nep-sea New Economics Papers
on South East Asia
Issue of 2012‒01‒03
fifteen papers chosen by
Kavita Iyengar
Asian Development Bank

  1. Average and marginal returns to upper secondary schooling in Indonesia By Pedro Carneiro; Michael Lokshin; Cristobal Ridao-Cano; Nithin Umapathi
  2. Japan and Economic Integration in East Asia: Post-disaster scenario By FUJITA Masahisa; HAMAGUCHI Nobuaki
  3. Blanket guarantee, deposit insurance, and risk-shifting incentive: evidence from Indonesia By Kariastanto, Bayu
  4. Leveraging Environment and Climate Change Initiatives for Corporate Excellence By Anbumozhi, Venkatachalam; Kimura, Mari; Isono, Kumiko
  5. Recent Developments in Asian Economic Integration: Measuring Indicators of Trade Integration and Fragmentation By Kiichiro Fukasaku; Bo Meng; Norihiko Yamano
  6. Outward FDI, merchandise and services trade: evidence from Singapore By Wong, Koi Nyen; Goh, Soo Khoon
  7. Accounting for the economic relationship between Japan and the Asian Tigers By Hideaki Hirata; Keisuke Otsu
  8. Participation in Rotating Savings and Credit Associations in Indonesia: New Empirical Evidence on Social Capital By A. Lasagni; E. Lollo
  9. Global Imbalances, the International Crisis and the Role of the Dollar By Riccardo Fiorentini
  10. Production Capitalism vs Financial Capitalism - Symbiosis and Parasitism. An Evolutionary Perspective and Bibliography By Erik S. Reinert; Arno Mong Daaol Author-X-Name-FirstArno Mong
  11. Effect of increase in allotted time on game playing performance: Case study of an online word game By Putthiwanit, Chutinon; Kincart, Andrew
  12. Walkability Planning in Jakarta By Lo, Ria S. Hutabarat
  13. Out of Sight, Out of Mind:The Value of Political Connections in Social Networks By Quoc-Anh Do; Bang Dang Nguyen; Yen-Teik Lee; Kieu-Trang Nguyen
  14. One Mandarin Benefits the Whole Clan: Hometown Infrastructure and Nepotism in an Autocracy By Kieu-Trang Nguyen; Quoc-Anh Do; Anh Tran
  15. Mainstreaming the Adaptations and Reducing the Vulnerability of the Poor due to Climate Change By Ranganathan, C.; Palanisami, K.; Kakumanu, K.; Baulraj, A.

  1. By: Pedro Carneiro (Institute for Fiscal Studies and University College London); Michael Lokshin; Cristobal Ridao-Cano; Nithin Umapathi (Institute for Fiscal Studies and World Bank)
    Abstract: <p>This paper estimates average and marginal returns to schooling in Indonesia using a non-parametric selection model. Identification of the model is given by exogenous geographic variation in access to upper secondary schools. We find that the return to upper secondary schooling varies widely across individuals: it can be as high as 50 percent per year of schooling for those very likely to enroll in upper secondary schooling, or as low as -10 percent for those very unlikely to do so. Average returns for the student at the margin are well below those for the average student attending upper secondary schooling.</p>
    Date: 2011–11
  2. By: FUJITA Masahisa; HAMAGUCHI Nobuaki
    Abstract: As regional integration proceeds in East Asia, intermediate goods production of advanced technology has been locked in Japan despite the dispersion forces of high factor costs. However, the disastrous earthquake in 2011 may have revealed supply chain disruption risk as another dispersion force. We analyze how these dispersion forces affect the specialization in intermediate goods production of Japan and discuss future competitive challenges for the Japanese economy under deindustrialization from the spatial economics viewpoint.
    Date: 2011–12
  3. By: Kariastanto, Bayu
    Abstract: Indonesia established a deposit insurance system to maintain stability in its banking sector after the abolishment of blanket guarantees in 2005. Since the insurance premiums are fixed and flat, deposit insurance may create an incentive for banks to take more risks and transfer the risks to the deposit insurer. Using an option pricing based model of deposit insurance, we compute the fair deposit insurance premiums for all banks listed on the Indonesian stock exchange. We find evidence that banks shifted their risks to the deposit insurer. The magnitude of risk-shifting incentives under the deposit insurance regime is higher than under the blanket guarantee regime, as Indonesian depositors seem to lack awareness in monitoring bank performance.
    Keywords: Deposit Insurance; Fair Premium; Option-based Pricing; Moral Hazard; Indonesia
    JEL: G18 G21
    Date: 2011–12–23
  4. By: Anbumozhi, Venkatachalam (Asian Development Bank Institute); Kimura, Mari (Asian Development Bank Institute); Isono, Kumiko (Asian Development Bank Institute)
    Abstract: This paper reviews selected initiatives taken by Asian countries to comply with emerging global sustainability standards, reporting, and management systems, and tracks the response of Asian businesses to global environmental concerns, examines market based innovations including new regulations that augmented corporate excellence, and identifies future directions for business that lead low carbon society. It recommends governments and business to join forces in supporting low carbon initiatives, drawing upon market mechanisms through reconfiguring national environmental policies and strategies.
    Keywords: climate change initiatives; global sustainability standards; low carbon initiatives; environmental policies
    JEL: M19 Q30 Q48 Q56
    Date: 2011–12–21
  5. By: Kiichiro Fukasaku; Bo Meng; Norihiko Yamano
    Abstract: This paper analyses the contribution to and engagement in global supply chains of Asian emerging economies by measuring several globalisation indicators based on the harmonised input-output and bilateral trade databases developed by the OECD. It focuses on major structural changes in the Asian trade network from the perspective of integration and fragmentation in global supply chains. It shows that greater fragmentation and higher dependence on supplies of intermediate goods and services from neighbouring countries have gone hand-in-hand and led to deepening economic integration between ASEAN and East Asia. ASEAN policy makers, therefore, need to consider their integration strategies from the perspective of the whole East Asian region and not just among ASEAN countries themselves.<P>L'évolution récente de l'intégration économique en asie : La mesure de l'intégration des échanges et de la fragmentation<BR>Ce document analyse la contribution et la participation des économies asiatiques émergentes et en développement aux chaînes d’approvisionnement mondiales, en mesurant plusieurs indicateurs de la mondialisation établis d’après la base de données entrées-sorties et la base de données sur les échanges bilatéraux constituées par l’OCDE, après leur harmonisation. Il porte en particulier sur les évolutions structurelles majeures intervenues dans les échanges intra-asiatiques, sous l’angle de l’intégration et de la fragmentation dans les chaînes d’approvisionnement mondiales. Il démontre que l’intensification de la fragmentation et la dépendance accrue vis-à-vis des approvisionnements en biens intermédiaires et en services auprès de pays voisins sont allées de pair avec le renforcement, qu’elles ont d’ailleurs entraîné, de l’intégration économique au sein de l’ANASE et en Asie de l’Est. Les résultats présentés dans ce document, qui s’appuient sur des données concrètes, ont des répercussions significatives sur les stratégies d’intégration économique régionale mises en oeuvre dans la région Asie-Pacifique. Les pays membres de l’ANASE doivent en particulier envisager leur stratégie de renforcement de l’intégration à l’échelle de l’Asie de l’Est dans son ensemble, et pas uniquement à celle de l’ANASE à proprement parler.
    JEL: F14 F15 O19
    Date: 2011–12–12
  6. By: Wong, Koi Nyen; Goh, Soo Khoon
    Abstract: This paper aims to explore the causality pattern between OFDI and major external trade components (i.e. exports and imports of merchandise as well as services) using Singapore as a case, since it is one of the largest outward investors in the Asian region, and is overtly trade-dependent. The findings reveal that there is evidence of OFDI-led trade hypothesis, particularly, merchandise exports and imports, an indication for OFDI to open up important channels for intra-firm trade activities, home country sourcing and backward integration. However, there is no evidence of causality relationships between Singapore’s OFDI and services trade because the nature of services is mainly to provide market presence in the consuming country. As such, Singaporean multinationals are likely to outsource their services either from the host country services sector or their own services-supporting subsidiaries that have been relocated abroad. The present study provides implications for policy formulation on strengthening the OFDI-services trade linkages.
    Keywords: Outward FDI; multinationals; Singapore; Granger causality; merchandise and services trade
    JEL: F21
    Date: 2011–07
  7. By: Hideaki Hirata; Keisuke Otsu
    Abstract: In this paper, we construct a two-country business cycle accounting model in order to investigate quantitatively the relationship between Japan and the Asian Tigers. Our model is based on Backus, Kehoe and Kydland (1994) in which each economy produces tradable intermediate goods that are aggregated to form final goods within each economy. We apply the business cycle accounting method of Chari, Kehoe and McGrattan (2007) and find that the main source of high frequency fluctuation in output in each economy is the fluctuation of production efficiency within its own economy. Furthermore, the growth in the Asian Tigers'production efficiency had a significant positive effect on Japanese economic growth over the 1980-2009 period through the endogenous terms of trade effect.
    Keywords: International Business Cycles; Business Cycle Accounting; Terms of trade; Productivity
    JEL: E13 E32 F41
    Date: 2011–11
  8. By: A. Lasagni; E. Lollo
    Abstract: Indonesia has a rich historical tradition of mutual cooperation at the community level. This study argues that rotating savings and credit associations (ROSCAs) constitute successful experiences of collective action within the informal financial sector. Therefore, using data from Indonesia Family Life Surveys, it explores the relationship between social capital and ROSCA participation and extends existing models from individual- to community-level determinants. The endowment of social capital at the village level correlates positively with individual ROSCA participation, because community social capital provides individual members with the resources needed to overcome self-selection and foster coordination -two main characteristics of ROSCAs. These results provide new evidence on the role of social capital for fostering collective action and offer new insights about community-driven development.
    Keywords: ROSCAs, informal finance, rotating savings, Indonesia
    JEL: D14 G29 O12 O53
    Date: 2011
  9. By: Riccardo Fiorentini (Department of Economics (University of Verona))
    Abstract: The paper investigates the links between international global imbalances and the recent international financial crisis. It also focuses on the asymmetries of the dollar standard exchange rate regime. Global imbalances preceded the crisis but were one of the ingredients that led to the financial crash of 2007-2008. The paper rejects the ‘saving glut' explanation of the US trade deficit and shows that the key role of the dollar in the international monetary system allows the USA to exert seignorage in the international economy and created a circuit where Asian and oil-producing countries financed the US deficit. The inflow of foreign capitals increased the US domestic credit supply contributing to the development of the sub-prime bubble. The paper concludes that only the creation of a supranational monetary authority can eliminate the dangers of the asymmetric dollar standard regime.
    Keywords: Imbalances, crisis, dollaer
    JEL: F33 E21
    Date: 2011–12
  10. By: Erik S. Reinert; Arno Mong Daaol Author-X-Name-FirstArno Mong
    Abstract: This working paper presents a note and an extensive bibliography on the relationship between production capitalism and financial capitalism. The document was produced for a conference held at Leangkollen outside Oslo on September 3-4, 1998. The background for the conference was the Asian financial crisis that started in July 1997. The massive Russian financial crisis had started a few days before the conference, on August 17, 1998, and the Russian participant, Prof. Vladimir Avtonomov, brought fresh news from these dramatic events. The conference was organized by Erik Reinert, who at the time worked for Norsk Investorforum, an organisation which at the time organized Norwegian production capitalists and later helped Reinert launch The Other Canon Foundation. Reinert was at the time also affiliated with SUM, Centre for Development and the Environment at the University of Oslo. The global financial crisis that started in 2008 . ten years after this conference . vindi- cates the perspectives presented here, and prompted the wish to make the note and the very extensive bibliography of relevant, but mostly forgotten, litterature on the relationship between the production sector and the monetary sector of the economy. The conference programme is found at the end of the document.
    Date: 2011–12
  11. By: Putthiwanit, Chutinon; Kincart, Andrew
    Abstract: Online game players tend to differ in the duration of time they play. However, no matter whether the time on playing an online game is spent positively or negatively, we may assume that when the duration of each online-game round is increased, players tend to engage in more interaction with their opponents. Though there are a significant number of research studies on time usage in computer games, there is no research exploring the direct effect of time on online game playing performance. As a result, this research aims to investigate the effect of time on player performance based on the case of an online word game. Ninety-three online word games (186 players) were randomly observed via the biggest online board game website in Thailand. The results show that an increase in time does not have effect on players’ performance. The managerial implication for further development is that webmasters may consider offering only time restricted games for players to avoid high traffic in websites; which, in effect will certainly solve the problem of lag time in online gaming.
    Keywords: Time; computer game; online game; game playing performance; word game; online word game
    JEL: L86
    Date: 2011–12–16
  12. By: Lo, Ria S. Hutabarat
    Abstract: Walking is the main mode of transportation for many of the world’s people, particularly those in cities of the majority world. In the metropolitan region of Jakarta, walking in the public realm constitutes the main transportation mode for almost 40 percent of trips—a massive contribution to urban mobility. On the other hand, there is no comprehensive planning for pedestrians in an analogous manner to other modes of transportation. Pedestrian facilities are often dilapidated, damaged, dangerous, or missing completely. Additionally, there is no process for assessing the inventory of pedestrian facilities, planning pedestrian facilities at a region-wide level, or even identifying the location of vernacular pedestrian routes in low-income and informal areas. Provincial pedestrian planning focuses on piecemeal, symbolic spaces such as monumental plazas that serve the nation-building project, but overlooks the functional network of routes that address the daily needs of the city’s residents. This dissertation examines the issue of walkability planning in Jakarta by investigating what matters to pedestrians and how pedestrian space is produced. The research employs mixed methods, including pedestrian network groundtruthing, structured streetscape observations, multimodal traffic counts, pedestrian activity mapping, pedestrian surveys and interviews with policy-makers. Data is analyzed through a combination of in-depth qualitative analysis as well as quantitative and statistical analysis. Based on this research, six key elements of walkability planning are proposed for Jakarta: multidisciplinarity, ethnography, accessibility, legibility, integrated activity, and shared streets. A literature review of walkability metrics reveals that walking is a highly multidisciplinary activity, with very different metrics emerging from different fields. In order to effectively encourage pedestrian activity, new multidisciplinary metrics should integrate the perspectives of all of these related disciplines and pedestrian planning should occur through inter-agency coordination. In Jakarta, interviews with policy-makers suggested that pedestrian planning is hindered by the fact that there is no lead agency for pedestrian planning, and there is a lack of cooperation between the different agencies that plan and produce urban public space. Pedestrian planning is also hindered by a discursive framework that is both modally and geographically biased—favoring motorized, long-distance modes of transportation and employing method derived from a Western research and planning norms. In order to overcome this discursive bias, ethnography should become a standard part of urban research, planning and design. The need for ethnography and qualitative analysis was made visible by the mismatch between standard transportation terminology, and prevailing practices observed in pedestrian mapping exercises and raised by pedestrians in on-the street interviews. For example, standard survey categories do not account for informal or integrated activity patterns like mobile street vending. From surveys conducted with mobile street vendors, it was difficult to separate their pedestrian activities into categories of travel from home to work, business-related travel, and visiting friends and relatives. In fact, it was difficult to even separate their travel from their activities since many vendors carried out business as they made their way through the neighborhood. With a large portion of the population engaged in the informal sector, the discrepancy between assumed and actual behavior severely compromises the quality of transportation-related research that is conducted in Jakarta and many other majority world cities. Ethnographic and qualitative research methods may therefore assist in producing more context-sensitive planning data and outcomes. These context-sensitive methods could include new analytical methods that focus on integrated activity, rather than trip-based or activity-based analysis. In relation to pedestrian activity, context-sensitive planning encompasses new approaches to accessibility that combine the notion of transportation accessibility with disabled access and universal access standards. The need for such an approach was revealed during interviews with policy-makers, who described accessibility in terms of market goods rather than human rights. Within the market for urban public space, ordinary pedestrians were unable to compete with other modes of transportation; within the market for urban impressions, ordinary pedestrian spaces were outcompeted by prominent, symbolic spaces; and within the market for cultural capital, ordinary pedestrians were excluded from planning processes because even the discourse of pedestrian planning was inaccessible to regular residents. In response to this problem of exclusion, integrated accessibility may facilitate inclusion in both planning processes and urban spaces within the city. In particular, integrated accessibility would aim to provide comprehensive routes of travel for all pedestrians, rather than isolated pockets of so-called accessible (yet unreachable) facilities. More context sensitive planning would also be facilitated through greater legibility of fine-grained and vernacular pedestrian networks that were missing from standard planning maps. These fine-grained networks represent highly connected facilities that serve much of Jakarta’s pedestrian transportation task. While the current synoptic illegibility of these areas may conveniently allow some communities to avoid state intrusion, it also means that low-income populations are chronically under-served with respect to basic urban planning and services. Increased legibility therefore allows for improvement and maintenance of urban systems like safe, functional pedestrian networks, and it may also play a role in increasing tenure security for Jakarta’s significant floating population. In many of these vernacular spaces, new street design approaches would also benefit pedestrians, who tend to use the streets as shared spaces, rather than spaces that are rigidly segregated by mode. Pedestrian activity mapping revealed that only an overwhelming majority of pedestrians used streets as hybrid spaces, with activity types falling into the categories of surface sensitive, risk-averse, distance-minimizing and stationary pedestrians. More realistic shared street designs would therefore accommodate —rather than ignore—the types of activities that occur along Jakartan streets. Design standards for “great streets†in Jakarta would also emphasize the safe sharing of streets through self-enforcing approaches to speed limits, and the integration of various urban elements like drainage, mobility and public-private interaction. While walkability planning in Jakarta displays many “wicked problem†features, there is much that can be done to improve, if not resolve, conditions for pedestrians within the region. Recommended strategies for walkability planning in Jakarta include a regional walkability plan and environmental policy developed using participatory planning, reformed governance and institutional arrangements, and a constituency building approach. The strategies also include expansion of road designations and an integrated accessibility strategy that draws upon new data sources from a WikiPlaces network map, an integrated activity study and pedestrian network cost-benefit analysis. In addition to Jakarta specific proposals, a number of proposals are made to advance discourse on walkability more generally. These approaches include decentered analysis of integrated activity, informal economic activity analysis, vernacular placemaking and Asian shared street design. Pedestrians and pedestrian plans traverse diverse physical, administrative and disciplinary spaces in cities of the world. Integrated and multidisciplinary approaches are therefore required to understand and accommodate these key users of public space. In Jakarta, walkability planning has potential to improve urban transportation efficiency while contributing to traffic safety, economic vitality, environmental quality and democratic governance. Successful walkability planning in Jakarta may also provide a model for planning in other cities where Western models of planning are unrealistic, inequitable and inappropriate. Jakartan lessons on walkability planning are particularly relevant, and improvements in walkability are particularly powerful, for cities characterized by relatively low median incomes, high land use densities, a substantial informal sector, rapid urbanization and rapid motorization. By improving walkability planning in Jakarta and other cities of the majority world, policy-makers and planners can move toward more sustainable, socially equitable and efficient cities.
    Keywords: Urban Studies and Planning
    Date: 2011–09–01
  13. By: Quoc-Anh Do (School of Economics, Singapore Management University, Singapore 178903); Bang Dang Nguyen (Finance and Accounting Group, Judge Business School, University of Cambridge, Cambridge CB2 1AG, U.K); Yen-Teik Lee (Department of Finance, Lee Kong Chian School of Business, Singapore Management University, Singapore 178899); Kieu-Trang Nguyen (SPEA, Indiana University, Bloomington, IN 47401, U.S.A)
    Abstract: This paper investigates the impact of social-network connections to politicians on firm value. We focus on the networks of university classmates and alumni among directors of U.S. public firms and congressmen. Using the Regression Discontinuity Design based on close elections from 2000 to 2008, we identify that a director’s connection to an elected congressman causes a Weighted Average Treatment Effect on Cumulative Abnormal Returns of -2.65% surrounding the election date. The effect is robust and consistent through various specifications, parametric and nonparametric, with different outcome measures and social network definitions, and across many subsamples. We find evidence to support the hypothesis that firms benefit more when connected politicians remain in state politics than when they move to federal office. Overall, our study identifies the value of political connections through social networks and uncovers its variation across different states and between state and federal political environments.
    Keywords: Social network; political connection; close election; regression discontinuity design; firm value.
    JEL: D72 D73 D85 G3 G10 G11 G14 G30 C21
    Date: 2011–12
  14. By: Kieu-Trang Nguyen (SPEA, Indiana University, Bloomington, IN 47401, U.S.A); Quoc-Anh Do (School of Economics, Singapore Management University, Singapore 178903); Anh Tran (SPEA, Indiana University, Bloomington, IN 47401, U.S.A)
    Abstract: This paper studies nepotism by government officials in an authoritarian regime. We collect a unique dataset of political promotions of officials in Vietnam and estimate their impact on public infrastructure in their hometowns. We find strong positive effects on several outcomes, some with lags, including roads to villages, marketplaces, clean water access, preschools, irrigation, and local radio broadcasters, as well as the hometown’s propensity to benefit from the State’s “poor commune support program”. Nepotism is not limited to only top-level officials, pervasive even among those without direct authority over hometown budgets, stronger when the hometown chairperson’s and promoted official’s ages are closer, and where provincial leadership has more discretionary power in shaping policies, suggesting that nepotism works through informal channels based on specific political power and environment. Contrary to pork barrel politics in democratic parliaments, members of the Vietnamese legislative body have little influence on infrastructure investments for their hometowns. Given the top-down nature of political promotions, officials arguably do not help their tiny communes in exchange for political support. Consistent with that, officials favor only their home commune and ignore their home district, which could offer larger political support. These findings suggest that nepotism is motivated by officials’ social preferences directed towards their related circles, and signals an additional form of corruption that may prevail in developing countries with low transparency.
    Keywords: nepotism, infrastructure construction, official’s hometown, political connection,political promotion, social preference, directed altruism
    JEL: O12 H54 H72 D72 D64
    Date: 2011–12
  15. By: Ranganathan, C. (Asian Development Bank Institute); Palanisami, K. (Asian Development Bank Institute); Kakumanu, K. (Asian Development Bank Institute); Baulraj, A. (Asian Development Bank Institute)
    Abstract: Many rural poor people in developing countries depend on agriculture and are highly influenced by climatic change. Adaptation to climate change impacts is increasingly being observed in both physical and ecological systems as well as in human adjustments to resource availability and risk at different spatial and societal scales. This paper reviews some of the options for reducing the vulnerability of the poor through integrated climate change adaptation strategies. The paper explains the climate change effects on agricultural production, adoption experiences in the context of sustainable livelihoods, integration of structural and nonstructural measures, amelioration effects and their costs, and the role of informal institutions in implementation.
    Keywords: climate change; agricultural production; poverty reduction
    JEL: N55 O13 Q54
    Date: 2011–12–19

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