firm Level Study for Latin American Countries By Hasan, Syed; Sheldon, Ian
  4. Cultural and Creative Industries as Determining Qualified International Flow Trade in Latin America, 2001-2011 By Jenny Cardenas-Ayala; Leandro Valiati
  5. Decentralization in Colombia: Searching for social equity in a bumpy economic geography By Juan Mauricio Ramirez; Yadira Diaz; Juan Guillermo Bedoya
  6. Regional labor markets in Brazil: the role of skills and agglomeration economies By Ana Maria Bonomi Barufi
  7. Contracting for Primary Health Care in Brazil: The Cases of Bahia and Rio de Janeiro By Edson Araujo; Luciana Cavalini; Sabado Girardi; Megan Ireland; Magnus Lindelow
  8. Innovative Activity in the Caribbean: Drivers, Benefits, and Obstacles By Preeya Mohan; Eric Strobl; Patrick Watson
  9. Performance of renewable energy auctions : experience in Brazil, China and India By Elizondo Azuela, Gabriela; Barroso, Luiz; Khanna, Ashish; Wang, Xiaodong; Wu, Yun; Cunha, Gabriel

  1. By: NU. CEPAL. División de Desarrollo Productivo y Empresarial
    Date: 2014–05
  2. By: Marina Bassi (Inter-American Development Bank); Matias Busso (Inter-American Development Bank); Juan Sebastián Muñoz (University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign)
    Abstract: We use 292 household surveys from 18 Latin American countries to document patterns in secondary school graduation rates over the period 1990-2010. We find that enrollment and graduation rates increased during that period while dropout rates decreased. We provide two types of explanations for these patterns. Countries implemented changes on the supply side to increase access, by increasing the resources allocated to education and designing policies to help students staying in school. Despite this progress, graduation rates are still generally low, there still persist remarkable gaps in educational outcomes in terms of gender, income quintiles, and regions within countries, and the quality of education is generally low.
    JEL: I21 I24 O54
    Date: 2014–10
  3. By: Hasan, Syed; Sheldon, Ian
    Keywords: International Relations/Trade, Research and Development/Tech Change/Emerging Technologies,
    Date: 2013–12
  4. By: Jenny Cardenas-Ayala (Universidad Federal Rio Grande do Sul, Brasil); Leandro Valiati (Universidad Federal Rio Grande do Sul, Brasil)
    Abstract: The growing internationalization process and the desire to be competitive in a globalized world, has recently sparked interest in the symbolic dimension, cultural identity, creative development, communications and knowledge as a source of economic development. This research aims to analyze how cultural and creative industries have a positive impact on international trade flows of the countries of South America. It is used the panel data methodology for the period 2002-2011 and it is considered that trade flows are determined by the inclusion of cultural indicators, technological innovation factors and socioeconomic characteristics.
    Keywords: creative industries, cultural industries, qualified international trade flows, panel data
    JEL: C33 F14 O31 O54 Z1
    Date: 2014–10
  5. By: Juan Mauricio Ramirez (Fedesarrollo, Colombia); Yadira Diaz (ISER, University of Essex); Juan Guillermo Bedoya (Fedesarrollo, Colombia)
    Abstract: Colombia’s decentralization was conceived to improve population’s access to social services, reduce poverty and equalize well-being across the territory. However, after more than 20 years of its implementation a big gap across municipalities still remains. This paper analyses the impact of the Colombia’s fiscal decentralization process over the achievement of social minimums as depicted by the average multidimensional gap and the multidimensional deprivation headcount. We implement an instrumental variable spatial autoregressive model with spatial autoregressive disturbances to take into consideration the spatial interrelated behaviour of deprivation in the Colombian context. This, while accounting for the endogeneity that arises when evaluating the impact of fiscal decentralization. We find strong statistically significant results across all the proven specifications that confirm causal diminishing effect of the share of own resources over multidimensional deprivation. Counterfactual scenarios of spatially differentiated decentralization policies highlight their grater effectiveness over geographically mute designs.
    Keywords: Decentralization, multidimensional poverty, social equity, economic geography, spatial interdependence, Colombia.
    JEL: H71 I31 I38 O23 R58
    Date: 2014–08
  6. By: Ana Maria Bonomi Barufi
    Abstract: This paper aims to discuss how agglomerations economies are present in the equilibrium outcomes of the Brazilian formal labor market. There has been a wide discussion on how to correctly identify agglomeration economies given all the different types of endogeneity found in the labor market relationships, as well as taking into account all the relevant aspects that may affect the results. We make use of an individual-firm panel database from the Ministry of Labor (RAIS - Annual Report on Social Information) with information for six years (2003, 2004, 2005, 2008, 2009 and 2012). With the panel data setting, it is not only possible to account for individual unobserved characteristics constant in time, but also for sector and area effects. Moreover, by identifying skills according to the occupational position of the individuals in each firm, it is possible to control for the proximity to different skill levels (in the sector and municipality) to account for different levels of production knowledge externalities. Individual fixed effects control the potential endogeneity of the labor quality. In the case of labor quantity endogeneity, even if there is no consensus of how to best control for it, instruments based on long time lags are considered. The results show that there is a positive and significant effect of density over wages (Urban Economics literature), even when controlling for other relevant characteristics. Moreover, a measure of market potential, related to the New Economic Geography literature, does not capture this positive relationship with wages in the same way, changing sign in a specific setting. Finally, considering a quantile regression approach, there is an indication that agglomeration economies reinforce wage inequality, with a higher effect for the upper part of the wage distribution.
    Keywords: agglomeration economies; regional labor markets; wage equation
    JEL: R23 E24 R30
    Date: 2014–10–06
  7. By: Edson Araujo; Luciana Cavalini; Sabado Girardi; Megan Ireland; Magnus Lindelow
    Abstract: This study presents two case studies, each on a current initiative of contracting for primary health services in Brazil, one for the state of Bahia, the other for the city of Rio de Janeiro. The two initiatives are not linked and their implementation has independently sprung from a search for more effective ways of delivering public primary health care. The two models differ considerably in context, needs, modalities, and outcomes. This paper identifies their strengths and weaknesses, initially by providing a background to universal primary health care in Brazil, paying particular attention to the family health strategy, the driver of the basic health care model. It then outlines the history of contracting for health care within Brazil, before analyzing the two studies. The state of Bahia sought to expand coverage of the family health strategy and increase the quality of services, but had difficulty in attracting and retaining qualified health professionals. Rigidities in the process of public hiring led to a number of isolated contracting initiatives at the municipal level and diverse, often unstable employment contracts. The state and municipalities decided to centralize the hiring of health professionals in order to offer stable positions with career plans and mobility within the state, and chose to create a state foundation, acting under private law to manage and oversee this process. Results have been mixed as lower than expected municipal involvement resulted in relatively high administrative costs and consequent default on municipal financial contributions. The state foundation is undergoing a governance reform and has now diversified beyond hiring for primary care. The municipality of Rio de Janeiro, which until recently relied on an expansive hospital network for health care delivery, sought in particular to expand primary health services. The public health networks suffered from inefficiency and poor quality, and it was therefore decided to contract privately owned and managed, not-for-profit, social organizations to provide primary care services. The move has succeeded in attracting considerable increases in funding for primary health and coverage has increased significantly. Performance initiatives, however, still need fine-tuning and reliable information systems must be implanted in order to evaluate the system.
    Keywords: administrative costs, administrative rules, aged, ambulatory services, antenatal care, basic health care, birth control, block grants, Bulletin, Care Performance, chronic ... See More + disease, cities, civil society organizations, Clinics, community health, complications, contractual arrangements, deaths, decentralization, delivery of health services, developing countries, diabetes, diseases, drugs, economic inequality, Economic Policy, Economics, economies of scale, emergency care, emergency rooms, employment, equipment, essential medicines, families, Family Health, financial contributions, financial incentives, financial resources, Government capacity, Health Affairs, health care delivery, health care facilities, health care needs, health care provision, health care workers, Health Clinics, Health Coverage, health education, health facilities, health indicators, Health Inequalities, Health Information, Health Information System, Health Information Systems, health infrastructure, Health Organization, health planning, Health Policy, health professionals, health professions, health promotion, health providers, health risks, HEALTH SECTOR, health service, health service delivery, health services, health spending, Health Strategy, Health System, health system performance, Health System Reform, health systems, health workers, Healthy Life, home care, hospital, hospital management, hospital sector, hospital services, hospital system, hospitals, human resource management, human resources, human right, hypertension, illness, income, income countries, income inequality, infant, infant mortality, information asymmetry, integration, international organizations, IUD, labor market, laboratories, large populations, laws, leprosy, Life expectancy, Life expectancy at birth, live births, local governments, low birth weight, management of health, management of patients, maternal mortality, maternal mortality ratio, medical care, medical doctors, medical education, medical procedures, medical residents, Medical School, medical staff, medicines, Millennium Development Goal, Ministry of Health, morbidity, mortality, national level, nongovernmental organizations, nurse, nurses, Nutrition, oral health, outreach activities, patient, patients, Physician, pocket payments, policy decisions, policy makers, political decision, poor quality care, population density, pregnancy, pregnant women, prenatal care, primary care, PRIMARY HEALTH CARE, primary health care facilities, primary health care services, primary health facilities, primary health services, primary health system, private sector, progress, provision of care, provision of health services, public administration, public contract, public health, public health system, public policy, PUBLIC SECTOR, public services, quality improvement, quality of care, quality of services, respect, school health, Secretary of Health, service providers, service provision, social action, social participation, social security, social security benefits, social services, socioeconomic development, state policy, State University, strategic priorities, Sustainable Development, tuberculosis, universal access, universities, urban areas, vaccination, woman, workers, workforce, World Health Organization
    Date: 2014–09
  8. By: Preeya Mohan; Eric Strobl; Patrick Watson
    Abstract: We investigate the determinants of innovation and the benefits from it in making firms more productive in the Caribbean. To this end we use a rich firm level dataset covering 14 different countries and various non-parametric, semi- parametric and parametric statistical tools. Our results show that, while firms may be productive for many reasons, there are substantial productivity benefits resulting from investment in innovation. Moreover, these benefits do not appear to be particularly low compared to what prevails in other developing countries. However, there is some indication that factors that would normally encourage innovation investment, such as patent protection, public subsidies, or cooperation among innovators, may not bear fruit.
    Date: 2014–09–25
  9. By: Elizondo Azuela, Gabriela; Barroso, Luiz; Khanna, Ashish; Wang, Xiaodong; Wu, Yun; Cunha, Gabriel
    Abstract: This paper considers the design and performance of auction mechanisms used to deploy renewable energy in three emerging economies: Brazil, China, and India. The analysis focuses on the countries'experience in various dimensions, including price reductions, bidding dynamics, coordination with transmission planning, risk allocation strategies, and the issue of domestic content. Several countries have turned to public competitive bidding as a mechanism for developing the renewable generation sector in recent years, with the number of countries implementing some sort of auction procedure rising from nine in 2009 to 36 by the end of 2011 and about 43 in 2013. In general, the use of auctions makes sense when the contracting authority expects a large volume of potentially suitable bids, so that the gains from competition can offset the costs of implementation. A study of the successes and failures of the particular auction design schemes described in this paper can be instrumental in informing future policy making.
    Keywords: Energy Production and Transportation,Markets and Market Access,Climate Change Mitigation and Green House Gases,Debt Markets,Emerging Markets
    Date: 2014–10–01

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