nep-pke New Economics Papers
on Post Keynesian Economics
Issue of 2019‒08‒26
five papers chosen by
Karl Petrick
Western New England University

  1. Reanalyzing the gender-specific effects of the Great Recession By Khalil, Sana
  2. Did Austerity Cause Brexit? By Fetzer, Thiemo
  3. Airbnb, Technological Change and Disruption in Barbadian Tourism: A Theoretical Framework By Lorde, Troy; Joseph, Tennyson S D
  4. Developmental Origins of Health Inequality By Conti, Gabriella; Mason, Giacomo; Poupakis, Stavros
  5. A New Taxonomy for International Relations: Rethinking the International System as a Complex Adaptive System By Scartozzi, Cesare M.

  1. By: Khalil, Sana
    Abstract: The subprime mortgage crisis that began in the United States eventually unraveled as the worst global economic crisis – the Great Recession – since the Great Depression of the 1930s. The literature has described several factors to explain the causes of the Great Recession, most prominent being the pace of financial deregulations and excessive financial innovations that catalyzed an unnatural boom that ended in a crisis (Crotty and Epstein, 2009). Countries hit the hardest in terms of an upsurge in unemployment rates over 2008–10 include Denmark, Estonia, Greece, Iceland, Ireland, and Latvia. A comparison of harmonized unemployment rates for these countries shows that Estonia posted the highest increase in the unemployment rate, which rose from 5.5 percent in 2008 to 16.7 percent in 2010, an increase of 203 percentage points. Other countries worst hit by the crisis were Iceland (153 percent), Latvia (151 percent) and Ireland (117 percent) (OECD, 2018a). To this end, an important but understated issue worthy of discussion concerns the gender impacts of the Great Recession. Crisis theories that have described its distributional dynamics do not converge to a united whole and predict differential impacts of crises for men and women. One theory posits that since women are used as employment buffers – called in when demand increases but pushed back when demand shrinks – women’s unemployment rates may rise more than that of men’s during recessionary phases. Thus, women might experience a greater loss in employment, earned income, and overall wealth during recessions (Humphries, 1988 [2010]). However, an argument running counter to this theory is that women’s concentration in female-dominated occupations – which tend to be cyclically robust – may shield women’s employment relative to that of men’s. Since there is no definitive theoretical model of these relations, the issue of the gender impacts of recessions becomes an empirical question. In this respect, men’s and women’s labor market experiences from the Great Recession can be treated as a litmus test. Similar to previous two recessions in the US, men’s unemployment rates rose faster than women’s during the Great Recession. Due to this phenomenon, these recessions have come to be known as “man-cessions” (Wall, 2009). However, I argue in this chapter that this observation can be misleading on many accounts. I argue that although men and women showed substantial differences in their vulnerabilities to the recession, within-gender differences were much more pronounced. Additionally, gender impacts of crises derive from differences in men’s and women’s unique, socially and culturally drawn positions, job structures, family models and welfare systems.
    Keywords: Recession, Gender gap, Employment, Unemployment
    JEL: F0 F00 J00 J7 J71
    Date: 2018
  2. By: Fetzer, Thiemo
    Abstract: This paper documents a significant association between the exposure of an individual or area to the UK government's austerity-induced welfare reforms begun in 2010, and the following: the subsequent rise in support for the UK Independence Party, an important correlate of Leave support in the 2016 UK referendum on European Union membership; broader individual-level measures of political dissatisfaction; and direct measures of support for Leave. Leveraging data from all UK electoral contests since 2000, along with detailed, individual-level panel data, the findings suggest that the EU referendum could have resulted in a Remain victory had it not been for austerity.
    Keywords: austerity; EU; Globalization; political economy; voting
    JEL: D72 H2 H3 H5 P16
    Date: 2019–07
  3. By: Lorde, Troy; Joseph, Tennyson S D
    Abstract: This paper focuses on how Airbnb, an internet platform which has created the possibility for mass participation in the tourism market, is resulting in class conflict between new entrants and the ‘traditional’ tourism industry. Specifically, it studies how traditional tourism interests in Barbados have responded to Airbnb by seeking to restrict participation in the industry and presents this as a microcosm of broader class transitions and conflicts associated with new technologies. The paper utilises a Marxist theoretical perspective buttressed by Joseph Schumpeter’s theory of ‘creative destruction’ – places emphasis on the process of destroying productive systems to understand how specific industries expand and survive – and Clayton Christensen’s notion of ‘disruptive innovation’ – a process by which a disruptive product transforms a market – for studying how transformations in technology are impacting the tourism industry in Barbados. Its aim is to provide an account of how the process of disruption is unfolding in Barbados by highlighting the reactions of the main hotel lobby group to Airbnb, while also applying the ideas of Marx, Schumpeter and Christensen as useful theoretical lenses through which to examine the unfolding of the process of disruption of settled class and historical control of a dominant economic sector by new technologies.
    Keywords: Airbnb Marxist theory creative destruction disruptive innovation tourism industry class relations
    JEL: B51 L83 O1 Z13
    Date: 2018–06–06
  4. By: Conti, Gabriella (University College London); Mason, Giacomo (University College London); Poupakis, Stavros (University College London)
    Abstract: Building on early animal studies, 20th-century researchers increasingly explored the fact that early events – ranging from conception to childhood – affect a child's health trajectory in the long-term. By the 21st century, a wide body of research had emerged, incorporating the original 'Fetal Origins Hypothesis' into the 'Developmental Origins of Health and Disease'. Evidence from OECD countries suggests that health inequalities are strongly correlated with many dimensions of socio-economic status, such as educational attainment; and that they tend to increase with age and carry stark intergenerational implications. Different economic theories have been developed to rationalize this evidence, with an overarching comprehensive framework still lacking. Existing models widely rely on human capital theory, which has given rise to separate dynamic models of adult and child health capital, within a production function framework. A large body of empirical evidence has also found support for the developmental origins of inequalities in health. On the one hand, studies exploiting quasi-random exposure to adverse events have shown long-term physical and mental health impacts of exposure to early shocks, including pandemics or maternal illness, famine, malnutrition, stress, vitamin deficiencies, maltreatment, pollution and economic recessions. On the other hand, studies from the 20th century have shown that early interventions of various content and delivery format improve life course health. Further, given that the most socioeconomically disadvantaged groups show the greatest gains, such measures can potentially reduce health inequalities. However, studies of long-term impacts, as well as the mechanisms via which shocks or policies affect health, and the dynamic interaction amongst them, are still lacking. Mapping the complexities of those early event dynamics is an important avenue for future research.
    Keywords: developmental origins, health inequalities, early interventions, health production function, health economics
    JEL: I14 J13 J24
    Date: 2019–06
  5. By: Scartozzi, Cesare M.
    Abstract: Abstract: The international system is a complex adaptive system with emergent properties and dynamics of self-organization and information processing. As such, it is better understood with a multidisciplinary approach that borrows methodologies from the field of complexity science and integrates them to the theoretical perspectives offered by the field of international relations (IR). This study is set to formalize a complex systems theory approach to the study of international affairs and introduce a new taxonomy for IR with the two-pronged aim of improving interoperability between different epistemological communities and outlining a formal grammar that set the basis for modeling international politics as a complex adaptive system.
    Keywords: international politics; international relations theory; complex systems theory; taxonomy; adaptation; fitness; self-organization
    JEL: N40 Y80
    Date: 2018

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